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  1. #1
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    Speed Limit: 15mph ?

    Nowhere on the trail signs does it state a speed limit but I was kindly informed that 15mph is the maximum limit. Yeah I was booking it and exceeding that by a good amount but I had a clear view of the trail and no one was in sight. Yet I reach the bottom and an official informs me that I could be cited yet they couldn't say how fast I was going. Can he really do that?

    FWIW I never pass people at anything greater than 6mph. Mostly because they are inattentive and even if you call out to them they get startled and jump all around like a chicken with their head cut off.

    This particular district seems anti biker for a number of reasons. I may very well give up riding here as a result. I guess besides my rant I'm wondering if they can cite me for being in excess of the limit without noting the speed I was actually traveling (26mph according to my garmin).

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by KidConejo View Post
    Nowhere on the trail signs does it state a speed limit but I was kindly informed that 15mph is the maximum limit. Yeah I was booking it and exceeding that by a good amount but I had a clear view of the trail and no one was in sight. Yet I reach the bottom and an official informs me that I could be cited yet they couldn't say how fast I was going. Can he really do that?

    FWIW I never pass people at anything greater than 6mph. Mostly because they are inattentive and even if you call out to them they get startled and jump all around like a chicken with their head cut off.

    This particular district seems anti biker for a number of reasons. I may very well give up riding here as a result. I guess besides my rant I'm wondering if they can cite me for being in excess of the limit without noting the speed I was actually traveling (26mph according to my garmin).
    where is this? yes multi use trails do have a 15mph limit in theory. good that you play it cautious around hikers- it only takes a few complaints to get trails closed. however no one can site you without an actual speed gun and i believe they would have to tell you its being used like in Marin. There are many trails in the Santa monicas where i rarely see anyone but you have to choose your routes carefully on the weekends.

  3. #3
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    They've been using radar guns in Sycamore Cyn., Ventura County for at least 20 years. ****ers!!

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    Where was this? What kind of "official", Ranger, Police Officer??

    I once had a Police Officer who was riding a dirt bike in Calavera mention the 15mph speed limit to me.... I was sorta astounded he was riding a dirt bike in a nature preserve where Dirt Bikes are not allowed... but whatever.
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  5. #5
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    Most OC County Parks have a 10 MPH speed limit. It is clearly stated on all the Kiosk Boards through out the park.

    It is also listed on each park website under information.
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  6. #6
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    Has anyone here actually been cited for a speed violation on a trail?

    Typically you can go to the website of whatever agency that overseas the area and find their ruleset. Kiosk boards/signage on a majority of trails in certain counties have no mention of speed limit but it still exists.

    Furthermore they seem to adopt a vague language of maintaining a "reasonably safe speed". This means they can cite you should they deem it unsafe even if you are below any maximum speed limit. While I've never been cited on any trail I have received such a citation on public roads even though I was traveling under the posted speed limit. The officer decided that it was an unsafe speed given conditions. No inclement weather or road obstructions but the judge arbitrarily decided that the officer's judgement superseded mine even though he would not elaborate on what conditions made my speed unsafe except for it being night time.

  7. #7
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    At 10 mph might as well not even ride a bike anymore. How can there be such restrictive speed limits out in nature on trails? Most the trails I ride hardly have any people and yet Im sure some dick officer would try to give me a ticket. Soon paved roads with speed limits, speed bumps and signs everywhere will be all we have left to ride... At least we can jump the speed bumps! (Until they put a No jumping speed bumps! sign.)

  8. #8
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    Not sure I've noticed any speed limit signs on LA or Ventura county trails. I don't think I've seen any signs on the bike path here in Valencia either.

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    The trail speed limit in Los Angeles County (not sure about other counties, though) unless posted otherwise (less) is 15mph. It's been the law all along and everyone is expected to know this.

    I was once informed by an "official", aka, a Park Ranger.

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    Hard to obey speed limits when you don't have a speedometer...


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by unaware View Post
    Has anyone here actually been cited for a speed violation on a trail?
    I just kept going, both times. I had 9 miles of slight DH in front of me, so I said **** it. However, if there are hikers or horses around, I ride respectfully.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Cycle Shawn View Post
    I just kept going, both times. I had 9 miles of slight DH in front of me, so I said **** it. However, if there are hikers or horses around, I ride respectfully.
    Sure it's all fun and games until one of them gets your license plate. You do have a license plate on your bicycle don't you?

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    Quote Originally Posted by EatsDirt View Post
    Hard to obey speed limits when you don't have a speedometer...

    An experienced cyclist like yourself knows EXACTLY what it feels like to move at 14.5mph. Any amount you push it beyond 15 mph is all on pure personal willpower.

    Perhaps the US Govt will pass a law that requires all bikes to have a speed governor. You guys would love that, huh?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIRTJUNKIE View Post
    Sure it's all fun and games until one of them gets your license plate. You do have a license plate on your bicycle don't you?

    Yes, I do! It hangs below my reflector and it says EATSHIT. And, that is no way directed towards you. I like DJ!

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    I don't think my average speed has ever exceeded 15 MPH.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by outside! View Post
    I don't think my average speed has ever exceeded 15 MPH.
    I'm pretty sure the Rangers don't care about your average speed. However, I care. I'm a very caring individual. If you need to talk about it, feel free to PM me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by outside! View Post
    I don't think my average speed has ever exceeded 15 MPH.
    Averages have nothing to do with riding over a posted speedlimit for even a few seconds.... That is what is wrong with Speed limits, they are an arbitrary number thought up by some lawmaker who has never rider a bike before....

