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Recreation Advocate

The OutdoorWire family websites feature news and information affecting outdoor recreation opportunities and access to public lands. 

Sierra Club Smear Campaign Against Carnegie and the Entire SVRA System


Dishonesty and disingenuousness are not admirable traits in either our personal or professional lives.  Over the years you have seen the Recreation HQ chronicle such behaviors by faux recreation groups and some hard-core anti-access groups.

The most recent example of this is where Kathryn Phillips, Director of the CA Sierra Club, has embraced the aforementioned undesirable traits via their ongoing campaign to attack the CA SVRA system with a disinformation blitz of unequaled proportion.

Sierra Club Attack on SVRAs

Link to History of Eco Campaign to Ban OHV Use at Carnegie/Telsa


As many of you know, I often work with environmental groups in various stakeholder processes.  Some of those efforts to find common ground have been productive.  The key to any collaborative process is based on the personal and professional integrity of the participants.

I would have refrained from this missive if the Sierra Club had acknowledged the hard work by SVRA staff and volunteers to manage those units in a sustainable manner.  Phillips’ disingenuousness is highlighted by the fact she never mentioned the new engineered contour trails that have been constructed and the many historic hillclimbs that have been closed and restored to a natural condition over the last 35 years. 

A Hillside Restoration Project Ignored by Sierra Club

Also, she failed to cite the many trail delineators, signing efforts, and water quality structures installed to protect natural and cultural resources.

Resource Protection Project Ignored by Sierra Club


It is my hope that some of the mainstream leaders in the environmental community will urge their colleagues to abandon their outdated and tired attack strategies and work with the SVRAs and OHV user groups on effective on-the-ground projects that protect resources and provide quality motorized and non-motorized recreational opportunities throughout the state.


Original author: Don Amador
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