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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Cheboygen area residents, and bussiness owners met today with several state representatives about the proposed trail link between Gaylord and Cheboygen. There have been 7 proposals in the past couple of years, and each one has been turned down by the Michigan DNR. The representatives at the meeting today said they will go back to Lansing with a new proposal and ask why the DNR has been turning down all these proposals. The representatives also added that there should be a connector with the next 2 yrs.
 

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Testimony ‘overwhelmingly' in favor of Gaylord-Cheboygan trail,


CHEBOYGAN - Business owners, and snowmobile enthusiasts let their opinions be heard at the House Subcommittee Hearing on tourism Monday at the Cheboygan High School, according to Rep. Kevin Elsenheimer, R-Bellaire. About 115 people attended the hearing, which focused on opening a portion of the snowmobile trail at Mullet Lake, which is currently designated for nonmotorized use only.

”Testimony was overwhelmingly in favor of the Michigan Dept. Of Natural Resources designating a trail linking Gaylord and Cheboygan, which are 50 miles apart,“ reported Elsenheimer following the meeting.

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Originally posted by vanslammer@Oct 18 2005, 03:25 PM
So is this more of the same or is something really going to happen ?????
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i hope that something will really happen this time. The state rep from that district is involved now. It's still a wait and see thing though. I'll believe it when I'm riding on it.
 

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I'll believe it when I see it. This has been going on for 15 years.
There is also the grade going from Indian River to the bridge that is not offically open either but the battle continues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Originally posted by Mikadoo@Oct 20 2005, 07:50 PM
I'll believe it when I see it. This has been going on for 15 years.
There is also the grade going from Indian River to the bridge that is not offically open either but the battle continues.
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If you are talking about the Mackinaw Bridge, then this is the section that is in question. Everyone want a trail open from Indian River to Cheboygen. I think it like a 15mi section that is in question here.
 

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Not really interested in the trail going up to the bridge as you can go from Indian River west to Allenson and then go up.
We need the trail going directly east from Indian River to Cheboygan and Onaway.
There is a trail going that way but not offically open and not groomed.
 

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I'd be happy with either route, but I think the RR grade is the one that will make it/has more people pulling for it/fewest fighting it. My understanding is that the one running east out of Indian River doesn't have much of a chance, but would be my favored route too.

Alanson north run is usually beat the last few times I've tried, or no snow. Have been beating it across Mullet to Aloha and going either way from there. Ice ridge there can be kinda challenging though :Wow1:
 

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IMO, the east route running south of the Lake would be better and would potentially open up some nice forest road and other off trail riding in Pigeon River Wilderness Area. To my knowledge, the only folks opposing this route, which would mostly be over state land is a council within the DEQ that is charged with monitoring the use of the PRWA and maintaining its "wilderness" quality as well as a few environmental groups. One problem with this route is cost as a crossing over the Pigeon River and possibly I-75 would be needed, although I don't know why they can't come to some agreement to use an existing highway overpass. The RR grade route to up the west side of the lake is basically ready to go and no new $ would be required so it has that going for it. The folks opposing it are the landowners along the trail. I don't think it will make for a very interesting or scenic ride but I will take whatever we can get. Right now, there is no decent way to go North out of Indian River. The Indian River to Alanson to Mackinaw to Cheboygan is a haul the trail, especially the legs from IR to Alanson and from Mack to Cheb are usually brutal. The IR to Alanson leg is also dependent upon leases that keep the trail shifting around and subject to going off line every year. If you are coming into Indian River from the south, given trail conditions and the roundabout route, most folks are going to turn around and go back rather than venture to Cheboygan. Its too bad. It keeps IR from becoming a "hub" for sledders and really isolates Cheboygan, which is bounded on the north by the big lake. The Black Mountain Rec Area southeast of Cheboygan is great place to ride but its mostly used only buy locals because it is too hard to get to.
 

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West Mullett Lake Trail

Portion of debated trail may be opened
Snowmobiles would be allowed on 1.25-mile section into Topinabee

ROSCOMMON - The Michigan Natural Resources Commission could open a portion of a disputed trail to snowmobiles this week.

The agency meets Thursday in Roscommon to discuss a variety of issues, and one of the agenda items is an order to regulate the use of the Cheboygan-Gaylord trail, Cheboygan County.