    If everyone would just be nice to other trail users there would be no need for stupid laws like this. But unfortunately one or two self centered people will always do something to irk others, whether that be a bike rider blasting by a pedestrian, a group of pedestrians walking abreast and blocking the entire trail, a hiker/running wearing two earbuds and not moving for you as you come up behind them because they can't hear anything but the music they are listening too, an equestrian rider allowing their horse to dump huge loads that fill up all the usable track on a single track, and not cleaning it up, Morons with dogs off-leash.......

    If everyone followed the Golden Rule this would not be an issue, but this society tends to be very self centered, me-first type attitudes and that causes conflict.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Averages have nothing to do with riding over a posted speedlimit for even a few seconds.... That is what is wrong with Speed limits, they are an arbitrary number thought up by some lawmaker who has never rider a bike before....

    If everyone would just be nice to other trail users there would be no need for stupid laws like this. But unfortunately one or two self centered people will always do something to irk others, whether that be a bike rider blasting by a pedestrian, a group of pedestrians walking abreast and blocking the entire trail, a hiker/running wearing two earbuds and not moving for you as you come up behind them because they can't hear anything but the music they are listening too, an equestrian rider allowing their horse to dump huge loads that fill up all the usable track on a single track, and not cleaning it up, Morons with dogs off-leash.......

    If everyone followed the Golden Rule this would not be an issue, but this society tends to be very self centered, me-first type attitudes and that causes conflict.
    100% in agreement on all of that ^^.
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  19. #19
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    If you ever come up to Norcal, the Midpeninsula Open Space parks (including Skeggs), occasionally enforce a 15 mph limit. They use radar guns! Most people get off with a warning, but they will give you a ticket (especially if you give them lip), and it ain´t cheap.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Averages have nothing to do with riding over a posted speedlimit for even a few seconds.... That is what is wrong with Speed limits, they are an arbitrary number thought up by some lawmaker who has never rider a bike before....

    If everyone would just be nice to other trail users there would be no need for stupid laws like this. But unfortunately one or two self centered people will always do something to irk others, whether that be a bike rider blasting by a pedestrian, a group of pedestrians walking abreast and blocking the entire trail, a hiker/running wearing two earbuds and not moving for you as you come up behind them because they can't hear anything but the music they are listening too, an equestrian rider allowing their horse to dump huge loads that fill up all the usable track on a single track, and not cleaning it up, Morons with dogs off-leash.......

    If everyone followed the Golden Rule this would not be an issue, but this society tends to be very self centered, me-first type attitudes and that causes conflict.
    Now, if everyone followed the golden rules, we wouldn't have rules, laws, cops, courts, jails, forest rangers and all that stuff. What would all those people do for work?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Cycle Shawn View Post
    Now, if everyone followed the golden rules, we wouldn't have rules, laws, cops, courts, jails, forest rangers and all that stuff. What would all those people do for work?
    Who cares what they would do for work, they should just get bike and ride!

  22. #22
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    I'd assume no ticket would stand in court with out some way of proof you where speeding. Still America right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by baja07 View Post
    I'd assume no ticket would stand in court with out some way of proof you where speeding. Still America right?
    WRONG. A peace officer can issue a citation simply stating that you were traveling at an "unsafe speed".

    But you could plead not guilty and have a trail date and HOPE TO GOD that the issuing officer doesn't show up on the trial date.

    Is it worth that much trouble?

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    depends on how much the ticket is

  25. #25
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    How long until there's a law about how much horseshit is acceptable on the trails??

    Sorry, i really despise most equestrians. they come off as rude, elitist nimbies.
    nothing witty here...

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2w4s View Post
    How long until there's a law about how much horseshit is acceptable on the trails??

    Sorry, i really despise most equestrians. they come off as rude, elitist nimbies.

    To say that most equestrians are "rude, elitist nimbies," is as ignorant as to say most mtbrs are rude a-holes that only care about themselves while out on the trail. Are there equestrians that are a-holes? Sure. Are there MTBR's that a-holes too? Yes.

    As for the 15 mph law just like about this: How do we come off when we run a hiker off a trail?

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2w4s View Post
    How long until there's a law about how much horseshit is acceptable on the trails??

    Sorry, i really despise most equestrians. they come off as rude, elitist nimbies.

    To say that most equestrians are "rude, elitist nimbies," is as ignorant as to say most MTBR's are rude a-holes that only care about themselves while out on the trail. Are there equestrians that are a-holes? Sure. Are there MTBR's that a-holes too? Yes.

    As for the 15 mph law just like about this: How do we come off when we run a hiker off a trail?

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    Quote Originally Posted by R38 View Post
    To say that most equestrians are "rude, elitist nimbies," is as ignorant as to say most MTBR's are rude a-holes that only care about themselves while out on the trail. Are there equestrians that are a-holes? Sure. Are there MTBR's that a-holes too? Yes.
    I'm not a horse rider but I know lots of horse people since my area is adjacent to horse properties.

    I have encountered far more disrespectful mountain bikers over the years than I have equestrian riders.

    But I can say with confidence that I have seen less idiot, disrespectful mountain bikers in the past year or so. I think the mtn biking community is starting to wake up. Starting to see we must be considerate to all others who we encounter.

    I never hear anyone shouting "STRAVA!!!" anymore.

    98% of the time, a downhill rider who is fast approaching either stops to let me continue my climb or makes room for each of us to continue, as do I. It was worse in recent history.

  29. #29
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    I live in an equestrian area and there's a lot of fatties on those poor ponies!

