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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

"April 06, 2007

Ocotillo Closing?


The San Diego Off-Road Coalition needs all off-roaders to act now. There is grave danger to one of our favorite riding areas.

The Federal Bureau of Land Management wants to lease 14,731 acres of prime off-road land to companies to build geothermal energy plants. Over 80% of the land is inside the Ocotillo Wells SVRA. The remaining acres are just east of Pole Line road and have traditionally been enjoyed for off-roading.

It is critical that off-road enthusiasts send their WRITTEN COMMENTS to the BLM to oppose this project.

If you value OCOTILLO WELLS you need to take the time to mail a comment and get ALL YOUR FRIENDS to do the same.

DO IT NOW - DON'T WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE! The San Diego Off-Road Magazine has excellent guidelines for action. Go to their Web site at for instructions. Written comments mailed have the most effect, so sit down, write and send your comments today. Written comments are being taken until April 30.

Bureau of Land Management
California Desert District Office
Attn: John Dalton
22835 Calle San Juan De Los Lagos
Moreno Valley, CA 92553


...more cut/paste:

san diego offroad magazine:

...and even more cut/paste:

"Some guidelines for letter writing:


In 2001 several geothermal companies applied for leases to drill test wells in what is mistakenly identified as the Truckhaven area but is actually in Ocotillo Wells to the east and west of Pole Line Road.

The initial leases will impact an area 14,731 acres. However the entire area encompassed by the Truckhaven Geothermal Leasing Area is 40,320 acres. According to the DEIS it has the future potential to use the entire area.

The BLM acting in accordance with federal and state guidelines to find alternative energy wants to grant these leases. They have three alternatives to solve this issue.

Alternative 1 is "No Action", to leave the land as is.

Alternative 2 will grant the leases only to the pending application

Alternative 3 (the PREFERRED ALTERNATIVE BY THE BLM) is to lease ALL the tracts amounting to 14,731 acres, not just the ones currently pending.

The document implies that there will be very little impact on off road recreation, but in fact it has the potential to ultimately affect 40,320 acres if these test wells are successful.

What you can do:

You can comment on one point or all of them. Be sure to include your first and last name and complete mailing address, so they know you are a real person. Also include your background in the sport, how long you have participated, if other members of your family also participate and how long you have been visiting Ocotillo Wells SVRA.

In your comments state that you favor ALTERNATIVE 1 and oppose both Alternatives 2 and 3. Give one or more reasons for why you have this opinion. You can choose from these provided:

1. The DEIS incorrectly states that annually 1 million visitors using 15,000 vehicles use the OWSVRA. In fact 1.9 million people visited the park in 2006 according to the Superintendent of OWSVRA. The park cannot stand to lose even one acre of land, let alone the vast amount of acreage we stand to lose if the test wells are successful. (Pages 3-48 and 3-53)

2. Page 2-8, paragraph 2.1.7 says the preferred Alternative 3, "does not result in undue or unnecessary degradation to resources." (resources = off road recreation) This is absolutely untrue, especially given the second pagraph on Page 2-9 that states the foreseeable development could occur on any land within the Truckhaven Geothermal Leasing Area, which encompasses 40,320 acres," 83% of this land within the OWSVRA.

3. Page 3-46 states "As part of multiple use management under FLPMA public land must be managed for outdoor recreation . . . " If this land is leased to geothermal companies that is in direct conflict with the outdoor recreation this land is used for. The two are not compatible. Off road users will suffer the loss especially if the exploration is successful.

4. Page 1-2 says "Once an area is developed for productive use of geothermal energy, the lease allows the lessee use of the resource for 40 years with a right of renewal for another 40 years." Once they get in to the off road park, they will never be gone in our lifetime.

5. The estimates of acreage disturbed in Table 2-2 is misleading when taken in context with information on Page 2-11. There is no accurate information available as to how much land will actually become unavailable. It is also unclear how long the drilling process will take. Estimates of six weeks to 120 days per well, with only three wells drilled at a time appear in the document. Does this mean construction could last four years?

(This info was taken from the San Diego Off Road Magazine. I hope they don't mind us spreading the word.)

5,124 Posts

455 Posts
Holy shit this is getting ridiculous!!! I grew up riding out at Ocotillo Wells, now they want to close that area too, shit the next thing you know you it will be illegal to smoke in a Bar in SD!! ;)

Checks in the mail!!!

Premium Member
2,061 Posts
Have the environmental groups weighed in on this? I know nothing about geothermal drilling and production, but my uneducated guess is that it might have some potential disturbance on the local environment. There's alot of environmental opposition to drilling in ANWAR and off the Florida Gulf Coast, as well as opposition to condo development along the Texas Gulf Coast. So you'd think the same would apply to geothermal drilling and production at an undeveloped desert area known for family recreational use.

Premium Member
6,442 Posts
This fucking government of ours is taking away everything we hold dear to us.:mad: :banghead: :asshat:

WTF:flipoff1: :flipoff1: :flipoff1: :flipoff3: to them.....

I'm writing, and forwarding this to all of my non TTORA Off road friends. As well as Dell Albright and Dan Roslund, who I'm sure are already on it. And also posting it up on our NVTTORA, and Toyota120 boards!!!!!!

I just went to OW for the first time for TDS this past March, I think I actually had a better time there at OW than I did that past three years of TDS @ Truckhaven.

This is bullshit!!

Thanks for posting this here on our board!!! :D :xusflag: :buttkick: :xusflag:
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