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Every business starts somewhere and often times it is out of some form of adversity…Here is the story of how Off Road Venture began…
I have been off-roading since I was five years old and have always had very fond memories of spending time with family and friends enjoying the sport together.
Late in 1998, I had an extremely disappointing encounter with a Michigan DNR Officer. As it turns out, a new policy regarding the use of ORV’s on State Owned Lands had recently been enacted – State Lands were now closed to ORV use unless they are posted open to ORV use.
Along with this new use policy came a zero tolerance enforcement policy…which meant, no questions would be asked of violators, no excuses would be heard and maximum penalties would be imposed…Period.
I had just returned to Michigan from living in California for many years. I bought an ATV, my friends and family took it out to the East Woods, our old favorite spot to play on State Land and within moments of driving the ATV, I was arrested and my ATV was confiscated…Just like that.
Clearly, I had no knowledge of this policy change and ignorance was no excuse. Once I got over my frustration with the situation, I embarked on a journey of discovery as to what is required of these agencies to inform the public of its policies and changes when they occur.
The bottom line – unfortunately, is – it is up to us to know what the rules are for everything we do and to do our best to follow those rules, which given the opportunity, I believe nearly everyone will do.
In Michigan, this involves The Federal Forest Service, US Armed Forces, The Michigan DNR, The Commercial Forest Program, County Government, Township Government, City Government and Private Property owners, each having their own land and road use managing policies – which you need to know.
The simple truth is, the information we need is available just difficult and tiring to get, leaving most of us deciding to simply do what we think is best and hope we aren’t breaking any rules.
I determined to gather every piece of information necessary from every involved governing agency and to put that information together in one complete, concise and easy to understand publication making it easy for anyone to “get it right” in nearly every case.
Our publications are not perfect, policies and trail systems sometimes change faster than we can keep up with and we depend on everyone involved in the sport to help us make our publications the very best and most accurate they can be.
It is our goal and mission to bring you the best information we can gather from the most reliable sources; to create products you can count on, that help you have the most fun in your outdoor recreation activities.