    I think the "STRAVA!" yelling is a bit of a myth, never once heard anyone tell that and I've ridden around plenty of racer types on OC trails.
    Quote Originally Posted by DIRTJUNKIE View Post
    Is this where we argue for the rest of the thread?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trevor Ochmonek View Post
    I live in an equestrian area and there's a lot of fatties on those poor ponies!

    I think the "STRAVA!" yelling is a bit of a myth, never once heard anyone tell that and I've ridden around plenty of racer types on OC trails.
    I have heard it yelled my way twice over the years (way back when STRAVA first became popular) and I have seen it shouted in at least one video. Whether the rider yelling it the video was trying to be funny or not, it's disturbing and rude, nonetheless.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Where was this? What kind of "official", Ranger, Police Officer??

    I once had a Police Officer who was riding a dirt bike in Calavera mention the 15mph speed limit to me.... I was sorta astounded he was riding a dirt bike in a nature preserve where Dirt Bikes are not allowed... but whatever.
    He he mention the infamous pole-leese motto , "Do what I say, not as I do"?
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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post

    I never hear anyone shouting "STRAVA!!!" anymore.
    thats too bad, I enjoy hearing that and quickly get weed wacker nylon string and post it across the trail so I can hear them yell "YAAVAH!" as they STRAVA
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    There must be a rumor going around about speed traps down in Big Sycamore Canyon (Santa Monica Mtns). Everyone was watching their back, being careful not to exceed the posted 15mph speed limit. Maybe this thread has everyone on edge??

  34. #34
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    Lol...where would the rangers be posted? On the side of the BB?

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Lol...where would the rangers be posted? On the side of the BB?
    At the bridge at the bottom of the steep paved hill.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Lol...where would the rangers be posted? On the side of the BB?
    Yes, like MCS says, at the bottom of the Black B!tch near the bridge.

    Also, in full camo attire (bushes attached to the helmet) hidden about the trail systems there.

    I will openly admit that I more than doubled the speed limit during my trek through there and no hikers were killed.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post

    I will openly admit that I more than doubled the speed limit during my trek through there and no hikers were killed.
    Hawgster, you're naughty!

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by fatcat View Post
    thats too bad, I enjoy hearing that and quickly get weed wacker nylon string and post it across the trail so I can hear them yell "YAAVAH!" as they STRAVA
    While you probably think you're clever, in reality that's beyond stupid and malicious.

    You are the epitome of an asshat.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by fatcat View Post
    thats too bad, I enjoy hearing that and quickly get weed wacker nylon string and post it across the trail so I can hear them yell "YAAVAH!" as they STRAVA
    lol, what a douchebag even if you meant it in jest.
    nothing witty here...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy Dunlop01 View Post
    depends on how much the ticket is
    With court fees it will be in excess of $300 at least according to the ranger I spoke with.


    So in addition to the speed limit there does appear to be wording that says you have to keep a reasonable or safe speed and that is based on the judgement of whatever official decides to cite you. You could ride past someone else at 5mph and they can deem that an unsafe speed. One particular Ranger said that proper etiquette requires you to dismount and walk your bike past slower traffic if they are headed in the same direction as you. If they are headed in the opposite direction you are supposed to some to a complete stop and let them pass you. This is all very arbitrary and stupid.


    Quote Originally Posted by 2w4s View Post
    How long until there's a law about how much horseshit is acceptable on the trails??

    Sorry, i really despise most equestrians. they come off as rude, elitist nimbies.
    The majority of equestrian riders I encounter on the trails here are like that. Then again these trails are single track and on the side of a hill so the other side is 100 foot drop. Combine that with their skittish horse and they really have no business being on these type of trails. There are a number of equestrian parks and trails around here so they should stick to those. But being the self entitled buttholes some of them are they feel the need to ride wherever they possibly can even if it poses significant risk to everyone on the trail. I guess the same could be said for MTBers too though

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by KidConejo View Post
    So in addition to the speed limit there does appear to be wording that says you have to keep a reasonable or safe speed and that is based on the judgement of whatever official decides to cite you. You could ride past someone else at 5mph and they can deem that an unsafe speed. One particular Ranger said that proper etiquette requires you to dismount and walk your bike past slower traffic if they are headed in the same direction as you. If they are headed in the opposite direction you are supposed to some to a complete stop and let them pass you. This is all very arbitrary and stupid.

    I would love for a ranger or police officer to demonstrate on earth that is supposed to work, dismount and walk past someone going in the SAME direction? Whomever comes up with this has ZERO common sense.

    Simply ring your bike bell and watch the Pedestrians move aside so you can safely pass on your bike....

    /facepalm
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    I would love for a ranger or police officer to demonstrate on earth that is supposed to work, dismount and walk past someone going in the SAME direction? Whomever comes up with this has ZERO common sense.


    Simply ring your bike bell and watch the Pedestrians move aside so you can safely pass on your bike....

    /facepalm
    Can you recommend a particular bike bell? I had a couple cheap Chinese ones but they aren't loud enough from a distance of say 20ft.

    But the real problem is people just don't pay attention. Anyone by them self typically has headphones in or is gabbing away on the phone so they are oblivious to their surroundings. People in groups are talking to each other in addition to also completely blocking the path. On the rare occasion there's a singular person who isn't distracted they seem confused by the sound. Maybe I ring it too far away but they seem to faintly hear it and stare skywards wondering what that sound is. It's not until I'm 10ft from them that they bother looking around and then freak out at the sight of me and decide to jump right in front of me for whatever reason. I think part of the problem is the ringing sound kinda echos so you can't locate where it's coming from.

