Oceano Dunes - Pismo Beach Update - PLEASE READ

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Mar 20, 2001
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#1
September 18, 2001
Friends of Oceano Dunes

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This email Contains:
1) Calendar
2) Request for more support
3) TRT Appointment
4) Trip report from the Eureka California Coastal Commission
5) Closing Comments

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1.) CALENDAR

SEPT: 21-23 SAND SPORTS SUPER SHOW
Friends of Oceano Dunes will be working the Sand Sports Super Show getting petitions signed, selling t-shirts, collecting donations, and informing the public of the current issues. Please stop by our booth adjacent to the ExtremeBuggies.com booth.

Sept: 28 MONTHLY FRIENDS OF OCEANO DUNES MEETING
This months meeting will discuss the outcome of the recent CCC meeting in Eureka as well as the recent filing of a 60 day notice of intent to sue by the Sierra Club. In addition we will be holding our raffle, selling t-shirts and assigning action items. 8-)
Directions are here: http://oceanodunes.org/documents/MonthlyMeetingDirections.doc

Oct: 9 – 12 CALIFORNIA COASTAL COMMISSION MEETING
The location will be; Hotel Del Coronado 1500 Orange Avenue Coronado, CA 92118 (619) 435-6611

The next meeting will hear Appeal No. A-3-01-61 (Parks & Rec., San Luis Obispo Co.) Appeal by Nell Langford from decision of County of San Luis Obispo granting permit with conditions to California Department of Parks & Recreation to maintain existing sand ramp at Pier Avenue, Oceano, San Luis Obispo County. (SM-SC)

*** The actual day has not been selected yet. Please check our website (http://oceanodunes.org) or that of the Coastal Commission (http://www.coastal.ca.gov/) for the latest dates and times.

We need more letters submitted…go here for details:
http://oceanodunes.org/action.asp

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2.) REQUEST FOR MORE SUPPORT

We are in a very large battle and we need help to win. We need volunteers to pass out information, get signatures, talk to people, work information booths, data entry, copying, printing, attend meetings and much more.

Any and all help is appreciated!

We need your continued financial support. We have retained an attorney to help us in litigation as well as developing good sound arguments, which we can present to the CCC. In addition, we would like to hire biologists and other specialists to ensure that the best information is available and understood to ensure our continued access to our public land.

This WAR is far from over, but without financial backing we will have to resort to bringing a water pistol to a gun fight.

*** Reminder: No salaries are paid, everyone involved in our efforts are volunteers. ***

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3.) TRT APPOINTMENTS
As many may not know, one of the recent decisions is that a Technical Review Team (TRT) be formed to assist State Parks in figuring out the best management strategy that takes into account everyone’s concerns.

The OHV community has one of the Friends of Oceano Dunes founders and current Co-President Jim Suty as our new OHV representative. In addition, we are very fortunate to have an outstanding back-up to support our concerns in case Jim is unable to attend meetings. Suzy Johnson is a long time resident in Paso Robles and member of the California 4 Wheel Drive Association (Cal4WD). Suzy is also better known as the editor of the Cal4WD newspaper called “IN-GEAR”

Congratulations to both Jim & Suzy, and we look forward to hearing about the current issues facing the ODSVRA.

The TRT’s first meeting is on Oct. 30th.

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4.) EUREKA TRIP REPORT

It is a tragic time for our country, one during which all of us at Friends of Oceano Dunes extend our prayers and condolences to the victims and their families of last Tuesday's attacks. Thoughts of hope, strength, and courage also go out to the emergency rescue and medical teams working around the clock in New York City and Washington D.C.

During the crises last Tuesday, members of Friends of Oceano Dunes braved the long drive to Eureka to attend the California Coastal Commission (CCC) meeting to fight to keep the Oceano Dunes State Vehicle Recreation Area (ODSVRA) open. Unfortunately, there was no decision made on the permit appeal (see details below) so we will have to present again at the meeting next month in Coronado. We still need your support! If you live near Coronado, we need you to attend the meeting. For those of you who can’t attend the meeting, we desperately need you to send letters against the appeal to the CCC. Meeting details and how to send letters are on the web at http://www.oceanodunes.org/.

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AT ISSUE is the permit for State Parks to grade and maintain the Pier Ave. ramp. They did receive a permit but in May one of the rental property owners filed an appeal. The appeal has been heard by the county supervisors and denied; now it has gone to the California Coastal Commission. It has been postponed 3 times and will be heard next month in Coronado.

