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  1. #101
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    Send Davey some socks....he has deserves them.
    I'm the problem....

  2. #102
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    EXACTLY. I don't see why people see this as one vs. other. Personally, I do feel that the wilderness thing would be nice but mountain bike advocacy is SOOOO much bigger than this one issue. Without IMBA we've got nothing working at regional and national levels. Support them both with your $ as well as your local club with $ and time. May you be cursed with flat tires and broken chains if you can't give at least as much as you spend on tires each year!


    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.P View Post
    Yep. I hope so too.

    The rhetoric has been ratcheting up. Did you expect IMBA or former IMBA people to just roll over?

    This forum and other discussions, concern me about a split, which could be a lose/lose.

    Lose/lose comes in the form of STC not succeeding, while alienating riders from IMBA. 99% of riders are looking for any excuse to not join/participate/donate, cuz that $25 can go towards a new $1000 fork!!!

    I actually like a two pronged scenario, one pushing hard, the other working the politics. To me, working both angles, seems like a win for riders. A win/win is STC succeeding and IMBA support.

    I'm flummoxed by people unable to look at the benefits to each, having to "chose a side" when both are working for riders interests.

    Again... Both are working for riders interests.

    By saying FU to one, because you like the other one better, just means you have made yourself half represented and weakened.

    P

    Probably unpopular in the forums of hate, but I support both STC and IMBA, as I believe both make us stronger.

  3. #103
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    informed opinons

    Quote Originally Posted by Davey Simon View Post
    This is the official IMBA response:

    https://www.imba.com/blog/mike-van-a...-policy-agenda
    I suppose I'm glad that IMBA finally got around to a "timely message"; unfortunately it's in keeping with the "too little, too late" theme.

    I'm glad they clarified "IMBA is not a national mountain biking club"; I'm not too sure that now knowing that they're "a true association" makes my understanding of their goals any better.

    Also glad they linked their Wilderness Toolkit; I hadn't taken the trouble to study this before now.


    From the "it just keeps getting worse dept" this IMBA blog response mentions "...as Wilderness accounts for only 2.7% of the total acreage in the continental US" as an apparent justification for their milquetoast Wilderness advocacy. Do they think I'm stupid enough to buy into this? I might give them some respect if they dug out a figure for "% of total available acreage". They're pushing the low ball too far...


    FWIW here in Calif. it's 31% of Federal land that is locked up as Wilderness Area; in some other western states the percentage is even higher.

    I'll keep paying my dues to IMBA but STC will be getting my discretionary donations.

    The rant shall continue.
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  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by drew p View Post
    EXACTLY. I don't see why people see this as one vs. other. Personally, I do feel that the wilderness thing would be nice but mountain bike advocacy is SOOOO much bigger than this one issue. Without IMBA we've got nothing working at regional and national levels. Support them both with your $ as well as your local club with $ and time. May you be cursed with flat tires and broken chains if you can't give at least as much as you spend on tires each year!
    I hope that people continue to support their local IMBA club. Many of these clubs have been kind enough to endorse the STC. We don't have a chapter in Marin or the North Bay.

  5. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.P View Post
    Yep. I hope so too.

    The rhetoric has been ratcheting up. Did you expect IMBA or former IMBA people to just roll over?

    This forum and other discussions, concern me about a split, which could be a lose/lose.

    Lose/lose comes in the form of STC not succeeding, while alienating riders from IMBA. 99% of riders are looking for any excuse to not join/participate/donate, cuz that $25 can go towards a new $1000 fork!!!

    I actually like a two pronged scenario, one pushing hard, the other working the politics. To me, working both angles, seems like a win for riders. A win/win is STC succeeding and IMBA support.

    I'm flummoxed by people unable to look at the benefits to each, having to "chose a side" when both are working for riders interests.

    Again... Both are working for riders interests.

    By saying FU to one, because you like the other one better, just means you have made yourself half represented and weakened.

    P

    Probably unpopular in the forums of hate, but I support both STC and IMBA, as I believe both make us stronger.
    "You must spread some reputation around before giving it to Mr. P again"

    Dude, spot on.

  6. #106
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    The bulk of wilderness is in the western states

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  7. #107
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    Sustainable Trail Coalition is still at it!

    Shit is getting crazy. I wonder who will be first to resign from IMBA over all this... similar to Jimmy Mac resigning from Mountain Bike Action once the magazine embraced e-MTBs? There's gotta be someone in IMBA who believes bicycling in Wilderness is not only appropriate, but also achievable!

  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by pliebenberg View Post
    I suppose I'm glad that IMBA finally got around to a "timely message"; unfortunately it's in keeping with the "too little, too late" theme.

    I'm glad they clarified "IMBA is not a national mountain biking club"; I'm not too sure that now knowing that they're "a true association" makes my understanding of their goals any better.

    Also glad they linked their Wilderness Toolkit; I hadn't taken the trouble to study this before now.


    From the "it just keeps getting worse dept" this IMBA blog response mentions "...as Wilderness accounts for only 2.7% of the total acreage in the continental US" as an apparent justification for their milquetoast Wilderness advocacy. Do they think I'm stupid enough to buy into this? I might give them some respect if they dug out a figure for "% of total available acreage". They're pushing the low ball too far...


    FWIW here in Calif. it's 31% of Federal land that is locked up as Wilderness Area; in some other western states the percentage is even higher.

    I'll keep paying my dues to IMBA but STC will be getting my discretionary donations.

    The rant shall continue.
    2.7% of the country, how much of the ride-able land is it? I imagine a lot more than that.
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  9. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by sfgiantsfan View Post
    2.7% of the country, how much of the ride-able land is it? I imagine a lot more than that.
    Between 10 and 50% depending on what you include. Most likely 20 to 30%. It is a huge number.

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  10. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by pliebenberg View Post
    I suppose I'm glad that IMBA finally got around to a "timely message"; unfortunately it's in keeping with the "too little, too late" theme.

    I'm glad they clarified "IMBA is not a national mountain biking club"; I'm not too sure that now knowing that they're "a true association" makes my understanding of their goals any better.

    Also glad they linked their Wilderness Toolkit; I hadn't taken the trouble to study this before now.


    From the "it just keeps getting worse dept" this IMBA blog response mentions "...as Wilderness accounts for only 2.7% of the total acreage in the continental US" as an apparent justification for their milquetoast Wilderness advocacy. Do they think I'm stupid enough to buy into this? I might give them some respect if they dug out a figure for "% of total available acreage". They're pushing the low ball too far...


    FWIW here in Calif. it's 31% of Federal land that is locked up as Wilderness Area; in some other western states the percentage is even higher.

    I'll keep paying my dues to IMBA but STC will be getting my discretionary donations.

    The rant shall continue.
    The big problem with the wilderness issue is that the issue is so vague to so many outdoor recreation groups. Yay environmental protection, with the blinders on. No one realizes that wilderness areas comprise most of the "really epic" terrain in North America. If one really wants to get out there and get into the backcountry on a bike, all of the sudden wilderness areas comprise a lot of the terrain that would fit the "really epic" metric. Even worse, wilderness study areas and potential wilderness kick cyclists out of even more area than the IMBA will admit. Just ask the people at Save Montana Trails. 800 miles of trail lost in the last 10 years.

  11. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.P View Post
    Yep. I hope so too.

    The rhetoric has been ratcheting up. Did you expect IMBA or former IMBA people to just roll over?

    This forum and other discussions, concern me about a split, which could be a lose/lose.

    Lose/lose comes in the form of STC not succeeding, while alienating riders from IMBA. 99% of riders are looking for any excuse to not join/participate/donate, cuz that $25 can go towards a new $1000 fork!!!

    I actually like a two pronged scenario, one pushing hard, the other working the politics. To me, working both angles, seems like a win for riders. A win/win is STC succeeding and IMBA support.

    I'm flummoxed by people unable to look at the benefits to each, having to "chose a side" when both are working for riders interests.

    Again... Both are working for riders interests.

    By saying FU to one, because you like the other one better, just means you have made yourself half represented and weakened.

    P

    Probably unpopular in the forums of hate, but I support both STC and IMBA, as I believe both make us stronger.
    The problem with this is that IMBA is actively discouraging the STC proposal. If they had just said, "This is not an IMBA proposal and we chose to pursue other avenues for trail access." I don't think anyone would be too upset. It is Ashley's responses (granted she is not IMBA currently) and their detrimental comments that have stirred this response. I think IMBA's biggest fear is that STC will be successful. Think about the conversation in the boardroom. "Everyone likes a winner, our donations will dry up if STC succeeds". What if STC then finds a new cause for trail access after a big victory, who are you going to support with financial donations?
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  12. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by timetraveler View Post
    ...who are you going to support with financial donations?
    Simple, the one who gets more quality trail opened up to mountain biking at the national and local levels without giving away anything mountain bikers can already access.
    "You're messing with my zen thing, man!"

