A bill introduced in the House and the Senate would designate over 9 million acres of public land in Utah as Wilderness, effectively closing off that land to any off-road riding. If land is designated as Wilderness then no vehicles, including motorcycles, ATVs, UTVs or bicycles, are allowed on that land. Called the America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act, the bill includes riding areas around Moab, the San Rafael Swell and Chimney Rock. The Utah congressional delegation opposes the legislation and some of them are working with local stakeholders to develop a separate lands bill. The American Motorcyclist Association is encouraging off-road riders to oppose the legislation. Learn more: Powersportsbusiness.com
Comment: Besides the riders themselves this legislation can impact dealers as well. In some recent interviews, dealers have told me about the negative effect on their business of local land access rules. In one case it was land use rules passed by the local municipality and in other it was a long-term trend at the state level. In the latter case the dealer stopped carrying an off-road line of UTVs because of poor sales he attributed to the very limited areas available for off-road riding.