‘Mud-boggers’ on sensitive BLM land issued $400 tickets

Several people driving through mud-bogged, sensitive lands inside Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area may pay $400 for the experience, the Bureau of Land Management said Friday.

The individuals, who were not identified, were issued $400 tickets last week after BLM rangers allegedly caught them driving outside the bounds of designated roads and trails inside Gunnison Gorge following recent rains. Tread lightly, officials warn.

“We’ve seen a lot more unauthorized tracks by motorcycles, ATVs, UTVs and full-sized vehicles off of designated roads and trails in Elephant Skin, Flat Top and Peach Valley off-highway recreation areas,” Dave Kauffman, BLM Montrose office manager, said in a news release.

Fines for damaging government property can reach up to $100,000 and carry potential prison time up to a year, the release said.

Motorized travel inside Gunnison Gorge is limited to designated roads and trails, with the exception of certain areas in Peach Valley and Flat Top designated open areas for cross-country use. Vehicles must be 50 inches or less in width, the release said.

All federal roads, areas and trails are classified as either open, closed or limited.

Authorities ask anyone with questions to visit the Montrose Public Lands Center, 2465 S. Townsend Ave., or call 970-240-5300.


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