Should Idaho hunters be able to use ATV’s to access public hunting areas? That’s a question Idaho lawmakers are currently chewing on.
From this story on IdahoReporter.com:
_Should the Legislature overrule the Idaho Fish and Game Department, and declare that people can use off-highway vehicles (OHV) as aids in hunting, or at least use OHVs to get to remote hunting grounds? Bird watchers and berry pickers can motor into the wild, but a hunter can’t? “That’s a basic inequality,” said Sen. Tim Corder , R-Mountain Home, at a hearing on OHV use before both the House and Senate resources committees Monday. Corder is sponsoring bills that aim to void the Fish and Game fish and game rule that OHVs can’t be used as hunting aids, which the department can determine is happening when a gun is simply on or in an off-road vehicle.
_”The commission is not opposed to 4-wheelers in any way,” Fish and Game Commission member Randy Budge told the joint committee. “It is simply about the use of 4-wheelers as an aid to hunting.” The goals of the rule, Budge said, are to maintain the quality of big game in the state, and to stave off the need for controlled hunts. Some who spoke Monday said the issue is about the ability to access remote public lands and the right to bear arms; a couple of speakers argued the state and federal government are conspiring to keep OHVs out of the state’s woods and wild lands, thereby creating de facto wilderness areas.
An OHV is not an “aid” to hunting, said Mark Sauerwald, with the Mountain Home ATV Club. Hunting aids include a sight on a gun, dogs, and bait, he said. The whole “aid” thing has “nothing to do with me getting from point A to point B,” he said, indicating that people who use HOVs can be honorable, law-abiding hunters._
Reaction? Is an ATV an “aid” to hunting on public land?