Missoula, MT, July 11, 2014 – The National Forest Foundation (NFF) is pleased to announce an expanded partnership with Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII), the leading manufacturer of off-road vehicles. Polaris’ $62,000 donation to the NFF will improve motorized recreation opportunities on two existing ATV trails on the Superior National Forest in Minnesota.
The first project will expand a current effort to address erosion and user experience on the 20-year-old Big Aspen ATV Trail. In 2013, the Forest Service received funding from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, which it combined with funding the NFF received from Polaris to improve approximately two miles of trail. This year, Polaris again is supporting Big Aspen ATV Trail improvements by providing funding to complete the final mile of trail resurfacing. The Forest Service will add gravel to the trail surface which will reduce erosion, improve user experience and result in a more sustainable motorized trail system. The Big Aspen ATV Trail is located near the Iron Range OHV Recreation Area, which is managed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
The second project will build one mile of new trail connecting a 27 mile loop route on Superior National Forest roads open to ATVs and snowmobiles with the popular Stony Spur Trail. The new Jackpot ATV Trail will utilize 27 miles of Forest roads open to OHVs. The one-mile connector trail and Jackpot ATV Trail loop were approved in the Superior National Forest Travel Management Plan adopted in 2012. The new trail will expand OHV opportunities in an area that lacks loop trail options. Local ATV enthusiasts have worked with the Forest to maintain trails in the area and will expand their partnership by maintaining the new Jackpot ATV Trail and the one-mile connector trail.
“Well managed and maintained Off Highway Vehicle trails are an important recreational asset that provide the public with a way to access and enjoy our National Forests – America’s Backyard,” said Bill Possiel, NFF president. “We are proud to have Polaris as a partner in supporting the NFF’s work to enhance outdoor experiences within our 193-million-acre National Forest System.”
“This partnership is a great way for Polaris to improve the riding experience on our shared public lands, while ensuring that ATV and OHV trails don’t impact forest health,” said Stacy Bogart, president of the Polaris Foundation.
This donation marks the second year the NFF and Polaris have worked together to improve National Forests.