Several years ago the horseback riding crowd started complaining to the Wildlife Commission here in N.C. that they should also be allowed to ride on gamelands. I went to the nearest hearing in Raleigh and some of the equine community present argued that there was not enough open space for them to ride and since gamelands are only used part of the year, they should be open to the public...afterall, they were funded by public money. They also claimed that horses did not cause erosion(?!) and in the next breath they said that all the trails open to horses in the State Parks around Raleigh were too rocky or slippery.
I answered the back that if horses did not cause erosion, then show me a pasture gate that had grass growing under it. Plus the only reason the State Park trails were so bad is because they were ERODED BY HORSES! Most riders only want to ride, they don't want to work to maintain trails. I know this because my wife rides her horse 5 days a week. Any time she needs work done on the trails, she tries to recruit my @$$ to help ( I have a lot of tools & I cut trees and brush a couple weekends a month working at the hunting lease). After making the point that those lands were paid for by public money that was collected off the back of the sale of hunting & fishing gear & license taxes, I told them that they should start pooling their money to buy some equestrian lands...they could even forbid hunting there.
The Wildlife Commission saw it the same way and closed gamelands to horse traffic. As it was, there was no such rule in place and many riders already had trails on gamelands they had been riding for years. The Wildlife folks didn't want the wear & tear, nor did they want riders not following the rules and riding during hunting season (which you know they would). So, the whole thing kind of blew up in their faces. If they just kept quiet, they may have gotten away with riding on gamelands (like was already going on) a while longer. Instead they are now prohibited.
Luck Counts, good or bad