from BikePortland.org » Appeals denied, groups now want injunction to stop Timberline MTB Park

Without opportunities for non-motorized recreation, many people will never gain an appreciation for nature that turns them into exactly the kind of environmental advocates, donors and voters that groups like the Sierra Club and Mazamas depend on.

BikePortland has a great article that y’all should read.  Bottom line, mountain bikers need a place to ride and we’ll take care of those places.  Local Eugene group Disciples of Dirt do tons of environmental trail work, and yet we are denied places to ride like the Ribbon Trail by hiker groups like The Obsidians and Friends of Hendricks Park who don’t understand the environmental benefits of mt. biking and their advocacy groups.

As a backpacker, environmentalist, and biologist (sort of), I understand why groups like Friends of Mt. Hood, Bark, Mazamas, Federation of Western Outdoor Clubs, Northwest Environmental Defense Center, and Oregon Chapter of the Sierra Club might initially be wary of a mt. bike area on Mt. Hood.  But, as a mt. unicycler and occasional mt. biker, I know those fears are exaggerated, unfounded, and uneducated.  It’s time that outdoors and environmental groups stop hating on mt. bikers . Mt. bikers like Disciples of Dirt are stewards of the environment, not crazy ruffians trampling a pristine wilderness.

Furthermore, if we don’t have a condoned place to ride, renegade riders will make their own trails and those rarely are environmentally safe.  I don’t condone this, but it happens.  Having sanctioned places to ride keeps new riders riding on trails that are maintained by groups like Disciples of Dirt, rather than making their own trails wherever they want and leaving them to erosion.

Anyway, it’s rare that internet comments are useful, but you should read the following quoted comments from the BikePortland article.  They succinctly explain why YOU should support mountain bike trails, which are currently very rare.

 

rwl1776 March 12, 2013 at 11:44 am

A reminder for those who remember the Mt Hood Legacy Act, championed by Earl Bluemenauer: Mountainbikers LOST access to 110 miles of singletrack in the Mt Hood Area, out of the 210 they were legally allowed to ride AND had done so for over two decades. These same recreational riders poured untold hours into the maintenance of these trails that all people could enjoy. This new Timberline MTB park would help to make up for the access mountainbikers lost forever. Please remind Mazamas and the others about these facts! P.S. What is the opinion of OregonWild about this MTB park, anyone know? They were the driving force behind the Mt. Hood Legacy Act……..

 

SilkySlim March 12, 2013 at 11:55 am

If you think of Mt. Hood as a big pie graph, how big would the slice be for this MTB area? Unless my estimation skills are way off, I am betting 1% or less. And of an area already being used recreation.

My point – bring it on! And I say that as someone way to scared to take on such downhill riding.

Eastsider March 12, 2013 at 12:15 pm

Without opportunities for non-motorized recreation, many people will never gain an appreciation for nature that turns them into exactly the kind of environmental advocates, donors and voters that groups like the Sierra Club and Mazamas depend on.

Bikes belong.

Burk March 12, 2013 at 12:33 pm

Having ridden on the course in Whistler I just can’t see how anyone could be against this in Oregon. From what I could tell the environmental impact was no different than the ski resort service roads. None of the trails impacted hiking routs… I just can’t see a real downside.

The upside on the other hand, I imagine this would be a huge financial boost to the area. Timberline obviously, but bike rentals, restaurants, bike shops, hotels… and such a great way to get people outside and enjoying the area.

I’m not getting how some groups are against this.

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