George Radke ATVAM President Legislation into 2013 / Winter Riding Opportunities With new legislators in the Minnesota House of Representatives and Senate, as well as new Committee Chairs, the session starting in January should be interesting to say the least. A big part of your membership dues and donations are dedicated to supporting ATV riding, trails, and all ATV use in Minnesota by working with the House, Senate and other state and local agencies. I’m positive this session is sure to bring some challenges and opportunities. And I have an opportunity for you.Your club President and/or ATVAM Representative, as well as all ATVAM Regional Directors, are invited to our Legislative Summit coming up on January 12.This is a one-day session and an opportunity for all ATVAM member clubs to be heard. At your next club meeting, look at the “resolution process” and come up with your own. Send a resolution or two and representatives to the Summit.Tell ATVAM what you would like to see changed or adopted. Resolutions received will be discussed and either dropped or accepted and move forward in the process to determine how and what would be required to make it happen as well as a timeline.This event is not open to our general membership but if you have some comments or ideas we sure would like to hear them! If your club did not get an invite please let me know at george. radke9@gmail.com. With all of the new elected officials, now is the time to get on their schedules and invite them to your next club meeting or function. Get to know them and let them get to know you. I cannot stress strongly enough how important this is. They hear from those against ATV recreation. We need to be heard, too. Well enough about legislation.The holidays are upon us and I sure would love to have a white Christmas. Winter can be such a glorious time! Many of us put our wheelers away for the winter or use them just to plow snow or ice fish. But ATV trail riding in Winter? Yes, sir! While there are not enough opportunities out there, some that are available are great, such as Nemadji State Forest. Need I say more? Sections of the Matthew Lourey State Trail are scheduled to open soon to ATVs, including winter use.This trail will connect once-separated sections, and link to the Gandy Dancer for miles of fun and great winter scenery. With your help, we’re working hard to make more winter trails available. Do you know of a trail that may make a good winter riding opportunity, whether ATV only or shared snowmobile? Tell us about it. Remember that almost all of the 20,000 miles of snowmobile trail in Minnesota were built by clubs. We need your help and support to build these ATV trails. After last winter with low snow conditions, many do not understand why we could not ride our ATVs on the snowmobile trails. Many of the businesses that rely on tourism did not have any snowmobilers and would have welcomed ATVers. Snowmobile clubs have put a lot of time and effort into securing private landowner permission for their trail access and this permission does not include ATV use. If we want to ride on private property, we need to ask. OR DECEMBER 2012/JANUARY 2013 3