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  1. #1
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    Sedona Kicked Out of I.M.B.A!!!

    I opened my email yesterday and found this message from Patrick Kell, I.M.B.A.'s Southwest Regional Rep:

    Hello, I hope this email finds you well. I'm contacting you to let you know that the Sedona Mountain Bike Club (SMBC) will no longer be part of the IMBA chapter program, we have given the SMBC Board 60 days notice of this action. This action has been taken due to the fact that IMBA and some members of the SMBC Board have divergent approaches to many of the fundamental components of mountain bike advocacy, and IMBA cannot align with the style of advocacy that some SMBC Board members are putting forth.

    We sincerely thank you for your support and hope that you can continue to support IMBA in the future, your current IMBA membership is still active. Should we re-establish an IMBA chapter in Sedona, we would welcome your renewed membership. Until then, we plan to work cooperatively with the Verde Valley Cyclist Coalition, as a leading advocacy group, the USFS at the Red Rock Ranger District as strong partners on a local, regional and national level, and other groups, agencies and individuals in the area. I would appreciate hearing your thoughts and feedback on this, please feel free to email or call at the number below.

    Thanks,
    Patrick

    Patrick Kell
    Southwest Regional Director
    International Mountain Bicycling Association
    802-371-9033
    patrick.kell@imba.com
    International Mountain Bicycling Association

    Of course, the main reason that I joined I.M.B.A. was that the Sedona Mountain Bike Club had become an I.M.B.A. Chapter. I never joined the Verde Valley Cyclist's Coalition, even though I had plenty of opportunity to do so for over ten years. And I did not join I.M.B.A. prior to the formation of the Sedona Mountain Bike Club, even though I.M.B.A. has been around for at least two decades.

    So, I have requested that my membership fees be refunded in full, as it appears as if I.M.B.A. officials had already made up their minds to give the Sedona Mountain Bike Club the boot even before I joined, and that seems to me like I.M.B.A. accepted my membership fees under false pretenses.

    This is incredibly lame of I.M.B.A. and I will be encouraging ALL of the other 80 or so Sedona Mountain Bike Club members to follow suit...
    If more people rode more bikes, more places, more often, the world would be a more better place!

  2. #2
    Lakvoodoo
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    Let's clarify... "Sedona" per se was not asked to step away from IMBA; rather, the SMBC was. The VVCC (which is a coalition of all types of riders throughout the Verde Valley to include Sedona) still has a good working relationship with IMBA as does the forest service.

    Full-disclosure: I am a member of both clubs as well as a long-time member of IMBA.

    Club or no club...it's all about moving forward. Out of curiosity, what did you expect from joining a club? Funding? Social beni's? Other? Social ties can (and will and should) continue. The money you put toward SMBC...what did you expect to get from that? If you were the local trail overlord, what would you want to see happen? And why?

    Happy trails...
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    Get Outside!

  3. #3
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    You guys sure have a lot MTB of drama down there.

  4. #4
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    Well, not really surprising news given how Patrick had already distanced himself from the Sedona chapter and "appeared" to be working more closely with VVVC.

    This has been posted before but it's a pretty good, unbiased overview of the scene. Sedrama - Growing Pains in Sedona - Pinkbike
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  5. #5
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    The Sedona Mountain Bike Club would seem to be the predominant club, but perhaps the Verde Valley cyclists are interested in building level sustainable trails for horses?
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  6. #6
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    Sedona Kicked Out of I.M.B.A!!!

    Shucks.
    Nobody gives a s#$t you singlespeed.

  7. #7
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    Your action of requesting a refund on your membership and telling everybody else to do the same is a prime example of what I assume IMBA (and the USFS) didn't want to deal with anymore. No offense, but a select few members of SMBC have feared change and haven't been afraid to let it be known. I wonder how much harm SMBC has done to local biking compared to how much good they have done...

    Maybe Patrick could shed a little light on this, but I heard that an affiliate club (Like VVCC) gets to keep more of the money they raise locally while a chapter club (Like SMBC) has to give more of the money they raise to IMBA to be distributed elsewhere. Again, this is just something rumored in another forum.

    But please don't get your panties in a wad because I haven't been a member of either VVCC or SMBC.
    The secret to mountain biking is pretty simple. The slower you go the more likely it is you’ll crash.
    - Julie Furtado

  8. #8
    IMBA south west
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    Dean - no we absolutely did not accept your dues having already made a decision, that would be unethical and it's not how I or IMBA operate. That sounds like another Sedona conspiracy theory to me. The final decision was made very recently. Like I said, i'll consult with a co-worker regarding a refund and will get back to you.

  9. #9
    IMBA south west
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    Quote Originally Posted by woahey View Post
    Your action of requesting a refund on your membership and telling everybody else to do the same is a prime example of what I assume IMBA (and the USFS) didn't want to deal with anymore. No offense, but a select few members of SMBC have feared change and haven't been afraid to let it be known. I wonder how much harm SMBC has done to local biking compared to how much good they have done...

    Maybe Patrick could shed a little light on this, but I heard that an affiliate club (Like VVCC) gets to keep more of the money they raise locally while a chapter club (Like SMBC) has to give more of the money they raise to IMBA to be distributed elsewhere. Again, this is just something rumored in another forum.

    But please don't get your panties in a wad because I haven't been a member of either VVCC or SMBC.
    Thanks for the common sense Woahey

  10. #10
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    The Verde Valley Cycling Coalition is mostly a roadie oriented entity and even most of the V.V.C.C. members who identify themselves as being "mountain bikers" are really just road riders on dirt, while the Sedona Mountain Biking Club consists mostly of hardcore, technical riders and also includes in its membership many of the original Sedona residents who are responsible for riding many of the routes into existence that are now the "famous" trails that people come from all around the World to ride. Without these original Sedona mountain biking pioneers, there wouldn't even be 1/4 of the trails here, and there would not even be enough of a Sedona mountain biking scene for us to even be having a discussion on this forum about Sedona trails and Sedona mountain biking politics.