    I did have a cheap Chinese electric horn and that worked pretty well. People could hear it from 30ft away or more. And more importantly they could locate where it was coming from so they would stand on the edge of the path and let you pass. But I also found most people don't like being honked at so they typically had a dirty look on their face, particularly older people. Also the sound was loud enough that it would startle some people and that's not good. It also broke being cheap plastic.

    But yeah, the logic some of the rangers employ is quite baffling.

  43. #43
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    I am currently in the market for a new bell, my last one was just a cheap "ring ring" bell. Similar to this:



    But I think my next one will be a bear bell with a magnet so I can have it ringing only when I need it to be. The bear bells are good because they make sound for a while leading up the pass.

    But really the "Ring Ring" created a magical parting of the peoples when I rang it on approach.
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    I've also found that the "ring ring" sound seems harder for people to locate which direction it is coming from. Sadly, shouting is the most effective even if the person does not understand what you said. They recognize it as language and thus someone is approaching so get out of the way. Other sounds just confound them. First they wonder if they actually heard it, then they wonder where the sound is coming from, and lastly once they locate it they wonder what they should do.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by unaware View Post
    I've also found that the "ring ring" sound seems harder for people to locate which direction it is coming from. Sadly, shouting is the most effective even if the person does not understand what you said. They recognize it as language and thus someone is approaching so get out of the way. Other sounds just confound them. First they wonder if they actually heard it, then they wonder where the sound is coming from, and lastly once they locate it they wonder what they should do.
    Really? That is very interesting as I have had the exact opposite experience myself, Shouting works about 50% of the time whereas the "Ring Ring" works 100% of the time. Are your trails heavily wooded? I can only imagine it has to do with how the sound is traveling in your area. Here in SoCal most of the trails just have low lying scrub around them, so unless there is high wind, sound is very easy to identify directionally because nothing is blocking or bouncing it around.
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    Hope this don't happen around here,

    http://www.tetongravity.com/story/ge...alifornia-park

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Hope this don't happen around here,

    http://www.tetongravity.com/story/ge...alifornia-park
    They probably hit those speeds only because they were recording it on STRAVA. And someone will almost certainly poach the now closed trail and post it up on STRAVA. They should have just banned STRAVA from the park. Problem solved regardless.

    Also, could someone create some stock photos for mountain biking that show old people on mountain bikes riding slowly and with great trepidation? If you are a badass, please don't let anyone take pictures of you in action. Thanks much.

  48. #48
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    Get one of those authentic sleigh bells. They're loud as hell, but curiously pleasant-sounding.

    Being quite heavy, they can be re-purposed as a defensive weapon, wrapped in a sock or maybe an Awesome Strap, for use against charging bears or stravaholes.
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  49. #49
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    As far as bells go the best one I've found is made by a local guy in Newbury Park. CWB Designs is the name of his little business an the web page is awareness bell dot com. The ringer is on a spring that latches on to the rim of the bell to turn it off. I have one of the bear bells with the magnet and that thing is so quiet compared to the awareness bell people wouldn't even hear it sometimes.
    I also have an Incredibell on my bars that is just a loud dinger that i use for climbing to warn hikers I'm coming up behind.

  50. #50
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    I don't necessarily want to be the one to do it but I'm pretty certain trail speeds could be challenged. Remember, roads have to be surveyed and studied every 5 years and lawfully warranted to set a specific speed limit. Also, the radar changes the game in some respect, but a Peace Officer must be trained at judging speeds in all circumstances to become an "expert witness" allowing them to determine your speed was unsafe. Are these Rangers getting certified in this training? Are trail speeds surveyed and warranted? I think someone could blow a lot of holes in a case like that and it's only going to take one challenge and a win for a rider to upset the apple cart with enforcement. It's going to cost agencies MONEY. I question whether the training even exists on that level but I could be wrong. I think the only strong case would be for radar use as long as a trained user is operating it. Even then, who determines the speed? What means were used to determine speeds. Lots of holes for a astute attorney to take apart, IMO.
    Always ride with a purpose.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    I don't necessarily want to be the one to do it but I'm pretty certain trail speeds could be challenged. Remember, roads have to be surveyed and studied every 5 years and lawfully warranted to set a specific speed limit. Also, the radar changes the game in some respect, but a Peace Officer must be trained at judging speeds in all circumstances to become an "expert witness" allowing them to determine your speed was unsafe. Are these Rangers getting certified in this training? Are trail speeds surveyed and warranted? I think someone could blow a lot of holes in a case like that and it's only going to take one challenge and a win for a rider to upset the apple cart with enforcement. It's going to cost agencies MONEY. I question whether the training even exists on that level but I could be wrong. I think the only strong case would be for radar use as long as a trained user is operating it. Even then, who determines the speed? What means were used to determine speeds. Lots of holes for a astute attorney to take apart, IMO.
    I think fighting the current trail speed limit laws would ultimately turn the powers that be against cyclist, simply for challenging their decisions.

    Even if we were to overturn the ratings of safe speed for trail use it would take years (as you mentioned earlier) of studying to determine new safe speeds if there is even a need to change them at all.

    How many of us have actually ever been cited? A fraction of one percent of all the cyclists out there. That's far less than those receiving speeding tickets on the freeway every day.

    I have heard more about warnings than actual citations. This is just one of those things where an accident happens and a speeding biker is involved. Then things heat up for a while, somebody may get nailed, but most will get warned. And then things calm down again.

