County looking into possible ATV trail move across CR 76

by Jennie Zeitler, Staff Writer

Public Works Director Steve Backowski said that issues still exist with an ATV trail running along County Road 76 north of Little Falls. The trail runs in the right-of-way along the west side of the highway.

“A few ATVs come through at a pretty good clip and there were issues with safety for school busses coming out of driveways,” Backowski told the County Board, Oct. 1.

The county has discussed the feasibility of relocating the trail from the west side of the road to the east side.

“But the requirements from Burlington Northern make that difficult,” he said. ‘We would have to buy an easement and have a trail appraisal done. They want a separation such as a fence between the trail and the Camp Ripley rail line.”

At this time, the county will remove trees within the right of way to improve visibility. Additional signage will be installed on the highway to alert motorists.

“We hope the opportunity will present itself to make a deal with Burlington Northern Santa Fe for getting the trail on the east side in a manner in which we can afford to do it,” Backowski said. “That seems to be the reasonable thing to do.”