    And, if it was not for the vision and dedication of the original Sedona mountain biking pioneers, who are the core of the S.M.B.C, I would have probably moved to Boulder City, Nevada or Whistler, British Columbia when I left Zion; so I am super grateful for all of the hard work they have done over the past few decades and all of the challenges that they have faced.

    To me, it is totally chicken$hit of I.M.B.A. to abandon the S.M.B.C; mostly over a disagreement over whether a petition opposing the recent illegal trail closures instituted by the Forest Circus included enough or accurate enough information. It is not the job of ANY petition to fully articulate the opposition's viewpoint, and the Forest Circus certainly presented extremely selective/biased/inaccurate info when they held their meeting announcing that they were "thinking of" (read that "had already decided to") implement their "mountain biking cross-country travel ban".

    In fact just the wording, "cross-country travel ban" is extremely and intentionally mis-leading in my estimation; since it is really a "trail closure", more than anything else. All that the petition pointed out, was that the closure ONLY targeted mountain bikers, not hikers, trail runners, equestrians, climbers, etc; and was therefore discriminatory.
    If more people rode more bikes, more places, more often, the world would be a more better place!

  11. #11
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    Patrick,

    I spoke with Dave Cichan yesterday after he read my original post here; and he informed me that he has a copy of a recording of a phone conversation between you and Rama, which validates my belief that you and/or IMBA had already made the decision to pull the SMBC's charter BEFORE I joined the SMBC, but had just not made the official announcement. Speaking directly with Rama further confirmed my suspicions.

    It is also interesting that after certain Forest Service employees told you that they did not wish to work with the SMBC, that you used that as partial justification to revoke the SMBC's charter, rather than having the balls to tell the Forest Service that you had over 70 members in a local club who are willing, able, and knowledgeable, and that they would need to find a way to incorporate these volunteers into their plans, in order to gain some trust and cooperation. Perhaps you need to grow a pair!
    If more people rode more bikes, more places, more often, the world would be a more better place!

  12. #12
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    Bike Doc, no offense meant but it seems like if your life is constantly filled with MTB drama it might not be the fault of everyone else around you.

  13. #13
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    Dean, i've been thinking about it for a long time, there is no doubt about that, and have gone back and forth in my own mind about it. As I have said several times, I didn't make the final decision until very recently.

  14. #14
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    IMBA is only partially representative of mountain biking, and they are extremely political. Every organization is, but being a bike organization its easy to forget that they are not necessarily on your side. IMBA is concerned with IMBA's platform and priorities - flat trails, lame grades, beginner-intermediate difficulty, brown-nosing whatever powers-that-be in the interests of 'promoting' mountain biking. I can ride my bike just fine without a bunch of whiny apologists, thank you. Maybe they saw 'progress' and 'change' as good...the 'answers' with Sedona imo lie somewhere between the dorks at IMBA and actual real mountain bikers. But what is DISGUSTING about IMBA they use their title and pulpit to bully, this is a perfect example. If you are not with the dirt roadies, you are against them. They obtain power by reacharound agreements with Land Managers where they purport to represent mtbrs, but they only represent 1 slice of us. I will never join IMBA. If you don't like how they want to denude you as a mtbr, speak out that they do not represent you. Let them all go ride multi-use paths with the Sierra Club. I hope they keep their boring, lame ideas out of K-trail. BCT is fun, but its just a decent trail. GO AWAY IMBA, Pemberton is calling.

  15. #15
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    I typed a half serious, half smartassed response and wound up deleting it in an effort to show some tact. All I really can say is this: If the SMBC is such a great club what SMBC members need to do is try to keep it together. The SMBC can still go on without IMBA's backing. Prove that it is an organization that is needed to make Sedona biking better. Make it so that the majority of local bikers support the causes SMBC states are important but do it with honesty and integrity.
    The secret to mountain biking is pretty simple. The slower you go the more likely it is you’ll crash.
    - Julie Furtado

  16. #16
    SamuraiBunnyGuy
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    Quote Originally Posted by chollaball View Post
    IMBA is only partially representative of mountain biking, and they are extremely political. Every organization is, but being a bike organization its easy to forget that they are not necessarily on your side. IMBA is concerned with IMBA's platform and priorities - flat trails, lame grades, beginner-intermediate difficulty, brown-nosing whatever powers-that-be in the interests of 'promoting' mountain biking. I can ride my bike just fine without a bunch of whiny apologists, thank you. Maybe they saw 'progress' and 'change' as good...the 'answers' with Sedona imo lie somewhere between the dorks at IMBA and actual real mountain bikers. But what is DISGUSTING about IMBA they use their title and pulpit to bully, this is a perfect example. If you are not with the dirt roadies, you are against them. They obtain power by reacharound agreements with Land Managers where they purport to represent mtbrs, but they only represent 1 slice of us. I will never join IMBA. If you don't like how they want to denude you as a mtbr, speak out that they do not represent you. Let them all go ride multi-use paths with the Sierra Club. I hope they keep their boring, lame ideas out of K-trail. BCT is fun, but its just a decent trail. GO AWAY IMBA, Pemberton is calling.
    you could have just said they're like union leaders...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by chollaball View Post
    IMBA is only partially representative of mountain biking, and they are extremely political. Every organization is, but being a bike organization its easy to forget that they are not necessarily on your side. IMBA is concerned with IMBA's platform and priorities - flat trails, lame grades, beginner-intermediate difficulty, brown-nosing whatever powers-that-be in the interests of 'promoting' mountain biking. I can ride my bike just fine without a bunch of whiny apologists, thank you. Maybe they saw 'progress' and 'change' as good...the 'answers' with Sedona imo lie somewhere between the dorks at IMBA and actual real mountain bikers. But what is DISGUSTING about IMBA they use their title and pulpit to bully, this is a perfect example. If you are not with the dirt roadies, you are against them. They obtain power by reacharound agreements with Land Managers where they purport to represent mtbrs, but they only represent 1 slice of us. I will never join IMBA. If you don't like how they want to denude you as a mtbr, speak out that they do not represent you. Let them all go ride multi-use paths with the Sierra Club. I hope they keep their boring, lame ideas out of K-trail. BCT is fun, but its just a decent trail. GO AWAY IMBA, Pemberton is calling.
    We seem to go round and round on this, but if IMBA's goal is to promote mountain biking, I'll make the educated assumption that the majority of those who call themselves "mountain bikers" are what you refer to as dirt roadies. I've said it from day 1, but if you want promote more the more aggressive riding aspect of mountain biking, you need the grassroot groups. And you need to keep the discussion private or semi-private. This is why I was so hard on some on this board. Certain folks had a place in mt biking, but using a public forum to promote their agenda was going to bit him in the ass.