WHAT THIS MEANS TO THE SVRA: If the Pier Ave. ramp cannot be maintained, it will be closed for vehicle access. This means all vehicles will have to use the Grand Ave. ramp, including emergency vehicles. Although this may seem to be no more than an inconvenience, it is the first step in closing the ODSVRA. If we lose the permit, it means that the Sierra Club can and will use the same cause to fight to close the Grand Ave. ramp thereby closing the SVRA. Also, consider that most all of the businesses along Pier Ave. will fail. Lastly, this also means that emergency response will be delayed from 8 – 10 minutes because emergency vehicles will have to use the Grand Ave. ramp – this could mean life or death!

THE PLAYERS:
- Appellant: the Santa Lucia chapter of the Sierra Club (Tarren Collins, Chairperson) and the Environmental Defense Center (EDC) backs Ms. Nell Langford, an absentee landlord of rental property along Strand Way. The EDC is the legal arm of the Sierra Club.
- Defendant: State Parks
- Friends of Oceano Dunes is supporting State Parks however possible to keep the ramp and SVRA open. Jim Suty is one of the co-founders of Friends of Oceano Dunes and is now a member of the Technical Review Team formed to provide non-biased input to the CCC regarding the environmental management of the Park. Jim represents the off-road community. There are ten other members including a representative for the environmentalist community. Jim is a member of the ASA, CAL4WD, BRC, UFWDA, CLORV and CORVA.

THE SEPTEMBER 12TH MEETING:
This meeting was proof that we are working together to accomplish our goal – Access to Oceano Dunes for All. It was a true pleasure to have Don Klusman (a long time champion for OHV access) from Cal4WD, Stacy Hardy, an ASA representative, along with Jim and myself to state our case. Thank you Don and Stacy!!!!!

Because Ms. Langford’s appeal is a very narrow issue, anyone wanting to speak on Oceano Dunes and the SVRA in general needed to speak at the public forum prior to lunch. Stacy was first up and did a fabulous job (especially spur of the moment), Don was next and showed his many years of experience… then came Nell. She went on and on about how State Parks got the Emergency Vehicle Access, including telling about how David Angelo watered the ramp down, how David made calls to the Supervisors, Fire Department and Ambulance Company (all relatives of either David or Arnie she said) and got the letters of support. I got up next to talk about all the misinformation spouted by the other side, noting the press conference at Labor Day where the Sierra Club stated Western Snowy Plover fatality numbers that in no way represented the numbers that state parks had found. Tarren Collins came up next to discuss that the numbers they quoted at the press conference came from State Parks (as she waved a news paper around - unfortunately that paper used the numbers Sierra Club quoted, not what State Parks said). Jim came up next and finished them off reminding the commissioners to think about who is bringing on the appeal and to consider the real reason behind it. Lastly a college professor, and plover expert, got up to speak on behalf of Oceano Dunes and State Parks. The Chairwoman asked if he was ever employed by State Parks, which he was as a consultant, and made it look as though she wouldn’t believe anyone who even worked as a consultant of State parks. I wonder if she realizes that Sierra Club’s biologist is biased?

After lunch the appeal finally came up. Only those who were at the original supervisors meeting were allowed to speak. Since David & Gerard spoke on behalf of Friends at the first meeting, Jim could speak for Friends. Both Don and Stacy could also speak as representatives for their organizations.

As the appellant, Ms. Langford presented first. Her arguments were simple: she showed a 50 year old map from State lands that showed the legal ingress and egress as straight behind the kiosk, not to the side as State Parks was doing now, and that the permit shows a straight ramp. Then she read some quote that basically said the bulldozer was “wantonly destroying” the habitat. She showed videos from the cameras on top of her house showing the traffic and bulldozer and claimed that both inhibited pedestrian access to the beach. She also said that this is a pedestrian beach and that “cars did not come before people”. She also showed 20 year old photos that showed the wood access ramp and how the in ‘82 storm took it out.

Tarren Collins said she was at the meeting and spoke on behalf of Sierra Club and discussed how she felt that State Parks wasn’t doing anything for the Plover.