  13. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey Simon View Post
    The big problem with the wilderness issue is that the issue is so vague to so many outdoor recreation groups. Yay environmental protection, with the blinders on. No one realizes that wilderness areas comprise most of the "really epic" terrain in North America. If one really wants to get out there and get into the backcountry on a bike, all of the sudden wilderness areas comprise a lot of the terrain that would fit the "really epic" metric. Even worse, wilderness study areas and potential wilderness kick cyclists out of even more area than the IMBA will admit. Just ask the people at Save Montana Trails. 800 miles of trail lost in the last 10 years.
    I've spent a lot of time in that "epic terrain" on foot, sometimes on horseback, and in the late 80's on my bike, and most of it would only be "ridable" to Hans Rey, Danny Macaskill, and other members of the 0.001% of mountain bikers with that level of skill, unless your idea of biking is hiking 1/2 mile for every 100 feet of trail that you can actually ride... Of course, much of that terrain is also extremely fragile, high alpine terrain: woefully thin soils and root systems among a matrix of frost heave rocks and dirt that only take a touch to erode; often geographically isolated and only acres in extant; buried under snow 9 months of the year; home to very rare animal and plant species some of which are on the edge of extinction as warming continues and their habitat shrinks; and it's already hammered along existing trails (and the many non-system human trails) by hikers, many of whom have no skills or knowledge to minimize their impacts. Bikes in most of these "epic" locations will only exacerbate these impacts. To state -or at the least imply- that all of these trails are rideable, and should be open to bikes ignores reality, ignores historical patterns of use, and ignores the ethical questions of how much impact should humans -and mountain bikers- inflict upon the environment and the flora and fauna that reside in these places.

    There are 1000's of square miles of existing Wilderness that see -at most- a few dozen people a year if that. They are that remote, that rugged, and that wild. Just because a person can carry their bike on their back to the top of a mountain on a loose, sketchy game or climber's trail doesn't mean that area is -or should be- "ridable." This shouldn't be a war against Wilderness -which provides many benefits far more important than human recreation- but rather a fight to avoid losing access to current trails and open up -on a case by case basis as is the intent of the STC effort- those trails that would be amenable to mountain bike use. It's easy to throw around numbers like "800 miles lost in 10 years" (actually 800 miles closed or at risk of closure in the last 5 years) but the fact of the matter is that a sizable amount -perhaps most- of those miles were not ridden by bikes at all prior to Wilderness designation and are simply not "ridable" unless your idea of biking is actually hiking 75%+ of the time; that or you are a super-human trials rider... They just happened to be in those areas that were designated Wilderness or are in WSAs.

    The concern and action evidenced on this thread and elsewhere against the loss of trails is a great thing. The divisive anger against other bike advocates, and the anger directed at environmental organizations (who are only one player in the original Wilderness policy in the late 70's early 80's and whose primary leaders/thinkers are now dead or retired) is really bad and does our advocacy work no good. The primary issue with resistance towards bike access in Wilderness lies in 30+ years of the status quo based on ill-informed (and commercial) decision made by past generations of policy makers, the continuing and persuasive mis-perceptiions of non-MTB'ers as to what mountain biking is and what its impacts are, a lack of knowledge of the 30+ years of science that shows that MTB impacts are equal to or lesser than traditional allowed Wilderness activities, resistance by other stakeholders (the livestock and pack outfitter industries in particular), and a lack of realization among the pro-Wilderness organizations about how the continued expansion of Wilderness is galvanizing the MTB community.

    Instead of focusing on attacks on other advocates and other stakeholders, our community should be working on educating other stakeholders as much as possible. Instead of attacks on online forums, how about sharing the science, educating on the factual reasons and reasoning behind the bike ban (it's not a conspiracy by environmentalist BTW), and why it was misguided? How about messaging environmental organizations that they are alienating a huge group of like-minded, potential allies in environmental causes (we all love and appreciate the outdoors and we all have environmental organizations and thinkers to thank for all of the public lands we are able to enjoy, do we not?)? How about realizing the distinction between national and local advocacy groups and understanding how their roles differ and how they strengthen the overall advocacy mission (and the fact that the opinion of a former ED of an organization does not reflect that of the current ED)? How about everyone recognize how much we all have in common and give some critical thought on the issue before responding with angry tirades or unsubstantiated charges (not aimed at you Davey, but our community in general)? It'll be a more focused and more successful method of achieving our goals.

  14. #114
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    I don't know Hunter. I've done a lot of chatting with a friend that rides a lot out of SLC. There are a lot of wilderness areas that have a lot of trails that are not as difficult as you imply. I've seen the photos and I actually had a trip planned to this area next summer but just like the BWC I've missed the boat again. There are heaps of trails in the 5 proposed wilderness areas. Sure some may be to hard for me, but certainly not all of them.Not just the Grandure Peak area but the 4 other massive wilderness areas that will all but close the Wasatch to bikes except for the Crest and Mill Peak route to Park City. Yes Grandure Peak is hard. Few people ride it. Does that mean that it should be closed to bikes forever? 2/3rds of the Wasatch are already wilderness areas. Why won't a national monument without wilderness save the area from development? Why include the wilderness protection? Is it absolutely necessary? Why can't SOC even bother to asses the impact to the off road cycling community? Why can't they even list cycling as a prohibited activity in wilderness on their web page? WTF! Why are they making statements that this will have a zero impact on the off road cycling community? Clearly it will. Why are they being so dishonest? Sure they are not specifically anti bike, they just don't give a rats ass about off road cycling. They can still go skiing all they want. I'm sure the SUV that gets them to the trailhead with the skis and gear runs of rainbows and unicorns.

    As far as your concerns about the high alpine go... Sure those areas are difficult to protect and difficult to manage. I've spent almost all of my time in the high alpine backpacking and have seen them trashed by people who didn't have bikes. I know what LNT means. I'm an environmentalist myself as surprising as it may sound. I'm just not a hypocrite. I've met the Nature Conservatory's pilots for their private jet. I was laughing so hard afterwards. This planet will be completely uninhabitable mostly because of overconsumption by the wealthy elite, in about 100 years. Bikes won't help or hurt the current situation. If the Sierra Club took a hard line on a vegan diet and private jets I'd start to listen to them again. It isn't that I don't care for the environment. It is that I don't understand how banning bikes from wilderness will benefit anyone long term. The high alpine is disappearing at a rapid rate, not from bikes but from unsustainable transportation methods and food production methods that are contributing to the biggest change in temperature on planet earth. The 6th great extinction is happening now and mountain biking isn't to blame. Maybe environmentalists should concentrate on these issues instead of championing keeping bikes off of narrow dirt paths?

    But hey in our lifetime we can watch the world end from a mountain top and never worry about being bothered by seeing a mountain bike.

  15. #115
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    I don't mind lots of hike-a-bike while on an epic adventure

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    And a good way to change minds of non-cyclists is to always practice this:

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    Davey, I've never implied that you are a hypocrite and I was speaking in general terms about Wilderness areas, especially those that were created prior to 2005 when the latest surge of Wilderness pushes began. The "really epic" terrain of which you mention is mostly in these older Wilderness areas and while there are areas like this in some current proposals or in the White Clouds, much of the current proposal areas are lower elevation, some are in desert climates, some are in places in the east and mid-west that have very little in the way of wild landscapes, and some are in response to very real risk of development (ski interconnect in the Wasatch and fracking oil and gas in Pennsylvania for example). I didn't even mention the proposals in the Wasatch, which are complicated maneuvers of developers, civic governments, the Feds, the state of Utah, and ski corporations, chief among them Vail Resorts, never a friend of Wilderness over profit.

    Why doesn't SOC list MTB'ing as prohibited in Wilderness? How about because it's pretty common knowledge., just like the fact that 4x4's motos, logging, mining, helicopter skiing, raves, RV camping, etc, are also not allowed. My educated guess (I've worked with SOC in the past on ski area issues) as to why they believe that this proposal won't impact MTB'ing is that they: one: aren't ardent mountain bikers, if at all, so don't share the passion and understanding of what they can do; two: don't see, and don't imagine, that bikes would ride up and down trails that are difficult, loose, rocky, and challenging enough for a day hiker; and three: believe, like I do, that there are places that bikes (or anyone in some cases) shouldn't go. That's part of the perception issue I've mentioned previously, they may not understand and "get" the sport and the abilities of those that practice it. This was the same argument I had with my boss when I quit my job in 2008 over his request that I draw up plans to add the Indian Ridge section of the Colorado Trail and much of the trails in the Hermosa Creek drainage to the Hidden Gems Wilderness proposal. There are places that bikes use with frequency because they are fun, they make critical connections, they provide a great experience, but I'm not alone in my belief that some trails aren't bike suitable due to erosion or wildlife issues, regardless of whether or not a few locals occasionally hike to the top of some peak to ride back down. I'd also probably conclude that they aren't hiker suitable for the same reason, but that would be a losing battle because hiking is pretty much allowed and accepted everywhere and anywhere...