    I'm not going even pretend I know the specific issues that led to IMBA kicking out the Sedona group. But I'd venture to say that they did not see eye to eye on how to promote the sport.

    This is just my opinion, and I'm sure plenty disagree.
    Nobody gives a s#$t you singlespeed.

  18. #18
    parenting for gnarness
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    Quote Originally Posted by woahey View Post
    I typed a half serious, half smartassed response and wound up deleting it in an effort to show some tact. All I really can say is this: If the SMBC is such a great club what SMBC members need to do is try to keep it together. The SMBC can still go on without IMBA's backing. Prove that it is an organization that is needed to make Sedona biking better. Make it so that the majority of local bikers support the causes SMBC states are important but do it with honesty and integrity.
    what is wrong with simply riding your bike and speaking out against discrimination? Why does SMBC have TO DO anything? Isnt a couple hundred signatures simply saying ' i like technical rides, I want access to my public spaces' being clear enough? Isnt a group having several dozen volunteers something the FS should seek out, instead of marginalize? Shouldnt a national biking org defer to a local one for local issues? Shouldnt Land Managers, as public employees with a mission to serve the public, be the ones concerned with positive actions and building bridges with the locals rather than discriminating?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by chollaball View Post
    Shouldnt a national biking org defer to a local one for local issues? Shouldnt Land Managers, as public employees with a mission to serve the public, be the ones concerned with positive actions and building bridges with the locals rather than discriminating?
    Isn't that what they are doing by working with the Verde Valley Cyclist Coalition?
    Nobody gives a s#$t you singlespeed.

  20. #20
    Always a good day to ride
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    I blame Dale's Maps and the Ricochet trail.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Casual Observer View Post
    Isn't that what they are doing by working with the Verde Valley Cyclist Coalition?
    yes, but...they are blatanly ignoring many relevant stakeholders in so doing. IMBA is a private entity and can pick its allies, but to then spin that it speaks for the community is laughable. FS owes it to all citizens to incorporate their povs.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by bik_ryder View Post
    I blame Dale's Maps and the Ricochet trail.
    Why do you have to bring race into this discussion?
    Nobody gives a s#$t you singlespeed.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by casual observer View Post
    why do you have to bring race into this discussion?
    lmao!

  24. #24
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    As was posted here earlier IMBA has terminated the Chapter Charter Agreement of the Sedona Mountain Bike Club (SMBC). IMBA blames/justifies the termination on the board of directors of the SMBC for several stated “violations” among them:

    - the Change.org petition
    - conduct relating to the USFS
    - and complaints at the last RTCA meeting

    What is interesting is that the SMBC is a directly democratic organization. We do not act or speak for our membership but transparently follow their wishes. Most recently we asked our membership to vote regarding the change.org petition. Here is how our membership voted:

    77% - Leave the petition in tact
    17% - Dis-associate the SMBC from the petition
    7% - Take the petition down

    When the SMBC's democratic decision making process is taken into account IMBA's stated reasons for Chapter Charter Termination “violations” of our board amount to a lot of Heresay and seem petty and ridiculous.

    So, what is the REAL reason that IMBA terminated the SMBC's Chapter Charter Agreement? There are two: The first is related to the new unwritten conduct a Chapter is expected to follow. Take for instance the South Western Regional Director's territory:

    California
    Nevada
    Utah
    Arizona
    New Mexico

    How is a Regional Director to achieve his or her organizational goals when they are managing five states?!... Well, I'll tell you: That Director most likely is relying on his or her Chapters to follow instructions. I can tell you that having 20+ years worth of issues here in Sedona, our Chapter was not looking for marching orders. Our community had discussed and identified our priorities long before a South Western Regional Director position even existed. Also, there was no discussion of IMBA's agenda/goals prior to Chapter formation or after constitution. I can only guess that our directors goals were at conflict with our own goals from day one as he NEVER illuminated us as to what they were.

    The second reason can be found in the third paragraph of IMBA's termination notice to the SMBC:

    “The petition jeopardizes IMBAs reputation and partnership with the USFS.”

    Basically, by conducting ourselves as a democratic grass roots mountain bike advocacy organization; communicating and standing-up for our members interests, telling the truth, and acting with integrity we angered the USFS and embarrassed IMBA. Given how close IMBA has chosen to work with the USFS our conduct was inexcusable. When it was time to decide how to proceed IMBA sacrificed it's mountain bike members interests to secure it's relationship with the USFS. In doing so IMBA has sent a clear message to it's members about where they stand.

    Which brings me to an important point of clarification: The SMBC (Sedona Trail Stewardship Fund LLC.) did not draft the Change.org petition. Rather, we assisted in the process of drafting and posting the petition. The petition was actually created by a collective of more than 20 local mountain bikers (including input from a member of the VVCC). The SMBC's board had learned that due to the threat of an imminent USFS trail closure a group of riders was considering a much more negative response. We engaged with the collective and lobbied for a more constructive and effective approach. The petition was the product of those discussions.

    The relatively small act of creating the petition made a big difference to many local riders. They saw that we were serious about democratic, grass roots, mountain bike advocacy, and as a result many more riders joined the SMBC. Many who of which had NEVER belonged to a mountain bike advocacy group before.

