Maybe post these pics and questions to FOCC Facebook page?
Let people see how the money is being spent.
Live to Ride, Ride to Live
I just posted a comment on their FB page.
Originally Posted by Brah
I was hoping to get out for a quick lunch ride at China Camp today, but just thinking about running into this bulldozed section totally discouraged me.
This is just lighting a fire under my ass to get over to Tamarancho for some real singletrack and trail digging this weekend.
letter sent. unreal whats going on around here. Glad there are great things happening up at Tamarancho however.
i sent a note to focc, gave them a failing grade in stewardship so far.
Hi there Davey,
Originally Posted by Davey Simon
I think while this statements has merits what I am trying to understand is how is bulldozing through habitat is beneficial for the park, for it's users and for the creatures that call CC home. My feelings aside as a cyclist, I don't see how this practice of turning single track into wide double track + is helpful for the overall health of the park. If anything, they should be trying to restore features to their [more] natural state pushing back run outs so that the trails remain within their boundaries and stop creeping wider and wider (as they have over the years of overuse and under-maintenance). I see that the FOCC has tried to eliminate some of the cut corners and unsanctioned trails, that I understand but cutting out roots, moving rocks and making trails artificially wider than they already are seems counter productive. This section currently in question is now virgin soil without the roots and rocks that have been there for some time, in the middle of winter. I only can predict that this section will be a giant washed out rut by the time winter comes to an end.
Mean while I am impressed with the work that you and your volunteers have been putting in at T-ranch, if CC subscribed to similar sentiments in terms of their trail maintenance I feel CC would be better off in the long run. Better for sustainability, preservation and for the enjoyment of all parties who use CC for leisure and recreation.
Such a bummer. This section always made for a nice little (climbing) challenge, and I think actually made the descent safer: there are some blind corners in this area, and having to scrub some speed for the rooty section lessened the likelihood of collisions. Let's evaluate: 1) exacerbated erosion, 2) increased speed & chance of collisions, 3) damaged plants & risk to the tree, 4) greatly diminished fun-factor.
Nice work, people. No way will I be paying a trail fee to these jackholes.
I guess I'll just stick to the unmarked trails near my house for roots. As a rigid single speeder these root areas are a challenge (for me) and I like trying to clear them on climbs.
For what it's worth, they do the same thing at Skegg's and it normalizes fairly fast in winter.
Keep in mind any lack of response may be a result of ones approach and tone as well. You know the saying about honey and vinegar. To be physically present at meetings would be key, as electronic communications largely go unnoticed or unheeded and don't accomplish much. Everything has a process and to be hostile, demanding and rowdy (which is common for forums) won't do much. There may not necessarily be hostility toward the mtb crowd...
Originally Posted by Davey Simon
Not a good excuse. I did PR for a semi government agency for years and we answered all emails within a couple business days no matter what the tone. The place I worked had a lot of haters too. It's just part of your job.
Originally Posted by Ollie_G
I am bummed too.
CSP trails would be monotonous if mother nature wasn't such a brute.
Let me show you my experience about the hypothesis that it seems as though State Parks has a bias against mountain biking.
Jim Donnelly Enters Rehab
We are in some strange new times.
Spoke with someone from MCBC today, doesn't sound like they knew of this bulldozing plan, but I was not able to reach their "Dirt Director". I made it very clear that as a MCBC member I am disappointed something like this would happen at a trail system they are now encouraging us to pay to access and that it does not fit within the goals of environmental stewardship, they have a trail work day scheduled for the 27th, why did they have to do this ahead of time?
On a positive note, I was pretty impressed with the MCBC rep, I spoke with him this morning and he was not aware of any work that had been done at the trails, he then followed up with me in the afternoon after he had a chance to ride the front loop out there.
He assured me MCBC had no involvement and was not aware of the work being done. He also said he spoke with some of the FOCC and State Park folks that did this foolish work and their claim was that trail sanitization had been planned for some time because there had been several injuries in that section not just limited to bikers , very lame excuse and pretty frustrating they decided not to share their plans with anyone and that they would excute it in such a crude and damaging manor. He also said they had no other work of that nature planned and that he tried to confer to them that MCBC and the mtb community is noticing all the trail work they do and that they should take input from mtbers since they are a major user group at the park. While I still disagree with MCBC position on the trail use fees, I really respect and appreciate someone form the organization taking the time to check out the trails first hand and make an effort to convey to the park operators the perspective of mountain bikers.
