Good points JDAs I said in my first post...... I'm not against horse riding.... been around horses a big part of my life and a lot of my family have horses.
Also say and agree with wademup... this is a tricky subject from that aspect and back a few years ago when we were discussing it ...probably a 50/50 split on opinions concerning a user permit.
But I do think what everyone needs to keep in mind and "hitch" touched on it..... not all public land is created equal.
In the case of LBL or DBNF to use as examples .... no doubt public ground , federally owned, paid for by everyone... but their intended purpose was defined as a recreational area. Otherwords their intent is shared recreational use...be it horses, atv / off road vehicles, hiking , camping, hunting , fishing ..ect... general outdoor related hobbies. The social impacts between shared users is understandable and honestly should be expected if you use these areas. However even in these situations "user permits " such as the LBL hunter use ,camping , ORV permits are required as is vaccination papers and other fees required to those riding horses.
In the case of KDF&WR's owned WMA's ... defined as Wildlife Management Areas .... the "overall recreational" intent is not there ...and ..no... not everyone paid for it or maintains it to this day. It was bought with the intent of managing wildlife... in turn giving the opportunity for public hunting & fishing as one of the "management" aspects.
So... while I understand .... yes... there are people who ride horses that also hunt/ fish / boat that buy KDF&WR license / P-R financial support. But it was not the intended purpose of the WMA's to be a public recreational areas like LBL or DBNF.
The same argument could be used & probably will be.. by all the other users in the future. They by licenses / pay P-R taxes / financially supported KDF&WR's so their "entitled" to use the property as they see fit to support their other recreational hobbies and that in itself could be unlimited. From atv's / ORV's ... the whole intent of wildlife management will be degraded to a point the use for hunting & fishing will be non-existent from an impact standpoint. The allowance of horses on WMA's has set precedence here ...all others will follow.
So in a nutshell..... yes ...I supported a KDF&WR's WMA user fee then...and do now. Also agree to maintain the integrity of the original intent of the property ...that those "other" activities during hunting seasons should be regulated / limited during that time as a point of safety and as principle .. considering the use of the land and why it exists. I'll also say in lieu of purchasing a user permit... to be fair.. if you can produce any hunting / fishing license or boater registration in your name this would be an exemption... as maybe an age requirement to exempt kids. But those users that cant ... they should buy a user permit... no different than LBL and provide additional financial support to maintain these areas.