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Thread: Maclaren Summit Trail Confusion for Caribou

  1. #1

    Default Maclaren Summit Trail Confusion for Caribou

    So I was recommended to check out this forum from BLM because of others having confusion on Maclaren Summit trail. I read from many other people about the confusion on whether you can hunt or not in this area, I don't know why they don't post it thoroughly through out the trail no big game hunting.
    After looking even closer and blowing up the map I see how yes it is in the area you cant hunt from, but just from looking in the regs it is confusing. Also from the amount of hunter going in and hunting I see I am not the only one, it would make since they would post in a few places "NO BIG GAME HUNTING FROM ATVS" this would be easy to understand and would clear up any confusion.
    I try very hard to be honest and to not break any regs, but when BLM, and over half of the people I talk to say the same thing. Yes this needs to be cleared up I do not understand why they cant post it clearly so confusion cant be an excuse.
    After talking to a biologist that stopped my while in their and the BLM not to contact the troopers also but see if he might or might not contact me for a ticket for shooting an animal in an area I did not know was closed is beyond irritating. Why not get together and figure out why this is happening and posting signs and clearing up the confusion, instead of letting others make the same mistake. Five other people by the way I talked to going in to hunt and make the same mistake I did.

    What are your thoughts.......

  2. #2
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    Well, i was there last week during the rain and can tell you the water runs downhill to the maclaren a full quarter mile uphill from the maclaren summit trail sign on the road. I will mention this to the bio and troopers who likely have never been there. The entire trail should be ccua.
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    To my somewhat limited knowledge the Summit Trail lies just inside of the Clearwater Control Use Area. It therefore closed to the use of atv's for hunting but in no way closed to hunting altogether. Use your legs and you are legal for hunting.

  4. #4

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    I used a wheelbarrow back in the early 70's.........likely a good game cart would be vastly superior.


    Quote Originally Posted by AK Wonderer View Post
    Use your legs and you are legal for hunting.

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    Regarding the CCUA, BLM says that the 7 designated trails within the CCUA (on the northside AND southside of the Denali Hwy) are useable to atv's...
    Therefore sightseers, fisherman, berry pickers, photographers, nature lovers, tree huggers, rock lickers, etc can fire up the ol' Honda Foreman and get on out there.....
    The trails are all considered "designated trails" therefore you are "supposed" to stay only on them and not venture off of them...
    Meaning, basically, in one way and out one way, don't go out breaking new trails... They (BLM) want to preserve the area and its historical nature....
    Look at the swede lake trails. Obviously many folks haven't read the trail rules... But anyhoo...
    Now, regarding hunting in the CCUA (that's per ADF&G), state rules, not BLM or DNR... So in CCUA, on the northside trails, you CAN HUNT, just that you CANNOT HUNT utilizing any motorized vehicle, whereas on the southside trails you can....
    Yes, some signage would be nice on atv usage and specific boundaries as well, but don't hold your breath on that one...
    I've chatted with Trooper J. Simeon up there many times.. He's a good dude and he'll always be straight up with you... But if he catches you hunting on the northside with a motorized vehicle within the CCUA, it won't turn out well for ya...
    If I'm way outta whack here, step in and clarify then....

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    this is becoming a case of Fed law vs State law. I watched several individuals hunt off of the Summit trail a couple weeks ago going way back in 5 plus miles. The signs may contradict each other with the Fed sign stating that trail is located in it's entirety within the TLHD. Does anyone know if the CCUA and the TLHD overlap?

  7. #7
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    So by definition, the eastern portion of the CCUA is defined by the Maclaren drainage. Areas that drain into the Maclaren river are included in the CCUA, all others fall within the TLHD. By definition and overlaying the ADFG map and Google earth mapping, the ridgeline extends back approximately 5 miles in a northerly direction before it turns east to pick up the seventeen mile drainage. There the ridgeline drops to the south of Basalt lake and then follows the upper ridgeline over to Glacier gap. Their map matches the exact description given. So...as long as the trail remains east of the highest western ridge before you drop into the Maclaren river valley, you are 100% in the TLAD and NOT in the CCUA. Direct line north from the trailhead, it is just under 5 miles to the Basalt Lake with everything draining into Rock Creek which drains EAST. Why is it so hard for AST and BLM to agree on this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sollybug View Post
    Well, i was there last week during the rain and can tell you the water runs downhill to the maclaren a full quarter mile uphill from the maclaren summit trail sign on the road. I will mention this to the bio and troopers who likely have never been there. The entire trail should be ccua.
    If the road was not there, the water would not make it to the Maclaren, it would drain easterly until it turned north into Rock Creek.

