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  1. #1
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  2. #2
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    Ok, I'm a little confused. I don't have my map with me at work. Are these potential areas part of the NF now, and are being considered for Wilderness designation?

    Wilderness=Bad, right?

  3. #3
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    Wilderness Expansion

    NOOOOO!!!!!!! Not to be alarmist, but...it looks like major threat to prime Pisgah riding: Laurel Mtn, Fish hatchery, Turkey Pen. What else is there? Seriously, wtf!

    Y, Wilderness = bad, unless you're a hiker, ONLY a hiker.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by swoodbrn View Post


    like major threat to prime Pisgah riding: Laurel Mtn, Fish hatchery, Turkey Pen.
    I don't think so, but maybe I am looking at the map wrong. Looks south east of Laurel and south of Fish hatchery.

    i guess part of Laurel could be in that section.

  5. #5
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    That's pretty much all of Turkey Pen area all the way over to Black Mtn. 5682 takes out Big Creek, Laurel and Pilot Cove. 5651 looks like Butter Gap / Long Branch.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by swoodbrn View Post
    NOOOOO!!!!!!! Not to be alarmist, but..
    Ok, then don't be alarmist. This has a snowball's chance. Remember, the Forest Service wants these areas not to be wilderness as much as we do (so they can log them).

    This is like me drawing a map of potential additions to my house...it just ain't gonna happen.

    ...but to be sure, make sure you participate in the Forest Plan Revision process. I think we *do* need more wilderness acreage in the region, but obviously these aren't the places to do it.

  7. #7
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    Click on "process paper" at the link below for a copy of how these lines were drawn.

    National Forests in North Carolina - Home

    From this, it does appear that mtbwnc is correct that the presented map is very very early in the so-called process.

    The same google search, however, yields the following:

    Western North Carolina | Wilderness.org

    So, yeah, some of the mtb community's input into is going to be needed. I have no idea how, when, or where that's going to happen formally, but if I find out, I will post it here.

    Thanks for posting this Park.

  8. #8
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    I read both of Mike's links - the FS one for a while. It was "Wilderness Scary" to read.

    Despite my call-sign, I am not living in NC right now. But I have lived through a wilderness expansion in WV, and it was bad. Some personal suggestions (by no means gospel and maybe a bit extreme):

    I would first get verbal verification of exactly what areas are being considered (even though the slide show gave some suggestions). Call the Ranger District office. Then make a determination if the areas being studies are worth the fight. Maybe all areas are worth a fight or only some areas. If the FS says "yea, but don't worry about it, it won't happen," assume the fight is on anyway (not against the FS, but against the Wilderness Proponents. The FS can be an ally).

    Second - Start organizing and perhaps make a new (tax exempt) business organization made specifically for mountain bike and wilderness issues, name the organization, get a board of directors, and a spokesperson. A new organization for this purpose alone shows that locals are serious. Obviously, the current mountain bike organizations would play a big role in this organization. A lobbyist may even be needed in the long run.

    Third, the National Wilderness Coalition is your enemy and it is against bikes. One of the many problems we ran into was local Wilderness supporters, who also didn't have a problem with bikes, getting quietly overruled by the Wilderness Coalition home office for suggesting a way to keep bikes in proposed wilderness areas. The Wilderness Coalition went so far as to elicit the assistance of a touring company (that had mtb roots - but had a lot of other irons in the fire) to advocate for wilderness to Congress. By propping this guy up, the Coalition used it as propaganda to suggest the bikers were for wilderness (which of course we were not). It was a divide and conquer approach. The Coalition will also say "well, nobody bikes there anyway," or "there is too much biking." Or they will say "we're just trying to save the Forest (from logging and other industries), and you should too." Call BS on all of these. And no matter what do not let them talk erosion. Tell them to take a hike to Shining Rocks and the Ledges. On the way, the trail erosion is awful.

    The Forest Service claimed to not want more Wilderness - but it happened anyway. We were unprepared and out maneuvered. Fortunately, it does take an Act of Congress. Get all the municipal politicians against it, and move your way up. Get a well-worded petition started immediately (on the internet so people like me can sign). And don't trust a thing the Wilderness Coalition says. If the local bikers are reactive instead of proactive, the chances of losing increase (The Wilderness Coalition depends on mountain biker apathy and even ignorance from some Wilderness Coalition members regarding mtb issues).

