Tag Archives: private property

TUWC – Land Donations to River Parks Authority

With Thursday’s news of land donations to Turkey Mountain, it’s important to take a long view back to what made this happen. In addition to lands donated by the city of Tulsa to the Tulsa River Parks Authority, the George Kaiser Family Foundation donated even more, bringing the total to around 400 acres. These donations triple River Parks Authority’s land inventory at Turkey Mountain.

GKFF has been a forward-thinking entity when it comes to preserving land at Turkey Mountain, buying up parcels for well over a decade. It has been patient, waiting for the city to commit to a vision for the area that dates back to the late 1970s – to keep that section of land along the Arkansas River as wild and free as possible, for the purpose of giving Tulsans a place to enjoy the outdoors in a natural setting.

The trend has been heading that way. Plans for an outlet mall on Turkey Mountain’s western edge were loudly rejected by the public, and the city listened. The land was included in the latest Vision Tulsa sales tax package, taking it off the market.

Next came dealing with the inherent instability of Turkey Mountain’s land leases. Monthly lease terms meant the possibility existed that lands leased to RPA could be wild one month, then developed commercially the next. A master lease program has ended that, providing a more stable and clear future for Turkey Mountain.

And now we have Thursday’s land donation, the moment that GKFF and many other advocates for Turkey Mountain have been waiting for. A hodgepodge of public and private land holdings is now being further unified, which will give planners the needed certainty that Turkey Mountain can be a long-term site for outdoor recreation.

For years, Turkey Mountain has been a magnet for mountain bikers, runners, hikers and nature enthusiasts. We now have greater assurance that this quality-of-life asset will remain so for the foreseeable future. Turkey Mountain serves as an important site for preserving the health of the city’s air and water, and is a major asset in the area’s promising outdoor recreation economy.

Thursday’s news is good for all Tulsans, now and in the future. For this, we owe the George Kaiser Family Foundation no small amount of gratitude. Its long-term thinking is paying off.

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KOTV – River Parks Adding Fencing Around Turkey Mountain To Stop Illegal Dumping

NewsOn6.com – Tulsa, OK – News, Weather, Video and Sports – KOTV.com |

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TUWC: A Mountain Biker’s Perspective on Trail Etiquette

As the weather warms up (and hopefully dries out!), thoughts turn to mountain biking on Turkey Mountain. All kinds of people come out to visit the mountain for various reasons, so you need to be aware of what you might encounter on the trails. Here are some things to consider before you roll.

Pedestrians and horses have the right of way. Like it or not, it’s the same on the trails as it is on the road. I have yet to encounter a horse on the trail, but I do know how skittish they can be. Twelve-hundred pounds of spooked horse is not where I want to be in the close quarters of a singletrack. Horses and people move slower over rough terrain than a mountain bike can, therefore it becomes our duty to keep everyone safe. Announce your presence and intent as you slow down to allow them time to adjust their path, but keep in mind this is not always possible. Be prepared to stop. I always appreciate walkers who step off the trail to accommodate me on my bike because they don’t have to. When I’m on foot, I always step out of the way of cyclists as a courtesy.

If you meet another cyclist on the trail, slow down and make enough room for you to pass each other safely. If you’re on a hill, the climber has right of way.

If you happen upon a slower cyclist in front of you, always announce your presence and intent such as “on your left.” Be prepared though, as people will get their lefts and rights somewhat confused under pressure and trail conditions may not be conducive to the cyclist being able to move over.

Don’t ride muddy trails. Mountain bike tires leave deep ruts in puddles and soft spots. Going around said puddles pushes the mud around, making low spots even bigger. Someone has to fix these issues to maintain the trail’s integrity; otherwise a washout becomes a serious concern. It’s better for you and your bike if you stay on the paved trails until the dirt is dry enough.

Wear your helmet! Every time I see a mountain biker without a helmet on Turkey Mountain, I say, “Look ma, no brains!” You never know when you’re going to miss your line and get dumped into the rocks, or when a tree branch is going to reach out to smack you. Even the most seasoned riders have been hurt on the trails they frequent the most. So always, always, always wear your helmet. Gloves are handy (no pun intended) for when you have to steady yourself against a tree or fall over on a rock. Knee pads and elbow pads are optional, but I know people who swear by them. If you take nothing else with you, be sure you have your cell phone in case you get lost, injured, or you find someone who’s hurt.

Watch your dog. I know a lot of walkers and riders who take their dogs to the mountain off leash. It is posted that all dogs must be on a leash, but I have mixed feelings about that. The dogs I know are OK and can be trusted. But there are people who have been bitten in the past. I’m not going to advocate one way or the other, but just let me say this: Any dog can go on the attack under the right circumstances. Make sure your dogs are vaccinated and prepare yourself if you let them off leash. The person they bite is not going to be very happy with you.

Please don’t move the rocks. I know the trails are rough and it’s tempting to move certain rocks out of the way to make them easier. However, our technical trails are what draw people from all over the country to visit our fair mountain and what gets Turkey Mountain listed as the No. 1 trail system to visit in Oklahoma. Rocks help prevent soil erosion as well, so just leave them be. They’re happy right where they are. If you happen to see limbs down or obstacles (not rocks) in the trail, be kind and remove them if you can. If they are too big, please make note of where they are and contact the appropriate entity to take care of them.

Also, whatever you take into the woods, please be sure to take out. Water bottles sometimes bounce out of holders as you bounce over the rocks, but food trash can go right back into your pocket or under the edge of your shorts.

It doesn’t take any extra effort to be considerate of trail users and trail fixers. Following these simple guidelines ensures everyone who comes out to Turkey Mountain has a great experience. Remember, we’re all out here to enjoy the same sunshine, trees, and dirt for all the same reasons.

Keep the rubber side down!

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Tulsa Voice: Natural beauty Tulsans make the case to protect Turkey Mountain

Natural beauty
Tulsans make the case to protect Turkey Mountain

The resistance has reached a clear and eloquent critical mass, a decided ripening that’s accelerated over the past few months. Simon has twice requested additional time to prepare for its meeting with the Planning Commission, which is now expected to take place June 17.

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Blog: YogisDen – The Outlet Mall on Turkey Mountain Moves a Step Further

The Outlet Mall on Turkey Mountain Moves a Step Further

 We are going to see lots of asphalt and lots of cars and lots of stores selling crap. Also, this huge mall is only going to have one entrance, off a two lane road from a freeway instersection with no lights. I’m expecting that they will want the road and the intersection upgraded at no cost to them as an “incentive.” I’m also sure that will want some fancy tax treatment to pay for infrastructure as more incentives. They are building on private land so they can do what they want but I don’t want to incentivize them. I’d like them to go somewhere else in town. Perhaps to a failed existing shopping center and redevelop it.

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Blog: YogisDen – More on the Outlet Mall on Turkey Mountain

More on the Outlet Mall on Turkey Mountain

Damage that was done for no purpose. Keep in mind that this is not public land, it is private land so I guess they can do whatever the landowner will stand for. Still, I spent years building pipelines all over Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi and I never met a landowner who would stand for this kind of damage during the survey process.

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Turkey Mountain, Private Property – A bloggers thoughts.

Update on Turkey Mountain: Addressing the ‘private property’ argument

The property in question is private property. But how it’s managed or developed will have an impact on Tulsa, and for that reason, we all have a say in how that goes down. The rules that won’t allow a slaughterhouse to be built beyond your backyard fence are the same as those that will determine the fate of what happens at Turkey Mountain.

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