State Parks then presented their side – basically shooting down anything Nell had to argue and left 4 minutes for the 4 of us to present. Don, Stacy and myself all gave our time to Jim. He was able to poke holes in all of Nell’s issues including the fact that the sand ramp has always been there, even when the wood ramp was there, it just wasn’t maintained. He also commented that although cars didn’t come before people, cars did come before Ms. Langford owning the property and accused her of being like the people who buy houses next to airports and then complain about the noise.

One last ditch effort by Sierra Club was to have the CCC shut off the emergency permit because it was for Emergency vehicles only, not public access. Fortunately the CCC lawyer said that it was not within their jurisdiction. It was an attempt to keep a ramp maintained only for emergency vehicles and not let the public use it… once again showing the Sierra Club’s true goal… keeping the public off the beach.

Since no action was taken, we’ll have to do it all over again next month. So please call, write; send pictures to the CCC for next months meeting. And thank you to all of those who did these last two months… ALL the letters received by the commission in July were from people on our side. Great job!

*** ACCESS FOR ALL! ***

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5.) CLOSING COMMENTS

Friends of Oceano Dunes has come a long way in the past few months. We are working hard to extend our hands to the many great organizations involved in the many fights around our State and Country. I highly recommend you also look into supporting the many other groups to ensure OUR continued access to our Public Lands.

Here are several groups we are working with:
ASA – American Sand Association
BRC – Blue Ribbon Coalition
Cal4WD – California 4 Wheel Drive Association
CLORV – California League of Off-Road Voters
CORVA – California Off-Road Vehicle Association
UFWDA - United Four Wheel Drive Assoc.

Thank you for all your hard work!

Friends of Oceano Dunes
http://oceanodunes.org
 
Joined
Jul 23, 2001
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#2
I need to join
How do you like your bike in the dunes?
i Have a trx250r and am wanting to get a cr125 i ride at pismo alot.
Where your from
im an hour south of fresno(hanford)
 
Joined
Mar 20, 2001
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#3
I live in SoCal, and I've never ridden at Pismo. I have been there once. I am just helping them out with their effort to keep the beach/dunes open to vehicles.

Yes, you need to join....please do, they need all the help they can get !!

Thanks,
 
Joined
Jan 10, 2001
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#4
i live near san luis obispo which is about 30 mins north of pismo. the dunes there are great, especially after a rain. i have 125 which isnt the best bike for the dunes but its still a blast. sicc air were you at the race in hanford saturday night?
 
Joined
Nov 4, 1999
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#5
I was just at Pismo this last weekend (22,23). I drove down the beach and noticed the creek was not even there. Is this normal this time of year? I'd like to go back and pull my 21-foot trailer but I've never done this at Pismo. I have a new 2001 Chevy Z71 4X4 1500 truck that I am guessing would not have a problem pulling the trailer in the sand. Any tips or suggestions? As long as the creek is gone, I'm thinking I'll be ok.
 
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Jan 10, 2001
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#6
ive seen guys in fords pulling bigger trailers than that...if you have a chevy you wont have a problem, just dont stray too far from the water. the creek has been gone for quite some time...it was huge one saturday last month...then the next day it was completely gone. it was weird. it shouldnt come back until it starts raining.

yzblue...did you find any good hits while you were out there? what size is your bike?
 
Joined
Jul 23, 2001
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#7
I was up there the 22, 23. Did you see that truck jumping comp?
How do you like ur bikes in the dunes i have a trx250r right now.
I didnt go to the races on sat did u? What was there?

YZ blue where in te valley are u? just air down your tires when your pulling.
Anybody have icq your instant messangers>???
 
Joined
Nov 4, 1999
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#8
Hi SICC_AIR,

I'm in Clovis. Hey, have you found a good place to ride in Hanford or anywhere else for that matter? I ride at Porterville from time to time but something closer would be nice.

Missed the truck jumping comp....didn't know about it. Also didn't go to races. No wonder there was such a line of cars at the ranger station!

Let me know where you ride, maybe we could hook up.
 
Joined
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#9
I ride at my friend and in the kings river but those places i wouldnt plan on being able to ride there.
Bakersfield is a nice place im not sure exaclty were i went when i went there.
Hanford has a track never been there becuase i have a quad.
On jackson ave and 43 there is a place to ride there havnt been in a while though.
Tulare has a track
This is one reason i want a bike is because quads are good or allowed on these places.
THat would be cool to hook up pismo would be best though cuz u cant get kicked out