Page 1 of 1

Kooc closures

Posted: Wed May 17, 2017 7:02 pm
by trailguy
Camped at Kooc and BC Forestry is in the process of closing most of the OHV trails and some of the Random camping. Two days ago a team of trucks & personal has put up a stagering amount of closure signage. I am not sure if all Random camping is being eliminated or not, as they will likely continue signage throughout the week. I can confirm all of the meadows from the T on Door road down to the Corrals has been closed to camping. Also the Mini sand dune area at Door West where the private RV park is has been closed to OHV & random camping, so all of trails off both sides of the Lake road, the dunes themselves and the meadows are all closed. I have also seen several other sustainable trails closed. They are putting up large info signs stating that OHV's are only permitted on hard pack roads and signed OHV trails, i have yet to see a legal designated trail sign.
This is in response to the trail closures in Alberta and the anticipated volume of OHV's. April longweekend was extremely busy at Kooc.
I have no cell service in camp so i hiked up a mountain to get service. I may post tomorrow evening if i have anymore updates.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Wed May 17, 2017 7:26 pm
by boland
May long weekend at kooc is always a nightmare of people leaving gigantic messes from huge parties. I wouldn't be surprised if this is just for may long to prevent some of that nonsense.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Thu May 18, 2017 8:26 am
by MotorEd
www.koocanusarecreation.ca

Spoke with a Regional Manager from Recreation Sites and Trails BC. They have had several open house discussions about the area. Increased usage of the area is a growing concern, along with the native issues and protection of the grasslands. He did mention specifically the traffic from Albertans because of the Castle Closure...which i said is a bit premature as that hasnt taken effect yet, but nonetheless thats the perception from the locals...too many Albertans coming and riding in that area.

He did say they are looking to establish a legal trail system that can be maintained and close down the other non sustainable trails eventually. But this is the first phase and really is an advisement, the next stage is enforcement...timing on that was yet to be determined.

Seems a death spiral here, silimiar to what happened with GAMP. Closed down riding areas, force more people into smaller areas, the result? over use and abuse.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Thu May 18, 2017 10:58 am
by trailguy
This is not just for May long weekend, this is permanent signage/closures. In speaking with one Forestry Officer they are moving to a designated trail system, although whether there will be any singletrack trails is still being debated.
I can't say i'm surprised with the changes as we have almost lost Kooc a couple of times over the years. Currently just way too many users in the area for it to stay the way it has been.
A big concern right now is they have closed singletrack trails that are flat, hard packed and very sustainable.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Thu May 18, 2017 11:51 am
by MotorEd
trailguy wrote:Currently just way too many users in the area for it to stay the way it has been.
A big concern right now is they have closed singletrack trails that are flat, hard packed and very sustainable.


totally agree.

The first 2 points on how this new group would like the area to be governed points directly to OHV usage.

Respect Our Environment:
Report unauthorized activity to 1-877-952-RAPP (7277).

Motorized vehicle use should be restricted to existing hard surface roads only.
Soil disturbance by motorized vehicles is prohibited.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Fri May 19, 2017 7:02 am
by downunder366
Pretty disappointed to hear this news. Def one of my favourite places to go camping/riding/boating.

Unfortunately, allot of abuse from irresponsible users have ruined it again for others. I think we all know what they are trying to do throughout BC and AB.

Personally I feel its in everyones best interest to keep an eye on campers/OHV users etc and report any type of abuse or disrespect for all areas.

My biggest concern, is the amount of increased traffic on the areas that are still open to OHV use. Kooc is a great place for shoulder season riding (esp spring). Unfortunately now we will probably see more trail damage in the Waip and Mclean areas.

I wonder if the club can provide more awareness through signage or through social media? I'd be happy to donate $$. The repetitive pics on social media of trail damage and rubbish left from campers do nothing for our cause.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Mon May 22, 2017 7:51 pm
by trailguy
Spent a week their. Did not see any more Random camping closures other than what was in my OP. Not sure of the Random camping status at the big dunes and south of their along the lake to the boarder.
More trail closure signage went up, however signed or not, all singletrack and non hardpacked two trackers are now illegal to ride OHV's in Kooc.
MotorEd posted it above " Motorized vehicle use should be restricted to existing hard surface roads only.
Soil disturbance by motorized vehicles is prohibited." This is on their website, the info signage being installed also states "Designated trails". Talking with more Forestry and one CO, they confirmed there are no designated trails yet and it is still a work in progress.
They could not confirm if more area's will see Random camping closures, garbage being left behind is a major problem.
Riding on anything other than Hardpack roads they are considering Environmental damage and is a $575 fine. The CO's are not easing into it with warning, they were writing up $575 tickets. I felt sorry for a guy in a truck down on the lake bottom that will soon be under water. He was doing donuts and they gave him a $575 ticket for Enviro damage. I asked the CO that wrote the ticket if we are not aloud to ride below the high water line and they said we can ride trucks, quads and DB if we don't spin our tires. They are going bonkers with this "Sensitive Grasslands" krap { as they nuke the area with dirty Logging practices }, so their reasoning for writing up the truck guy was the lake bottom had the potential to grow grass. :crazy:
They are also considering implementing a Mountain Bike trail system, they would be giving them some of the current DB singletrack. As a guy that spends more time on my MTB than DB this is a horrible idea and will not work, especially with the BC locals. I voiced my opinion to a few Forestry and CO's that this is a terrible idea and is destine for failure.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 12:41 pm
by cedric
Here's what the signs look like.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Fri May 26, 2017 7:58 am
by boogle2
What a disappointment. With these closures, the castle closures, and now word of an MLA wanting to shut down a bunch of riding in the Ghost/Waiparous area, it seems like one can almost see the end of the great trail riding we have at our fingertips here in Calgary.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 1:17 pm
by ttwest
Any updates on designated Trails being opened?

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 1:25 pm
by axel99
boogle2 wrote:What a disappointment. With these closures, the castle closures, and now word of an MLA wanting to shut down a bunch of riding in the Ghost/Waiparous area, it seems like one can almost see the end of the great trail riding we have at our fingertips here in Calgary.


Which local MLA are you referring to?

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 1:33 pm
by boogle2
Cameron Westhead. Apparently had a meeting with ranchers of big horn MD looking to close the entire west side of the riding area. I guess that would mean the entire transalta road would be closed.

Re: Kooc closures

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 2:50 pm
by axel99
Interesting, We run into some of the ranchers on the East side of FT road and have only had positive encounters. They use alot of the historic single track and quad trails for managing thier cattle on quads and horse back. They seem to like having passable trails.

I believe its one fellow on the west side complaining vocally, seems to think he should have a couple thousand acres of public land for exclusive use at a couple dollars a acre. GAMP lives on.

If you come across a herd of cattle please slow down and pass by, creating as little distrubance as possible. A startled animal can easily brake a leg or get seriously injured, which is almot always fatal.