I'm with you Davey, we need to be PRESENT at FOCC meetings to make sure our voice is heard and that we are taken seriously as a user group.
Last edited by IrieRider; 01-18-2013 at 06:03 PM.
Davey- I'm with you on this, we need to make a stand.
I have tried to join FOCC to voice the opinion of mtbr's but the "join" link on the website merely takes you to a donations page, WTF. I refuse to donate to this organization and will not join if donating is mandatory.
Last edited by Mt. Tam Haze; 01-18-2013 at 07:47 PM.
The sanitizing of bike trails using this method has happened elsewhere. One of my frequent rides is at Red Tail trail in Chabot. The trail was plowed, widened to about 6-8 feet wide and the tracked, skid-steer machine they used stirred up the dirt so bad that it was not virtually unrideable, but REALLY unrideable. The dust and dirt was about 6 inches thick, so it was just like riding on the beach. When I walked through Red Tail to finish my loop I noticed there were no tire tracks or foot prints. Nobody used the trail. I did not go back for about 8-9 months. However, in all fairness, the trail did come back and it now almost the way it used to be, so there is hope for that section at China Camp.
Okay everyone, how many times have we seen this sort of "trail-work" happen in our various neighborhoods? Even with noble ideals, the machine work is more often borne by trail users like us as some sort of meteorological cataclysm; the opposite of the functional intent.
Originally Posted by omanwurmi
Furthermore, in many cases the released sediment takes flight in dust during dry times and coats indigenous flora and fauna with grit, and gets washed wholesale down gulches and into riparian habitats. Not always, but too often, this kind of trail maintenance also damages the surrounding canopy. Not only that, proper finish work, including deberming, blending the upslope, measuring and finishing the bench to proper outslope (taking into account actual measurements, side-slope and not just some guys rule of thumb), creating drainage features, ensuring drainages are countersunk, etc, are often not done.
Worst case scenarios include: Cutting tree roots will stress trees. They will fall. Animals who live in these trees fall. The trees hold up a good part of the hillside. More damage. Domino effect. Sweco or trail machine undercuts unstable back slope and a year later a land-slide takes out the trail. Sweco or trail machine cuts into surfacing water over shallow bedrock, a spring, and the trail becomes a perpetual mud bog in situ.
State parks strive to make their trails safe to "insure public safety"(sic). CSP's goal of safe smooth and wide trail means no fun and a deep scar upon the landscape and a take on wildlife for the rest of us.
Any trail which might cause a problem are the kinds of trails we like here. CSP would spend our money to either sanitize them or close them, unless we pushback very very hard as a group.
The CSP "one-size-fits-all" trail standards are wrong. The CSP strategy is analagous to the "shot-gun approach". We should not let them manage State Park trail systems this way.
Last edited by Jack Burns; 01-18-2013 at 10:46 PM.
Man. Right when I started mountain biking I remember sitting at this section and trying to climb it over and over again. I also remember the first time I cleaned it and how stoked I was on mountain biking, progression, etc.
Previously known as mttamrnr.
Guys, this has all been done before, all been heard before, in the 26 years of advocacy.
Originally Posted by Ollie_G
Actual presence at "meetings" is where the least amount of participation occurs. There are isolated occasions when the mob shows up enraged but that settles down sooner or later. The ones who sit at the front table are always there. How do you think that makes us look?
MTB advocacy started, in the East Bay anyhow, in 1987 when we were totally shut out of parks. THEN everyone showed up and the BTCEB was formed. MBTC was formed about the same time. Once the urgency subsided, with renewed but limited access, the fall-off of participants was precipitous. An invested few remained to do all the work, trying hard to get people involved. Presence at "meetings", face-to-face, discussions, panels....many, many hours.
Actual gains, specifically the sort expressed here as desired, were not possible, though it took years to admit this. Extant rules and guidelines did not include us and the antis used that as leverage. People, those who seemed to have the time and inclination, walked away from advocacy as pointless and further energy expended as futile. You can hear this in the voices of many.
Many good advocates just quit. Many refuse to step back on board as they have learned their lessons. A few meetings won't do, especially if there are regulations and Master Plans in place that prescribe use and development. Numbers, political influence, money and time is what it seems to take. Once folks realize this, they go ride their bikes.
