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Since I dont want to unstoke my stoke thread - Page 2

post #31 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by CTKook View Post

Well, the original ban on motorized transport was because they didn't want roads, parking lots, etc.  A heli, or a float trip down a river, are pretty non-intrusive.  

Consider that those user groups may actually be your friends.  Also, things like float trips (which some hardcore enviro types do want to see banned) are great vacations and a great way for people to actually experience more of the outdoors.

A pet peeve of mine on this point is motos.  Yes, there are jerks, just as in any user group.  But, responsible riders are no louder than a large hiking group, and a lot of moto trails are actually pretty buff single track (those trail degradation horror stories do exist, but they exist for hiking trails, too).  They're certainly not as high-impact environmentally as horses.   

I don't expect them to win being allowed to ride in wilderness areas any time soon, but for many other areas they're a group of users that people should be more open to including rather than trying to shut the door on them right after MTBs are inside the door. 
I agree whole heartedly. 
post #32 of 47
I think this is exactly the problem with making any change.  If you let the MTBs in, then the motos want it next.  Then the atvers, and the 4x4 ers.  Where does it stop?  It stops when there is no longer any wildness associated with the area.  Kinda defeats the purpose of protecting the area for its wildness to begin with.

I personally like having places to hike that require only the effort of your body to access.  I enjoy being somewhere where I don't hear the noise of civilization except for the occasional aircraft (and I'd be happier not to hear that).  I suspect there are others who are more rabid in this viewpoint than I am.

I can see allowing MTB access to some parts of the wilderness, but I can't endorse allowing motorized vehicles.  This from a die-hard westerner.

Mike
post #33 of 47
1
post #34 of 47
Just because dolly sodds and the gallatin river are being closed by wilderness does not mean that this is the biggest threats to single track everywhere. In my locality there are three big threats to single track those are: Poorly built trails that erode all on their own and need constant maintenance, ATVs incursion on single track, and cattle drives occurring on single track. Round here bikers need to follow the rules because if we don't show good faith and follow the rules then we don't have any moral leg to stand on when ATVs come and 2-track up a whole trail system.

Mechanized transport originally meant anything with a motor to transport people. But the interpretation was changed by the implementing agencies (BLM, USFS, NPS) 25 years ago has been generalized to mean, banning any contrivance with a wheel e.g. bikes and wheel barrows (used by hunters for transporting meat). This is reinterpretation was a bad idea and should be wound back to the original meaning from 1964. That's something worth fighting for IMO.

And yes I do belong to IMBA. Sadly, IMBA has capitulated to wilderness groups and is not seeking a rule change that grant MTB access to wilderness. In that sense they are failing in their mission to advocate for MTB access. And its a real weakness in their approach. What MTB groups are lobbying for MTB access to wilderness? 
Edited by tromano - 11/13/09 at 9:09am
post #35 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

I think this is exactly the problem with making any change.  If you let the MTBs in, then the motos want it next.  Then the atvers, and the 4x4 ers.  Where does it stop?  It stops when there is no longer any wildness associated with the area.  Kinda defeats the purpose of protecting the area for its wildness to begin with.

I personally like having places to hike that require only the effort of your body to access.  I enjoy being somewhere where I don't hear the noise of civilization except for the occasional aircraft (and I'd be happier not to hear that).  I suspect there are others who are more rabid in this viewpoint than I am.

I can see allowing MTB access to some parts of the wilderness, but I can't endorse allowing motorized vehicles.  This from a die-hard westerner.

Mike

I agree with this Mike, but I'd like to add that Michigan is a state that has tons of State and Federal forest that is protected with great trail systems for various uses(horse, mtb, Motorcycle, atv hiking, xcountry skiing, etc).
Our DNR requires that you pay for an ORV permit to access any trail within the designated system.  If you are caught off trail, you are fined heavily and sometimes jailed(depending on the severity) 
When people work within the system every one can have their piece of the trail system.  Its the poachers who wreck it.
Because Mr TC is an avid dirtbiker, we volunteer to do trail maintenance and clean up.  We find that working within the system has developed a much better relationship with all concerned and gives us a stronger voice.
post #36 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

I think this is exactly the problem with making any change.  If you let the MTBs in, then the motos want it next.  Then the atvers, and the 4x4 ers.  Where does it stop?  It stops when there is no longer any wildness associated with the area.  Kinda defeats the purpose of protecting the area for its wildness to begin with.

