Latest Newsletter


Latest Newsletter

Spring 2021 (pdf)

From AMA Magazine

Russ Ehnes has a long history of fighting for off-highway rights. He continues that work as AMA Board chair.

Russ Ehnes, who has been an AMA member for 23 consecutive years and spent decades advocating for off-highway access rights, was selected as Chair of the AMA Board of Directors during a meeting in February 2020.  In addition to serving on the AMA Board as the member representative from the Northwest Region, Ehnes is the former executive director of the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council. He also has led the Montana Trail Vehicle Riders Association and the Great Falls Trail Bike Riders Association. He has chaired the Montana OHV Grant Advisory Committee and has served on the Federal Advisory Committee for the U.S. Forest Service Planning Rule.  Ehnes replaced outgoing chair Maggie McNally-Bradshaw, former member representative from the Northeast Region. McNally-Bradshaw served on the board since 2009 and had been the AMA board chair since 2013. She exited her position due to term limits. 

We asked Ehnes a few questions to help members get to know him better.

Finding Common Ground for Trails and Recreation 

By Bob Walker, Chair, Montana Trails Coalition Board of Directors

The Montana Trails Coalition (MTC) works in partnership with individuals, organizations, and communities to support trails and outdoor recreation opportunities on lands open for public use in Montana.  The Coalition’s many objectives include, among others, sharing information about existing sources of funds and securing adequate resources to meet Montana’s trails and outdoor recreation needs.  The MTC’s immediate primary efforts involved studying the potential sources of funds for trails in Montana and recommending actions to secure funds.  We published the Montana Trails In Crisis report that clearly describes the demand for trails in Montana and the dire lack of adequate funding.

By International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association

The International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (ISMA) has partnered with the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI) and the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) in the ‘Look Before You Pump’ campaign, an ethanol education and consumer protection program. The campaign reminds consumers to always use fuels containing no greater than ten percent ethanol when powering their outdoor power equipment or other non-road product, such as boats, snowmobiles, motorcycles, ATVs not designed for higher ethanol fuel blends.

By Karen Umphress, Past Staff Person, NOHVCC

I have been active in the outdoors all of my life. Camping, hiking, fishing, canoeing, and swimming were all parts of family recreational time. When I lived in Washington State for a while one of my favorite forms of outdoor recreation was hiking on Mount Rainier; and one of my favorite hikes was along the Carbon River and Glacier. This was a seven-mile trip out to the Tolmie Peak lookout and back going over Ipsut Pass. The total length of the hike is 14 miles and has several thousand feet of elevation change. It takes a full day and is a great workout.

Focused work will help agency reduce a maintenance backlog and make trails safer for users


U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in February announced the selection of 15 priority areas to help address the more than $300 million trail maintenance backlog on national forests and grasslands.  Focused trail work in these areas, bolstered by partners and volunteers, is expected to help address needed infrastructure work so that trails managed by USDA Forest Service can be accessed and safely enjoyed by a wide variety of trails enthusiasts. About 25 percent of agency trails fit those standards while the condition of other trails lag behind.

“Our nation’s trails are a vital part of the American landscape and rural economies, and these priority areas are a major first step in USDA’s on-the-ground responsibility to make trails better and safer,” Secretary Perdue said. “The trail maintenance backlog was years in the making with a combination of factors contributing to the problem, including an outdated funding mechanism that routinely borrows money from programs, such as trails, to combat ongoing wildfires.