    There are methods of compromise such as cherry-stemming. IMBA has some talk about wilderness proposals on its website. In WV, IMBA was virtually non-existent. IMBA also seems timid to me. IMBA is always talking compromise, while the Wilderness Coalition uses faux-compromise (like asking for wilderness it knows it can't get, offer it to the bikers, and then say, "here bikers, see we're compromising - now give us all we really wanted).

  9. #9
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    right. These areas are just inventories of areas that meet the criteria necessary to establish a wilderness designation. They are not proposals, or anything definitive.

    those visuals will hopefully encourage you to send an email with your comments regarding the plan revision.

    send them to NCPlanRevision@fs.fed.us

  10. #10
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    thanks for sharing this, I just learned of it today...
    My one says BRAP!

  11. #11
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    Email sent. thanks.

  12. #12
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    While losing bicycle access to all those trails would be unfortunate, more Wilderness is inherently a very good thing and the Pisgah District is in dire need of more Wilderness.

    I'm not sure why the USFS does not look to other areas of the forest to develop trail systems and Wilderness. The Big Pisgah Tract, for example, has an existing trail system that is a lot like Wilderness as it is now. It would be great if they designated it but I'm guessing it doesn't fit their agenda.

    If they want to make a Laurel Mountain Wilderness that is good with me. I'm not afraid to go into the woods on foot. Mountain bikers can stick to Dupont or Bent Creek or where ever bikes are still allowed.
    More Trails, Not Less

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  13. #13
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    Wilderness Expansion

    Hmm, waah...driftwood? You know, the 'b' in 'mtbr' stands for 'bike'? Am I missing some sarcasm in thinking that you're saying you're ok with less bike and more hike trails? I guess I'm a little afraid of going into the woods on foot...afraid I'll wish I coulda brought my bike.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by driftwood View Post
    While losing bicycle access to all those trails would be unfortunate, more Wilderness is inherently a very good thing and the Pisgah District is in dire need of more Wilderness.

    I'm not sure why the USFS does not look to other areas of the forest to develop trail systems and Wilderness. The Big Pisgah Tract, for example, has an existing trail system that is a lot like Wilderness as it is now. It would be great if they designated it but I'm guessing it doesn't fit their agenda.

    If they want to make a Laurel Mountain Wilderness that is good with me. I'm not afraid to go into the woods on foot. Mountain bikers can stick to Dupont or Bent Creek or where ever bikes are still allowed.
    Is that a joke? I don't get it.

  15. #15
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    Wilderness Expansion

    I'm afraid driftwood is a scorned child with hurt feelings. Apparently he has turned against his brethren because he can't have his way. Sad.

  16. #16
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    I am afraid the elevator doesn't hit the top floor in that one.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  17. #17
    drunken pirate
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    Sorry folks, there is more to our National Forests than just mountain bikes. It is a shame that mountain bikers cannot see the value of Wilderness.

    Losing bicycle access to all those trails would be unfortunate and I think there are better places to designate as Wilderness.

    I haven't turned against anyone. Mountain bikes, for me, are just one of many ways I enjoy our forests. I haven't been solely a mountain bikers for many years. I really like the efficiency of bikes, the variety of terrain I can enjoy on them, and the amount of ground I can cover on one, but my bike is not my only means of transport an I recognize their limitations and impact. From my perspective it seems all that a lot, if not most, mountain bikers only mountain bike.

    As much fun as riding Laurel Mountain or Turkey Pen Gap is I tend to prefer Wilderness on foot to them. I enjoy a variety of activities and a variety of trails. I wouldn't want to go to Wilderness every time I am in the woods but if we had more Wilderness I would likely go there more often.

    The Pisgah District has two Wilderness areas: Shining Rock and Middle Prong. Shining Rock is so heavily used these days most trails really aren't true Wilderness in my opinion. I think in Shining Rock only Fork Mountain and Greasy Cove are class 1 trails. As traffic continues to increase in Shining Rock, Middle Prong is seeing more and more users and is starting to suffer the same effects as Shining Rock. The need for more Wilderness is very real and demonstrable.

    As part of the Forest Plan Revision many users are asking for more Wilderness and Class 1 trails. I'd love to see Class 1 trails for bikes but will settle for more for foot travel only if that is all we can get.

    I agree with Pisgah. Mountain bikers should take this seriously if they do not want to see areas with trails that are currently open to bikes designated as Wilderness or even Wilderness Study Areas.

    Saying it doesn't have a chance might not be as good as working to ensure that it does not have a chance . But whatever...
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  18. #18
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    Its simple. Mountain bikes should be allowed in wilderness areas. On appropriate trails of course...

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  19. #19
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    Putting this old shoe back on...

