The official supporting club of Jericho Mountain State Park and Success OHRV trails.
Your Subtitle text

ATV News

TAKE A RIDE ON THE WILD SIDE - BY BARBARA TETREAULT
BERLIN DAILY SUN - 4/26/13

ANDROSCOGGIN VALLEY – Ten years ago, with the backing of then Berlin Mayor Robert Danderson, the state moved to purchase approximately 7,000 acres around Jericho Lake for an ATV park. At the time, there were few places for ATV riders and the city hoped to diversify its economy by marketing itself as a place that welcomed ATV riders. Now, with Coos County is positioning itself as one of the premier... places for ATV riding in the country with its Ride the Wilds initiative offering 1,000 miles of interconnected trails, the Androscoggin Valley is moving to capitalize on Jericho State Park and the region’s growing reputation for ATV riding. Earlier this month, the Androscoggin Valley Chamber of Commerce sponsored a presentation by Harry Brown, president of the North Country OHRV Coalition, the nonprofit organization that has developed Ride the Wilds. Brown and the task force’s marketing director Corrine Rober are hosting similar sessions across the county offering advice to local businesses on how to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the Ride the Wilds trail network and brand. Brown explained that the network of ATV trails in Coos County is not available anywhere in the eastern United States. The nearest competitor is the Hatfield McCoy Trails in West Virginia, which offers more than 600 miles of off-road trails. Brown said when the Ride the Wilds was initiated in 2011, he was looking for something that would create economic development for the region and take advantage of underutilized facilities. Probably the most signifi cant accomplishment was developing the coalition itself, bringing together 16 existing ATV and snowmobile clubs and all three chambers of commerce in the county. Much of the network uses existing logging roads and snowmobile trails. The coalition worked to get access to the Upper Connecticut Headwaters lands and to convince private landowners to allow ATVs on their property. There still are some gaps in the network before it is one continuous loop but the development of an east-west connector is in the works.
Brown points out the effort is self- funded — no tax money has been used in building the network with the member organizations providing volunteer labor. He said the future challenges will be to find money for trail development and maintenance, educating riders to safely use the trails, enforcement, providing access to services, and marketing. Brown pointed out that Hatfield McCoy Trails has a $750,000 annual marketing budget. Last year, the coalition had $15,000 for marketing.
Still, Brown said there are signs that Ride the Wilds is having an economic impact. The network was dedicated last June in a widely publicized ceremony that featured Gov. Maggie Hassan. Rooms and Meals revenues from Coos County the following quarter were up significantly higher than the rest of the state. Chris Gamache, head of the N.H. Trails Bureau, said last year saw a marked increase in ATV registrations. He said registrations had been growing steadily until 2007 when he said the recession hit the sport hard. Growth has been slow until last year when there was a 10 percent increase. Brown noted that nationwide sales of ATVs are increasing while snowmobile sales are flat. Gamache said the market is skyrocketing for the side-by-side ATVs, which allow riders to sit together and provide a roof, windshield, and room for a picnic lunch. The vehicles are also wider which is good news for Coos County because the trails here allow vehicles up to 62 inches wide. In the rest of the state, the width is limited to 50 inches. The coalition turned to N.H. Grand for marketing services and it used the limited advertising dollars to run ads in the Boston market and worked to promote the system. The N.H. Grand website contains an entire section on Ride the Wilds with an interactive map and information on rentals, events, and services. The Ride the Wilds logo has been trademarked and organizations are charged a small annual fee to use it as a way to raise money for marketing.
Cathy Conway of N.H. Grand said any tourism business that wants can be listed on the website which is also linked to the state’s tourism site. Brown said they are working to do direct marketing to dealers and to get in national ATV publications. He said in the future the coalition would like to market merchandise with the Ride the Wilds logo. Rober offered several examples of businesses that have successfully moved to take advantage of the Ride the Wilds trail system. In the Androscoggin Valley there are over 130 miles of ATV trails with the Jericho State Park the centerpiece. At the meeting, Ray Bergeron of Northeast ATV Rental in Gorham urged local merchants to support the ATV initiative in the Berlin-Gorham area. He said there is momentum behind it and said he believes Ride the Wilds will be great for the entire county if everyone works together. “We are just at the tip of this,” he said. Randy Cicchetto of Jericho Motorsports in Berlin said he started his business eight years ago and it has grown substantially. He said customers are coming from all over the country and spending money here. Dick Huot of the Androscoggin ATV Club said he had a lot of reservations about Ride the Wilds when he first heard about it. He found himself on the marketing committee and said he became a believer. The region has taken some hits with the closing of many of its mills and industrial facilities and Huot said ATVs can provide some economic activity. He said the region must buy into Ride the Wilds and promote it. “It’s good for everybody,” he said. Gamache said one major step the local communities have taken is allowing ATVs to ride on local roads to access businesses and trail heads. Gorham and Milan allow ATVs on specific roads. Berlin recently moved to allow ATVs to use all city streets to access trailheads and businesses. Berlin City Manager James Wheeler said the city hopes the move will encourage ATV enthusiasts outside the region to look at purchasing second homes in Berlin. He pointed out there are many quality houses in Berlin available at very reasonable prices. Gamache agreed with Wheeler, noting the city’s decision is big because it allows ATV enthusiasts to ride their ATVs to local trail systems and removes the need to trailer the vehicles. “That second home recreational market is ripe for the area,” Gamache said.
Berlin and the Androscoggin Valley are also hoping to continue to grow the annual Jericho ATV Festival. This year the date of the festival has been pushed back to Aug. 2 and 3 to allow Polaris to bring its Experience Tour to the event. The appearance of Polaris, a major ATV manufacturer, is expected to increase attendance. The chamber has also received a grant to help market the event which has grown every year.