    Many of the members who chose to join the SMBC happened to be pioneers of the Sedona mountain bike scene; local residents, riders, shop owners, and yes some illegal trail builders... the very people that we desperately needed at the table... people with deep roots, a lot of skin in the game, and a tremendous amount of passion. Having these folks willingly join the SMBC and become part of a public process was a HUGE victory and an important step towards working through the several decades old challenging relationship that had existed between mountain bikers and the USFS.

    However, IMBA has decided that moving forward in a very aggressive way is more important... In my opinion they are also seeking to re-brand mountain bike advocacy... to IMBA... They intend to OWN it. Everyone who spends time on this site understands there is more than one way to skin a cat. Any organization that seeks a monopoly is expecting the public to accept an incredibly dangerous precedent. Consider the words of professor Eben Moglen:

    “Sharing is how knowledge grows, 'Owning' is how knowledge shrinks.”

    IMBA needs to realize that the future of mountain bike advocacy is not top-down coercion but bottom-up, grass roots, 'crowd sourced' solutions and free community driven knowledge bases.

    From what I can see Sedona has become a significant part of IMBA's campaign to convince the mountain biking public that they are important/relevant. As an example IMBA has plans to hold it's World Summit in Sedona in 2014. The irony is that IMBA would not even be considering Sedona for their World Summit without the work of many of our members (Sedona's mountain bike pioneers)... who IMBA has just completely disrespected!

    One last thought: Metcalfe's law – is based on telecommunications networks but can be applied to human networks. It states that the value of a network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system (n2). When applied to the larger mountain bike community, our network becomes stronger when we 'include' more mountain bikers. So how does IMBA figure that alienating 70 of it's newest members is “strong mountain bike advocacy leadership”? Maybe it's time for change?

    The Sedona Mountain Bike Club rides on. We will continue to ride together, participate in democratic grass roots mountain bike advocacy, and seek to engage the USFS in a mutually beneficial and respectful relationship.

    CB
    Last edited by CANADIANBACON; 07-13-2013 at 01:28 PM.

  25. #25
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    Why does something so fun and great have to have politics involved?
    “Think of bicycles as rideable art that can just about save the world.”
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  26. #26
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    Politics in general, "They" the players start out with the best intentions and then over time realize that the only way to move forward is to assimilate and become generic. Pretty soon everything becomes flat, paved, and un-agressive. I don't know anything about this political drama, but I gotta say canadianbacon's post is pretty well thought out well articulated. It speaks directly to someone like me that is a core aggressive ex MX riding advocate, that just see's the establishment closing trails all over the country, and disguises it by saying "here you go these trails are made of dirt you should be happy"...............Keeping in mind though that the illegal trail builders and downhill bombers running hikers and horses off trails do ruin it for the rest of us, there needs to be rules, and the by nature the aggressive tend to be anarchists that really are not for rules.......here lies the problem...............ok back to your regularly scheduled political battle.........LOL!

  27. #27
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    As a national advocacy group that must cooperate with various government agencies and cultivate a favorable public image, the IMBA predictably follows a "go along to get along" approach. Anything perceived as too aggressive or not sufficiently cooperative with land managers makes them nervous and hesitant.

    This may be an OK strategy for getting more people into the sport and making nice with the USFS. But I can tell you for certain that this approach will primarily get us double wide, mildly graded, mulit-use trails. Not exactly what many serious riders are craving.

    In my perfect world, the IMBA would be more aggressive and not be shy about using the same hardball tactics the SC and other anti-access groups have been beating us with for decades. MTB has favorable numbers and demographics. Screw being nice and break out the bats and chains more often.

    But that is not how the IMBA sees things.

    I can see the logic in supporting both the IMBA and groups like those in Sedona who choose to be more aggressive in protecting their trails and access. On the whole, MTB as a cause is better for having both.

    Personally, I am 100% in the more aggressive camp. Playing nice with the anti-access crowd is a losers game and the land manager govt bureaucrats always follow the path of least pain or resistance. You can be aggressive without surrendering the moral high ground.

    R

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by tysonnemb View Post
    Why does something so fun and great have to have politics involved?
    Because IMBA is first and foremost a political entity. Representing LOCAL groups and riders is not even secondary. It's way down their list.
    If you're lucky enough to be in the mountains,
    you're lucky enough.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by chollaball View Post
    IMBA is only partially representative of mountain biking, and they are extremely political. Every organization is, but being a bike organization its easy to forget that they are not necessarily on your side. IMBA is concerned with IMBA's platform and priorities - flat trails, lame grades, beginner-intermediate difficulty, brown-nosing whatever powers-that-be in the interests of 'promoting' mountain biking. I can ride my bike just fine without a bunch of whiny apologists, thank you. Maybe they saw 'progress' and 'change' as good...the 'answers' with Sedona imo lie somewhere between the dorks at IMBA and actual real mountain bikers. But what is DISGUSTING about IMBA they use their title and pulpit to bully, this is a perfect example. If you are not with the dirt roadies, you are against them. They obtain power by reacharound agreements with Land Managers where they purport to represent mtbrs, but they only represent 1 slice of us. I will never join IMBA. If you don't like how they want to denude you as a mtbr, speak out that they do not represent you. Let them all go ride multi-use paths with the Sierra Club. I hope they keep their boring, lame ideas out of K-trail. BCT is fun, but its just a decent trail. GO AWAY IMBA, Pemberton is calling.
    IMBA can go to hell, spodes and pu$$ies use their worthless trial building doctrine as justification to sanitize otherwise good trails.

    PMP is a fine example. If you think you're good because you can ride everything there, think again. It was at least 30% more technical ~2001. Today it's just faster, and therefore more dangerous for spodes, hikers, and glue stick lovers.

    (I)diots (M)orons (B)itches (A)$$holes
    Nice KOM, sorry about your penis.