    Theres another meeting coming up in about a month in Asheville.

    Question:

    What is PAS doing to become a stakeholder in these negotiations as they progress?

    I dont mean that to sound cynical...I honestly would like to know since Im out of the loop. I do plan on attending this meeting if Im able.

    I know Pro-Wilderness groups are active and have a fairly loud voice, who's up there speaking up for mtn. bikers? This might be discussed on the PAS website but not everyone who rides Pisgah lives in WNC. Everyone who enjoys these mountains should try to keep informed on how the planned revisions are going.

    This link has already been posted but it really breaks down what is going on with NC Nat'l Forests.

    National Forests in North Carolina - Home

    Check out "process papers" about halfway down to see where the proposed new Wilderness Areas will be...looks like Laurel mtn. area and Turkey Pen if im reading it right...


    thanks ya'll.

  20. #20
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    I'm not on the board or even a member right now, but I will probably take a vacation day so I can attend.

  21. #21
    drunken pirate
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banjopickin View Post
    Putting this old shoe back on...

    Theres another meeting coming up in about a month in Asheville.

    Question:

    What is PAS doing to become a stakeholder in these negotiations as they progress?

    I dont mean that to sound cynical...I honestly would like to know since Im out of the loop. I do plan on attending this meeting if Im able.

    I know Pro-Wilderness groups are active and have a fairly loud voice, who's up there speaking up for mtn. bikers? This might be discussed on the PAS website but not everyone who rides Pisgah lives in WNC. Everyone who enjoys these mountains should try to keep informed on how the planned revisions are going.

    This link has already been posted but it really breaks down what is going on with NC Nat'l Forests.

    National Forests in North Carolina - Home

    Check out "process papers" about halfway down to see where the proposed new Wilderness Areas will be...looks like Laurel mtn. area and Turkey Pen if im reading it right...


    thanks ya'll.
    I'm not sure what 2bfluid's official role with PAS is but he is their grant writer and perhaps some sort of spokesman and is the only one of them posting in this thread. He says:

    Its simple. Mountain bikes should be allowed in wilderness areas. On appropriate trails of course...
    As much as I'd like to know which existing Wilderness trails in our area are appropriate for bikes I don't think he is familiar enough with the trails to say. (And he is a beginner mountain biker anyway, those trails would all be well above his skill level. Yes, he raced last year's Enduro in the beginner category, that makes him a beginner.)

    I know PAS/SORBA collectively is bound to be smarter than to try to actively argue for mountain bikes in Wilderness but are they going to fight against Wilderness expansion?

    The need for more Wilderness is very real. Other users groups are asking for it and might just get it.

    I think the Big Pisgah tract would make an ideal new Wilderness area. Suggest that over changing existing multi-use trails, regardless of how unexcellent, poorly designed and built they are .
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  22. #22
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    Nice try DW. Trying to dismiss me as a beginner? You are soooo desperate. My opinions are my own unless stated as such. Sorry I only decided to start racing late in the game. I hope you feel better about yourself now. Done anything for Pisgah lately?

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  23. #23
    drunken pirate
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bfluid View Post
    Nice try DW. Trying to dismiss me as a beginner? You are soooo desperate. My opinions are my own unless stated as such. Sorry I only decided to start racing late in the game. I hope you feel better about yourself now. Done anything for Pisgah lately?

    Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk
    I'm not desperate at all. Just pointing out facts is all.

    As always you cannot back up your opinions or refute my points and I'd love to debate this issue with you but I do not think you have the knowledge and experience necessary. It isn't nearly as simple as you think. Or maybe it is... Bikes are machines and machines are not allowed in Wilderness...

    I honestly don't know what I've done for Pisgah recently. I'm sure your definition of "doing something for Pisgah" is substantially different from mine anyway. I've been having a kick @ss spring and spending a lot of fun time out in Pisgah (including some outstanding Wilderness trips). So much that the last thing I've been thinking about is what is happening on the internet.... Summer is coming and things are only going to get better
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  24. #24
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    hmmm...ok, well then....

    My question never got answered. Is someone from SORBA/PAS in the game so to speak to be an advocate for mountain bikes during these talks? My personal thoughts are its imperative that we keep Laurel Mtn./Big Creek, Turkey Pen, and the areas around the Fish Hatchery open to bikes.

  25. #25
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    Banjo I forwarded your message to the BOD of PAS. I know that they have had discussions on the subject and were planning on attending the meeting and representing MTB's.

    If you want to know something about PAS you should head to their web site or contact them.

    Sent from my DROID BIONIC using Tapatalk
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