OHRV AND SNOWMOBILE REGISTRATIONS NOW AUTOMATED

 

CONCORD, N.H. -- Beginning with the 2014-2015 registration year, Off-Highway Recreational Vehicle (OHRV) and snowmobile registration certificates will be computer-generated and printed by the agent on regular paper. Customers still must visit their OHRV registration agent in person to register their vehicles and receive their decals -- online registration is not available. A $2 transaction fee will be charged per vehicle registration; this fee goes to the vendor for the automated system, Sovereign Sportsman Solutions, to cover development and operating costs. . For example, a resident ATV registration, previously $55, will be $57. A resident club member snowmobile registration, previously $64, will be $66.

 

OHRV registration agents around the state have already been trained on the new system, says Fish and Game Licensing Supervisor Sue Perry. "I think our agents are going to be happy with electronic registrations,"

said Perry. "Automation will streamline their end-of-month administrative reporting duties and save time on the transaction at the counter."

 

For the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, the new system will replace an outdated multi-part paper registration certificate and allow faster access to registration data. In turn, the Trails Bureau will receive their distribution of monies faster and help expedite the funding for grants to snowmobile and OHRV clubs across the state.

 

For consumers, the OHRV registration transaction will be faster and easier. In many cases, their information will already be in the system.

 

"This is an important step forward," said Perry. "The new system allows Fish and Game to operate more efficiently and effectively, using technology that has been adopted nationwide with positive results."

 

Fourteen-month OHRV registrations for the 2014-2015 year are available as of May 1. Regular OHRV and snowmobile registrations will be available on or after June 16 for the registration year that begins July 1.

 

The N.H. Fish and Game Department has been using a similar automated system for issuing hunting and fishing licenses since December of 2013.

 

For a statewide list of OHRV Registration Agents visit http://www.wildnh.com/OHRV/ohrv_agent_list.htm.

NHOHVA Annual Meeting
April 26, 2014  Warren, NH








NHOHVA, the New Hampshire Off Highway Vehicle Association, has hired a lobbyist to work on their behalf with Concord legislators.  Rath Young Pignatelli will look out for the OHRV community's best interests in all legislations moving forward, but their primary focus will be in getting a "Club Incentive Bill" passed.  The Club Incentive Program would reward OHRV owners for joining a NHOHVA member club in a similar fashion to the way snowmobile registrations are currently processed.






August 24, 2013
Manchester Union Leader
John Harrigan: This about ATV trails from a non-aficionado

JOHN HARRIGAN


THE GRAND experiment, closer to the ground:

About six months ago, at March town meetings, North Country residents voted to allow ATV clubs to use dirt roads (in loftier climes, gravel roads) as links between trails. This was seen, and still is, as a means to encourage a pursui...t that could bring much-needed dollars into a territory that has lost almost everything but its scenery.
It is the same thing, in a way, that has driven the unheralded and - to some - incomprehensible opposition to Northern Pass: a stubbornness to keep and to hold what is ours, the only thing left, after losing Ethan Allen and Tillotson Manufacturing and Groveton Papers and every other big-jobs enterprise. In the end it is up to us to keep and love the beauty of the landscape, or leave.
And so landowners and taxpayers agreed to let ATV riders use certain segments of town-owned and traveled roads to foster what many people believe, and I'm one of them, is a pursuit that will eclipse snowmobiling in a very short time. Three years, and I'd bet the farm.
Just look at the logistics. Snowmobiling, in a good year, is a three-month deal. ATVs can run for six months. In addition, nowhere east of the Mississippi can ATV riders travel on such huge, well-maintained and circular trails with abundant places to eat and stay overnight and return to their trailers.
There is nothing left for those above the notches but the landscape, and we should not sacrifice the landscape for downstream users. As for the promised millions bestowed by Northern Pass to "train and educate" for jobs, the questions are: for what jobs, and when and where? What jobs are within driving distance, and I'm talking about people who would and are driving long distances?
There are no jobs, within reasonable distance, to educate us for. All we have is the land.

A trail-linking road runs right by my front lawn. If I'm out there mowing grass or fixing machinery or hauling logs or other things or just sitting on the front porch, I wave, and so do the ATV riders. (Hint: Stop and say hello.)
Having said all this, I'm not an ATV aficionado. To me, an ATV is a tool to use around the farm. Still, to each his own. I've ridden the trails and would rather walk as long as I'm able. My ATV, and it's a good machine, shakes me to death, and riding on steep trails scares me to hell and gone. Teenagers and lesser beings will scoff.
The minute the state forced ATV users to register their vehicles, the state owed users a place to ride. This began with a pathetic few places on public land. Now it has mushroomed into the private sector, and now it all depends on clubs gathering responsible riders and enforcing the rules and landowners willing to let them ride.
This is a good thing because, in the end, it was going to happen, land being finite. It all would have depended on landowners, who in the broad scheme of things allow 80 percent of all trails for snowmobiles or ATVs, statewide.
This means that ATV clubs, like snowmobile clubs, have to police riders and the trails. This means reining in the 10 percent (that is my figure) of rogue riders, which I'm sure constitute teenage riders whose parents do not instill any respect for other property owners or instill basic respect for others on the trail.
In the North Country, landowners and ATV clubs have embarked on a grand endeavor that now offers a circuitous trail system unequaled east of the Mississippi.

ATV riders can park their trailers and embark on a one-night, two-night or weeklong ride through astounding scenery and at nightfall can stay at fine establishments, whether in Gorham, Errol, Log Haven, Pittsburg, West Stewartstown, North Stratford, Colebrook or beyond.
Law enforcement friends tell me that the ATV scenario in southern New Hampshire has become so chaotic that they've given up.

I hope that's not true. Above the notches, we have hope and hold fast.

The key is for law enforcement people to know each and every household harboring an ATV. In the south, this is daunting because the numbers are so huge.
The key for landowners and users, in the end, is communication and respect for landowners in a community that cares.

John Harrigan's address: PO Box 39, Colebrook NH 03576, or hooligan@ncia.net

Berlin park to open up for ATVs

 
BERLIN - A land exchange will add nearly 100 acres to the land available for off-road vehicle trails in Jericho Mountain State Park.

The first step is a swap of conservation land in Bartlett and White Mountain National Forest land completely surrounded by the Berlin ATV park. The swap is between the Society for Protection of New Hampshire Forests and the U.S. Forest Service.

The society will then sell the Jericho tract to the state. The tract on the northern slope of Bartlett Mountain will become part of the White Mountain National Forest. The appraised value of the 96.6-acre parcel at Jericho was set at $48,300; the 76.5-acre Bartlett tract is valued at $39,000.

The Forest Society will pay the White Mountain Forest the difference in value of the two parcels - $9,300. And the state will pay the society the appraised value for the Jericho parcel.

"It absolutely makes sense for us to acquire it," Chris Gamache, head of the New Hampshire Trails Bureau, said Thursday. 

Gamache said formal discussions started in 2009, and that the transfer is expected to be complete by late summer or early fall.

The acreage has a dirt road through it which could not be used as long as it was part of the White Mountain National Forest, he said. There is already a snowmobile corridor through the land.

"This land exchange is the result of consideration by an interdisciplinary team and collaboration with two of our local land management partners, the Forest Society and the state of New Hampshire Department of Resources and Economic Development (DRED)," Tom Wagner, White Mountain National Forest supervisor, wrote in his March 11 letter of decision for the Bartlett Mountain Land Exchange.

He added: "We're extremely happy to be able to finish this land acquisition."

"The outcome is well worth it," Jack Savage, Forest Society spokesman said, noting the society bought the land in 2009 with the goal of holding it for eventual purchase by the WMNF.

