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  1. #1
    mtbr member
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    New Trans-Catalina Trail, not opening to Mt. Bikes

    The Catalina Island Conservancy is finishing a trail that will start in Avalon and finish in Two Harbors, about 25 miles in total length. That's the good news, the bad news is that they are not going to allow mountain bikers on this trail (the only single track on the Island.) For some reason, they do not believe in mixed use trails. Bikers will be relegated to a handful of dirt roads (they refer to these dirt roads as trails on the maps.)

    Keep in mind that this trail will never be well traveled, not with a $67 price tag just to get to the Island. The Conservancy also has complete control of access by requiring hikers and bikers to sign releases and get permits to enter their land.

    There are only a few riders living on the Island and they need help from educated and concerned mountain bikers on the mainland. Please help by writing the Catalina Island Conservancy at webmaster@CatalinaConservancy.org. Or visit their site at www.catalinaconservancy.org.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    IMBA Canada
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    I did not read the whole thing... or do not know what's at stake... but if there is need, you can contact your local IMBA rep so that he can use a "Take Action" from IMBA that will be sent to every IMBA newsletter member and affiliated clubs...

    Hope this helps,
    ADSVMQ :: Quebec mountain bike trail advocacy group www.ADSVMQ.org

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by tahoetucker
    Please help by writing the Catalina Island Conservancy at webmaster@CatalinaConservancy.org. Or visit their site at www.catalinaconservancy.org. Thanks.
    I would caution you from jumping into action too fast. My experience has been that advocacy is a process, not an event. There needs to be a lot of communication between the groups. It sounds like the mtber's are not yet organized, so that is probably the first step. There is an education process that has to occur on both sides, each side needs to learn and understand the concerns and conditions of the other side. There are probably a lot of questions that need to be answered, some of which are not yet clarified.

    I don't believe that pitting the two sides against each other helps anyone, it may actually create more of a problem and take longer to untangle. There really are no good guys and bad guys, just people with different agendas.There is an opportunity for the mtbers to be part of the solution, not another adversary.

    I agree with Jay that IMBA is a great resource and should be utilized. Thier education material is priceless. Once a good relation has been established, you can probably get that information in front of the appropriate folks and hopefully things can change. I just think you need to have a good plan in place before action is taken and don't expect a complete reversal overnight. Just my 2cents. Good luck!

  4. #4
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    Consider getting involved by helping perform trail maintenance on the trail in question. Your effort to obtain bike access will carry more weight if you have been putting in your sweat equity. Helping with trail maintenance will also give you a network of contacts within the organization you are hoping to get to change their minds about mountain bikes.

  5. #5
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    History repeats itself.

    Am I wrong to believe some access issues are similar to the basic civil rights issues of the 50's and 60's?

    Sorry to go off topic, I just read the book "Freedom Riders"

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/s...toryId=5149667
    Michael Vitti
    CLIMB President
    www.CLIMBonline.org
    www.IMBA.com
    NY State Trails Council Member

  6. #6
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    Is this island private property? If so it sounds like to me you'd have to work uphill in many ways, probably trying to convince them that they would bring in more equity if bikers were able to use it. Also something to consider would be introducing the idea of restricted usage, perhaps having the trail open to bikes seasonally or having the trail closed to bikes on even days to reduce conflict. And from the web page seeing that the Sierra Club did most of the work there, this might not be very easy. As they are likely in league with this "conservancy" .

    Good luck.
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  7. #7
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    Thanks

    I've contacted IMBA and am waiting for a reply. I appreciate your help.

  8. #8
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    Several miles of the trail (the West End past Two Harbors) are on existing roads that were closed to bikes but not signed as such. Now, there are signs clearly stating bikes are not allowed. Perhaps a start would be to open all roads on the island to bikes. This would only add a few more roads but a lot of area. I think most of the Trans Catalina trail is either double track (old, unused roads) or full on roads that run hummer tours. The only true single track is near Avalon.

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