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Voyageur Country ATV

Posted by on August 7, 2017



Bruce Beste

We started a new ATV club – Voyageur Country ATV – in late April.  We had 66 people at an organizational meeting on April 25 where all 66 joined the new club.  We have had tremendous support and interest from the local ATV community.  To date we have over 500 adult members.  We are in the process to add approximately 60 children of family memberships to our member count.  Children between 12 and 16 who have ATV Safety Certificates will become family members (we also want to know children of members between 12 and 16 who are interested in a safety course because our club will sponsor classes).

Our membership includes folks from Orr, Leiding Township, Camp 5 Township, Crane Lake, Portage Township, Beatty Township, and Cook (plus other places).   Our mission is foremost to create an ATV trails system in Voyageur Country and promoting local business and commerce.  Then (secondly) to promote responsible riding on the system, and instruction for youth.

While there are many miles of ATV trails in the forests between Cook, Lake Vermillion, Crane Lake, Elephant Lake, Myrtle Lake,  Pelican Lake, and Orr, there is not a connecting system of roads open to ATV use.  Thereby, making it difficult to go from one trail to the other without trailering or loading machines onto trucks and trailers.  This method also creates a situation of several trucks and trailers parked along the forested roads.

Our club has met with The US Forest Service regards to the Forest Roads 491 and 203 between Crane Lake and Elephant Lake.  We have met with St Louis County regards to County Roads 23, 24, and 422 between Lake Vermillion, Cook, and Crane Lake.  And regards to County Road 180 between Cusson and Elephant Lake.  These roads could be the backbone of a larger trails system in Voyageur Country.  We have also met with the MN DNR regards to the Managed trails at County Road 422 and the Gold Mine Resort Road, and the Holm Logging roads near Lake Vermillion and Elbow Lake, and we have met with Molpus Companies regards to property and ATV access between Black Duck Lake and the Sheep Ranch Road north of Cusson.  In early October, some of these roads opened for ATV use as a pilot for a new permitting ordinance for St Louis County.

Local government-wise, our club has met with Portage, Leiding, Camp 5,  Beatty, and Crane Lake Townships and received support from them for our trails proposal to the US Forest Service and to St Louis County.  We have met with City of Cook and City of Orr and they too have written letters of support.   We are currently working on an Ordinance review of Two Harbors, Hermantown, Chisholm, and Eveleth regarding ATV use and will present to both Cook and Orr.

I have attached a couple letters to our local government representatives that I sent out late winter as we were beginning to organize.  And 2 letters of support (from Crane Lake Visitor Bureau and one from Township of Crane Lake).  We have other support letters from other townships that I did not include.

Our club officers are:

President – Brad Sokolowski

VP – Mike Koski

Treasurer – Gretchen Janssen

Secretary – Melissa Rabas

Trail Administrator – Steve Koch

Board Members – Tom Tacik, Bruce Beste

At this time, I believe this evening’s presentation will be done by Steve Koch and me.  We will bring along maps of the proposed trails system.

Thank you.  Bruce.

One Response to Voyageur Country ATV

  1. Brad Yaritz

    Any chance of this app being updated anytime soon? I was looking at the fishing report and it is quite out of date.


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