  30. #30
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    I went out and had a blast on my bike today and it was no where near Sedona. Just sayin'
    Vassago Cycles, Shadetree Bikes, Flat Tire Bikes, Galfer Brakes USA

  31. #31
    Lakvoodoo
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    Here's a thought: have you ever approached the VVCC to work toward your objectives? Maybe worth a try. After all, the infrastructure is already established, the ear of the FS is already attainable, there's a decent mix of MTB (XC, DH, enduro,...), road, muni, etc..

    For most of us in the VV, it's not about politics nor money nor being a member of a "club" or labeled one type of rider or another.....everybody just wants to ride. No one discounts any of the incredible mtb history here, in fact, most of us appreciate and respect the heck out of it! Props!

    Now... It's those of you who present yourselves as so "counter-culture", yet you establish an organization to be part of a "culture". Yet in the big picture, it's fracturing a community which should be pretty tight knit. Compared to other issues in this world right now, this all seems so friggin petty. So back to my original query....pass on some of your interests to the VVCC. Better yet, get involved. Represent. You don't even have to wear spandex. :-)




    Quote Originally Posted by Bike Doc View Post
    The Verde Valley Cycling Coalition is mostly a roadie oriented entity and even most of the V.V.C.C. members who identify themselves as being "mountain bikers" are really just road riders on dirt, while the Sedona Mountain Biking Club consists mostly of hardcore, technical riders and also includes in its membership many of the original Sedona residents who are responsible for riding many of the routes into existence that are now the "famous" trails that people come from all around the World to ride. Without these original Sedona mountain biking pioneers, there wouldn't even be 1/4 of the trails here, and there would not even be enough of a Sedona mountain biking scene for us to even be having a discussion on this forum about Sedona trails and Sedona mountain biking politics.

    And, if it was not for the vision and dedication of the original Sedona mountain biking pioneers, who are the core of the S.M.B.C, I would have probably moved to Boulder City, Nevada or Whistler, British Columbia when I left Zion; so I am super grateful for all of the hard work they have done over the past few decades and all of the challenges that they have faced.

    To me, it is totally chicken$hit of I.M.B.A. to abandon the S.M.B.C; mostly over a disagreement over whether a petition opposing the recent illegal trail closures instituted by the Forest Circus included enough or accurate enough information. It is not the job of ANY petition to fully articulate the opposition's viewpoint, and the Forest Circus certainly presented extremely selective/biased/inaccurate info when they held their meeting announcing that they were "thinking of" (read that "had already decided to") implement their "mountain biking cross-country travel ban".

    In fact just the wording, "cross-country travel ban" is extremely and intentionally mis-leading in my estimation; since it is really a "trail closure", more than anything else. All that the petition pointed out, was that the closure ONLY targeted mountain bikers, not hikers, trail runners, equestrians, climbers, etc; and was therefore discriminatory.
    .
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  32. #32
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    Conspiracy Theory???

    [QUOTE=IMBA south west;10527656]Dean - That sounds like another Sedona conspiracy theory to me.QUOTE]

    I spoke with Patrick Kell yesterday and he informed me that I.M.B.A. was currently working with the Red Rock Ranger District of the Forest Service to bring the non-system trails known as the hogs (Hog Heaven, High on the Hog, Hog Wash and Hogaliscious) into the system and made "official". He then went on to tell me that I.M.B.A. and the Forest Service had conspired to keep the Sedona Mountain Bike Club out of the discussion, as it was assumed by them that the S.M.B.C. would F things up.

    He went on to further inform me that there were also talks going on between the Forest Service and I.M.B.A. to bring "Western Civilization" and "Last Frontier" into the system, and that also in that instance, they had conspired to not invite the S.M.B.C. to the table and to try instead to keep them in the dark.

    After that, Patrick informed me that there were discussions going on between I.M.B.A. and the Forest Service about holding the 2014 I.M.B.A. World Summit in Sedona, to show off all of the amazing trails here which had been built without authorization and had since been adopted by the Forest Service; and that once again, the two parties had conspired to keep the S.M.B.C. away from the table and out of the discussion; even though many of those trails may have been originally created by members of the S.M.B.C!

    Somehow, he was able to ignore the sheer hypocrisy of his position.

    I had heard that Ireland had the highest rate of mental illness of any country in the World, and trying to have logical conversations with this man makes me think that what I have heard may well be true...
    If more people rode more bikes, more places, more often, the world would be a more better place!

  33. #33
    IMBA south west
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    Not entirely accurate Dean, but yes it is another of your conspiracy
    theories. Here are the facts. VVCC and USFS have applied for a grant
    to do some work on Hogs, IMBA have provided $2,500 towards the
    project. Regarding Western Civ and Last Frontier, I had a very
    informal conversation with some folks this week about that and will
    likely follow up on it later this summer. Regarding the World Summit,
    we would ride the legal trails, which were likely built by some SMBC
    members before SMBC came into being, there is no question about that.

    None of these conversations were me conspiring, it's simply a matter that the SMBC board don't get asked to participate, it's not my fault that the many great SMBC members are so poorly represented by most of their board. If I were a member I would ask the board why they are not brought into these conversation. Regarding your Ireland comment, there really is no need to bring other peoples personal illnesses into the conversation, that's quite unkind.

    [QUOTE=Bike Doc;10531495]
    Quote Originally Posted by IMBA south west View Post
    Dean - That sounds like another Sedona conspiracy theory to me.QUOTE]

    I spoke with Patrick Kell yesterday and he informed me that I.M.B.A. was currently working with the Red Rock Ranger District of the Forest Service to bring the non-system trails known as the hogs (Hog Heaven, High on the Hog, Hog Wash and Hogaliscious) into the system and made "official". He then went on to tell me that I.M.B.A. and the Forest Service had conspired to keep the Sedona Mountain Bike Club out of the discussion, as it was assumed by them that the S.M.B.C. would F things up.

    He went on to further inform me that there were also talks going on between the Forest Service and I.M.B.A. to bring "Western Civilization" and "Last Frontier" into the system, and that also in that instance, they had conspired to not invite the S.M.B.C. to the table and to try instead to keep them in the dark.