I personally like having places to hike that require only the effort of your body to access.  I enjoy being somewhere where I don't hear the noise of civilization except for the occasional aircraft (and I'd be happier not to hear that).  I suspect there are others who are more rabid in this viewpoint than I am.

I can see allowing MTB access to some parts of the wilderness, but I can't endorse allowing motorized vehicles.  This from a die-hard westerner.

Mike
 


Access to motos elsewhere does not have to equal access to wilderness, though on principle relative to a big hiking group it's reasonable to question why they're considered different.

The personal desire to have places that require only your own physical effort to access is a consumer taste for exclusivity.  The physical reality is that you can go to place that are quite crowded -- Zion, Yosemite -- and even in peak season be pretty much alone in many places with only a 30 minute hike.

 

In most "popular" mountain biking areas -- destination areas that people travel to for vacations, etc. -- you can often go on singletrack trails on a weekend and see maybe 7 or 8 other riders over 3 hours, except right at the trailhead.   So we're not talking big intrusions on anyone's solitude, even in those areas.  Most areas also have maybe one trail that goes "deep" and on those it's unusual to see anyone else -- and these are areas that are not wilderness.

There's nothing wrong with exclusivity per se though.  If the BLM wanted to set aside "hiking parks" where hikers could go without having to see anyone except other hikers, cool.  Just keep it maybe about the size of an 18 hole golf course, about right for an exclusive club. 

I can find peace and quiet in 30 minutes by the Flatirons in Boulder without caring about other uses of the land that are going on around me, if peace and quiet, and not an exclusive experience, is really what I'm after.
 

post #37 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

We find that working within the system has developed a much better relationship with all concerned and gives us a stronger voice.

 

+1
post #38 of 47

CTK

Setting aside wilderness is not about exclusivity, it is about preservation of the attributes of places that are relatively untouched by human influence.  There are many people who get value out of knowing that there are such places even though they never visit them or use them personally -- this is know as "existence value" in economics, and there is a robust literature that has demonstrated and quantified this value.

I don't think there is anything particularly exclusive about wilderness other than it requires using your own power to visit it.  It doesn't require wealth -- in fact, the vast proportion of folk visiting wilderness are probably not the wealthy.  Those unwilling to use their own effort to visit wilderness can visit many popular relatively wild areas such as Zion, Yellowstone, RMNP, etc.  Interestingly, a NPS study found that over 95% of the visitors to Yellowstone never got more than a hundred yards from their cars.

 

Mike

post #39 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

CTK

Setting aside wilderness is not about exclusivity, it is about preservation of the attributes of places that are relatively untouched by human influence.  There are many people who get value out of knowing that there are such places even though they never visit them or use them personally -- this is know as "existence value" in economics, and there is a robust literature that has demonstrated and quantified this value.

I don't think there is anything particularly exclusive about wilderness other than it requires using your own power to visit it.  It doesn't require wealth -- in fact, the vast proportion of folk visiting wilderness are probably not the wealthy.  Those unwilling to use their own effort to visit wilderness can visit many popular relatively wild areas such as Zion, Yellowstone, RMNP, etc.  Interestingly, a NPS study found that over 95% of the visitors to Yellowstone never got more than a hundred yards from their cars.

 

Mike



The myth that there are places in the U.S. relatively untouched by human influence is just that. 

People mtb-ing are most definitely using their own power. 

Leaving that to one side, requiring people to use their own power to access something is a means of exclusivity.  It is at odds with some things such as disabled access, of course, and actually there are big efforts right now to provide more access for the disabled for these areas.  To say that you want to democratize access for people who are officially disabled, but keep people out who may not physically be able to access the same areas because they're not in great shape, etc. out, is a bit odd. 

I'm in good shape, so I don't feel affected by this personally other than by the relative lack of MTBing available in the US relative to what could be.  If I were, say, an overweight factory worker who was in essence being told either ride a horse, or stuff it, for access to some of these places by some stuffy Sierra Club type, I might feel a bit differently.
post #40 of 47
Where did anyone get the idea it takes less effort to take a MTB into the backcountry than walk? 

