Off-road vehicle tourism pitched to RDN

Group wants use of Horne Lake to access crown lands and trails

Two off-roading clubs on Vancouver Island are hoping to start a pilot program that will provide off-road vehicle adventures that include access to Crown land and forest service trails via the Horne Lake route.

Oliver Sayah of the Comox Valley ATV Club and Brad Davis of the Mid-Island ATV Club are collaborating on creating an inter-community, off-road vehicle tourism business and pitched the concept to the Regional District of Nanaimo.

At the regional district’s committee of the whole meeting on March 13, the two clubs, who are members of the Quad Riders Association of BC, appeared as a delegation and said they want to try out the program this coming fall for one or two weekends.

They requested the RDN grant their group permission to access forest service roads using a back portion of Horne Lake Campground during the low season. The group already has a land-use agreement with Island Timberland. They indicated they are not going to be operating in the park and only on the main road going out of the campsite.

The two representatives pointed out that the program will be an added boost to tourism in the region and has potentially huge economic benefits, especially during the off-season. It will not impact other user groups, they said.

“It is going to encourage tourism without any cost,” said Sayah, who also pointed out as example of the success that the Campbell River ATV club has had in their area with newly gained access.

The two clubs combined have approximately 300 members, who engage in responsible off-road activities on the Island. It’s a family oriented group.

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