Sunday, April 29, 2007

State Trust Land

Below is a photo of the beautiful spot we had to vacate yesterday. We were parked with some friends in this valley just south of Moab that we knew was used by RVers frequently. We all thought this was federal land managed by the Bureau of Land Management and perfectly legal for us to spend some time there, as we all had done in the past. Well we were visited one morning by an employee of the State of Utah who informed us we needed to move off of State Trust Land within the next day. Needless to say, we were very disappointed. Didn't they understand that we were doing no harm? After all, the cows and horses were trampling on the ground and eating everything there. After some growsing amongst ourselves, we decided that at least we would make further inquiries and explain to the appropriate individuals that we were very good custodians of the land and that perhaps they would see fit to let us stay.
Well we wrote a letter to the State of Utah Land Trust Dept. and the six of us went to the office in Moab to discuss this with the young man who had come to give us our notice that morning. It was a learning experience. He was very respectful of our situation and listened courteously to our lobbying efforts. We learned that the land was donated for the sole purpose of earning funds to be contributed to the schools in Utah. The Land Trust Dept. is responsible for insuring the value of the land is maintained. The grazing of cows and horses that is permitted on the land helps to raise funds. It was difficult to argue with the ban on camping on the land after we were more informed. Due to our persuasive manners, we were successful in getting permission to stay for a few more days. But after sleeping on it, we all packed up and moved to the BLM campground a couple of miles down the road the next morning. We still have a fantastic view, just not the wide open space that we were sharing with the cows.
Our off-roading is in full swing now with friends that we met last year in Moab. Today we took the "Steelbender" trail. It was a full day of fourwheeling, about seven hours. There were plenty of obstacles and challenges. Photos of this weeks trails will follow.

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Hi: Thanks for your thoughts.