February '19

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FEBRUARY 2019 THE SHOP 7 that genuinely admires the great outdoors, cherishes the land it uses, and acts sensibly while trail riding. So, what's the answer to achieving com- promise and peace? LIAISON EFFORTS BRIDGING THE GAP Organizations like Off-Road Business Association (ORBA) exist because there is a budding need for outside groups to assist with liaison efforts between grassroots 4x4 enthusiasts and regulators, ensuring a fair and just approach from both sides. Its very existence is "to advance the off- road community by influencing policy and implementing change with congressional lobbying and the ability to work cohesively through partnerships." Here's a statement on its mission: ORBA proactively protects recreation access and opportunities by ensuring that America's families are not arbitrarily denied the right to responsibly recreate. ORBA provides leadership in addressing land use issues by advancing policies that conserve the environment while at the same time providing off-road recreation opportunities. We are a professional trade association com- posed of off-road-related businesses united to promote common goals that support the prosperity and growth of the off-road industry. ORBA makes decisions and takes actions that maintain and expand off-highway vehicle recreation opportunity. ORBA works closely with its partner organizations on local, state and federal issues that have potential impacts to the off-road industry. We are dedicated to making it possible for the OHV industry to have a voice in land use issues. So, how is the off-road education effort going, and are the 4x4 and powersports communities successfully navigating a more complex scenario in comparison to years past? Well, these days it's common practice for off-roaders to adhere to Tread Lightly! tac- tics that lessen the environmental impact as they encounter challenges on the trail. "Constantly scan the path ahead to pick the safest route around large holes, ruts, bumps, railway tracks, culverts, fences, posts, debris and other obstacles or haz- ards. Avoid dangerous terrain such as steep slopes, marshes and swamps. Drive over, not around, to avoid widening the trail." Widespread adoption of respectable off-roading practices has been embraced in a positive manner—first and foremost because it's the right thing to do. "People recognize that in order to keep active, we have to obey the rules. And in order to keep our opportunities, we need to protect the environment," says Amy Granat, managing director at the California Off-Road Vehicle Association (CORVA). It is a sentiment Wood echoes. "Many of Trout Unlimited's 300,000 members and supporters help maintain trails and drive Jeeps and other all-terrain vehicles to get to hard-to-reach spots, and do so responsibly," he told The Drive. Despite significant improvement and with most off-roaders adopting respon- sible practices, however, the sport continues to experience ideological challenges from some environmentalists and outlier law As aftermarket professionals, it pays to remind consumers of the importance of playing by the rules, so that they can come back year after year for more parts and services. (Photo courtesy Pro Comp USA) FEBRUARY 2019 THE SHOP 7 Environmental and off-road agencies continue to work collaboratively to create land use rules that a majority of users can agree upon. (Photos courtesy Pro Comp USA)

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