Shed Antler Hunters Reminded to RIDE ON Designated Routes in Utah
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (March 29, 2013) — With weather conditions improving, more and more people will be heading outdoors and shed antler hunting is a great way to spend time enjoying Utah’s public lands with friends and family this spring. State and federal agencies responsible for managing Utah’s natural resources would like to remind shed antler hunters to only RIDE ON Designated Routes while participating in this popular outdoor activity.
Whether you are traveling by foot, hoof or on a set of tires, staying on an existing route minimizes environmental impacts, reduces erosion and helps keep our precious water resources clean. If you are traveling by motorized vehicle, also known as an off-highway vehicle (OHV), you should know while some opportunities still exist to travel cross-country in areas like the Little Sahara sand dunes, most public lands in Utah limit motorized travel only to routes designated as open to OHVs. It is also important to know that not every existing road or trail is included in the system of routes designated open to OHVs so make sure you get an up-to-date map with information regarding the use of motor vehicles from your local land management agency.
The majority of those searching for antlers do so responsibly. However, every year there are people that leave designated roads and trails with their OHV which has the potential to stress wildlife weakened by winter, causes tremendous damage to important wildlife habitat and do so illegally.
Law enforcement will be patrolling popular shed hunting areas this spring to ensure compliance with existing travel management rules. So please tread lightly, drive or ride only on roads or trails designated as open and do your part to help keep respected access open access.
Thanks and RIDE ON Utah!
For more information regarding Utah’s RIDE ON Designated Routes campaign and Tread Lightly!, click here.
Tread Lightly! is a national nonprofit organization with a mission to promote responsible recreation through ethics education and stewardship programs. Tread Lightly!’s award-winning educational message, along with its training and restoration initiatives are strategically designed to instill an ethic of responsibility in outdoor enthusiasts and the industries that serve them. The program is long-term in scope with a goal to balance the needs of the people who enjoy outdoor recreation with our need to maintain a healthy environment. Tread Lightly! offers unique programs and services to help remedy current recreation issues. Individuals and businesses can commit to Tread Lightly! and protect outdoor access by becoming a member at www.treadlightly.org.
The School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration is an independent state agency that manages 3.4 million acres of Utah trust lands for the financial benefit of Utah’s public schools and other public institutions. Money generated from school trust lands is deposited in the state Permanent School Fund.
The Division of Utah State Parks and Recreation preserves and provides natural, cultural and recreational resources for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of this and future generations. Attracting nearly 5 million visitors annually, Utah’s 43 state parks and museums generate tourism revenue for our state and local economies, and are vital to our quality of life as destinations of beauty, natural wonder, history and culture. Utah State Parks and Recreation also administers the state summer and winter off-highway vehicle programs, providing education, trail maintenance, grant programs, user compliance, accident investigation, and search and rescue.
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources serves the people of Utah as trustee and guardian of the state’s wildlife. We believe wildlife is valuable to everyone. Our goal is to expand wildlife populations and conserve sensitive species by protecting and improving wildlife habitat. Preserving our fishing, hunting and shooting sports traditions is an important part wildlife management and conservation and adds to the quality of life in Utah.
The mission of the U.S. Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The Agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to State and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world.
The mission of the Bureau of Land Management is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The BLM manages over 245 million surface acres according to their multiple-use mission to manage public land resources for a variety of uses, while protecting a wide array of natural, cultural, and historical resources.