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    Here is a trail track showing the alignment of the trail, it is clear that it is in the area that drains to the east.Maclaren Trail.jpg

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    Default Maclaren Summit Trail Confusion for Caribou

    Pretty much breaks down trail uses!


    http://www.blm.gov/style/medialib/bl...s_brochure.pdf





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  11. #11

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    Guys take some time to actually read the stuff that is out their. Their are a few issues thrown around here, some of which are not at all related. First lets talk about land status. The BLM manages the southern portion of the TLAD, The State of Alaska the northern. The brochure link posted above clearly states that as it has a BLM and DNR header, BLM and DNR logos, BLM and DNR contacts, and even a colored map which shows BLM and DNR lands. Further it states that trails 1-3 (on the north side of the road) to include Macleran Trail are managed by the State of Alaska DNR. Point is the State and BLM seem to have the same TLAD rules and happen to put out a brochure together which everyone assumes is a BLM only brochure. The second issue is the Clearweater Controlled Use Area. This is a State of Alaska designation (as all controlled use area are) and has nothing to do with BLM. I use the Denali a lot and their are no Fed signs on the north side of the road. In fact this weekend at Macleran trail there was a quickly thrown together ADFG (which is a state agency for those not patient enough to read) information sign. I did not read it because that trail and Glacier are simply prime locales for people knowingly or unknowingly breaking the CCUA access rules. Lastly their are 4 agencies involved in land management in the general area. BLM (which has roughly the lands on the south side of the highway Macleran summit to Paxson Closed Area) the State of Alaska DNR (which has roughly the north lands from Paxson to Macleran River, plus the Paxson Closed Area) The Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game (which manages hunts, game, fish, etc) and the AK Wildlife Troopers. So if you need clarification on the area it is wise to check with the approriate agency. I think alot of people on here mix up troopers, blm, ADFG, blm rangers, the manager at Walmart, the Mcdonalds cook, etc. Hey if you ask enough people you will eventually get the answer you are looking for right? As someone above said the buck stops with Simeon, Heinbaugh, or the BLM Rangers. Best to talk to them if you truly want to know what will/wont get you in trouble.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cory100 View Post
    Guys take some time to actually read the stuff that is out their. Their are a few issues thrown around here, some of which are not at all related. First lets talk about land status. The BLM manages the southern portion of the TLAD, The State of Alaska the northern. The brochure link posted above clearly states that as it has a BLM and DNR header, BLM and DNR logos, BLM and DNR contacts, and even a colored map which shows BLM and DNR lands. Further it states that trails 1-3 (on the north side of the road) to include Macleran Trail are managed by the State of Alaska DNR. Point is the State and BLM seem to have the same TLAD rules and happen to put out a brochure together which everyone assumes is a BLM only brochure. The second issue is the Clearweater Controlled Use Area. This is a State of Alaska designation (as all controlled use area are) and has nothing to do with BLM. I use the Denali a lot and their are no Fed signs on the north side of the road. In fact this weekend at Macleran trail there was a quickly thrown together ADFG (which is a state agency for those not patient enough to read) information sign. I did not read it because that trail and Glacier are simply prime locales for people knowingly or unknowingly breaking the CCUA access rules. Lastly their are 4 agencies involved in land management in the general area. BLM (which has roughly the lands on the south side of the highway Macleran summit to Paxson Closed Area) the State of Alaska DNR (which has roughly the north lands from Paxson to Macleran River, plus the Paxson Closed Area) The Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game (which manages hunts, game, fish, etc) and the AK Wildlife Troopers. So if you need clarification on the area it is wise to check with the approriate agency. I think alot of people on here mix up troopers, blm, ADFG, blm rangers, the manager at Walmart, the Mcdonalds cook, etc. Hey if you ask enough people you will eventually get the answer you are looking for right? As someone above said the buck stops with Simeon, Heinbaugh, or the BLM Rangers. Best to talk to them if you truly want to know what will/wont get you in trouble.
    The point is that these individuals are using their own interpretation and I believe at least one of them is not taking into consideration the trail realignment or the new extension. Clearly the new trail is NOT within the CCUA with the exception of a very short section that needs to be GPS tracked and overlayed to verify. I have tried to get BLM to give me their trail data as I am sure that they have it surveyed, but have not heard back from them. The buck does not stop with Simeon, he is working on his own interpretation and unless he is going to go out and verify every single gut pile, and track leading to it, he is operating on pure speculation.

