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Don Amador's Top Ten Recreation Predictions for 2009

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Produced Dec. 29, 2008

10 - A thawing of diplomatic tension and increased trade relations between the USA and Cuba are realized during the first 8 months of the Obama administration. Motorcycle racing fans in Cuba petition their government to host an event as part of the popular Endurocross Series. Cuban authorities schedule an Endurocross event and at least two freestyle motocross exhibitions for the 2010 season.

9 - An international corporation will manufacture a 15 horsepower diesel/electric hybrid dual-sport motorcycle. It will be a multi-purpose “World Bike” that functions – with various and additional attachments available for purchase at time of sale – as a farm tractor, trail-bike, commuter, military transport or weapons platform, well pump, people mover, competition racer, and home power generator.

8 – The International Olympic Committee considers adding a 40 min. motocross race to the Triathlon. This would be in addition to the 40km bicycle ride and other tests. Members of the IOC understand that professional motocross riders are some of the best conditioned athletes in the world. This proposal seeks to address that fact and include them into the competition.

7 – After reviewing how successful the ecologically-sensitive 4 wheel-drive vehicle- based wildlife tours are in Africa, the National Park Service reviews its road and trail network to better facilitate public access. The Service initiates a public rule-making process in 2009. The Service believes that if it works in African National Parks it should work in the USA too.

6 – Based on a recommendation from a Silicon Valley-based research firm, the United Nations declares all humans as “pollutants” because they are carbon-based and are claimed to be a significant contributor to Global Warming. Researchers are directed to develop a program that genetically changes humans into a copper-based life form. Until that research is complete and because of political and public blow-back, the UN only lists “recreationists” as interim polluters and requires them to scale-back outdoor activities and instead explore the world, hunt, fish, and play sports on their computers.

5 - The new Congress and Obama administration develop a new program to cut the federal budget and consolidate government agencies. One proposal is to combine the USDA Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management into a new department called the Land and Forest Bureaucratic Service. No decision has yet been made as to the color of the uniforms.

4 - After president-elect Obama is sworn in on January 21, members of the Bush Cabinet meet at Dick Cheney’s property in Wyoming for a one week recreation vacation that consists of snowmobiling, winter 4x4ing, ice fishing, and relaxation.

3 - Owners of Dubai’s Indoor Snow Park invite the National Snowmobile Racing Association to hold an event at the facility. The Association considers having an event there for the 2009/2010 racing season. A large water-crossing (where snowmobiles hydroplane) is being planned as part of the course.

2 – A new coalition of pro-access Democrats and Republicans form a Congressional “Save our Trails” working group. This group finds a receptive ear in the Obama administration. President Obama directs his cabinet to develop a public land oriented works project where grants and other monies are directed to hire the unemployed and youth to do trail maintenance on federal lands.

1 - Motorized recreation groups and mainstream environmental organizations join forces in 2009 to promote efforts by the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management to better manage and enhance both their motorized and non-motorized recreation programs.

Both groups understand that the days of “Big Gulp” Wilderness proposals are over. However, there will be times when the groups part company on specific issues.

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Don Amador is an outdoor recreation consultant and writes on land-use and environmental issues from his office in Oakley, California. He may be reached by email at: damador@cwo.com

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