    Lastly, if you are attempting to imply that I -or anyone that considers themselves environmentally minded- is a hypocrite by supporting environmental causes or organizations because one such org may use a corporate jet or not advocate living naked in a cave as a scavenger, than you'd have to count yourselves one as well. As an environmental professional -who quit his job and paycheck over the issue of Wilderness and bikes no-less- I don't ascribe to the view that the world is ending and therefore I should do whatever whereever I want. You should be aware that bike impacts, or those of hikers and horses for that matter, are not "big picture" issues, but they can be important, even critical, factors for water quality and the well-being and survival of wildlife and even some rare species of flora, among other issues. To compare the bikes in Wilderness issue to climate change, toxic contamination, industrial extraction, and other global issues that impact us all is disingenuous. Anger can get you fired up on an issue, and that can be a great motivator, but many among the MTB community are lashing out, stereotyping, and making grand accusations towards others without fully understanding their motivations, perspectives, and assumptions about an issue only serves to widen divides of understanding and undermine any meaningful attempts at cooperation and mutual agreement (if possible).

    BTW, the Wilderness proposal in the Wasatch is just that, a proposal. It will take time to enact, if it even gets that far, so go ride it next summer, there's nothing to stop you. Maybe I'll join you if you'll have me along...

  17. #117
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    Huntermos nailed it in my opinion.

    Most of the Wilderness is not the issue as it is not rideable anyhow. The problem is the areas that are ridden and those that are rideable without causing any real harm.


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  18. #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by huntermos View Post
    Anger can get you fired up on an issue, and that can be a great motivator, but many among the MTB community are lashing out, stereotyping, and making grand accusations towards others without fulling understanding their motivations, perspectives, and assumptions about an issue only serves to widen divides of understanding and undermine any meaningful attempts at cooperation and mutual agreement (if possible).
    This.

  19. #119
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    Reading both Huntermos and Davey's posts, I actually think they agree on 97% of the issues under discussion, and 100% of the important points. We are all on the same team here.

  20. #120
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    Yeah, I don't think the "wilderness is too hard to ride in" reasoning holds water (or that it's too fragile). The first thing that comes to my mind is the San Mateo Wilderness in Socal. You've probably never heard about it, and that's because it's on the wrong side of the tracks (well, Hwy 74). The famous San Juan trail (11 miles start-to-finish) and locally famous Chiquito trail are on the other side of the highway.

    The wilderness contains almost 40,000 acres, has miles and miles of trails, and sees very few humans. It would be an awesome place to ride. And there are similar areas up and down the state, where an imaginary line keeps us from riding just because very few people in 1964 could imagine that mountain biking would become mainstream decades later.

    Opening some wilderness areas to riding doesn't equate to opening the flood gates. Adding a handful (if that) of riders to those trails a few days a week won't affect the environment one way or another. That's just another tired old Sierra Club red herring... If you really want to minimize impact put your energy into banning horses.
    Last edited by dirtvert; 12-17-2015 at 09:33 AM.
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  21. #121
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    Epic!?!?

    That word epic seems to throw a hiccup into the conversation; "epic" is pretty darn hard to nail down once it leaves the realm of classical literature.

    Does one even need to ride "epic terrain" to have an epic adventure?

    There's a lot campsites in Wilderness areas accessed by full-blown pack-train trails that, yes, have truly "epic terrain" (and probably sensitive) surrounding them; that doesn't mean I need to go peak-bagging on my bike to have an epic experience. Low impact as it's said. I'd just like to be able get as far in on my bike as a saddle horse can; that's all I'm interested in. Red Bull wannabes stay home please.

    There are a lot of rides that could make for an epic loop but a chunk of Wilderness stands in the way.

    STC doesn't want to make Wilderness areas wide open to bikes; just access where appropriate. IMBA sort of wants to do the same thing with "corridors" and "cherry stems"; what little success they've had with that approach seems to be very restrictive. Hence; the STC...
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  22. #122
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    The term "wilderness" seems to invoke thoughts & perceptions that aren't matched by the reality of what wilderness actually is.

    Earlier this I was in a "Wilderness" area and could look down and see &/or hear:

    1 railroad line with almost hourly trains,
    1 major cross country Interstate hwy carrying thousands of cars & trucks daily,
    3 different State hwys,
    1000s of houses, one of which is my own,
    Dozens of boats on the lake.

    This was hardly the pristine & desolate experience I expect when I read or hear the term "Wilderness".

  23. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by powpig View Post
    The term "wilderness" seems to invoke thoughts & perceptions that aren't matched by the reality of what wilderness actually is.

    Earlier this I was in a "Wilderness" area and could look down and see &/or hear:

    1 railroad line with almost hourly trains,
    1 major cross country Interstate hwy carrying thousands of cars & trucks daily,
    3 different State hwys,
    1000s of houses, one of which is my own,
    Dozens of boats on the lake.

    This was hardly the pristine & desolate experience I expect when I read or hear the term "Wilderness".

    As far as "pristine"....many of the original 54 areas set aside as wilderness by the passing of the Wilderness Act in 1964 as well as many of the rest of the over 700 areas made wilderness since were not pristine when they received the protected designation. Many were already altered by man by mining, logging, or other industry...or in some cases used for military purposes such as artillery ranges (i.e. Dolly Sods Wilderness in West Virginia). Nature has come back and taken over again in these places, but they are not untouched or "untrammeled by man" to use the wording of the Wilderness Act.
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  24. #124
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    I vote huntermos for 2016
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  25. #125
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    Besides the fact that not all wilderness is high alpine fragile trail, the reason why trails are unrideable is mostly due to the inane restrictions on power tools. The STC is trying to fix this as well. As for the "untrammeled by man" concept it's total BS and completely ignores native American history.

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  26. #126
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    TAMBA weighs in with money and reason:

    https://www.facebook.com/Sustainable...r&notif_t=like

  27. #127
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    That's awesome!

    Loved that they CC'd IMBA
    Go get that KOM "You Deserve" - http://www.digitalepo.com/index.php

  28. #128
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    I'm with TAMBA and I'm going to contribute $.

    I'm exploring organizing the Our Trails Alliance. Our Trails Alliance | Take Control Of Our South SF Bay Trails The purpose will be to change the business model of land agencies in first the South SF Bay Area so they work for the trail users, not themselves. No more begging for new trails and access. Midpen, Santa Clara and San Mateo County Parks, etc will be more like contractors to the user group. Of course the user group will include all users, not just MTB.

    I've done this before. Check out Our Trails Alliance | Take Control Of Our South SF Bay Trails and subscribe to show support.

    I'm still working on the purpose text to get it right. Of course I would love feedback.

    We are not bound forever to the current organizational models of boards and commissions. There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution that specifies the current model.

    The USFS is an open organization with great people. Let's replace other land agency management with USFS managers. That will change things fast. Yes, I've done this before. It isn't impossible, or even that hard. Join me!

    If we can get it to work in Silicon Valley and the SF Peninsula we can spread it throughout California.

    IMBA has the slows.

    Jim
    MTB blog for intermediates: http://intermediatemtb.com. Trail analysis videos, bike and component reviews, other stuff.

  29. #129
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    I heart TAMBA.
    Friends don't let friends ride e-"bikes" on dirt.

    Nature is not a sidewalk (I'm looking at you, MidPen).

  30. #130
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    Don't miss this...

    Content here does not officially represent the CA DPR.

    Windows 10, destroying humanity one upgrade at a time.

  31. #131
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    The hit squad has been sent after K.G.(A.S.S.) on his facebook page.

    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph Meldrum, owner of Oakridge Adventures, Hood River Oregon
    The Wilderness has always accessable to all, you just have to hike to get there.
    Quote Originally Posted by John David Baca, ironically a privileged white dude
    Kurt P Gensheimer your argument here has become what negotiators call positional. This typically fails unless your position is extrodinarily strong, which it is not. You have some valid points but your fighting historical precident and negative perceptions in side a bureaucracy. Starting from a postition that vastly over estimates your own importance to the matter (I know thats the mt. biker way [probably itself a matter of the sport being one largely perused by privileged white dudes]
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve who must be on IMBA paid staff
    But, as a mountain bike of 33+ years, I feel it’s OK to have wilderness with disappearing Historical trails, that it’s OK to have no biking in Wilderness Study areas. It’s even OK to not defer these decisions to local land managers susceptible to more in-your-face pressue I know I’m in the minority here, but someone has to speak up for true wilderness.

  32. #132
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    IMBA won't stick its neck out for mtb. They will, however, peek through a partially opened door to see if the coast is clear and claim some credit.
    I don't rattle.

  33. #133
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    STC; time to write letters

    Those of us who have donated to the cause got an email this morning updating STC's progress and also a notification that it's time to start communicating with our elected representatives in support of Wilderness Area bicycle access.

    And not just via quickie email; drop half a buck on a stamp and send a hard copy via snail mail:

    "Which leads us to what we now need from you. We are now at the point where we need to have each of you, and your friends, write a letter to your legislators in Congress (representatives and senators). Our D.C. advisers recommend physical letters, not emails, as snail mail indicates that someone feels particularly strongly about an issue. They also recommend that we not use a form letter—all letters should be personal and individualized. So we are not going to say anything more than you should tell them how you feel about lack of bike access in Wilderness and on the Pacific Crest and Continental Divide trails."