    We just need to be responsible when we are out there with other trail users. It's common sense.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sesostris View Post
    As far as bells go the best one I've found is made by a local guy in Newbury Park. CWB Designs is the name of his little business an the web page is awareness bell dot com. The ringer is on a spring that latches on to the rim of the bell to turn it off. I have one of the bear bells with the magnet and that thing is so quiet compared to the awareness bell people wouldn't even hear it sometimes.
    I also have an Incredibell on my bars that is just a loud dinger that i use for climbing to warn hikers I'm coming up behind.
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  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post
    We just need to be responsible when we are out there with other trail users. It's common sense.

    ^^^This!!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post
    I think fighting the current trail speed limit laws would ultimately turn the powers that be against cyclist, simply for challenging their decisions.

    Even if we were to overturn the ratings of safe speed for trail use it would take years (as you mentioned earlier) of studying to determine new safe speeds if there is even a need to change them at all.

    How many of us have actually ever been cited? A fraction of one percent of all the cyclists out there. That's far less than those receiving speeding tickets on the freeway every day.

    I have heard more about warnings than actual citations. This is just one of those things where an accident happens and a speeding biker is involved. Then things heat up for a while, somebody may get nailed, but most will get warned. And then things calm down again.

    We just need to be responsible when we are out there with other trail users. It's common sense.
    Agreed.

    The Ranger I spoke with said that they have received numerous complaints about MTBers though. He admitted some of the hikers just don't like MTBers and want us prohibited from using the trails. I'm not sure how they'd go about doing this and if a citizen could submit a proposal but these complainers are apparently quite vocal. Maybe they will get wise and use Strava to document the illegal speeds and use that to ban us.

    I was told there's a particular singletrack which seems to create a lot of complaints. But being single track, vehicle access to it is limited and thus they aren't really inclined to patrol it. Ie. they are too lazy to do anything but sit in their jeeps and look for violations. But this laziness also means that they'll seek the easiest remedy to complaints and that would be banning MTBing. It doesn't help that we have Strava documenting speeds and also people are altering the trails with berms, dirt ramps, bypasses, etc. These illegal activities along with the vocal anti-MTBers will cause us to lose access.

  55. #55
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    I'm often amazed at the aversion so many riders have toward using bells on their trail networks without considering the long term benefits. Here in San Luis Obispo, we have a phenomenally effective bell program that is embraced by riders, hikers, and equestrians alike. Trail conflicts here are minimal at best. We're digging and opening new multi-use trail at what would be considered an alarming rate compared to most communities and we have lots more coming in the not-to-distant future. We're doing this literally arm in arm with all facets of trail users equally. CCCMB.org (Central Coast Concerned Mountain Bikers) is our local and long time (25+ years) trail organization and we run the Bell Program. ALL of our local trail networks in City Open Space and local State Park have "Bell Boxes" that we maintain for riders to grab a bell and hit the trail, return it when done, or keep it and go online and make a donation to the organization. Our bell program is all done by CCCMB but we have a strong local sponsorship that essentially covers the cost of bells. Local bike shops, riding clubs, equestrian clubs, etc donate and we have the bells made up with their logos on one side, CCCMB on the other.

    A key thing with bells, IMO, is they need to be heard and heard well prior to an encounter with other users. Push button commuter bells don't help so much depending on the user. A user will be just as startled by a rider if that rider makes no noise till they are in close proximity to the other user. Using the type of bells we use (Bevins Bells) has equestrians, (even the horses), and other users on alert knowing a rider is approaching long before a critical encounter. A typical encounter on our trails with a bell user is by the time the rider reaches the other user, say a hiker, the hiker in almost all encounters is already off the edge of the trail allowing safe passage. The other amazing thing that happens is also about 90% of the time, it's a smiling encounter most often met with a "Thanks for the Bell!" response coming from the non-rider. I see the same thing with equestrians. I just had an encounter last Sunday at MdO State Park where I was climbing and closing on 2 equestrians. They, and the horses, knew I was there hundreds of yards before our encounter and they were able to judge my proximity and then took the initiative to find a safe spot to step of trail, have their horses face my direction, and let me pass without even stopping. I asked if it was safe for the horses before doing so and they were all "Sure! Go for it!"I never missed a beat and PR'd my long climb.

    Seriously, if you all want to keep doing this sport on trails, you need to get onboard with something like this on your local level. It's proactive. It shows you actually give-a-shit about other people on the trail. It's nt going to stop every potential bad encounter since you can't control personalities and different levels of entitlement folk but I'm showing you a system that has HUGE beneficial long term impact on multi-use trails.

    I never take my bell off my bike so I murdered this one to match my carbon matte frame. I just throw a rare earth magnet inside which sticks to my LEV seat bolt when I'm riding.

    btw...you can get these online at Art's Cyclery. Throw one on your next order. They're $4 FOUR BUCKS!




    Always ride with a purpose.

  56. #56
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    I also noticed that in the various agency's regulations they restrict dog leashes to 6ft or under. So the 40% or so of people who actually keep their dog on leash about 90% of them violate the 6ft restriction. I ride with a video cam all the time and have a great footage of how 96% of the dog owners are violating trail regs and posing risk to others.

    I was considering editing a video and putting it on youtube documenting the problem. Might also have to bug the various park districts and aware them of this problem. I'm not sure what the fine is but it could be a good source of revenue for them. But will this short sighted? We really don't want more enforcement on trails do we? If bikers are primarily complaining about this could it backfire on us and they just limit our access?

