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OFF-ROAD RIDERS TO HIT A NEW TRAIL

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Four years ago, construction of an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) trail in Yellowstone Canyon just 10 miles north of Altamont was initiated. The project, sponsored by the Ashley National Forest and State of Utah, is now close to completion and the trail is expected to open to the public this summer.

The Yellowstone ATV Trail will cover approximately 30 miles of varying terrain and difficulty. It will be open for shared use by multiple vehicles as well as accommodating hikers and other users. When the trail opens, it will be the only ATV designation on the Roosevelt and Duchesne Ranger District."You can head two different directions from the same trail head," explained Nick Giannettino, public service group leader for the Roosevelt and Duchesne Ranger Districts. "It will have two loops. One loop runs to the west towards Petty Mountain. The other goes to the east towards Dry Gulch."

The trail's layout offers users a combination of opportunities to test their abilities, ranging from easy to difficult, and narrow to steep, or both, according to Giannettino. "It covers a variety of terrain. It's a very scenic trail laid out for enjoyment and not for speed. It ranges from low elevation sagebrush to higher elevation forests." Users will have to exercise caution, he warned. "If you're looking for speed, you're in the wrong place."

The project includes construction of a parking lot at the canyon's trail head. The trail head is easily accessible even by car, says Giannettino, if you don't mind a bumpy ride. A small bulldozer is being used to clear the path and construct the trail.

Construction has taken several years because state and federal funding for the project has been allocated in phases.

Once the trail opens, the Forest Service will need help maintaining the trail. Volunteers should contact the Forest Service office Roosevelt.