    ...or send an email AND a letter!
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  34. #134
    Yeti SB95c
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    Donated but nothing from STC. Maybe they only contact donors of over $1000.
    MTB blog for intermediates: http://intermediatemtb.com. Trail analysis videos, bike and component reviews, other stuff.

  35. #135
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmpreston View Post
    Donated but nothing from STC. Maybe they only contact donors of over $1000.
    I'm not to the $1K mark (yet). Maybe check your spam folder?
    Content here does not officially represent the CA DPR.

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  36. #136
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    ^^ Mine was in my Google "Promotions" folder.
    Friends don't let friends ride e-"bikes" on dirt.

    Nature is not a sidewalk (I'm looking at you, MidPen).

  37. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by Berkeley Mike View Post
    IMBA won't stick its neck out for mtb. They will, however, peek through a partially opened door to see if the coast is clear and claim some credit.
    Ha!!

    I'm actually quite cool with that. We will need IMBA's local chapters and advocates to speak up for access in local areas once the blanket ban is lifted.

    They can take all the credit they like IMO.

  38. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmpreston View Post
    Donated but nothing from STC. Maybe they only contact donors of over $1000.
    Ted has been writing a lot of very personal emails to donors. Nearly all of them under 1K.

    If you can't find your letter I'd be happy to buy you a beer or 3 at gestalt this week. PM me if you don't have much going on with the rainy weather.

    Thank you very much!!!

  39. #139
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    What action are we asking our representatives for?

    A generic 'I like bikes yay'?
    A request for help "I want to bike in places which i used to be able but are now 'wilderness', please help me"?
    A note of support 'I like the work the STC is doing to help biking'?
    A very specific 'please support resolution/thingy xyz'?

    I assume we're earlier in the continuum--but where?

  40. #140
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    You should have gotten an auto-generated thank you from STC. Everyone is getting one. Also, STC thanked you personally on FB in response to a message you posted, if it's still there.

  41. #141
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    STC board members are starting to hear requests for more letter-writing guidance than the e-mail provided. The board is going to have to send out another e-mail with more specifics. But it won't be until after Christmas.

    If anyone's having trouble deciding what to write, it's better to wait for more guidance. If anyone is planning to go ahead now, you can certainly mention STC but don't have to. Whether you do or not, a letter should say that the bans on bicycles in Wilderness and the PCT (if you care about the latter) are out of date, bad for both conservation and recreation, and need to go. You can also say you've heard a bill may be introduced that would let local land managers decide where human-powered travelers can go, and you support that, because the current Wilderness ban rests on edicts from Washington, D.C. that are decades old and don't take local knowledge into account. Something like that would be fine.

  42. #142
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    Quote Originally Posted by imtnbke View Post
    STC board members are starting to hear requests for more letter-writing guidance than the e-mail provided. The board is going to have to send out another e-mail with more specifics. But it won't be until after Christmas.
    Thanks; the guidance you have here is good too. I just don't want the representatives to be put the letter in the WTF pile, if the goal is that they should be putting it in the take action pile.

    Do consider posting draft guidance somewhere like here, where you'll reach a number of people who can provide you feedback before you send to everyone.

  43. #143
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    Re: Writing your legislators...

    Re: Writing your legislators...

    It would probably be very good to bring up how lots of kids are connecting with nature and the outdoors via riding bicycles, whether they be little one's on striders or bigger ones on an ever-growing high school mountain bike team. These are the next generation of conservationists, forest rangers and land managers who matter so much when it comes to protecting wild places now and in the future. They are people who don't share their die hard Sierra Club grandparent's ideals that bicycles are evil, dangerous or inappropriate in nature. Wilderness can't be experienced or cared about on a mobile device or video game either.

    Personal stories about your kids and the outdoors would be powerful additions to your letters.

  44. #144
    More pie please
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    Question for the STC folks…

    Some of what the STC is asking for seems analogous to the 2012 change in Nat’l Park Service policy to which shifted the bikes/no-bikes decision to the local office. Could you compare and contrast this to the STC proposal for me?

    I ask because if that NPS policy change is analogous, then it seems like a positive, real-world example of what would happen if the STC is successful.

    Thanks,
    ///Charlie

  45. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey Simon View Post
    Ha!!

    I'm actually quite cool with that. We will need IMBA's local chapters and advocates to speak up for access in local areas once the blanket ban is lifted.

    They can take all the credit they like IMO.
    It will be the same locals who will do the speaking, make no mistake. Bid for local SF BayChapters is a pure power and money grab now that the hardest work has been done while IMBA has taken CA and SF monies and worked everywhere else but here for 25 years. I was at the table in 2012 with 25 local advocates and they saw it for what it was.
    I don't rattle.

  46. #146
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    Looks like the bar is set so low, they'll now make just about any place a National Park.

    America’s most polluted nuclear site is now a national park /

  47. #147
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    Thanks for your work on this important issue, Davey! I just donated to STC.

    - I saw that Philip Keyes @ NEMBA took a stance supporting STC. That reminds me that I need to re-up with NEMBA. I left the Greater Boston area years ago and kept up my membership.
    - I think I got a letter from IMBA asking for money or membership renewal. I think I'll let it lapse and send the $ to TAMBA instead.

  48. #148
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    Wow.

    Sustainable Trail Coalition is still at it!-memo1.jpg

    Sustainable Trail Coalition is still at it!-memo2.jpg

    Timeline on how things went from bikes okay to bikes not okay, to actually bikes are okay, to no bikes:

    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?...5944704&type=3

  49. #149
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkMass View Post
    Thanks for your work on this important issue, Davey! I just donated to STC.

    - I saw that Philip Keyes @ NEMBA took a stance supporting STC. That reminds me that I need to re-up with NEMBA. I left the Greater Boston area years ago and kept up my membership.
    - I think I got a letter from IMBA asking for money or membership renewal. I think I'll let it lapse and send the $ to TAMBA instead.
    Cheers! The NEMBA support was a huge step in the right direction. As was TAMBA's endorsement and big donation.

    Keep in mind I'm riding on the coat tails of a much smarter group of advocates. Ted Stroll being a dude we all owe a huge debt of gratitude.

    I'm really pleased they let me join the board. I'll keep working on this issue till the day I die.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  50. #150
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkMass View Post
    Thanks for your work on this important issue, Davey! I just donated to STC.

    - I saw that Philip Keyes @ NEMBA took a stance supporting STC. That reminds me that I need to re-up with NEMBA. I left the Greater Boston area years ago and kept up my membership.
    - I think I got a letter from IMBA asking for money or membership renewal. I think I'll let it lapse and send the $ to TAMBA instead.
    Also Mark, thanks for donating! Sorry I didn't put that in my first response to you! Oops!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  51. #151
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    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_Beer View Post
    Wow.
    My thought exactly!
    Really feels like the tide could be turning for us.
    Thanks for posting that, totally made my day!

  52. #152
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    Great stuff Empty Beer!

    I would guess that these papers were dug up through FOIA requests. Very helpful to fight back against the notion that there has always been an "accepted" prohibition on bikes.

  53. #153
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    Here is nice summary of those papers on a nice & tidy timeline:
    History ? FIX AMERICA?S TRAIL SYSTEM

  54. #154
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    I see that STC now has some letter writing information posted on their website. I have written my letter, but my question is whether it is helpful to write that this is a top political issue for me, and will affect my vote in 2016, other whether such a statement is unhelpful because it is perceived as a threat.

  55. #155
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    Quote Originally Posted by California_Dave View Post
    I see that STC now has some letter writing information posted on their website. I have written my letter, but my question is whether it is helpful to write that this is a top political issue for me, and will affect my vote in 2016, other whether such a statement is unhelpful because it is perceived as a threat.
    I could be wrong but just writing a letter stating that allowing some cycling access to wilderness areas is important to you is enough.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  56. #156
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    Hi, California_Dave — It is fine to say that that this is a top political issue for you and a politician's stance on it will affect your vote in 2016. That makes you a so-called single-issue voter, and politicians pay lots of attention to single-issue voters. As long as you're polite in what you write, you're doing no harm. Indeed, if that is the way you feel, you should tell your members of Congress that.
    Last edited by imtnbke; 01-11-2016 at 11:41 AM.

  57. #157
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    No response from STC

    Quote Originally Posted by imtnbke View Post
    You should have gotten an auto-generated thank you from STC. Everyone is getting one. Also, STC thanked you personally on FB in response to a message you posted, if it's still there.
    I donated to STC in early December and never received a response for it. My PayPal shows it going through. I was hoping to be on their mailing list to continue to support them. I totally support what they are doing and like others, am now thinking of donating more locally than continuing my IMBA membership. Do you hear that IMBA??? Sounds like maybe they are the "weak" link...?

