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Anybody see this?

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Anybody see this?

Postby TahoeJeff » Mon Dec 14, 2015 1:23 pm

Mountain bikes in the wilderness? No thanks!

http://www.outsideonline.com/2038461/mo ... aign=tweet



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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby chulavista » Mon Dec 14, 2015 3:39 pm

900 comments on that story...wow.

There are trails in several national parks where cycling is allowed and some allow bikes and horses together. Not sure why they need to change the laws.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby dave54 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 5:13 pm

How many of those 900 comments are mike vandeman sock puppets? Given his past I would wager most.

I do not see the proposal as all that evil. The bill only requests the land agencies consider bikes where feasible and appropriate. Few trails would actually have bikes allowed as many are simply not rideable by most bikers. Mtn bikes are already de facto allowed on much of the PCT, as the FS rarely enforces the ban. The predicted chaos has not occurred. Likewise the handful of trails in the NPs have not degenerated into demolition derbies and wastelands.

The relaxation of the handgun ban in the NPs have not turned them into wild west shootouts. The proliferation of large RVs resulted in campgrounds remodeled and expanded, with dire predictions of catastrophe by the opponents. Those did not happen. I fail to see why a few mtn bikes will turn wilderness areas into desolate ghettos.

Much ado about nothing. History shows the predicted disasters do not occur.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby Wandering Daisy » Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:00 pm

I see this as the slippery slope. Allow one form of wheel and then where do you stop. Strollers? Wheelbarrows? Hand carts? Who has the right of way? I would say hikers, but most by the virtue of the speed of a mountain bike, it is the hiker that has to usually jump out of the way.

If allowed, like any other user, the mountain biker needs to be educated on how to ride safely so he does not cause damage to others. I personally do not like walking on trails with mountain bikes. I have been nearly run down too many times.

Mountain bikes can also go a long distance during a day- and no permit required. A lot of trails are crowded enough without adding another use that does not have to abide by quotas.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby zacjust32 » Mon Dec 14, 2015 7:00 pm

If the only reason bikes shouldn't be allowed is for the wilderness experience, I find that selfish. I'm no expert on the environmental impact of cycles, but if their impact is between horses and hikers -as the article claims-, I see no reason not to allow some bikes on some trails. Getting people out and into the wilderness is what I think governmental management is all about. Sure there's plenty of other places to ride, but some of the best views in the state and country are in the wilderness. If impact is the same, why not allow these others to experience it, they're tax paying citizens too?

I'm not to concerned with "average" people going out and irresponsibly biking on trails, once they hit that first hill I think most will change their mind. If the management makes an effort to introduce biking in a responsible way, there should be fewer problems. I would also like to see a disclaimer; maybe that trails can be closed at any time due to neglect or abuse. It's awesome to see roads and trails maintained by groups and clubs, like 4wd jeep trails, that puts a responsibility on them to take care of the use. Some of the most well-maintained trails I've driven and ridden on are maintained by private parties who see that responsible use allows for more use. Not exactly applicable here, but the idea remains.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby kpeter » Mon Dec 14, 2015 7:31 pm

In the early 1970s my family was backpacking in the Seven Devils in Idaho--at that time it was national forest waiting for designation as wilderness. We were at Sheep Lake, and to our shock a motorcyclist, carrying his motorbike and hopping across a talus field, picked his way around the lake. When he got to us he told us he had been riding cross country, had come down a scree slope, and was picking up the trail at the lake where he would ride out. As we hiked out a few days later we kept seeing tire tracks, and of course the evidence of the numerous places he cut off the switchbacks was apparent. The pass he had come down was something like Harrison Pass--I have literally skied down it on foot--and he had carried his motorcycle across several hundred yards of large talus. I would not have believed it possible had I not seen it.

I'm not suggesting that this proposal has anything to do with motorcycles. However, if an enterprising motorcyclist can get his motorcycle across terrain like the Seven Devils, then mountain bikers can and will do it nearly anywhere they are allowed. Whatever is decided, we should never for a single moment think that the difficulty of the trail will deter a mountain biker.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby oldranger » Mon Dec 14, 2015 11:37 pm

I have 2 responses to such a proposal. First it is a natural response to the creation of new wilderness areas that were previously accessible to bicycles.
A good example is the Badlands wilderness just east of bend. It had lots of roads that could be negotiated by bicycles and off road vehicles. The badlands is a wonderful place but it is not now or did it ever meet the definition of Wilderness--it was roaded and fenced and cross fenced--the southern boundary is a US highway. But it was completely closed off to all such uses. So people have to find someplace else to go. Close enough places and people will try and institute changes to how "Wilderness" is managed.

If mountain bikes are permitted on wilderness trails I would expect day use of many trails would skyrocket. How hard is it to ride up the Lyle Fork of the Tuolumne? There is little technical riding on the trails into Roaring River. That 14 mile hike could become an easy out and back day ride. I know of a particularly fine fishing lake that the first 5 miles could be handled easily on a bike in an hour or less. The last part would require stashing the bike but the overall effort would be greatly reduced.

In short allowing mountain bikes would simply increase the demand for use of wilderness trails.

What I see as a probable result of permitting mountain bikes on trails would be the need to implement day use quotas in areas where there are none and more trailheads with quotas for overnight travel in order to maintain any sense of solitude that is supposedly one of criteria of wilderness.

