Fix Our Parks

TheChairman

New Member
Aug 16, 2022
21
19
Browns Mills
I just moved back here to Pemberton and ride my dual sport in Brendan T Byrne. I actually go for distance, and probably cross between forests. I found all of the various maps, blazes, websites and signage super confusing as to what roads are where, what is legal, and what is even private property. So I found this website and started to read in hopes to get some answers. I know what "POSTED" means, I know what "NO MOTORIZED VEHICLES" means, and I know what a locked gate stands for. I see signs that say "NO ATVs", but I also know that tagged and registered vehicles are allowed on the roads. Does that include me, too?

Sheesh! Now I have a bunch of acronyms I don't know thrown into the mix.

I keep it to established roads and I travel slow, usually under 20mph. I figured I was probably OK, but the more I read here the more confused I get. I was tracing out a road I recently traveled on Google Maps and it actually disappears from the map at one point. In retrospect, I noticed that the NJDEP or whatever signs did stop being nailed to the trees but the road was definitely there with no breaks. I hope I wasn't on someone's hunting land or something. That's dangerous.

The last thing I want is to be cited and have my bike impounded. Ignorance is not an excuse for breaking the law, not that it seems to matter. I've ridden thousands of miles at this point and never ONCE seen a wildlife officer or Ranger. Believe me, If I saw one I'd approach them immediately just to try and get answers. Not even so much as an official looking person conducting some sort of research or work to stop and talk to. Just other dual sports and Jeepers. WHY is there ZERO law enforcement presence?!? Do they just show up for sting operations when things get bad enough and then leave? Where Im from, Fish and Game officers patrol these sorts of places just like any other law enforcement officer would patrol city streets. Who or where do I even call to report people destroying the roads or ponds?

This is my first post here. Just wanted to give some perspective as not quite an outsider looking in. This is an absolute mess.
 
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TheChairman

New Member
Aug 16, 2022
21
19
Browns Mills
We have it good, and some people want to restrict us. Well, to hell with them.
Some law enforcement presence would go a long way in keeping everything open. There’s a list of rules a mile long already.

There’s no threat of consequences. None. The people who do damage know they are doing damage and don’t care because there’s no threat of consequences.

Even as much as a law enforcement presence alone would likely be enough to make the most egregious acts stop. A few officers visibly patrolling on ATVs or dual sports. That’s all.
 

Tony

Scout
Jul 30, 2015
59
33
70
Folsom
Some law enforcement presence would go a long way in keeping everything open. There’s a list of rules a mile long already.

There’s no threat of consequences. None. The people who do damage know they are doing damage and don’t care because there’s no threat of consequences.

Even as much as a law enforcement presence alone would likely be enough to make the most egregious acts stop. A few officers visibly patrolling on ATVs or dual sports. That’s all.
I just moved back here to Pemberton and ride my dual sport in Brendan T Byrne. I actually go for distance, and probably cross between forests. I found all of the various maps, blazes, websites and signage super confusing as to what roads are where, what is legal, and what is even private property. So I found this website and started to read in hopes to get some answers. I know what "POSTED" means, I know what "NO MOTORIZED VEHICLES" means, and I know what a locked gate stands for. I see signs that say "NO ATVs", but I also know that tagged and registered vehicles are allowed on the roads. Does that include me, too?

Sheesh! Now I have a bunch of acronyms I don't know thrown into the mix.

I keep it to established roads and I travel slow, usually under 20mph. I figured I was probably OK, but the more I read here the more confused I get. I was tracing out a road I recently traveled on Google Maps and it actually disappears from the map at one point. In retrospect, I noticed that the NJDEP or whatever signs did stop being nailed to the trees but the road was definitely there with no breaks. I hope I wasn't on someone's hunting land or something. That's dangerous.

The last thing I want is to be cited and have my bike impounded. Ignorance is not an excuse for breaking the law, not that it seems to matter. I've ridden thousands of miles at this point and never ONCE seen a wildlife officer or Ranger. Believe me, If I saw one I'd approach them immediately just to try and get answers. Not even so much as an official looking person conducting some sort of research or work to stop and talk to. Just other dual sports and Jeepers. WHY is there ZERO law enforcement presence?!? Do they just show up for sting operations when things get bad enough and then leave? Where Im from, Fish and Game officers patrol these sorts of places just like any other law enforcement officer would patrol city streets. Who or where do I even call to report people destroying the roads or ponds?

This is my first post here. Just wanted to give some perspective as not quite an outsider looking in. This is an absolute mess.
I ride out there too in fact I ride two to three times a week and I see the park police out on patrol a lot. I also see the Fish and Games officers too.
 

TheChairman

New Member
Aug 16, 2022
21
19
Browns Mills
I ride out there too in fact I ride two to three times a week and I see the park police out on patrol a lot. I also see the Fish and Games officers too.
Definitely not doubting that, just that I’ve never encountered one.

Years ago I worked at Walmart in Lumberton, and I had one customer who is an avid hunter. He told me Burlington County only has one game warden assigned to it. I have no way to verify that and it was a while ago, obviously. I fished a lot at the time and can say the only warden I ever met was the nice uniformed lady who came to pick up the child support books from the license counter.

I’m from Florida originally. Down there, you can’t engage in any form of outdoor recreation without encountering Fish and Game officers regularly. They have more jurisdiction than the state police. If plants grow or animals live there, they can cite and arrest. I had one stop me for speeding once, green and blue flashing lights and all. It also helps that funding for environmental enforcement there is rarely contested by anyone, no matter their political affiliations.
 