    I don't feel they're really into the grass roots stuff as much as they seemed to be into hawking socks etc. I tend to get more cynical as the charitable agencies I donate to get so big that their original intentions become muddied. I'm still an active member of Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA is a true guerillas in the corporate land grab fight), but now I feel bikes in wilderness is a new priority for me. The scam in the Idaho Wilderness debacle pissed me off so much that it got me off the fence. I too once rode those trails now off limits to bikes.

  58. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by RooHarris View Post
    I donated to STC in early December and never received a response for it. My PayPal shows it going through. I was hoping to be on their mailing list to continue to support them.
    Others have had the same problem; check your spam/junk folders. I believe everybody who donated got an email response sent to them.
    Content here does not officially represent the CA DPR.

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  59. #159
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    Nope.. not in spam

    Quote Originally Posted by pliebenberg View Post
    Others have had the same problem; check your spam/junk folders. I believe everybody who donated got an email response sent to them.
    I check my SPAM once a day and have not seen a response there either. Hopefully, I'll get something so I can continue to donate.

  60. #160
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    Quote Originally Posted by RooHarris View Post
    I check my SPAM once a day and have not seen a response there either. Hopefully, I'll get something so I can continue to donate.
    PM sent

  61. #161
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    Geez, we at STC regret that people aren't getting thank-you responses. We are auto-generating them. Maybe they are seen as such high-ranked spam that some ISPs don't deliver them even as far as a spam mailbox or folder. However, we send e-mails to all donors occasionally, so we can thank everyone that way the next time we do one.

    We really appreciate the generosity of everyone who's donating, and we can assure you that your money is going almost 100% to paying our lobbyists and their few support needs (printing a brochure, for example).

    The main exception to this 100% figure is that the credit-card processor deducts 2.9% of your donation before we receive it. (If you pay by PayPal, the whole amount you donate gets to us.) But as for STC board members' travel, meals, printing, and phone calls, and STC filing requirements with government agencies, incorporation fees, etc., etc., the cost to our donors has been, so far, zero. Board members have collectively spent about $2000 to $3000 of our own money for these things. In addition, board members and their relatives have donated about $12,000 to STC.

    STC (meaning our donors) is paying $5 a month to maintain our Google account, and we spent about $42 to have checks printed. That's all that this board member can think of in writing this. So rest assured that your money is being used almost 100% to win trail access.

  62. #162
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    Quote Originally Posted by RooHarris View Post
    I donated to STC in early December and never received a response for it. My PayPal shows it going through. I was hoping to be on their mailing list to continue to support them. I totally support what they are doing and like others, am now thinking of donating more locally than continuing my IMBA membership. Do you hear that IMBA??? Sounds like maybe they are the "weak" link...?

    I don't feel they're really into the grass roots stuff as much as they seemed to be into hawking socks etc. I tend to get more cynical as the charitable agencies I donate to get so big that their original intentions become muddied. I'm still an active member of Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA is a true guerillas in the corporate land grab fight), but now I feel bikes in wilderness is a new priority for me. The scam in the Idaho Wilderness debacle pissed me off so much that it got me off the fence. I too once rode those trails now off limits to bikes.
    What is your role in SUWA? Any chance that SUWA would be willing to provide a letter of support for STC/2016 Wildlands act to IMBA and/or STC? I realize this is a big ask, but it would be huge for STC.

    At a minimum I think it would be very helpful to the cause if you (and everyone else on this thread) were to write to IMBA and note you are a (paying?) IMBA member and a (paying?) SUWA member (other organization member) that supports STC.

    One of IMBA's concerns, and I think it is legitmate, is IMBA's perception that an equal number of members/mountain bikers are against STC as are for it. My concern with this is that I doubt much is being done to really tease out where these responses are really coming from...I suspect an awful lot of people are writing to IMBA and STC representing themselves as "mountain bikers that are against STCs mission" but in reality they own a cirqua 2002 huffy mtb that gets ridden once a year and they may not be very representative of IMBA members that are actually contributing in any meaningful way to MTBing...but that's admittedly only a somewhat informed theory.

    On the flip side of that, I think that the best way to help STC gain legitimacy is to become a contributer to both organizations and vocally advocate for IMBA to support STC. I think that boycotting IMBA will create a fractured voice that will ultimately become less coherent and less effective towards the mission of STC, IMBA and the rest of the MTBing community that just wants to ride their bikes, post on the internet and let someone else do their advocacy.
    Last edited by madturtle; 01-17-2016 at 05:35 PM. Reason: typos

  63. #163
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    Advocating Bikes In Wilderness

    Quote Originally Posted by madturtle View Post
    What is your role in SUWA? Any chance that SUWA would be willing to provide a letter of support for STC/2016 Wildlands act to IMBA and/or STC? I realize this is a big ask, but it would be huge for STC.

    At a minimum I think it would be very helpful to the cause if you (and everyone else on this thread) were to write to IMBA and note you are a (paying?) IMBA member and a (paying?) SUWA member (other organization member) that supports STC.

    One of IMBA's concerns, and I think it is legitmate, is IMBA's perception that an equal number of members/mountain bikers are against STC as are for it. My concern with this is that I doubt much is being done to really tease out where these responses are really coming from...I suspect an awful lot of people are writing to IMBA and STC representing themselves as "mountain bikers that are against STCs mission" but in reality they own a cirqua 2002 huffy mtb that gets ridden once a year and are that they may not be ver representative of IMBA members that are actually contributing in any meaningful way to MTBing.

    On the flip side of that I think that the best way to help STC gain legitimacy is to become a contributer to both organizations and vocally advocate for IMBA to support STC. I think that boycotting IMBA will create a fractured voice that will ultimately become less coherent and less effective towards the mission of STC, IMBA and the rest of the MTBing community that just wants to ride their bikes, post on the internet and let someone else do their advocacy.
    I love the passion I'm seeing from STC. As a member of SUWA, I am only a minor contributor, but have supported them ever since 1993 when I once lived in Utah. Their commitment to protecting the lands of south eastern Utah from the land grabbing insane county commissioners, rabid off-road motorized vehicles and mineral extraction corporations has never wavered. As one pundit observed of the small size of SUWA when conducting business in Washington, "They are the mouse that roared!".

    I will contact them to see if they will support STC's mission statement. Likewise, I will send my advocacy commitment to IMBA when I renew my membership and ask that they too support STC efforts. You are entirely correct, working together is the only way to insure anything ever gets achieved.

    Mountain biking has come a long ways since I first threw my leg over a top tube in the hills above SLC in 1985. My wife and I have seen many of our favorite areas locked out. The Boulder/White Cloud Wilderness designation got me off the fence regarding the exclusion of bikes in an area once open to biking. My first ever panier trip into the woods was into Fisher Creek, Idaho before the fires. Although this trail is just outside the Wilderness Designation, it is a shame that one can never legally access the beauty of the White Clouds on a bike again unless things change. The pristineness was unforgettable, but the high mountain cattle grazing/damage was upsetting. Since then, more lands have been shut off to mountain bikers who over the years have proven to be some of the best stewards/ advocators of the back country.
    Last edited by RooHarris; 01-23-2016 at 03:06 PM.

  64. #164
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    Another thing regarding people not receiving thank-you e-mails: A few weeks ago STC sent an e-mail to our several hundred donors to thank them and give them a status update. We got back maybe two dozen badly formatted or no longer valid addresses. If you didn't receive a thank-you response on donating, that could be the cause, although one would think that Paypal or the credit card company would catch any formatting issues when processing the donation. We're going to send out another mass e-mail in coming days, so if you continue to hear nothing from STC, please send an e-mail to info at ZZZsustainabletrailscoalition ZZZdot ZZZorg (omitting the Zs, of course; they're there to block crawlers) and we'll try to figure out what's up.

  65. #165
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    People have donated about $100,000 to STC at this point, which is all the more heartening when one considers that about 99 percent of the money has come out of people's own pockets. Two or three smaller bike companies have donated about $1,000 collectively, for which we are most grateful because they don't have deep pockets. In contrast, what might be called Big Bike has donated not one cent, has in a couple of cases sent STC e-mails that are dismissive, panicky sounding, and/or rude, and seems nervous about STC for whatever reason.

  66. #166
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    Quote Originally Posted by imtnbke View Post
    People have donated about $100,000 to STC at this point, which is all the more heartening when one considers that about 99 percent of the money has come out of people's own pockets. Two or three smaller bike companies have donated about $1,000 collectively, for which we are most grateful because they don't have deep pockets. In contrast, what might be called Big Bike has donated not one cent, has in a couple of cases sent STC e-mails that are dismissive, panicky sounding, and/or rude, and seems nervous about STC for whatever reason.
    I had the pleasure of making Jackson Ratcliffe, of STC, acquaintance last evening at our club's (Mendocino Coast cyclists) annual officer's meeting. His presentation and sincerity was welcoming. We moved to donate $500 to STC's cause. You guys ROCK!

