|History of the Nevada Backroaders
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|Author:||brad/duuuude [ Sat Aug 22, 2009 3:20 pm ]|
|Post subject:||History of the Nevada Backroaders|
In July 1998 White Pine 4 Wheelers hosted the NUFWA convention in Ely at the Bristlecone Convention Center. This was also the first year of the White Pine 4x4 Rally so that folks could go wheeling while in Ely for the convention.
At that event Wes W. met Mac M. and Maxine L. and began talking about the fact that there wasn’t a club aimed at all the beginning 4 wheelers. They talked about all the folks they knew that had bought 4WD vehicles but had no idea how to drive them correctly and had no idea where the trails were to drive them on. Also these folks weren’t necessarily looking to modify their vehicle or beat their rigs up on harder trails. They decided to take it upon themselves to create just such a club dedicated to teaching new folks with stock 4WD vehicles how to enjoy offroading and how to see the other side of Nevada with them.
They also drew upon their experience in other clubs and organizations to make the new club just a little different. They decided that rather then have elected officers the club officers would be volunteers who would surrender their position when they tired of it or someone else decided to step up and try on the position. They also decided that interested folks could pay the dues and become a member rather then having to be voted in like in other clubs. And one of the big differences was that since the club was aimed at newbies it would not be a political club. The emphasis would be on teaching the people the proper ways to offroad and letting them decide if they wanted to join one of the many political groups later on down the trail. It was decided that the club officers would not “speak” for all the membership and instead the individual members could speak for themselves. It was also decided that rather then having a monthly meeting someplace to attend to club business that the meeting would occur on each months club run at lunch and all business would be taken care of then and there. They also decided that the once a month club run should actually have a destination rather then just a drive in the dirt. This is why we still have “places to go or things to see” as the basis of the monthly official club run. Since everything was being done via the U.S. Mail back then it was decided that visitors would be asked for a $5 donation to cover the printing and mailing of the once a month Trail Boss Report to them.
So by July of 1999 the Nevada Backroaders took form, bylaws were adopted and club officers were chosen. The first president was Pat M., the treasurer was Dave L., the activity director (better known as Trail Boss) was Maxine L., and the 2 directors were Mac M. and Wes W. Things were good and the club started to grow.
During the September 2001 club run the membership voted to create a sixth club officer position, website director, and Brad C. was chosen to fill that position. Since then Pat stepped aside as President and swapped positions with Wes. In January 2004 Maxine stepped aside as Trail Boss and Brad took over that position and handed off the Website Directors position to Lisa A. Between 2004 and 2006 John C. became a Director as did Phil W. and in July 2006 Brad took back the Website Director position and handed the Trail Boss mantle off to Bob M. John eventually handed his Director position to Justin B. On August 1st 2009 Bob M. handed the position of Trail Boss to Tom E. but Bob was made Newsletter Editor, a non-director position, and will still take care of the monthly newsletter.
The Backroaders has gone from a small club with a core of 10 or so teaching members to the largest 4X4 club in Nevada today with a membership that runs 80 to 90+ members at most times. We must be doing something right.
In 2000 the Backroaders helped White Pine 4 Wheelers in resurrecting the July White Pine 4x4 Rally and the 2 clubs helped in putting it on moving the HQ from the Hotel Nevada to the Prospector Hotel in 2001. Due to costs for insurance and other difficulties 2004 was the last year the 2 clubs put on the Rally at the Prospector Hotel and starting in 2005 it became a looser non-advertised weekend of wheeling with friends and the official July club run for both clubs. And members and friends of both clubs have been coming up and enjoying the mountains ever since. I believe we may have more people coming up since the change then we ever had show up during most of the Rally years. If not it sure is close.
In June 2001 during a pre-run of Mount Moriah for the 2001 White Pine 4X4 Rally Rob E., a member of the Backroaders & a U.S.N.P.S. Ranger at Great Basin N.P., suggested the club contact the U.S. Forest Service/Ely Field Office about adopting the old Dog Springs Ranger Cabin and fixing it up before it fell apart. Maxine L. became the contact person for the club and along with Mac M. started talking to U.S.F.S./Ely. The adoption was approved August 6, 2002 and on September 14, 2002 the first work party of Nevada Backroaders hit the cabin. On that first trip the cabin and outhouse were painted, the rotted out section of the floor in the cabin replaced, a new seat was built for the outhouse, and both roofs were given a much needed spraying of shingle oil. The annual work party is now the Sunday run during the July Weekend in White Pine each year and this year the cabin & outhouse were given new metal roofs that should help the survive many more winters in the North Snake Range Mountains.
During the July 2007 Weekend in White Pine the subject of a club “good works” project in the Las Vegas area was broached. Brad C. said he’d make the initial queries with the BLM and U.S.F.S. offices in Clark County and see if there was anything the club could get involved with. It was determined that there really wasn’t anything like the Dog Springs Cabin available in Clark County so Brad looked into an Adopt-A-Trail type project. Several members suggested Mormon Well Road that runs thru the Sheep Mountains in the Desert National Wildlife Range. Desert N.W.R. is managed by the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife and after checking with that agencies office in Las Vegas it was determined that U.S.F.&W. has never done an Adopt-A-Trail Project. Brad had to hand the project off due to a scheduling problem so Tom E., Rex K., & Mac M. took over working with U.S.F.&W. On April 8, 2008 it was made official and the Nevada Backroaders became the Adopted caretakers of the Mormon Well Road from Corn Creek Station all the way to the N.W.R. boundary near U.S 93. September 27, 2008 was the first official clean-up trip and the club will continue to do a once a year trip each September. However, when ever a club member runs the trail during the year they should check in at the Guest Center and pick up any trash they see.
So here we are 10 years later still enjoying our sport and still growing, and teaching, and staying true to the ideas of the founders. It seems that during that conversation in July of 1998 they got it right and the Nevada Backroaders continues to be, in my mind, the best 4X4 club there is and we continue to “see the other side of Nevada”.
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