Link to the info
 

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CHEBOYGAN - Those who have been waiting for a snowmobile trail linking Cheboygan and Gaylord will have to wait a bit longer.

An update on efforts to find an alternate route between Cheboygan and Gaylord will be presented in Lansing on Thursday, but it will be an information-only item, not one for action.

The Michigan Natural Resources Commission will meet at the Lansing Center beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, and among the subjects to be addressed in the director's report is an update on the snowmobile trail - but it is not an action item.

“I received a courtesy call from (Michigan Department of Natural Resources) Director (Rebecca) Humphries indicating the same thing,” said state Rep. Kevin Elsenheimer, who has spearheaded a movement to accelerate a decision on a trail.

Providing a route connecting Cheboygan and Gaylord has been the subject of debate for a decade. At issue is a link between the two cities other than what is known as the West Mullett Lake trail, a 12-mile stretch of former railroad track that has been off limits to snowmobiles and other motorized vehicles since the state purchased the trail.

As part of an agreement of the purchase, the NRC and Michigan Department of Natural Resources agreed to keep the land as a “quiet” trail while promising to find an alternate trail for snowmobilers and other enthusiasts of motorized recreation. During the ensuing decade, many alternate routes have been proposed, but none have been accepted as being viable.

Earlier this month, Humphries issued an order opening a 1.25-mile section of the West Mullett Lake route between Interstate 75's Exit 313 and Topinabee. But the remaining section of the trail remains off limits to motorized vehicles.

The trail was the subject of a public hearing in Cheboygan in October, when members of the state House of Representatives Subcommittee on Tourism received input from residents on the issue. A majority of those who spoke at the hearing in the Cheboygan Area High School auditorium supported opening the West Mullett Trail, since the ban on motorized vehicles is not legally binding.

It was strongly hinted at during that October hearing that the DNR and NRC would select one of the two alternate routes on Thursday. That's not the case, said Elsenheimer.

“My expectations, based on the Cheboygan hearings, was that the DNR would come up with a reccomendation for further action on the trails,” said Elsenheimer, R-Bellaire, on Tuesday. “That is not going to happen at this meeting.”

Mindy Koch, a resource management deputy for the DNR, agreed Tuesday that she does not anticipate any action on Thursday.


http://www.cheboygannews.com/articles/2005.../news/news2.txt
 

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INDIAN RIVER - State officials will reveal the estimated cost to build an alternate snowmobile trail to the Mullett Lake railroad grade.
The Michigan Natural Resources Commission will meet Thursday in Lansing to hear cost estimates. No decision will be made then, officials said.
Mindy Koch, resource management deputy with the state Department of Natural Resources, said commissioners requested the information this year.
"They wanted a clearer picture of the natural resources impact," Koch said.
The trail would require construction of three bridges over Interstate 75, Little Pigeon River and the Pigeon River, a designated state natural river where construction is discouraged. The route would include wetlands and recognized wildlife habitat.
Early estimates put the 36-mile route at more than $4 million.
The trail is designed as an alternative to a former railroad grade along the west side of Mullett Lake, purchased in 1995 with funds from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust. It remains closed to motorized traffic because of safety and noise issues for nearby residents, the DNR said. The path crosses more than 40 driveways, sometimes within several yards of lakeside homes in Topinabee.
Fred Brandt, president of Cheboygan Trail Groomers, said he is not encouraged by recent talk about the alternate route. He wants state officials to open the former railroad grade.
"We shouldn't spend $4 million when we can open this other trail for $2,000," Brandt said. "We own this property. It belongs to the people of Michigan."
Brandt said very few lakeside residents stay in their homes during winter months, so the railroad grade should be available to snowmobilers. State officials aimed to find an alternate route when motorized traffic was banned from the 12-mile stretch.
"Ten years and we haven't gotten it yet, and our little town needs it," to increase winter tourism dollars, Brand said.
Existing trails between Indian River and Cheboygan are not designed as a loop and trail-riders must retrace their tracks.
Another possible route would cross through the Pigeon River Country State Forest, but Koch said the first alternative appears to have less potential impact on natural resources.

http://www.record-eagle.com/2005/nov/30trail.htm
 

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Let's get a group of HCS'ers and I'm sure we can get all 36 miles cleaared out and ready to go for a measly old $2 million
 
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