    Thank you all for taking up the fight to insure trails stay open for the rest of the greater cycling community. We will ask IMBA to get behind this great endeavor.

  67. #167
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    We need to get Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson involved. According to U.S. Forest Service visitor use data 96.5% of all Wilderness users are white. The mountain bike ban is racist! It denies Wilderness access to minorities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54 View Post
    We need to get Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson involved. According to U.S. Forest Service visitor use data 96.5% of all Wilderness users are white. The mountain bike ban is racist! It denies Wilderness access to minorities.
    AND

    ADA can come into play with ebikes. A disabled person could access the wilderness area with an ebike. Since it's hard to distinguish them from normal, non cheater, mtb, we should all have access. Not an ideal situation, but at least we can ride there then
    Lead by my Lefty............... right down the trail, no brakes.

  69. #169
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    Quote Originally Posted by ziscwg View Post
    AND

    ADA can come into play with ebikes. A disabled person could access the wilderness area with an ebike. Since it's hard to distinguish them from normal, non cheater, mtb, we should all have access. Not an ideal situation, but at least we can ride there then
    Let's not let the conversation drift into disabled access. Respectfully I request we only bring up non motorized access to wilderness areas from now on. All users can be managed and disabled access is an entirely different matter.


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    ^^^^^^^
    What Davey said.

  71. #171
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    Letter to SUWA

    Quote Originally Posted by madturtle View Post
    What is your role in SUWA? Any chance that SUWA would be willing to provide a letter of support for STC/2016 Wildlands act to IMBA and/or STC? I realize this is a big ask, but it would be huge for STC.

    At a minimum I think it would be very helpful to the cause if you (and everyone else on this thread) were to write to IMBA and note you are a (paying?) IMBA member and a (paying?) SUWA member (other organization member) that supports STC.

    One of IMBA's concerns, and I think it is legitmate, is IMBA's perception that an equal number of members/mountain bikers are against STC as are for it. My concern with this is that I doubt much is being done to really tease out where these responses are really coming from...I suspect an awful lot of people are writing to IMBA and STC representing themselves as "mountain bikers that are against STCs mission" but in reality they own a cirqua 2002 huffy mtb that gets ridden once a year and they may not be very representative of IMBA members that are actually contributing in any meaningful way to MTBing...but that's admittedly only a somewhat informed theory.

    On the flip side of that, I think that the best way to help STC gain legitimacy is to become a contributer to both organizations and vocally advocate for IMBA to support STC. I think that boycotting IMBA will create a fractured voice that will ultimately become less coherent and less effective towards the mission of STC, IMBA and the rest of the MTBing community that just wants to ride their bikes, post on the internet and let someone else do their advocacy.
    Here is my letter to Terri Martin Southwest Regional Organizer for SUWA with CC to Scott Groene (Executive Director) at Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance:

    ​​Terri,

    I feel we have met indirectly through our friend Kim and my sweet wife Mary Kay when you all kayaked the Green River last summer.

    I have been a sustaining SUWA member for 23 years. My continued support of what SUWA represents has been unwavering throughout this time frame.

    The reason for this email letter is to see if SUWA would consider supporting the Sustainable Trails Coalition (FIX AMERICA?S TRAIL SYSTEM ) in their efforts to address specific changes to the 1964 Wilderness act and the subsequent legislation that excluded mountain bikes from Wilderness designated areas.

    I believe that the originators of the 1964 Wilderness Act would have welcomed mountain biking as a form of human powered vehicles if it had existed at the time.

    Today, mountain bikers have committed themselves to maintaining many trail systems outside of Wilderness designated areas thus alleviating the local, state and Federal agencies much of the trail maintenance work and costs associated with it. Why not in Wilderness areas? I fervently believe the purpose of preserving large tracks of Wilderness land are for all to enjoy as long as they do it under human power. Biking has been proven to be no more damaging to trail surfaces than human foot traffic ( as documented in the US Department of Interior report - 2006 "Assessing and Understanding Trail Degradation"). It is in the spirit of human power that we would have access to enjoy lands that are currently closed to us. For me, biking is a great way for finding peace of mind in the woods.

    In 1994, my wife and I enjoyed a pannier bike trip into the vast wildness of the White Cloud mountains in Idaho. The trails were defined by towering peaks which loomed over vast tracts of pristine beauty. Recently, legislation was passed to outlaw bikes in an area once well maintained by the mountain biking communities of eastern Idaho. Now designated as "Wilderness", biking is no longer allowed. I have seen too many beautiful areas like the Boulder-White Cloud wild lands shut out to mountain biking. This is not in the spirit of fair play. The originators, like Frank Church, of the Wilderness act wanted to preserve these vast tracts of land for all to explore under their own power.

    Senator Frank Church said In 1977

    "My final comments tonight concern the issue of wilderness purity. Time after time, when we discuss Wilderness, questions are raised about how developed an area can be and still qualify as wilderness, or what kinds of activities within a wilderness are consistent with the purposes of the Wilderness Act. I believe, and many citizens agree with me, that the agencies are applying provisions of the Wilderness Act too strictly and misconstruing the intent of Congress as to how these areas should be managed."

    My greatest hope is that SUWA will consider backing the Sustainable Trails Coalition in their effort to open up many of these "off-limit" tracts of Wilderness land to human non-motorized powered bicycles. The STC would like to support the idea that individual parcels considered open to biking be decided by the local land managers of each Wilderness determined area.


    Thank you for any support possible.

    Sincerely,
    Roo Harris

  72. #172
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    Davey,
    Any way of pinning this thread so it stays on top of the NorCal forum. I feel what STC is doing is revolutionary to the future of mountain biking.

    Thanks,
    Roo

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    Quote Originally Posted by RooHarris View Post
    Davey,
    Any way of pinning this thread so it stays on top of the NorCal forum. I feel what STC is doing is revolutionary to the future of mountain biking.

    Thanks,
    Roo
    It was pinned for some time. Maybe a mod could pin it again. I can't help other than asking fc via Facebook.

    BTW. Thank you for your letter of support. We need our supporters to send letters like yours to their Congress members and Senate members.




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  74. #174
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    Letter to Jared Huffman

    Quote Originally Posted by Davey Simon View Post
    It was pinned for some time. Maybe a mod could pin it again. I can't help other than asking fc via Facebook.

    BTW. Thank you for your letter of support. We need our supporters to send letters like yours to their Congress members and Senate members.




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    I have already sent my letter to Representative Jared Huffman. It's time we all got off the fence and support the STC now. Also, that we notify our wishes that IMBA do so too. My letter to IMBA will be going out in my membership renewal soon. I think it's time that Laurel Harkness/IMBA get into the STC boat sooner than later. It is a long row to Capitol hill and all arms are needed.

  75. #175
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey Simon View Post
    It was pinned for some time. Maybe a mod could pin it again. I can't help other than asking fc via Facebook.

    BTW. Thank you for your letter of support. We need our supporters to send letters like yours to their Congress members and Senate members.



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    That was fast! If we can get sh!t done that quickly here, maybe we will see STC successful sooner than later with the things that really matter for our future in Wilderness areas. We can only work towards it as a unified group with a common goal in mind.
    Thank you guys for all you do!

  76. #176
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    Great letter, Roo! Keep us posted on a response!

    In other great news, a former IMBA Chair and Board Member contacted STC a couple months ago and offered to help the effort. He's now on the STC Board and recently offered this open letter:

    OPEN LETTER TO MTB COMMUNITY FROM FORMER IMBA CHAIR

    January 16, 2016

    Dear fellow mountain bikers:

    I’m honored to accept the invitation of the Sustainable Trails Coalition (STC) to serve on its Board. There’s been much discussion of late about the relative pros and cons of STC and IMBA, so I thought it appropriate to offer a civil, yet transparent explanation for why a former IMBA Chair such as myself would choose to dedicate his efforts exclusively to STC’s mission.

    1. STC’s mission is clear, straightforward and reasonable: to remove needless access restrictions and address the poor state of our trail system. STC proposes to address these concerns with modest, reasonable legislation: the Human-Powered Wildlands Travel Management Act of 2016 (HP-WTMA).

    2. HP-WTMA would, among other things, reform the blanket nationwide bicycle bans in Wilderness by allowing each National Forest or other public land unit to decide on bicycle access at the local level. I stress: local input from mountain bikers and local decision making! Importantly, neither STC or HP-WTMA advocated for a blanket right to ride in Wilderness.

    3. IMBA has historically and consistently demonstrated disinterest in seeking changes to current Wilderness law. During my chairmanship of IMBA and certainly well before it, the organization consistently displayed a lack of enthusiasm for joining this fight. Given the clear choice between seeking this modest right for mountain bikers and potentially jeopardizing relationships with agencies and land managers (which IMBA regards as critical to its mission,) IMBA has opted to side with the status quo, preferring relationship preservation over the potential to reinstate mountain biker access where appropriate. Regrettably, this “play nice” approach with regulators hasn’t worked so well recently, particularly in Idaho where recent loss of mountain biking access in the new Boulder–White Clouds Wilderness near Ketchum and Stanley lead Idahoans to donate $5,000 to STC through the Southwest Idaho Mountain Biking Association (SWIMBA).