We used to own horses, and I have done many rides into Mokulomne and Desolation Wilderness, and parts in-between that are now proposed for wilderness.  I rarely saw MTB in the non-wilderness area, but I know they will miss the access.  I did come across some moto riders, and that was always a concern because of the speed they could close around blind corners, and the noise intrusion.  I always felt there was room for all of us to have a place in those remote areas.

Tromano's concern above of IMBA.not advocating for wilderness access reminds me of the AMA who concedes on a number of  politically hot issues for motorcycles (like loud pipes), and the more radical ABATE who does not concede any biker's "rights".

Anyway, it makes for odd bedfellows, but I would think the MTB community would be teaming up with the AMA for this one issue, but from what I gather here, mountain bikers are not politically active in protecting their rights:

Quote:
On November 10, U.S. Representative Maurice Hinchey of New York, along with 88 other colleagues, sent a letter to the U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar asking that he circumvent normal legislative procedures and administratively close more than 9 million public land acres in Utah. Effectively designating Wilderness areas without public debate or congressional approval only further erodes the public's confidence in their government. Hinchey is attempting to thwart the legislative process by having the public lands described in his bill, H.R. 1925, America's Red Rock Wilderness Act of 2009, administratively protected by the Secretary. 
post #41 of 47
^^^ Maurice Hinchey of New York looking to grab 9mm public acres... in UT... nicely captures the fact that a lot of this stuff is driven by elites and what they want made available primarily to themselves.
post #42 of 47
I don't want to wade through this whole thread, so sorry if this has been said already:

Personally, I'd be all for 'Wilderness' if it meant Absolutely No Humans, period. Leave it 100% to wildlife... how many Sierra Club members would be for that? Seriously, instead of deciding which users are OK and which aren't, just say "humans pretty much suck at playing with wildlife, let's just let some areas be". I'm betting there would be a MAJOR pull-back of new proposed Wilderness.
post #43 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

I don't want to wade through this whole thread, so sorry if this has been said already:

Personally, I'd be all for 'Wilderness' if it meant Absolutely No Humans, period. Leave it 100% to wildlife... how many Sierra Club members would be for that? Seriously, instead of deciding which users are OK and which aren't, just say "humans pretty much suck at playing with wildlife, let's just let some areas be". I'm betting there would be a MAJOR pull-back of new proposed Wilderness.

That's pretty much what wilderness is. Once you get 10 miles from a trail head there are very few people there.
post #44 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post

I don't want to wade through this whole thread, so sorry if this has been said already:

Personally, I'd be all for 'Wilderness' if it meant Absolutely No Humans, period. Leave it 100% to wildlife... how many Sierra Club members would be for that? Seriously, instead of deciding which users are OK and which aren't, just say "humans pretty much suck at playing with wildlife, let's just let some areas be". I'm betting there would be a MAJOR pull-back of new proposed Wilderness.
 

The Sierra Club would figure their active members can get some eco-angle to still get privileged access to the goods -- peregrine falcon studies, bear scat counting, some such -- and be all for it. 

Maybe a winter ski tour to see if moose still chew on trees.  All that snow all to themselves...hmm, y'know, I think the moose is a significantly understudied animal, count me in.
post #45 of 47
 One of the trails closest to where I live has some areas that are getting washed out and developing sand traps.  Volklgirl took the time to map out a proposed reroute and presented it to the local DNR office.  the plan was approved and we'll be making new trail allowing the old worn out trail to recover.  
That is what happens when you go through proper channels, take the time to communicate well and do the work necessary to improve the trail, and improve the relationship with the authorities. 
post #46 of 47
That's the way to do it: work with the system and things will often work out.  Better to be a fair player than an antagonist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

 One of the trails closest to where I live has some areas that are getting washed out and developing sand traps.  Volklgirl took the time to map out a proposed reroute and presented it to the local DNR office.  the plan was approved and we'll be making new trail allowing the old worn out trail to recover.  
That is what happens when you go through proper channels, take the time to communicate well and do the work necessary to improve the trail, and improve the relationship with the authorities. 
post #47 of 47

Ive just gotta reply to the first post, trails around here almost never get closed (eastern Wyoming) due to low traffic, more horses (and cows) on the trails than people. Trails closing for hunting season is a must around here since people tend to get the alcohol fueled antelope fever and pop shots at anything that moves, someone even shot a cow a couple years back. But for some reason our trails never close during hunting season, i heard a shot when i was riding two years ago and thats the last time ive ridden during season. I also dont ride in the mud ect.

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