  13. #13

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    "I have tried to get BLM to give me their trail data as I am sure that they have it surveyed, but have not heard back from them."

    Not sure if BLM would have data on lands that they don't manage? Maybe you would have better luck with the State of Alaska DNR. It is their trail and they are the ones who have been making improvements.

  14. #14

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    So again I see how I could be in the wrong, but did not do it knowingly, I just want to get this cleared up. Hate sitting and waiting for a phone call, wondering how bad I am going to be sited. Especially since I borrowed the gear to get in to the hunting area. But the biologist and the BLM guys are telling me not to get a hold of Simon, but wait and see if he calls me. I told the BLM guy to forward my info to Simon any way but did not here back from him as of yet.
    Thank you all for your info, this was defiantly a learning experience. I will have to sit down and really do some home work and not rely on what anyone else tells me. This truly just ruined this hunt, I hate the feeling deep down in the gut when you get hit with a mistake like this. Again though lesson learned......
    I agree it is my responsibility but would be nice if it was marked a few spots no large game hunting from atvs on the trail...

  15. #15

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    HOW many sign do you ATV people need.........??? Maybe a sign before every mud hole....WARNING.....this mudhole could injure your machine or your body. WARNING.......Crossing this creek/river/whatever could result in you machine getting washed away, plus there is the risk of hurting your body, or drowning to DEATH. WARNING.........going down this trail....if your machine breaks, your chubby butt will have to walk back. More signs and more signs,,,,,what was that song, "Signs....signs, everywhere signs, don't do this....don't do that". Let's make Alaska wilderness look like Time Square. Maybe some solar powered electric neon flashing signs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    HOW many sign do you ATV people need.........??? Maybe a sign before every mud hole....WARNING.....this mudhole could injure your machine or your body. WARNING.......Crossing this creek/river/whatever could result in you machine getting washed away, plus there is the risk of hurting your body, or drowning to DEATH. WARNING.........going down this trail....if your machine breaks, your chubby butt will have to walk back. More signs and more signs,,,,,what was that song, "Signs....signs, everywhere signs, don't do this....don't do that". Let's make Alaska wilderness look like Time Square. Maybe some solar powered electric neon flashing signs.
    Seriously? I think you are missing the point. The signage at the trail head is conflicting and you have individuals that are relying on the agencies that have jurisdiction to get it right. If the trail is truly in the CCUA, then it should be clearly marked where that line exists, if it exists. With the movement of the trail and the new extension, it really muddied the waters.

  17. #17

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    Is it really that confusing to those who walk in.........???? Or is it just ATV operators who have a confussion issue........??? Seems to me if ATV people are unclear.......just don't go there problem solved......Go someplace else.

    Quote Originally Posted by ERDucker View Post
    Seriously? I think you are missing the point. The signage at the trail head is conflicting and you have individuals that are relying on the agencies that have jurisdiction to get it right. If the trail is truly in the CCUA, then it should be clearly marked where that line exists, if it exists. With the movement of the trail and the new extension, it really muddied the waters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    Is it really that confusing to those who walk in.........???? Or is it just ATV operators who have a confussion issue........??? Seems to me if ATV people are unclear.......just don't go there problem solved......Go someplace else.
    So as long as the solution benefits you, then you are satisfied. Sounds like a certain presidential candidate in front of the Benghzai panel. I believe her own words were "What difference at this point does it make?"

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