    4. STC’s legislative efforts are timely and professionally guided by smart, tested government relations experts. Never has there been a better time politically to seek these proposed legislative changes.

    5. IMBA is structured as a 501 (c)(3) so it can’t lobby without jeopardizing this particular tax status. STC is a 501(c)(4) which is designed to permit lobbying.

    6. As bureaucracies age they ossify. At 28 years old, IMBA is increasingly bureaucratic; STC isn’t. Bureaucracies are characterized by inertness, slowness to action, and preoccupation with administering overgrown organizations. By contrast, STC is nimble, lean-and-mean, singleminded and laser focused. This “startup” approach will serve mountain bikers well.

    7. IMBA has been invited but has declined to support STC. On Dec. 29, STC’s Founder Ted Stroll sent a letter to IMBA’s Executive Director Mike Van Abel asking whether IMBA would publicly support STC and its efforts. This lack of formal response to a sister advocacy organization is disappointing given IMBA’s admission that it can’t lobby and is a disservice to all mountain bikers, including the growing numbers who support STC.

    8. In politics, when you disagree on tactics but support the objective, the takeaway too often is akin to “You’re not with me, you’re against me.” IMBA has repeatedly said that it shares STC’s larger vision about mountain bikes but differs on tactics. Let’s be very clear what that means. This is simply polite bureaucratese for: “we don’t support you; please go away.” In my humble opinion, that stance is unnecessarily short-sighted.

    In summary, given IMBA’s history of studied intransigence on Wilderness, its unwillingness to support STC publicly, and the justness and ripeness of this cause, I felt it was time to place my support behind this “little engine that could”. That engine is STC. They’re making a difference for mountain bikers in the halls of Congress. And they aren’t going away.

    With STC’s help, I look forward to a day where my right to seek solitude on a bike doesn’t take a back seat to similar solitude-seeking rights of hikers or equestrians, whose trail impacts are widely regarded as more impactful than our two human powered rubber wheels.

    I hope you’ll join me in supporting STC’s reasonable and limited efforts.

    Thanks for your consideration.

    John Bliss
    Current Board Member, STC
    Former IMBA Chair 2010
    IMBA Board Member 2006-2010
    Former IMBA member

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    Good stuff from John. One note, a 501(c) (3) certainly can lobby. The IRS uses a formula to determine compliance of certain limitations. IMBA is in no danger of exceeding their limit. There are things they can't do at all, but lobbying isn't one of them.

  78. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by ronski View Post
    Good stuff from John. One note, a 501(c) (3) certainly can lobby. The IRS uses a formula to determine compliance of certain limitations. IMBA is in no danger of exceeding their limit. There are things they can't do at all, but lobbying isn't one of them.
    There are no clear cut numbers of IMBA members who support the STC movement. This is a topic finally come to a head ever since getting kicked out of the Wilderness Eden. One thing I have learned over the years of political bullsh!t, together, we all can make a difference. Like Bernie Sanders says "it's about what the people need regardless of big business". Has IMBA gotten too big? So Big, they shy away from what is necessary to get real grass roots action accomplished. I noticed that John Bliss is now a "former" IMBA member? If we all pulled a membership boycott would they come out to support STC? We as the bicycling community have a monumental say in all of this. Without us there would be no IMBA.

  79. #179
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    Roo, I'm not sure i like where you're going with that last post...

    Sure, majority of riders wish and desire for imba to support stc, and that may be coming in the not so distant future (i believe imba board is meeting next month to discuss doing so).

    You say 'together we can make a difference' but then insinuate a membership boycott?

    The specific issue of Wilderness aside, is the mtb world stronger with, or without, as many imba members as possible?
    Every trails a flow trail ifya would just learn how to ride-stop dumbing down the planet

  80. #180
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    Quote Originally Posted by ronski View Post
    Good stuff from John. One note, a 501(c) (3) certainly can lobby. The IRS uses a formula to determine compliance of certain limitations. IMBA is in no danger of exceeding their limit. There are things they can't do at all, but lobbying isn't one of them.
    True. The IRS formula is actually quite simple:

    Applicant has (R) after name in "confidential voter registration database"=NO_lobbying.

    Applicant has (D) after name in "confidential voter registration database"=Lobbying.

  81. #181
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    I've asked on many forums and Facebook: What are the benefits of IMBA? I never received a good answer. Actually, almost never any answer.

    Check out what they say the membership benefits are:

    https://www.imba.com/membership/individual/benefits

    I'm interested in none of those. I'm interested in more and better trails. I volunteer time and donate money to trails within my limited resources. Everywhere I look it is the local organizations, bike shops, and sometimes inspired land managers who are making things happen. IMBA is a ghost. They exist mostly on my membership socks.

    When the California Environmental Quality Act was being amended a few years ago and we could have made it easier to build trails where was the IMBA Norcal rep?

    A ghost. Nothing there at all.

    This is NOT MTBer in-fighting. This is valid criticism by a long time member. ROMP, a now defunct local club of which I was once a member, was one of the IMBA founders.

    We need to move on to more dynamic groups. We can maintain the IMBA trail crews without the overhead of the rest of the organization.
    MTB blog for intermediates: http://intermediatemtb.com. Trail analysis videos, bike and component reviews, other stuff.

  82. #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmpreston View Post
    We need to move on to more dynamic groups. We can maintain the IMBA trail crews without the overhead of the rest of the organization.
    Bravo!
    Content here does not officially represent the CA DPR.

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  83. #183
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    Every year I renew my IMBA membership at Sea Otter. For the yearly dues I get a couple of tires (which I donate), a tee shirt or socks, a year of Mountain Flyer magazine, a box of Clif Bars, and probably something else. I'll continue doing that. It's not that much money. But...all my other donations go to local causes like Tamarancho, Access 4 Bikes, and now STC.
    IMBA sends out quite a few email pleas for donations. I've contributed in the past but haven't in the last couple years as I've come to realize that their "successes" are limited and that they've seemed to become an organization that exists more to solicit money than to aggressively pursue trail access for Mountain Biking.

    All the "membership benefits" they list are similar to the ones listed in a recent AARP membership plea I recently received...which must be a mistake...I'm far too young for AARP....
    I never said most of the things I said - Yogi Berra

  84. #184
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    timetraveler, at least AARP has a lobbying effort in D.C. and defends Social Security from rampaging Tea Partiers whose membership depends on Social Security. I think I started getting AARP solicitations around age 50. It won't stop after that.

    IMBA is all about bragging about the club's activities and they do glue the clubs together a little. However, what made me vocal about membership is when some real "get it done now" club officers started wondering why their clubs are in IMBA. They were wondering if they would lose much if members would join them without selecting their clubs in the IMBA membership renewal process. They don't feel the benefits are there.

    I belong to TAMBA directly and MBoSC through IMBA. I used to belong to IMBA with no club selected but now that is forced on us.

    Yes, the dollars are small but memberships add up after a while.
    MTB blog for intermediates: http://intermediatemtb.com. Trail analysis videos, bike and component reviews, other stuff.

  85. #185
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    My plan, as my IMBA renewal mail just showed up, is to pay the absolute minimum.

    Every year I have paid OVER the minimum, but this year I will be paying the extra dollars to STC, and make sure IMBA knows it and why.

    (I have already donated to STC in 2015)

  86. #186
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    I'm happy that the STC has been endorsed by so many IMBA clubs


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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackies Pasture View Post
    My plan, as my IMBA renewal mail just showed up, is to pay the absolute minimum.

    Every year I have paid OVER the minimum, but this year I will be paying the extra dollars to STC, and make sure IMBA knows it and why.

    A related note to extra donations to anyone paying out extra $ beyond a minimum membership...

    Is that any $ you give to IMBA goes through the 60/40 split before your selected club/chapter (assuming you have one) sees any of that extra coin.

    So, if like me, you'd like to be an IMBA member and keep your extra money spent local, make sure you donate to your local club directly any moneys you spend beyond the minimum mebership dues....
    Every trails a flow trail ifya would just learn how to ride-stop dumbing down the planet

  88. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryanxj View Post
    A related note to extra donations to anyone paying out extra $ beyond a minimum membership...

    Is that any $ you give to IMBA goes through the 60/40 split before your selected club/chapter (assuming you have one) sees any of that extra coin.

    So, if like me, you'd like to be an IMBA member and keep your extra money spent local, make sure you donate to your local club directly any moneys you spend beyond the minimum mebership dues....
    Dead on. Support your local clubs directly.

    What is more interesting is that this rather mellow revolt against IMBA has been going on for years and they never respond. They are like clueless mid-level managers in the usual dumb company. In the biz world we consider this inept management. Of course this isn't only an IMBA issue.

    Tonight over a couple of bottles of wine I'm coaching my wife on how to take control in of an NYSE company's department. (She's at the division level.)