JerseyDevil

Scout
Dec 22, 2003
86
67
57
Jackson, NJ
I just moved back here to Pemberton and ride my dual sport in Brendan T Byrne. I actually go for distance, and probably cross between forests. I found all of the various maps, blazes, websites and signage super confusing as to what roads are where, what is legal, and what is even private property. So I found this website and started to read in hopes to get some answers. I know what "POSTED" means, I know what "NO MOTORIZED VEHICLES" means, and I know what a locked gate stands for. I see signs that say "NO ATVs", but I also know that tagged and registered vehicles are allowed on the roads. Does that include me, too?

Sheesh! Now I have a bunch of acronyms I don't know thrown into the mix.

I keep it to established roads and I travel slow, usually under 20mph. I figured I was probably OK, but the more I read here the more confused I get. I was tracing out a road I recently traveled on Google Maps and it actually disappears from the map at one point. In retrospect, I noticed that the NJDEP or whatever signs did stop being nailed to the trees but the road was definitely there with no breaks. I hope I wasn't on someone's hunting land or something. That's dangerous.

The last thing I want is to be cited and have my bike impounded. Ignorance is not an excuse for breaking the law, not that it seems to matter. I've ridden thousands of miles at this point and never ONCE seen a wildlife officer or Ranger. Believe me, If I saw one I'd approach them immediately just to try and get answers. Not even so much as an official looking person conducting some sort of research or work to stop and talk to. Just other dual sports and Jeepers. WHY is there ZERO law enforcement presence?!? Do they just show up for sting operations when things get bad enough and then leave? Where Im from, Fish and Game officers patrol these sorts of places just like any other law enforcement officer would patrol city streets. Who or where do I even call to report people destroying the roads or ponds?

This is my first post here. Just wanted to give some perspective as not quite an outsider looking in. This is an absolute mess.

I see park police and game officers all the time, every time I'm out there in fact.. They are in areas that need enforcement usually, not the main roads. No they can't be everywhere but they work hard. If it's a maintained road, not posted otherwise, and you have a legal plate, and insurance, you're allowed anywhere a car is allowed. I'd like to keep it that way, without permit requirements. Permits won't solve anything at all.

Zero enforcement..? No way. It is more that a million acres but they do a good job considering all the variables. Could they use some more officers and some more funding sure. There is much more an issue of illegal dumping than anything else.
 

TheChairman

New Member
Aug 16, 2022
21
19
Browns Mills
I guess I must be doing something right if I’m not seeing them.

Correct me if I’m in the wrong spot for this but, where does one go to get involved helping with clean up and other projects?

I tried to join the one Facebook group, but I wasn’t accepted and now I can’t find the group. I assume I was probably declined and blocked because my profile picture shows me wearing my helmet.
 

JerseyDevil

Scout
Dec 22, 2003
86
67
57
Jackson, NJ
I guess I must be doing something right if I’m not seeing them.

Correct me if I’m in the wrong spot for this but, where does one go to get involved helping with clean up and other projects?

I tried to join the one Facebook group, but I wasn’t accepted and now I can’t find the group. I assume I was probably declined and blocked because my profile picture shows me wearing my helmet.
The stigma is so strong you won't beat it with a helmet on, or a team of jeeps cleaning up the forest as the largest grass roots cleanups ever done. They want it all with no compromise.
 
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TommyP

Explorer
Mar 30, 2022
122
100
Clementon
thomaspluck.substack.com
The stigma is so strong you won't beat it with a helmet on, or a team of jeeps cleaning up the forest as the largest grass roots cleanups ever done. They want it all with no compromise.
I’m going to help clean up Turkey Swamp Wildlife Management Area with a bunch of Subaru Owners at the end of the month. I remember when mountain bikes were considered the “trail ruiners” by my fellow hikers. Now they have been admitted into the fold.
I attended the Fix Our Parks meeting for 45 minutes before I had to leave. One member did complain about bicycles, and e-bikes, calling them “motorized vehicles.” Once again, e-bikes are not dirt bikes, most are hybrids that can be pedaled or not. I saw two people using them at Carranza when I got stuck in that washout rutted deep by off-roaders. E-bikes can make trails accessible to those who can’t bike or hike long distances, and while bicycles can wear down hiking trails, I’ve come to accept them, as long as riders signal. (That can be a Lance Armstrong wannabe shouting MOVE! in north NJ in my experience, but that’s another issue.)

I didn’t hear anything at the Fix Our Parks meeting about closing roads, which I find disingenuous, if that’s being discussed elsewhere.
One member mentioned that ATVs fording streams destroys the habitat. I can see that happening on a well-traveled ford. The few lifted Jeeps I’ve seen in the Pinelands have passed me on marked roads like High Crossing, and Iron Pipe road in Washington, which as far as I can tell, permit vehicles.

It is extremely aggravating to see anyone willfully dumping trash or destroying wilderness and bragging about it online, but the way to stop it is enforcement, not closing. A good example is the recent raid against that large off-road group illegally on private property. The egregious offenders tend to brag about it, so a well-funded park police monitoring social media could know about it ahead of time, or fine or arrest offenders and impound vehicles who identify themselves in videos. I remember when a speeding Ferrari driver was caught via his front license plate reflecting in a car he was tailgating. I’m not really a fan of law enforcement spying on social media looking for possible infractions, but they are already doing it, and I would rather have them send warrants or tickets to offenders like that, than shut down access to public land except for an exalted few. That being said, I will be purchasing a fat tire bike to explore trails this autumn without having to worry about getting high centered on ruts in a washout again.
 
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