    After that, Patrick informed me that there were discussions going on between I.M.B.A. and the Forest Service about holding the 2014 I.M.B.A. World Summit in Sedona, to show off all of the amazing trails here which had been built without authorization and had since been adopted by the Forest Service; and that once again, the two parties had conspired to keep the S.M.B.C. away from the table and out of the discussion; even though many of those trails may have been originally created by members of the S.M.B.C!

    Somehow, he was able to ignore the sheer hypocrisy of his position.

    I had heard that Ireland had the highest rate of mental illness of any country in the World, and trying to have logical conversations with this man makes me think that what I have heard may well be true...

  34. #34
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    Red Rock Drama Queens will never let up. I can't wait for the Real House Wife's of Sedrama to air on A&E....

  35. #35
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    Dave, some of what you say is correct, much of it is not. Correct that some of the current members of SMBC are the pioneers, that is not in question. Sedona Trail Stewardship Fund is a DBA for SMBC. Strange that some members that I spoke to this week didn't know that? They also didn't know about any of the positive developments in Sedona, again it's strange that they didn't know any of those things. You didn't poll your membership in a democratic manner before posting the petition in their name, you haven't told them who will be representing them when it gets to D.C., so why talk about democracy and transparency when asked to remove it? You were not democratic about it in the first place. You're bluffing and clutching at straws, and it shows. I've had the full range of responses from the community on this matter including folks being upset and calling me a fascist on one end of the scale to the other end, which has included comments such as "thanks", "you rock", "stoked", "I, like many members agree with IMBA's style of advocacy, rather than that of those board members", "I'm seriously thinking of ending my SMBC membership", I will change my IMBA chapter to XYZ Chapter", "By this action I believe that IMBA is clearly showing their support for the use of positive collaboration related to mountain biking on public lands".

    I'll likely reserve a meeting room in Sedona over the next few weeks in order to continue this conversation in person with any members who wish to participate. You know that I don't hide or shy away from these matters.

    Also to use terms such as 'expected to follow orders' is totally incorrect. Typing the word 'REAL' in caps, also does not make something real. I'm fully aware that I have not gotten involved in any substantive projects with SMBC and the reason is the almost continual stream of paranoid conspiratorial nonsense perpetuated by a few folks, which gets in the way of being able to get stuck into the projects. The SMBC membership are an awesome group of people, but unfortunately they are represented by several local folks who have ensured that they are excluded from advocacy matters, and therein lies the irony. They deserve much better, they deserve to be represented by people whose opinion is sought out, not by people who get ignored. Should the membership wish to continue with their current leaders representing them, that's fine. We don't expect people to follow orders, but we do expect our local ambassadors to at least have the ability to get invited to the table. The SMBC board don't get asked to participate, and that responsibility sits on your shoulders due to the poor representation that you provide for your constituents. Stop bluffing and blaming others for your lack of leadership and the situation that you have created.

    Quote Originally Posted by CANADIANBACON View Post
    As was posted here earlier IMBA has terminated the Chapter Charter Agreement of the Sedona Mountain Bike Club (SMBC). IMBA blames/justifies the termination on the board of directors of the SMBC for several stated “violations” among them:

    - the Change.org petition
    - conduct relating to the USFS
    - and complaints at the last RTCA meeting

    What is interesting is that the SMBC is a directly democratic organization. We do not act or speak for our membership but transparently follow their wishes. Most recently we asked our membership to vote regarding the change.org petition. Here is how our membership voted:

    77% - Leave the petition in tact
    17% - Dis-associate the SMBC from the petition
    7% - Take the petition down

    When the SMBC's democratic decision making process is taken into account IMBA's stated reasons for Chapter Charter Termination “violations” of our board amount to a lot of Heresay and seem petty and ridiculous.

    So, what is the REAL reason that IMBA terminated the SMBC's Chapter Charter Agreement? There are two: The first is related to the new unwritten conduct a Chapter is expected to follow. Take for instance the South Western Regional Director's territory:

    California
    Nevada
    Utah
    Arizona
    New Mexico

    How is a Regional Director to achieve his or her organizational goals when they are managing five states?!... Well, I'll tell you: That Director most likely is relying on his or her Chapters to follow instructions. I can tell you that having 20+ years worth of issues here in Sedona, our Chapter was not looking for marching orders. Our community had discussed and identified our priorities long before a South Western Regional Director position even existed. Also, there was no discussion of IMBA's agenda/goals prior to Chapter formation or after constitution. I can only guess that our directors goals were at conflict with our own goals from day one as he NEVER illuminated us as to what they were.

    The second reason can be found in the third paragraph of IMBA's termination notice to the SMBC:

    “The petition jeopardizes IMBAs reputation and partnership with the USFS.”

    Basically, by conducting ourselves as a democratic grass roots mountain bike advocacy organization; communicating and standing-up for our members interests, telling the truth, and acting with integrity we angered the USFS and embarrassed IMBA. Given how close IMBA has chosen to work with the USFS our conduct was inexcusable. When it was time to decide how to proceed IMBA sacrificed it's mountain bike members interests to secure it's relationship with the USFS. In doing so IMBA has sent a clear message to it's members about where they stand.

    Which brings me to an important point of clarification: The SMBC (Sedona Trail Stewardship Fund LLC.) did not draft the Change.org petition. Rather, we assisted in the process of drafting and posting the petition. The petition was actually created by a collective of more than 20 local mountain bikers (including input from a member of the VVCC). The SMBC's board had learned that due to the threat of an imminent USFS trail closure a group of riders was considering a much more negative response. We engaged with the collective and lobbied for a more constructive and effective approach. The petition was the product of those discussions.

    The relatively small act of creating the petition made a big difference to many local riders. They saw that we were serious about democratic, grass roots, mountain bike advocacy, and as a result many more riders joined the SMBC. Many who of which had NEVER belonged to a mountain bike advocacy group before.

