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  1. #1
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    Why don't mountain bikers and motorcycles work together

    I know they are different, but that is not how hikers, equestrian users, and hardcore wilderness people feel about it. I know I used to be a hardcore wilderness guy. I am still way more green than the average person, but realize that all users should be able to use our resources in a responsible way. I was mountain biking in Boulder before most of the trails were closed to mountain bikers.

    Hikers want dangerous mtbers off the trail. They are all dangerous in their opinion.

    Equestrian users worry about mtbers spooking their horses and want them off their trails.

    Wilderness people want all humans off the land.

    I worry that if mtbers and moto users don't work together we will be weaker and lose more trails than we need too.

  2. #2
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    When I was first in MTB while I was living on Guam(very much like cali red dirt), the majority of the trails were made by dirt bike/mud trucks. To an extent we would pioneer trails only to come back and see the massive erosion left by the powered brethren or the decent trail would then be eroded almost unusable by a couple that came out during a rain spell. We accepted it as part of the turf since it was less clearing that we had to do, but the environmental impact was tremendous compared to the trails that we would leave.

    Eventually it came to a head when a 4wheeler/moto guy had a big endo and sued the landowner(big time land owner 100+ acres). For a while it led to the land being no-trespassing completely until we were able to negotiate a separation from the other users and get special privilege reassigned to bikes and hikers.

    All by way of saying that while teaming together can have its plusses, it can have it's negatives just as easily by association.

  3. #3
    Big Gulps, Alright!
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    Because I could spend all day riding like a total jackwad and not nearly do as much trail damage as a moto can do in the space of 90 seconds.

    Just because they both have two wheels doesn't mean they should be grouped together. Adding a motor changes everything.
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  4. #4
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    I don't moto, but I do know that if not for motos, many of the really fun trails I've enjoyed would not exist if it were not for motos. By their very nature, they are great at cutting trails. So I'm never quick to frown upon the moto community.... we are brothers and we owe them a lot. I can truly appreciate their frustration with being kicked out of areas they have historically ridden. Appropriately ridden, I don't think a moto does all that much damage to a defined trail either. Of course, bad apples can (and often) "ruin it" for everyone in the moto world, just like they can in MTB and any other recreational pursuit you can think of. With all that said, yes, we should be working together in some capacity. The problem, in my opinion however, is there is SO MUCH age old legislation that truly sees OHV as the end-all-be-all evil in the great outdoors. Aligning with moto can hurt us from the association. An example of this would be designated Wilderness. While I truly believe bicycles will one day be able to legally ride in designated Wilderness, motorized vehicles will never, ever be allowed. In less extreme situations, mtb has a hard enough time defending itself as a human powered activity... positioning ourselves with motorized, loud, faster, destructive versions of us isn't going to help.

    There's gotta be something we can do together (to further trail access), but I'm not sure what it is and how to go about it.

  5. #5
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    Build a trail. A mountain bike singletrack. Build it properly to be fun to ride AND sustainable. Put in a couple of years of sweat equity. Have a moto wreck it in half an hour.

    Then come back and see me.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
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  6. #6
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    ^^^^^ That. ^^^^^^

  7. #7
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    in my neck of the woods on conservation lands motorized vehicles are banned period so it is not an issue. the mandate is towards multi use trails.

    in areas north of me mtber's are seen as a demanding newbies who have not put in their sweat equity and contribute very little financially to the trail system... i make sure i go out with the motorized group a few times a year to help out on trails (always say i'm am mtber)

    every area is different and requires a different approach.
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  8. #8
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    Never mind I figured that this thread would be worthless before I posted it up. I realize most people want other user groups banned from their playground. Just wait for the equestrian, hikers and earth first groups to push you off the trails you created and maintained.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironbrewer View Post
    Never mind...
    You know, your Why can't we all get along request was good intentioned, but, yes, you knew how it was going to turn out, so maybe you shouldn't have bothered.