    Think about what I've posted on Our Trails Alliance | Take Control Of Our Trails. Are you ready for changing the game big time? While STC is working at the Congressional level we need to work at this from the state and local level. IMBA clearly isn't the answer to getting trails done. Great concept, dumb management. (IMBA management, please attack me.)

    Or we take over IMBA and turn it into the organization it should be.

    Jim
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  89. #189
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    While I'm less than impressed by how IMBA has handled the launch and growth of STC (they sound like the Sierra Club, IMHO), and being from NorCal I empathize with the difficulties in getting "wins" locally when you have 1 rep covering a massive amount of territory, but I still think there needs to be a national MTB advocacy organization a la Backcountry Horsemen and American Hiking Society looking out for MTB interests, even if it isn't pursuing the high hanging fruit. With that said, due to a phenomenally apathetic MTB community (30K members out of 8M riders?), what can we really expect from IMBA when it comes to addressing injustice related to the misinterpretations of the Wilderness Act? And keep this in mind:

    Memberships:
    Sierra Club: 2.5 million-ish
    The Wilderness Society: 500K-ish
    IMBA: 30K-ish (I've mistakenly thought we had 80K-ish... hopefully we didn't lose 50K!)
    Backcountry Horsemen of America: 13K-ish
    American Hiking Society: "over 7.5K" (via Wikipedia, since AHS won't publish their #'s anywhere)

    Oh, and IMBA may be perfectly happy with the dinero coming in from Subaru and a few big name industry partners... I read somewhere that "hikers drive Subaru's too".

    Sustainable Trail Coalition is still at it!-imbaelite.jpg


    And no... Bell, Shimano, Specialized, SRAM, and Trek have donated $0.00 to STC
    Last edited by Empty_Beer; 01-25-2016 at 02:26 PM.

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    Empty_Beer, dead on analysis. The issue is leadership and IMBA has none. As President Lincoln said of General McClellan, "he has the slows".

    As I've found in decades of leadership in civic advocacy (national and international accomplishments), and business (two industry leading companies), it is better to bury the existing organization and start over.

    Sorry, I'm a Silicon Valley techie and renewal is our thing.

    Jim
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  91. #191
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmpreston View Post

    Sorry, I'm a Silicon Valley techie and renewal is our thing.

    Jim
    I think your trail alliance initiative could be valuable after STC sunsets.

  92. #192
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    Empty-beer, STC is on a different track. We need both efforts now, and much more than IMBA offers.
    MTB blog for intermediates: http://intermediatemtb.com. Trail analysis videos, bike and component reviews, other stuff.

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    I have nothing invested in any of these organizations listed above, however I am familiar with 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) organizations and I see comparisons galore in this thread between various types of exempt organizations that are apples and oranges..... The Sierra Club, AARP and STC are examples of 501(c)(4) organizations and operate under legal rules less strict than 501(c)(3) organizations. 501(c)(3)s are generally not allowed to lobby or politic at the risk of losing their (c)(3) tax exemption along with donors ability to deduct to deduct their donations. 501(C)(4)s can lobby however "donations" to a 501(c)(4) are not an allowable charitable tax deduction. Its my understanding that IMBA is a 501(C)(3) "educational" organization and that STC is a 501(C)(4). The IMBA is limited in its ability to lobby unlike the STC, AARP, The Sierra Club etc.

    I had started to write a long explanation of how the Sierra Club (c)(4) and Sierra Club Foundation (c)(3) operate, however its to much info. suffice to say your donations to the sierra club foundation (c)(3) are tax deductible while donations to the Sierra Club (c)(4) are generally not deductible. Not many people are aware of the fact these are two separate legal entities.

  94. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by huntermos View Post
    I've spent a lot of time in that "epic terrain" on foot, sometimes on horseback, and in the late 80's on my bike, and most of it would only be "ridable" to Hans Rey, Danny Macaskill, and other members of the 0.001% of mountain bikers with that level of skill, unless your idea of biking is hiking 1/2 mile for every 100 feet of trail that you can actually ride...
    Bollocks. Miles and miles of great ridable trails and roads.

    Quote Originally Posted by huntermos View Post
    Of course, much of that terrain is also extremely fragile, high alpine terrain: woefully thin soils and root systems among a matrix of frost heave rocks and dirt that only take a touch to erode;
    Bikes would not damage it any more than hiking, and ten times less than horses that you rode there.

    Quote Originally Posted by huntermos View Post
    educating on the factual reasons and reasoning behind the bike ban (it's not a conspiracy by environmentalist BTW), and why it was misguided?
    There are no factual reasons behind the ban, and it is a conspiracy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmpreston View Post

    This is NOT MTBer in-fighting. This is valid criticism by a long time member. ROMP, a now defunct local club of which I was once a member, was one of the IMBA founders.

    We need to move on to more dynamic groups. We can maintain the IMBA trail crews without the overhead of the rest of the organization.
    ROMP is not defunct, just renamed and is now SVMTB. Groups are only as dynamic as their members.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyFromNovato View Post
    I have nothing invested in any of these organizations listed above, however I am familiar with 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) organizations and I see comparisons galore in this thread between various types of exempt organizations that are apples and oranges..... The Sierra Club, AARP and STC are examples of 501(c)(4) organizations and operate under legal rules less strict than 501(c)(3) organizations. 501(c)(3)s are generally not allowed to lobby or politic at the risk of losing their (c)(3) tax exemption along with donors ability to deduct to deduct their donations. 501(C)(4)s can lobby however "donations" to a 501(c)(4) are not an allowable charitable tax deduction. Its my understanding that IMBA is a 501(C)(3) "educational" organization and that STC is a 501(C)(4). The IMBA is limited in its ability to lobby unlike the STC, AARP, The Sierra Club etc.

    I had started to write a long explanation of how the Sierra Club (c)(4) and Sierra Club Foundation (c)(3) operate, however its to much info. suffice to say your donations to the sierra club foundation (c)(3) are tax deductible while donations to the Sierra Club (c)(4) are generally not deductible. Not many people are aware of the fact these are two separate legal entities.
    The history of how the Sierra Club lost their tax exempt status is very interesting. They took out major newspaper ads trying to block dams on the Grand Canyon in the 1930s. The Sierra Club foundation was started after the Sierra Club lost their tax exempt status, due to the action against the governments dam building. Reading up on this history was pretty cool. Learning that the Sierra Club wasn't always a HOHA's organization that literally does nothing while the world melts and rejoices in keeping children out of wild places was certainly refreshing.

  97. #197
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    More good news!

    Singletrack Magazine | USA: John Bliss joins STC Board, Attacks IMBA

    With some limited criticism coming from the IMBA it is really great that John is joining the effort. I think that it puts a much different perspective on the negativity coming from the IMBA. His letter is very interesting and enlightening, if you were wondering why things are going so poorly for off road cycling advocacy lately.

  98. #198
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey Simon View Post
    The history of how the Sierra Club lost their tax exempt status is very interesting. They took out major newspaper ads trying to block dams on the Grand Canyon in the 1930s. The Sierra Club foundation was started after the Sierra Club lost their tax exempt status, due to the action against the governments dam building. Reading up on this history was pretty cool. Learning that the Sierra Club wasn't always a HOHA's organization that literally does nothing while the world melts and rejoices in keeping children out of wild places was certainly refreshing.
    My post was incorrect. The dam project/protests/newspaper ads that led to the SC losing their tax exempt status was during the 1960s. Thanks GuyFromNovato. Beers on me at the Brustop sometime!

  99. #199
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    Revolutionary change is needed...

    "You say 'together we can make a difference' but then insinuate a membership boycott?"

    "The issue is leadership and IMBA has none. As President Lincoln said of General McClellan, "he has the slows"."

    If IMBA is the tail and the members are the dog who is wagging whom? It's time to be heard with direct action.

    Thirty years or so ago, I was a member of the Sierra Club. I became disillusioned with the enormous bloat (Fatness, if you will) of the organization and eventually resigned as an active member. It feels to me IMBA is taking on a similar persona. There lies something below the surface that is not at all right. Something is beginning to smell. Time for IMBA to take a serious look at what they have become and who do they truly represent.


    As Jim said above:

    "As I've found in decades of leadership in civic advocacy (national and international accomplishments), and business (two industry leading companies), it is better to bury the existing organization and start over."

    Instead of renewing my IMBA membership, I will donate some money to be earmarked to an IMBA grass root endeavor. A note will accompany my check stating my wishes regarding their full support for STC and where the future of biking needs to go. When they decide to throw their weight in with STC, I will then renew my membership.

    In the meantime, I am doing what it takes to keep our trails open, support our newly organized NOR-CAL cycling team, increase our membership role in the Mendocino Coast Cyclists and continue promoting Mendocino Coastal cycling to economically benefit our local depressed communities. Thanks to the greater Bay area bike riders we are seeing changes happen as they discover our phenomenal trail system.

    Change is good...

  100. #200
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    In the Spirit of Wilderness...

    Sustainable Trail Coalition is still at it!-frankchurch.jpg

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