By Edith Tucker
Coos County Democrat


March 6, 2013
STEWARTSTOWN — The likelihood that completing a 1,000-mile-long interconnected ATV trail system in Coös County — now branded “Ride The Wilds” — in time for summer riding is now so great that an all-day Grand Opening will be held on June 15 at Coleman State Park.

“We chose that day because we figure that even the system’s remote trails at higher elevations will be dry enough to open up,” explained Harry Brown of Stewartstown, president of the North Country OHRV Coalition that is co-sponsoring the celebration with the state Bureau of Trails.

New Hampshire Grand recently assisted the Coalition by facilitating a strategic messaging session with all the participants interested in working together for the success of an interconnected trail system. Each of the 15 ATV clubs represented by the Coalition is eligible to have one board member.

Common signage, easily accessible maps, a logo and website — and possibly mobile apps — are all on the docket as the Coalition’s next steps.

Brown, who has been untiring in his efforts to connect the trail system so that ATV riders don’t have to trailer their vehicles from one location to another, compares “connectivity” to opening up a new factory. “It’s a new economic development driver that will help existing small businesses, like the Diamond Peaks Motel and Store on Route 26 in Colebrook, and spur new hospitality oriented enterprises to open up, from restaurants to rental and repair shops.

“It’s all coming together,” Brown explained in a Wednesday afternoon phone interview.

“Members of the OHRV Coalition believe that connecting up the trails will help bring riders from across the Northeast to the 7,500 acre Jericho Mountain State Park in Berlin as well as customers into downtown Colebrook and other North Country communities.”

Many people — club members, boards of selectmen, the Coös county commissioners and delegation, state Bureau of Trails and personnel in other state DRED divisions — have worked hard to make this happen, Brown explained. He happily concluded, “The Grand Opening on June 15 will indeed be a grand day!” 


Letter to the Editor, Berlin Daily Sun
Androscoggin Valley ATV Club needs your help.

                       

            The Androscoggin Valley ATV Club (AVATV) manages the Jericho & Success OHRV trails along with the downtown connector trail. This amounts to approximately 80 miles of trails in Berlin and Success that need constant maintenance.  All of this work is done by a limited number of volunteers.  A portion of the funds to accomplish this work comes from your ATV/UTV/Trail bike registration dollars in the form of Grant-in-Aid funding and from gasoline taxes you pay when you fill up your OHRV.  Per State statute these funds can only be applied for and received by a non-profit organization, such as your local ATV Club.  Also per State statute the Jericho Mountain State Park ATV trails would not have been born or continue to exist without your locally organized AVATV Club.  There are costs associated with the operation of a non-profit club that are not covered by grants which is what some of your membership dollars pay for.  Since the first Jericho trails were opened in 2006 membership numbers have dropped from a high of over 200 to just below 50 to date.  There are many ATV enthusiasts in this area that enjoy the Jericho, Success and City Connector trail system on a regular basis.  You may have noticed trails needing work, more signage, obstacles blocking trails, memberships slow to get processed, etc…  This is all due to not enough volunteers.

            Now you can to ride an OHRV from Gorham to the Canadian border.  This would not be possible without the Androscoggin Valley ATV Club and all of the other ATV Club’s from Gorham to Pittsburg along with tremendous support from the NH Bureau of Trails and cooperation from many landowners.  Every club along the way has played a vital role in the interconnection of the trail systems, which will rival that of the popular Hatfield-McCoy trails in West Virginia, while providing a huge boost in the tourism economy!

            For the past three years the AVATV Club has organized the popular Jericho ATV Festival.  The work involved in organizing this event coupled with the duties of managing several miles of ATV trails has put a tremendous burden on the AVATV Club volunteers.

            Please consider joining the AVATV Club and offering your help in any way you can.  There are many more duties other than physical trail work that need to be done.  The Club also needs volunteers to make the 2013 Jericho ATV Festival bigger and better.  The AVATV Club has regular monthly meetings held on the last Wednesday of every month at the Tri-County Cap office on 30 Exchange St. across from the Post Office in Berlin at 6:30 PM with a Festival organization meeting following at 7:00 PM.  All are welcome to attend and you don’t need to own an OHRV.  An enthusiasm to help grow our community is all that is needed.  Membership applications are available at Jericho Motorsports, Absolute Power Sports or on our website at www.avatvclub.org and clicking on the membership page.

We look forward to meeting you,

AVATV Club Board of Directors 

Website Builder