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Mark Warmoth, founder and president of Weekend Warrior Trailers Inc., Perris, Calif., believes all toy hauler manufacturers should provide financial support to the California Off-Road Vehicle Association (CORVA) to make sure outdoor motorsports enthusiasts will continue to have access to lands where they enjoy the lifestyle.
Although CORVA is based in Sacramento, Warmoth said it actually is a national organization that also works on behalf of outdoor motorsports enthusiasts in other states.
The growth in popularity of toy haulers, also called ramp trailers, sport utility trailers or sport utility RVs (SURVs), was directly related to the growth in popularity of four-wheel all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the use of motorcycles off road, Warmoth explained.
Consequently, he said, “There’s no need for the trailers if there’s no place to ride (ATVs or motorcycles off road). There’s more and more people riding and fewer and fewer places to ride, so we’ve got to turn that around.”
Currently, California is a battleground for off-roaders’ rights. There are around 220 lawsuits pending that seek to have off-roading banned in certain area0s to protect endangered species, Warmoth said.
“As the off-road thing gets more popular, the environmentalists are coming out of the woodwork to try and stop off-roading as a lifestyle,” he said. “We consider ourselves environmentalists. We just believe in saving the land for the people, not from the people.
… The more radical environmentalists are using the federal Endangered Species Act “as a weapon because it was designed to stop (activities) now before we do any more damage and then do the research,” Warmoth said. “Once something gets closed because it’s on the endangered species list, it stays closed for years even though it (a particular species) may not be endangered.”
There are environmentalists who are outspoken in their desire “to close down off-roading,” and they are better organized than the supporters of off-roaders’ rights, Warmoth believes.
One way the manufacturers of toy haulers can advocate on behalf of their customers is through CORA’s Action program, which involves buying stickers, which cost $25 each, to attach to their trailers.
Warmoth’s Weekend Warrior brand is the top-selling travel-trailer/fifth-wheel brand in California, according to Statistical Surveys Inc., and Warmoth said other major towable RV manufacturers, including Thor California and Komfort, subsidiaries of Thor Industries Inc., along with National RV Inc. and Alfa Leisure Inc. also buy CORVA Action stickers.
Other toy-hauler manufacturers participating in the Action program are Idaho’s Kit Manufacturing and Oregon’s Northwood Manufacturing, according to CORVA’s website, corva.org.
Motorcycle dealers comprise the other big group of CORVA Action supporters, Warmoth said.
“We’re raising around $300,000 a year to hand to the (off-roaders’ rights advocacy) organizations that are fighting for land-use issues in all these different places and hiring biologists to prove that species aren’t endangered,” Warmoth said. “But it’s a big battle and it needs cash and I need the other manufacturers. I’d like to challenge all of the manufacturers of ramp trailers. If they are going to take money from people who buy their trailers then they should put some of it back to the California Off-Road Vehicle Association.
“The battle right now is in California and it needs money,” he added.