We have to do something different and adjust our expectations. Repeating the same things over and over again........
I'm sure most everyone here is open to what those with many years of experience with these issues think is best and most effective.
Originally Posted by Berkeley Mike
So what should we do Berkeley Mike? I don't want to repeat past mistakes.
Originally Posted by Berkeley Mike
1. Start by defining what it is that people want. Mtbr is great for that, it's all here: create a list.
2. Next talk personally with someone close to the situation about what is wanted and what might be possible: who might that be?
I'm guessing you guys might not be too happy with what you hear but you need to take those steps.
Then pick your battle, make a plan of attack, gather your resources, sally forth.
1 and 2 are easy......
Slide - no. We have tried to rally support for next weekend's trail work at CC, but were not a part of this week's work.
Originally Posted by slide mon
Originally Posted by jbt56
any chance you could put up the details of next weekend's trail work?
Originally Posted by Piranha426
Man, that sucks. Used to head up there from San Jose to get a variety on the riding, but it's quite a bit of a ride from here so I haven't been up there in a year.
From what I understand, FOCC is now controlling China Camp, which means China Camp is no longer part of the State Parks, is that correct?
As someone who spends an enormous proportion of my free time as an (unpaid!) advocate for cycling, I'd love to know what else I can do to help alert "locals" (Who I guess have to be born here or something? I've worked in Marin for almost 10 years, rode here for 7, and lived here for almost 4, when do I get my "locals" card?) about changes to trails. I would honestly (no snark) love to know how we can make the process better for people, even though we have pretty much NO SAY in the development of that process. We post/send e-mails/make hay on Facebook about every single meeting. We post/send e-mails/make hay on Facebook about writing letters. We post/send e-mails/make hay on Facebook about advertised trail work days. We ride and ride and ride and talk with other riders that we encounter. We ask ourselves and other riders what they want to see. We spend too much time on forums like this. In terms of defining "what's best for us" (as if you can really know such a thing), how the hell else are we supposed to know what people want? Am I supposed to "have ESPN or something?!?"
Originally Posted by Davey Simon
Advocates are generally not made aware in advance about the details of trail maintenance, unless it's the kind of maintenance for which volunteer labor is helpful/required. FOCC is primarily functioning as a funding vehicle for China Camp. They are not, and cannot, do anything that CSP would not or cannot do on its own. Neither FOCC nor CSP has any obligation (let alone history) of alerting trail advocates when they are going to do work that significantly changes the nature of a trail (unless that work falls under the purview of CEQA or some other regulatory process - hey, did you know that for the past two years, CSP has developed a state-wide programmatic EIR for proposed trail use changes? And that the public has had multiple opportunities for input to that EIR, all of which have been advertised here on MTBR?!?). The sanitation of the root rut on Bay View was most likely something CSP wanted to do well before FOCC began acting in the fiduciary interest of the park; FOCC just provided the funds to finally do it. But this was hardly some conspiracy by FOCC and local bike advocates to piss off "intermediate and advanced riders."
As for why CSP wanted to sanitize the trail, and why they decided to do it the way they did - who knows. I don't. The advocacy community will follow up with both CSP and FOCC, and do our best to communicate what it means when these kinds of actions are implemented without the input of the local cycling community. But, damn, I don't know what else to tell people when these things happen. We do our best. We show up. We write letters. We make our opinions (and the opinions of the people we meet) known. But no one has to ask us for permission to do anything - like, really, ANYTHING - so I don't really see how it's our fault when things happen that people don't like.
Originally Posted by jbt56
If you own the land, personally, you can make the trails you want.
If someone friendly to Mtb owns the land you might get the trails you want.
If someone else who is not friendly to Mtb owns the land.....you are at their mercy.
A park civically owned set up to serve the public will develop to serve everyone.
What we want as Mtb trails are very different from trails mandated by general plans. The only reason the trails in China Camp were the way they were is that the Park could not manage to change them, not because they thought it was good for Mtb. As soon as the resources were found the trails were brought in line with predetermined standards. If we are honest, there are a fair number of riders who found those trails a joke, anyhow, which begs the definition of "what mountain bikers want," in the first place.
I'm afraid that the idea that we have much influence over what the trails will be like in a State Park may simply be mistaken. At best the trails which cannot be effected by maintenance come closest to what some find somewhat acceptable.
So in a Socratic effort what, then, can we expect to effect in a civic park?