    Things as they stand now are tolerable so perhaps it's best to just keep silent and enjoy it while it lasts. No point in fighting back and causing them more headaches? We don't want to push them actually do something especially when we stand to lose the most right?

  57. #57
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    Is that hill you want to die on? Even though there's a 6' leash requirement, is a longer leash actually creating a problem? Coming to the table with petty complaints about other trail users is just going to divide all the trail users and pit them against one another. I run my Lab on my local network and for his pleasure, use one of those recoil-type leashes that extends to 15'. I never let him roll in front of me on blind corners but I have never seen where this a problem whether on my bike riding the trail, or walking him.
    Always ride with a purpose.

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Really? That is very interesting as I have had the exact opposite experience myself, Shouting works about 50% of the time whereas the "Ring Ring" works 100% of the time. Are your trails heavily wooded? I can only imagine it has to do with how the sound is traveling in your area. Here in SoCal most of the trails just have low lying scrub around them, so unless there is high wind, sound is very easy to identify directionally because nothing is blocking or bouncing it around.
    I ride various trails but the open trails cause the most confusion. It seems to echo in the canyons and hills.



    Quote Originally Posted by KidConejo View Post
    I also noticed that in the various agency's regulations they restrict dog leashes to 6ft or under. So the 40% or so of people who actually keep their dog on leash about 90% of them violate the 6ft restriction. I ride with a video cam all the time and have a great footage of how 96% of the dog owners are violating trail regs and posing risk to others.

    I was considering editing a video and putting it on youtube documenting the problem. Might also have to bug the various park districts and aware them of this problem. I'm not sure what the fine is but it could be a good source of revenue for them. But will this short sighted? We really don't want more enforcement on trails do we? If bikers are primarily complaining about this could it backfire on us and they just limit our access?

    Things as they stand now are tolerable so perhaps it's best to just keep silent and enjoy it while it lasts. No point in fighting back and causing them more headaches? We don't want to push them actually do something especially when we stand to lose the most right?
    It's likely best to just keep quite. However there are plenty of irresponsible trail users so take adequate measures to protect yourself from injury or lawsuit.

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    Is that hill you want to die on? Even though there's a 6' leash requirement, is a longer leash actually creating a problem? Coming to the table with petty complaints about other trail users is just going to divide all the trail users and pit them against one another. I run my Lab on my local network and for his pleasure, use one of those recoil-type leashes that extends to 15'. I never let him roll in front of me on blind corners but I have never seen where this a problem whether on my bike riding the trail, or walking him.
    The leash thing is an issue. People let their dogs wander and often around blind corners. These 15-25 ft leashes should not be used. The biggest problem is that even if I see the dog and owner ahead of time the owner cannot reel the dog in so comes into my path and some are aggressive and want to bite the tires. And as soon as I pass by they'll want to chase perhaps by instinct.

    Simi and TO both have dog parks so if owners want to let their dogs roam around they should take them there and not on to the trails. Maybe if enough of these unrestrained dogs get bitten by a rattlesnake then owners will learn. But it sucks that the dog would have to suffer for the owners negligence.

    I do like your bell box initiative but I have a feeling that it would be pilfered within the first week if done out here. So many of the trail signs and boards here are defaced in some manner. I'm surprised how many actually have bullet holes in them. And the wooden ones people feel compelled to etch their name or initials into.

    I also like how your land agency is open to trail building. Again here they would need to commission an environmental impact study and have slew of engineers design it likely costing millions which they won't spend. Never could the average citizen/layman be allowed to construct a trail.

    I should just move to an accepting community and not try to wage any futile war. Maybe Cal Poly would be better than attending UCLA .

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    I'm often amazed at the aversion so many riders have toward using bells on their trail networks without considering the long term benefits. Here in San Luis Obispo, we have a phenomenally effective bell program that is embraced by riders, hikers, and equestrians alike. Trail conflicts here are minimal at best. We're digging and opening new multi-use trail at what would be considered an alarming rate compared to most communities and we have lots more coming in the not-to-distant future. We're doing this literally arm in arm with all facets of trail users equally. CCCMB.org (Central Coast Concerned Mountain Bikers) is our local and long time (25+ years) trail organization and we run the Bell Program. ALL of our local trail networks in City Open Space and local State Park have "Bell Boxes" that we maintain for riders to grab a bell and hit the trail, return it when done, or keep it and go online and make a donation to the organization. Our bell program is all done by CCCMB but we have a strong local sponsorship that essentially covers the cost of bells. Local bike shops, riding clubs, equestrian clubs, etc donate and we have the bells made up with their logos on one side, CCCMB on the other.

    A key thing with bells, IMO, is they need to be heard and heard well prior to an encounter with other users. Push button commuter bells don't help so much depending on the user. A user will be just as startled by a rider if that rider makes no noise till they are in close proximity to the other user. Using the type of bells we use (Bevins Bells) has equestrians, (even the horses), and other users on alert knowing a rider is approaching long before a critical encounter. A typical encounter on our trails with a bell user is by the time the rider reaches the other user, say a hiker, the hiker in almost all encounters is already off the edge of the trail allowing safe passage. The other amazing thing that happens is also about 90% of the time, it's a smiling encounter most often met with a "Thanks for the Bell!" response coming from the non-rider. I see the same thing with equestrians. I just had an encounter last Sunday at MdO State Park where I was climbing and closing on 2 equestrians. They, and the horses, knew I was there hundreds of yards before our encounter and they were able to judge my proximity and then took the initiative to find a safe spot to step of trail, have their horses face my direction, and let me pass without even stopping. I asked if it was safe for the horses before doing so and they were all "Sure! Go for it!"I never missed a beat and PR'd my long climb.

