“The whole idea behind this is to try and help the economy and area,” is what Bancroft Councillor Wayne Wiggins says about the Eastern Ontario Trails Alliance’s idea for a universal one-pass for ATVers in Ontario. He is a representative with the EOTA.
The proposed universal pass would allow Ontario ATVers to ride any trail in the province, no matter where they bought the pass. Currently, EOTA, Park to Park in Perry Sound and ATV Ontario already share a pass, but the 17 clubs with the Ontario Federation of ATVers aren’t included in the group.
Wiggins says a “drop dead date” to work out a deal is June 2nd when the OFATV meet. OFATV President Dave Baker tells us that they will be voting on whether or not to keep their loyalty program that gives a $25 discount to people who have been a member for a year. Both agree that is where the program lies. A pass with the EOTA costs $150, while a discounted OFAV pass costs $125. “For us to make any changes to our pricing platform it has to come from our membership,” Baker says since they are a rider federation.
Another problem Baker says they have run into is the fact that most OFATV trails are not multi-use, unlike EOTA trails. “We’re mostly made up of private property and other areas that may not allow other user groups,” he points out. “Unfortunately we can’t wave a magic wand and make it so all demographics can go on the trails we look after.”
“The ATV groups are only concerned about ATVs,” Wiggins says. The EOTA’s mandate is to include multi-use trails for everything from four-wheeling to horse-back riding, Wiggins adds.
“Assuming that all the clubs are on board and that votes passes shortly thereafter we would sign a reciprocation agreement with the EOTA,” Baker says. “They have to come to an agreement that we can all live with,” Wiggins says.
Written by: Mathew Reisler