    From my perspective the big problem is the amount of destruction that can be wreaked upon the land by a particular user group. Obviously, with the power available to them, motos can do a lot, and I think we have all seen examples of it. There are local trails that I used to enjoy riding but eventually abandoned because, due to throttle twisters, they became miles of churned up earth that is a pain to pedal thru and no longer enjoyable. Similarly, I've had favorite hiking trails that were absolutely destroyed by equestrians. I'm willing to concede that those groups need somewhere to go, but I think it should be limited to areas where the damage can be contained.

    But, back to your premise, I think there are situations where it would benefit us to work with other groups, but I think you have to decide on a case by case basis. I don't see enough benefit in teaming up with the motorized crowd to justify the potential guilt by association that could go with it, but I could be persuaded in special situations. Equestrians seem to have a disproportionate amount of influence, for reasons that I have never grasped, so I suppose it usually pays off to at least consider them when looking at trail access and construction. I always try to find ways to keep relations good with the foot-traffic crowd. Piss off enough hikers/runners and your life will become hell, no doubt about it.

    The green crowd is always going to be there. I think that most of them are well meaning, but do get a bit over-the-top at times. I think infiltrating their ranks to soften their resolve and come to mutually agreeable solutions will deliver better results than trying to overpower them.

  10. #10
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    Here in Austin, there is one public park that is designated as moto-accessible. Emma Long / City Park.

    Mountain bikers ride there a lot as well. It's rocky and hard-packed caliche, so deep rutting doesn't seem to be as much of a problem.

    I support there being 'some' trails designated for moto. I love riding motorcycles, but still I don't think motos should be allowed on all trails. That doesn't mean I wouldn't support their lobbying efforts for at least having something to ride.












  11. #11
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    Ummmm braaap is kinda cool, but they wreck trails out here. Most places don't have the terrain to let them sit together.

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  12. #12
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    Hmmm. An electric motor on a DH/FR bike = okay ?

    Electric Motocross | The Straight Dirt | MountainBike.com


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironbrewer View Post
    Never mind I figured that this thread would be worthless before I posted it up. I realize most people want other user groups banned from their playground. Just wait for the equestrian, hikers and earth first groups to push you off the trails you created and maintained.
    I build mountain bike singletrack. In my lifetime I've hand built over 50 miles of trail. It's taken me over 40 years. I build trail by the foot. On average it takes an hour to build 10 feet of singletrack by hand in good conditions. A motorcycle or ATV can destroy about 10 feet per second.

    I advocate, build and maintain trails in 2 different types of areas. Public parks (multi-use, non-motorized, hike, cycle and most times, equestrian) and private property (multi-use, non-motorized, hike, cycle and equestrian).

    I've done the leg work. I went to the local land owners or the government to ensure that we had legal access to the land. I designed the trails and had the trail systems approved. I went to the meetings when the hikers "found" our mountain bike trails and complained that people were riding bicycles on them and scaring their puppies. I went to the meetings when motorcyclists and ATV riders "found" our trails and insisted that they had a right to use them.

    The accepted use for the trails I've built isn't going to change in my lifetime. Both the government and the land owners I deal with, have made it very clear that motorized vehicles are not going to be allowed on multi-use non-motorized trails on their land.

    I've repaired the damage done by motorcycles and ATVs when they used the trails after they were told they couldn't. I've replaced the signs they tore down, I've replaced the locks they cut, I've rebuilt the bridges they tore out because they were too small to handle the machines.

    I've advocated for space for motos and ATVs simply because I don't want them on the hiking and cycling trails. I've educated hundreds of kids in the local school bike club in how to get along with hikers and horses on the trails. I've attempted to educate adult cyclists in the same subject with relative success. I've spoken with local horse riding clubs and individual riders and as a result, we have a very good rapport.

    So, to answer your original question. I don't work with motorcyclists on advocating for access to trails because the ones I have tried to work with don't understand that hikers/equestrains and motorcycles don't belong on the same trails. The equestrians and hikers I've worked with realize that they can co-exist with bicycles on the same trails.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
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  14. #14
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    In our area, motorized use (except by snowmobiles on designated trails) is not allowed in town conservation lands, state park lands and in the White Mountain National Forest. There are areas where motos and MTBs coexist peacefully but land manager prohibitions make it impossible here.