    Seriously, if you all want to keep doing this sport on trails, you need to get onboard with something like this on your local level. It's proactive. It shows you actually give-a-shit about other people on the trail. It's nt going to stop every potential bad encounter since you can't control personalities and different levels of entitlement folk but I'm showing you a system that has HUGE beneficial long term impact on multi-use trails.

    I never take my bell off my bike so I murdered this one to match my carbon matte frame. I just throw a rare earth magnet inside which sticks to my LEV seat bolt when I'm riding.

    btw...you can get these online at Art's Cyclery. Throw one on your next order. They're $4 FOUR BUCKS!




    While these are effective (since the sound is almost continuous), they drive me absolutely insane. I have high volume, sensitive hearing so I can hear a mouse fart from across a field. I tried one of these dangling bells a few months back and it drove me nuts. I threw it away. It's just not for me.

    I do have handle bar bells on my mountain bikes which I do use, though.

    I hope this doesn't mean that I cannot ride your trails. I feel that I am a part of SLO Town history being that I had been visiting the area regularly since the 1970s and that I lived there for a short spell in the late 80s. It doesn't bother me to hear a passing rider who is using your type of bell but it would drive me nuts if I was in a group with riders who were using these.

    Please understand that I am in no way trying to undermine the working system you have up there. Perhaps that is what it's going to take? Maybe I could wear ear plugs? I am extremely aware of things around me at all times so not hearing well wouldn't be deficient in my case.

  61. #61
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    My GF has one of those bells where you can "turn off". With the bell constantly ringing...it drove both of us nuts...mostly her though. Its insane loud. Its pretty much stays off now...the noise that bell makes is off the wall.

    I have a Bear Bell (I think thats what its called) strapped to my pack.

    The thing regarding hikers is that if they are zoned out. They are zoned out and are not paying attention no matter how loud my bell may be. I frequent dirt Mulholland and there are tons of hikers and dog walkers. Lots of them are just walking with headphones on and staring at their phone. Only way to get their attention is to tap on their shoulder. There was a girl hiking up the middle of the trail when I was coming down. She had her headphones on and staring at her phone. I pretty much had to come to a full stop...and at a full stop...she just about walked into me.

    I scared the crap out of some zoned dude on the lower section. I was traveling in the opposite direction on the opposite side of the fire road (wide enough for two cars side by side). When I rode by he flailed his arms like someone sneaked up behind him and kicked him in the ass. The dude had his headphones on and was staring at his phone.

  62. #62
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    ^ Yes, my dangling bell had an attached magnet to turn it off but the last thing I want to do is to feel the need to turn it on or off.

    My handle bar manual ringer gets the job done.

    And about dog leashes, LOL,... I am going to say that an honest 90%+ of the dog owners in my community take their dog off the leash the moment the road turns to dirt, even as they pass the sign that states "Dogs must be on leash". I have stopped on purpose a few times when I happened upon dog owners who had their dog(s) off the leash and asked them to put it/them on the leash. Only once did a guy refuse.

  63. #63
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    I've come across plenty a zoned out head buried in their phone hiker. While I'll approach and pass them in a safe manner I do thoroughly enjoy scaring the crap out of them. Serves them right for not paying attention. If only they'd walk off the side of a cliff or step on a rattlesnake.

    And the 90%+ off leash seems accurate. I now carry pepper spray as a result. But I'm wondering if I should spray the dog or their owner.

  64. #64
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    I take the PSA approach with off-leashers. I don't even let them know I'm bothered by their uncontrolled pooch. Instead, I just say "Hey, fyi....it's now a $561 dollar fine for dogs off-leash and the Rangers aren't giving warnings!" You want to see fast action? And their always so thankful to the nice man on the mountain bike.

    btw...that IS our new fee structure and stance on City Open Space land thanks to some NIMBYS on the other side of town. We can no longer ride at night because of this group, too.
    Always ride with a purpose.

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    I take the PSA approach with off-leashers. I don't even let them know I'm bothered by their uncontrolled pooch. Instead, I just say "Hey, fyi....it's now a $561 dollar fine for dogs off-leash and the Rangers aren't giving warnings!" You want to see fast action? And their always so thankful to the nice man on the mountain bike.

    btw...that IS our new fee structure and stance on City Open Space land thanks to some NIMBYS on the other side of town. We can no longer ride at night because of this group, too.
    No night riding?! How can anyone tell you that you can't ride at night (unless you are passing through private property)?

  66. #66
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    Try this>>>> Mountain Bike Bells | TIMBER - Mountain Bike Bells by TIMBER

    Nice couple making a great start on their privately owned local company and.....They bust their butts doing trail work too
    "We'll ride it until they pave it."

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  67. #67
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    Yup. No night riding (very limited if any places left in my area atleast), No dogs off leashes, No letting go of your brakes on a down hill for some fun. This is where we are at. Strava times aside, does anyone remember when you were a kid and went to the top of a big hill just to ride down it as fast as you could, for fun??? If you cant go fast down a hill, on a bike, in a big open space, where theres hardly any people around... Tell me where can you ??? Do I have to buy my own land now to have fun? What are public spaces even for if not for recreation?

  68. #68
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    Mirrycle Incredibell Brass Duet

    Quote Originally Posted by KidConejo View Post
    Can you recommend a particular bike bell? I had a couple cheap Chinese ones but they aren't loud enough from a distance of say 20ft.