    Many of the members who chose to join the SMBC happened to be pioneers of the Sedona mountain bike scene; local residents, riders, shop owners, and yes some illegal trail builders... the very people that we desperately needed at the table... people with deep roots, a lot of skin in the game, and a tremendous amount of passion. Having these folks willingly join the SMBC and become part of a public process was a HUGE victory and an important step towards working through the several decades old challenging relationship that had existed between mountain bikers and the USFS.

    However, IMBA has decided that moving forward in a very aggressive way is more important... In my opinion they are also seeking to re-brand mountain bike advocacy... to IMBA... They intend to OWN it. Everyone who spends time on this site understands there is more than one way to skin a cat. Any organization that seeks a monopoly is expecting the public to accept an incredibly dangerous precedent. Consider the words of professor Eben Moglen:

    “Sharing is how knowledge grows, 'Owning' is how knowledge shrinks.”

    IMBA needs to realize that the future of mountain bike advocacy is not top-down coercion but bottom-up, grass roots, 'crowd sourced' solutions and free community driven knowledge bases.

    From what I can see Sedona has become a significant part of IMBA's campaign to convince the mountain biking public that they are important/relevant. As an example IMBA has plans to hold it's World Summit in Sedona in 2014. The irony is that IMBA would not even be considering Sedona for their World Summit without the work of many of our members (Sedona's mountain bike pioneers)... who IMBA has just completely disrespected!

    One last thought: Metcalfe's law – is based on telecommunications networks but can be applied to human networks. It states that the value of a network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system (n2). When applied to the larger mountain bike community, our network becomes stronger when we 'include' more mountain bikers. So how does IMBA figure that alienating 70 of it's newest members is “strong mountain bike advocacy leadership”? Maybe it's time for change?

    The Sedona Mountain Bike Club rides on. We will continue to ride together, participate in democratic grass roots mountain bike advocacy, and seek to engage the USFS in a mutually beneficial and respectful relationship.

    CB

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by cstem View Post
    I went out and had a blast on my bike today and it was no where near Sedona. Just sayin'
    +1 ^

  37. #37
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    I once slept at a holiday Inn but today I was deep in the forest smelling wet pines and enjoying hero dirt.
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phillbo View Post
    Red Rock Drama Queens will never let up. I can't wait for the Real House Wife's of Sedrama to air on A&E....
    now that s@&t is funny
    Make Flagstaff RAD Again.

  39. #39
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    So, I am to believe that the SMBC's acting board (of volunteers) is utterly poor in performing their duties from the Southwestern Regional Director of IMBA who is ranting on mtbr?! That is rich.

    Contrary to the attacks, and Heresay, the facts tell a different story; that the SMBC board has performed their basic duties excellently.

    One thing has become very clear throughout this entire experience. IMBA's Southwestern Regional Director feels that he is right and any dissenting voice is wrong and a “conspiracy theorist”. I beg to differ. I thought I had seen it all but this is a first, I am witnessing someone intent on playing mountain bike advocacy GOD.

    What is certain is that IMBA's Southwestern Regional Director abused his influence and role by positioning himself as barrier between the SMBC and entities such as the USFS and holding back important information. This is why the SMBC board and our our “awesome” club members were excluded from participating in advocacy projects with the USFS and “ignored” and not “invited to the table”. By design.

    As far as I am concerned we DO deserve better. I hope IMBA is listening.

    CB

  40. #40
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    I'm a long time IMBA member and definitely not an IMBA hater. This really seems like IMBA is throwing the local club under the bus because it is politically expedient. Patrick's comments in this tread smack of arrogance. Can you really call yourself a grassroots organization when you are shutting out local voices?
    Only two infinite things exist: the universe and stupidity. And, I am unsure of the universe
    - Albert Einstein

  41. #41
    IMBA south west
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    Dave, i'm not going to get into this any further with you on here, due to the mis-inperpretation of my words, for one reason or another. As I said, I plan to reserve a meeting room and all interested parties can come along and voice their opinions and ask questions. I'll let you know a date once I have one.

    Off to ride Flagstaff. Later.

    Quote Originally Posted by CANADIANBACON View Post
    So, I am to believe that the SMBC's acting board (of volunteers) is utterly poor in performing their duties from the Southwestern Regional Director of IMBA who is ranting on mtbr?! That is rich.

    Contrary to the attacks, and Heresay, the facts tell a different story; that the SMBC board has performed their basic duties excellently.

    One thing has become very clear throughout this entire experience. IMBA's Southwestern Regional Director feels that he is right and any dissenting voice is wrong and a “conspiracy theorist”. I beg to differ. I thought I had seen it all but this is a first, I am witnessing someone intent on playing mountain bike advocacy GOD.

    What is certain is that IMBA's Southwestern Regional Director abused his influence and role by positioning himself as barrier between the SMBC and entities such as the USFS and holding back important information. This is why the SMBC board and our our “awesome” club members were excluded from participating in advocacy projects with the USFS and “ignored” and not “invited to the table”. By design.

    As far as I am concerned we DO deserve better. I hope IMBA is listening.

    CB

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by clockwork View Post
    I once slept at a holiday Inn but today I was deep in the forest smelling wet pines and enjoying hero dirt.
    Yeah! I say we Critical Mass this thread with stoke!
    Vassago Cycles, Shadetree Bikes, Flat Tire Bikes, Galfer Brakes USA

  43. #43
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    Time for a ride !

    Sedona Kicked Out of I.M.B.A!!!-jess-pinal-3.jpg
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    arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by IMBA south west View Post
    Dave, i'm not going to get into this any further with you on here, due to the mis-inperpretation of my words, for one reason or another. As I said, I plan to reserve a meeting room and all interested parties can come along and voice their opinions and ask questions. I'll let you know a date once I have one.

    Off to ride Flagstaff. Later.
    Interesting...

    As the story actually begins to come out, and everyone begins to see what our Chapter has been up against the Southwestern Regional Director of IMBA want's to take the discussion off-line.