Oh yeah we also have places near bend with separate foot and bike trails running parallel. Some bikers insist on using the foot trails. I'm sure that one of these days some old fart will accidentally slip his trekking pole into the spokes of the bike as he stumbling off the trail to avoid getting hit. :D

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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby AlmostThere » Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:02 pm

Trails I have hiked that allow bikes become wide, rutted, muddy messes in any rain. Plus we end up looking out for unhappy rattlers the bikes run over and leave them p'o'ed and ready to bite as slower hikers approach. And I won't even get started about rude bikers who don't bother to announce themselves and bully by us. Just say no to bikes in the wilderness.


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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby maverick » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:31 pm

Mike, totally agree, would not like to see the already difficult permits, made even more difficult or impossible to secure on the most popular trailheads.
Oh yeah we also have places near bend with separate foot and bike trails running parallel. Some bikers insist on using the foot trails. I'm sure that one of these days some old fart will accidentally slip his trekking pole into the spokes of the bike as he stumbling off the trail to avoid getting hit. :D


That has happened before. :rock:

My main issue with this is, that neither the NPS, or the FS has the personal to enforce the current regulation, so why introduce another group of trail users, which could subject our wilderness areas to even more impact and abuse?

On local trails in the Bay Area, where there are designated hiker, horse, and bike trails, some are shared, have repeatedly seen mountain bikers using trails designated for hiker use only, and as AT mentioned, many do not follow the designated speed limits, putting themselves and others at danger.

Who is going to ticket those bikers, who have the need for speed, and break the rules/regulations? How many of use have seen either first hand or the evidence of fellow backpackers set illegal fires, build illegal fire rings, or setting up camp to close to a water source (river or lake) for example.


So if, and when these agencies can prove that they can take care of their backyards, by enforcing the current rules/regulations on the books, increase their budgets to deal with the current issues impacting our wilderness, human and natural, and then get the personal to deal with the new regulations, prior to the introduction of mountain bikes, then go for it.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby justm » Thu Dec 17, 2015 8:30 pm

NOOOOOO
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby LMBSGV » Thu Dec 17, 2015 9:16 pm

As a long-time resident of first Fairfax and then West Marin, I’ve been in the middle of the mountain bike-hiker-equestrian wars since the beginning. My first encounter with a mountain bike was Joe Breeze riding one of the first “clunkers” on a trail in Fairfax. Due to my extensive experience with bike-hiker encounters, I am completely opposed to mountain bikes in designated wilderness. For all the reasons stated in other posts, bikes on wilderness trails is a disaster. One of the biggest problems for the Marin County Parks department are all the illegal single track trails built by bikers in areas with extensive networks of fire roads where bikers can ride legally. (Within a mile of my house, I know of at least three illegal single tracks.) Imagine what will happen in wilderness areas with bikers building illegal trails.

Unfortunately, there is a rather pushy segment of the mountain bike community that will not give up on their push to get bikes in wilderness areas. Currently, the Marin Parks department is having meetings on rules for the parks and open space and the bikers show up in force, verbally intimidating anyone who disagrees with them. They simply do not perceive the incompatibility of a bike with wilderness or even most trails. “Erosion caused by bikes? Hikers run down? What are you talking about? We should be able to go anywhere we want.”

It is time for the National Park Service and Forest Service to state that mountains bikes will never be permitted in any designated wilderness and that the discussion is closed. No further comment.
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Re: Anybody see this?

Postby cmon4day » Fri Dec 18, 2015 11:38 am

dave54 wrote:How many of those 900 comments are mike vandeman sock puppets? Given his past I would wager most.

I do not see the proposal as all that evil. The bill only requests the land agencies consider bikes where feasible and appropriate. Few trails would actually have bikes allowed as many are simply not rideable by most bikers. Mtn bikes are already de facto allowed on much of the PCT, as the FS rarely enforces the ban. The predicted chaos has not occurred. Likewise the handful of trails in the NPs have not degenerated into demolition derbies and wastelands.

The relaxation of the handgun ban in the NPs have not turned them into wild west shootouts. The proliferation of large RVs resulted in campgrounds remodeled and expanded, with dire predictions of catastrophe by the opponents. Those did not happen. I fail to see why a few mtn bikes will turn wilderness areas into desolate ghettos.

Much ado about nothing. History shows the predicted disasters do not occur.


I agree with Dave54's assessment. I really don't see the problem with MTB's in the wilderness. Everyone here on this forum loves the mountains for the solitude, scenery and adventure. What makes a person who loves to ride any different. So whats the big deal if you're hiking along and you meet a couple of guys or gals on MTB's on an adventure. I sure you'll talk to them and share some stories just like you do when you cross paths with other BPers. After the greeting you'll each go on your merry way, no experience is ruined.

As far as trail damage, that is just an excuse. Look at what horses do to the trails. Hikers also have an impact. And yes MTB's have an impact as well. The solution to this problem is trail maintenance. That system is already in place. Thousands of $$ and countless man (person) hours are spent on trail maintenance each year. So what's the big deal.

To those who oppose MTB's in the Wilderness, just get over it and not be so single minded.
Attachments
betasso-trail.jpg
Sweet single track in Bend, OR. Trail seems fine to me.
betasso-trail.jpg (53.64 KiB) Viewed 457 times
DSC01909.JPG
Look how wide the trail is here. No MTB's caused this
JMT Lyell Canyon Trail restoration_T.JPG
Trail crew doing some maintenance. No MTB's caused this
JMT Lyell Canyon Trail restoration_T.JPG (138.74 KiB) Viewed 457 times
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