  15. #15
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    Disclaimer: I no longer own dirtbikes but started riding at age 6 and sold my last dirt bikes at age 46. I have been riding MTB's for 20+ years. The only place I've ridden MTB's where dirt bikes were also present is outside Durango and they presented ZERO problems....no trail destruction, no safety issues.

    Now on to my rant. You people that make blanket statements about dirt bikes ruining trails in 10 seconds are guilty of the same nonsense that whacko greenies and equestrian riders make about mountain bikers ruining trails. Where I live, dirt bikes aren't legal on public lands unless we go 90 miles east into the desert so all the trails I ride are used my 90%+ mountain bikers and 10% pedestrians of some type. Shocker alert!! There are plenty of trashed trails, rutted corners and no shortage of illegal trails and nary a dirt biker in sight.

    What bothers me the most about all this stuff (at least in my area) is that MTB groups build 90% of the trails and make up well over 90% of the users but that's the group that gets banned first. Pretty screwy if you ask me.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by k2rider1964 View Post
    Disclaimer: I no longer own dirtbikes but started riding at age 6 and sold my last dirt bikes at age 46. I have been riding MTB's for 20+ years. The only place I've ridden MTB's where dirt bikes were also present is outside Durango and they presented ZERO problems....no trail destruction, no safety issues.

    Now on to my rant. You people that make blanket statements about dirt bikes ruining trails in 10 seconds are guilty of the same nonsense that whacko greenies and equestrian riders make about mountain bikers ruining trails. Where I live, dirt bikes aren't legal on public lands unless we go 90 miles east into the desert so all the trails I ride are used my 90%+ mountain bikers and 10% pedestrians of some type. Shocker alert!! There are plenty of trashed trails, rutted corners and no shortage of illegal trails and nary a dirt biker in sight.

    What bothers me the most about all this stuff (at least in my area) is that MTB groups build 90% of the trails and make up well over 90% of the users but that's the group that gets banned first. Pretty screwy if you ask me.
    It was not intended to be a blanket statement. It was my experience. cmc4130 showed an example where dirtbikes don't destroy trails and they co-exist with MTB. You've showed another where it's likely MTB and hikers damaging trails.

    I know for a fact that it takes about a second for a moto to destroy 10 feet of singletrack that it took me an hour to build because I've watched it happen. I don't have to guess who did what.

    You people that make blanket statements about dirt bikes ruining trails in 10 seconds are guilty of the same nonsense that whacko greenies and equestrian riders make about mountain bikers ruining trails.
    I re-read the entire thread and didn't see where any made a blanket statement like that. In my experience, the complaints I've had to deal with from hikers and equestrians have always been about safety on the trails, not damage.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
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  17. #17
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    Actually there is more good discussion in this thread than I thought. In Colorado the OHV community decided to tax themselves to raise money for trail maintenance in the form of a sticker system. I regularly give my time to do trail maintenance. In Colorado Springs a trail system was just shut down to motorcycles, because of a rare fish in the streams. The OHV community did trail maintenance, paid for and put bridges across all water crossings. Guess who the next user group to be banned from those trails will be. You got it MTB riders.

    Yes inexperienced or reckless motorcycle riders can damage trails, but that is not the only reason people lose access to trails. In Boulder we lost miles of trails for mountain biking , back in the 80's, due to bad hiker MTB interactions. It only takes a few reckless MTBers to rail past the wrong hiker to get trails closed.

    Not all work to keep access to trails is lawsuits exc. Most of is is just educating the various user groups.

    Just about every trail in Moab was pioneered, designed, built, and maintained by OHV groups. I can't stand it when I get dirty looks from mountain bikers on slickrock. The slickrock trail wouldn't exist if it wasn't for motorcycles.

    I always try to be courteous to all trail users. I stop for hikers, mountain bikers, and pull over, turn off my bike, and take off my helmet (helmets sometimes spook horses, my daughter rides horses) for equestrian users.