    This tactic is not surprising given previous experience; our board was only met by the South Western Regional Director on two occasions despite many invitations. In stead each of us was always approached and contacted unilaterally.

    Our Chapter Charter termination is another example of this same behavior: In stead of calling a public meeting with the entire membership of the SMBC the Southwestern Regional Director sent out an email informing our members that our Chapter Charter had been terminated. No previous notices or warnings, written or otherwise.

    If the Southwestern Regional Director really wanted the best for our "awesome" members than he should have asked us to call a public meeting. He and our membership could have confronted their board, discussed any and all issues, and or sought change.

    How could this have possibly happened under a paid Professional Mountain Bike Advocate?

    The upcoming meetings are an attempt at damage control: to control, and spin the 'message' about what REALLY happened in Sedona, to discredit the Sedona Mountain Bike Club, and an attempt at installing/positioning another club as "the new" face and voice of mountain bike advocacy in Sedona.

    I am confident that the savvy among you are beginning to see the bigger picture here. It's a sorry state of affairs when we need to remain vigilant of our "champions".

    CB

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by IMBA south west View Post
    Dave, i'm not going to get into this any further with you on here, due to the mis-inperpretation of my words, for one reason or another. As I said, I plan to reserve a meeting room and all interested parties can come along and voice their opinions and ask questions. I'll let you know a date once I have one.

    Off to ride Flagstaff. Later.
    Didn't the SMBC board already try and meet with you to clear up the air, initially in person and then changed to what was apparently a non-productive conference call? Apparently you mind was already made up at this point.

    Our board is excited to be meeting with Patrick Kell, South Western Regional Director of IMBA on Monday May 20th, 2013 to discuss the SMBC and IMBA’s partnership moving forward.
    It is our intention to present your comments and concerns to Patrick that you have voiced via the club website and those that were written at our first annual general membership meeting.
    We would also like to discuss with Patrick how the SMBC and IMBA can become a more effective team and more relevant in representing those interests.
    Ring a ding ding this Spring | SMBC

    For the record I'm a member of SMBC and IMBA but not sure what to make of all this. There isn't complete transparency wrt to the other club as well. There are no clear, well-articulated reports of the meetings VVVC has been having with the FS behind closed doors. But I am of the opinion that IMBA did not have SMBC's back when the FS decided to discriminate and close trails only to bikers. The relationship had soured long before then which is too bad as it was the members of SMBC that invited IMBA to the party.
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  46. #46
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    Nice. Great ride partner!
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    you're lucky enough.

  47. #47
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    So, Bike Doc = traildoc? If not, I don't think mental illness is solely an Irish thing. Clearly Sedona has that market cornered.

  48. #48
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    Hmmm for the most part it seems to be going in the right direction. I mean it's still up in the air but basically this is the same thing that is or has already happened in other areas. As more people get into it and as popularity grows it needs to become established and organized.

    As for singling out the MTB'rs I think that is a shame. I understand the reason though as there is probably much more possibility of environmental damage and excess from us than from trail riders. Still if it is illegal and more than one group is doing it then they ALL should be addressed.

    In general I see the Sedona groups point, but I think the other two groups are taking the road that most likely to end up in success. It would be nice if they both got results in some way or another. Hopefully you don't have too much butting heads between the two advocacy groups.
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  49. #49
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    Patrick:
    this whole thread does not pass the smell test. How are we misrepresenting when you say this: "None of these conversations were me conspiring, it's simply a matter that the SMBC board don't get asked to participate, it's not my fault". HOW THE F DO YOU WILLFULLY MARGINALIZE the local chapter, who built the trails you and your org are now sticking your d*** into? They didnt just 'not get invited', they were left out and you and you obviously did not feel they were important enough to merit inclusion. Don't spin this...you made agreements with the FS while willingly leaving out the locals. There is absolutely no other way that happened.

    Why am I getting involved? 2 reasons. You seem insincere to me after YOU reached out to ME, and you and IMBA are becoming involved with GROAZ.

    First: you contacted me, on Facebook, not even 30 min after I posted in this thread my disgust with IMBA. How did you even contact me on FB when you didnt know who I was? we'd never met or spoken. In your first note to me, you didn't introduce yourself. You started in by 1) implying how indebted I should be to IMBA because you are giving a grant to GROAZ of which I am a member. And 2) you said I like to hide. How do I have 5000 posts on here to your 50, and like to hide?

    Here below is the very first FB message i got from you friday 7-12. Heck of a way to introduce yourself, and fwiw, contacting MTBR members without invite outside of MTBR should get you timedout.

    Jason, it's interesting that you are a member/affiliated with GROAZ, who as an organization we are working with and have spend in excess of $6,000 (from the IMBA Trail Building Fund) in designing the bike park in Phoenix, yet you will go on MTBR and bash us. It would be great to chat in person. My number is 802-371-9033. Please feel free to give me a call, or send along your number and i'll call you. I'm not expecting to hear back from you, as you tend to hide, but I would genuinely like to talk in person.

    We exchanged 4 message, each one you invited me to talk. I wrote you a long, strong but polite email about why I didnt think IMBA belonged in Sedona or in GROAZ. My points were as have been stated over and over in this thread: you are not local, locals should not be excluded, IMBA should leave the FS to clean up its own mess and not try to take over advocacy. You have not even sent a brief reply saying 'thanks for your opinions, let's agree to disagree'. Seems to me that you are quite quick to get on the keyboard, but wont even bring polite closure to an exchange that you initiated cause I disagree with you.

    So why is IMBA involved with GROAZ? After reading all this, I will absolutely be asking these questions to our board. You and your org do not seem trustworthy. If your mission coincides with ours, that's great. thanks for the support. We welcome partners. But if you are trying to turn us into your puppet, or take over our locally-driven agenda...it will be made transparent.

  50. #50
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    Wow IMBA.........absent a mea culpa and an explanation, I say we're done here.

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