    But the real problem is people just don't pay attention. Anyone by them self typically has headphones in or is gabbing away on the phone so they are oblivious to their surroundings. People in groups are talking to each other in addition to also completely blocking the path. On the rare occasion there's a singular person who isn't distracted they seem confused by the sound. Maybe I ring it too far away but they seem to faintly hear it and stare skywards wondering what that sound is. It's not until I'm 10ft from them that they bother looking around and then freak out at the sight of me and decide to jump right in front of me for whatever reason. I think part of the problem is the ringing sound kinda echos so you can't locate where it's coming from.

    I did have a cheap Chinese electric horn and that worked pretty well. People could hear it from 30ft away or more. And more importantly they could locate where it was coming from so they would stand on the edge of the path and let you pass. But I also found most people don't like being honked at so they typically had a dirty look on their face, particularly older people. Also the sound was loud enough that it would startle some people and that's not good. It also broke being cheap plastic.

    But yeah, the logic some of the rangers employ is quite baffling.
    I use the Mirrycle Incredibell Brass Duet. It has a nice sound you can only get from a brass bell, doesn't sound obnoxious, and may be easier for the listener to locate. I haven't run into many surprised hikers since I started using it 8 yrs ago. If I'm going 15 mph +, I use it on blind corners, and when I first spot a hiker. If you do it far away enough, it doesn't seem like you're barking orders on the trail.

    You can vary, somewhat, how loud it will ring. The first chime is when the lever is depressed, and the second after it's released. That way, you could ring once on approach, and then a second time after passing, for acknowledgment.

  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by btsjeff View Post
    Yup. No night riding (very limited if any places left in my area atleast), No dogs off leashes, No letting go of your brakes on a down hill for some fun. This is where we are at. Strava times aside, does anyone remember when you were a kid and went to the top of a big hill just to ride down it as fast as you could, for fun??? If you cant go fast down a hill, on a bike, in a big open space, where theres hardly any people around... Tell me where can you ??? Do I have to buy my own land now to have fun? What are public spaces even for if not for recreation?
    Public spaces are for recreation, you just have to do it at a slow speed.


    Back when I was a kid we didn't even really have suspension so I doubt we even exceeded 15mph even though it felt like 30. Hey, perhaps that's the key. We need to ride full rigids so 15mph is exciting.

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrfat View Post
    Public spaces are for recreation, you just have to do it at a slow speed.
    Well it's actually illegal to ride bikes on Public Space trails in the area that I live. You are only allowed to ride on the roads with the Border Patrol trucks and off roaders. Not only that, but they made it difficult to access the public lands around Otay Mountains by creating a kind of barrier surrounding Otay Lakes road using different "Sensitive Habitat Zones", ecological reserves, and preserves. Now you cannot even pull over and park on Otay Lakes road and go hiking towards the mountains. There used to be several Trail heads heading out through old rancher lands where we went out and found small waterfalls and now its all closed off. There are some areas open around Pio Pico campground, but past that we get roads. I kind of wonder why the entire south east community isnt speaking out more about this, but I guess everyone is happy enough with their newest phones n shit..

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
    Is that hill you want to die on? Even though there's a 6' leash requirement, is a longer leash actually creating a problem? Coming to the table with petty complaints about other trail users is just going to divide all the trail users and pit them against one another. I run my Lab on my local network and for his pleasure, use one of those recoil-type leashes that extends to 15'. I never let him roll in front of me on blind corners but I have never seen where this a problem whether on my bike riding the trail, or walking him.
    i got bitten by on off leash german shepard on sully canyon a couple years ago, the owner was a raging lunatic, it was surreal. wish i had been wearing a gopro, i would have been internet famous and i'd be in living in british columbia right now instead of worrying about what it's going to sound like at cheseboro on a saturday morning when everybody has a brand new (and very nice, i'm going to buy one) timber bike bell.
    nothing witty here...

  72. #72
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    I second Dirtrider's endorsement of Timber Mountain Bike Bell.



    The clapper is easily and completely silenced by the slider switch. Added bonus it has a much better sound than the traditional bear bells. I made the switch early this year and it works wonders.

    Besides, as stated before, the Lacys are avid contributor to trail work. They were out there, side by side swinging picks and shovels with us this past build season as we added another 2.5 miles of new trail to Black Mountain is San Diego.

    Yep, this is a RINGING endorsement for Timber Mountain Bike Bells
    Apathy will get you exactly what you deserve

  73. #73
    One ring to mash them all
    Reputation: the one ring's Avatar
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    ¯\(°_o)/¯

  74. #74
    Binned
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    Good, get rid of strava all together.

  75. #75
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    I also have a timber bell. You can get one with the sweet MWBA logo for $20. The bell is extremely important to maintaining our access and coexistence with other users. I pressure everyone I ride with to use one. The faster you go the more important it is and bear bells are not loud enough if you are going fast.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by bankerboy View Post
    The clapper is easily and completely silenced by the slider switch. Added bonus it has a much better sound than the traditional bear bells. I made the switch early this year and it works wonders.
    I agree, these bells are great! I also started using one earlier this year and it sounds so much better than any other bell, plus it is easy to turn on and off. It really has made a difference for warning hikers and equestrians. I used to use a bell only for particular downhills, but now I can turn this bell on some distance from hikers, even on the flats, and it really helps them hear me coming.

  77. #77
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    I use a handlebar bell also, and I use it a lot. People like
    it much better than when I use to yell "on your left".

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