OHV Monitoring, Analysis, and Report

Photo Credit: John Carter||||| Photo Credit: John Carter||||| |||||


Prior to 2017, Y2U collected over 100 days of sound data on snowmobiles, ATVs, dirt bikes and other vehicles on access roads and dispersed campsites within the Caribou National Forest.  Over two thousand records of observations were entered into the database to date. In summer of 2016, there was a large increase in traffic with sound levels recorded at over 100 dB, so we decided to delay our sound report to allow for additional data collection in 2017.  During the summer of 2017, we worked with Dr. Randy Martin from Utah State University, as well as an undergraduate intern who helped us collect both air quality and vehicle number data for Paris Canyon.  Y2U expects Dr. Martin’s report by the end of December 2019, which was delayed in 2018 for reasons out of our control.  Dr. Martin and Dr. John Carter will be working on another summer of data collection for 2020 in Paris Canyon. 

Work Plan

  • Waiting for the final report from Dr. Randy Martin.
  • Analyzing opportunities to expand our data collection in 2020.
  • In 2020 our staff GIS analyst Denise Petersen will be generating a map of the Bear River Range portion of the Corridor to show areas impacted by sound from OHVs.
  • Distributing the updated sound and air quality reports once they are complete to Forest Service staff to propose changes to their speed limits, road maintenance and law enforcement in the Caribou National Forest.
  • Presenting the report to the local County Commission to propose changes to their speed limits, road maintenance and law enforcement on county access roads to the Caribou National Forest.
  • Continue leasing equipment for monitoring air quality (particulates), video with stereo sound, speed radar, and sound (decibel levels).

Expected Outcome

By exposing the excessive OHV usage - including excessive speeds, dust and noise - we hope to encourage action by the Forest Service. The resulting data set from this project will help with ongoing efforts to create summer and winter travel plans for OHVs that reflect the recent increase in traffic. The project is an important element of protecting wildlife in the Corridor and providing opportunities for quiet recreation.