    MY RANT When you say it only takes a second for a moto to destroy 10 feet of singletrack, that sounds like any moto that rides a singletrack will destroy it. Responsible riders will not destroy your singletrack. A mountain bike can put a huge rut in an entire trail if it is muddy. Maybe they should be closed to mountain bikes because they might ruin them. The answer to that is no they shouldn't be closed to mountain bikes, just because one selfish dickwad might ride the trail in the wrong conditions.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironbrewer View Post
    ...

    MY RANT When you say it only takes a second for a moto to destroy 10 feet of singletrack, that sounds like any moto that rides a singletrack will destroy it. Responsible riders will not destroy your singletrack. A mountain bike can put a huge rut in an entire trail if it is muddy. Maybe they should be closed to mountain bikes because they might ruin them. The answer to that is no they shouldn't be closed to mountain bikes, just because one selfish dickwad might ride the trail in the wrong conditions.
    I agree with your entire post. I'd like to address this part.

    Responsible moto riders didn't destroy my singletrack. I know that.

    The situations I spoke of where the trails were destroyed were on trails built for mountain bikers, by mountain bikers. They were designed and built to be ridden by any mountain bike in any weather conditions.

    I'm also aware of areas that can be ridden by irresponsilbe moto riders and they couldn't hurt the trail.

    On a related note.
    There is a local situation that is ongoing. The end result is going to be bad. I'm not involved as this area is 3000 miles away from where "my" trails are. It's just where I happen to be living at the moment.

    A local trail system is on a very large piece of land owned by the federal (Canadian) government. It crosses 4 different municipalities and up until about 10 years ago was not officially anything. It's part of the St. Lawrence Seaway. It has been used by hikers, horses, motos, OHV's and MTB's for many years. About 10 years ago the federal government was to close access to this land due to lawsuits leveled by people who had injured themselves while using the land. The 4 municipalities approached the federal government and made an agreement to allow public access to the land in exchange for the municipalities taking responsibility for the land.

    Recently, in one municipality a new subdivision and golf course was built adjacent to the land. Few of the new residents ever ventured on to the land but they did lodge a complaint with the local municipality. Their complaint was simply that they didn't like the noise of the motors. As a result of this complaint, the municipality decided to pull their support. The other 3 municipalities quickly followed suit.

    As of a week ago, the federal government has announced that they will close access to the land. For everybody. Fences and gates will go up and security will patrol.

    Is this the fault of the motorized users? Absolutely not. They were legal users of the land. They weren't doing anything different than they had been doing for years.

    Did they get blamed for it? You bet.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    I agree with your entire post.

    If you agreed with my entire post, I'm not sure why you would not like to increase our power by joining forces (I'm kind of selfish because I love both sports). I know some battles are not winable for everyone involved. Sounds like in the case in Canada, maybe the motos should have bowed out gracefully. If mountain bikers had worked with moto users on other access issues over the years and built up a certain level of trust and camaraderie, maybe they could have gotten the motos to bow out gracefully. I don't know the issues well enough, but that may not have helped. Maybe the land owners just wanted an excuse to end a practice they had gotten sick of.

    Access is kind of like a marriage. You need to know how to pick your battles. Sure honey I'll clean the garage, by the way I'm going riding for 4 days in Moab.

  20. #20
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    In the case I cited, nobody had a chance to do anything. The first news anyone got was that the fences and gates were going to go up in the new years and the lands would be closed. No debate, no public input.

    To answer your question, I wouldn't join forces with motorcyclists because in my experience they would not help my situation. They would be a detriment. I find it pretty easy to get access for mountain bikes and hikers, a little tougher to get access for horses. If I mentioned motors that would be the end of the conversation.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
    You may be happy to hear that my dad has kicked cancer's ass. Now he's looking for whoever sent it.

  21. #21
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    I do both moto and ride my mtn bike.Both have their places to play but moto aint as bad as most think either.

    As far as fighting together it wont happen thats why the sierra club and similar are succesful in shutting trrails down they know how to divide and conquer and do well.They can single out motos on trails and get bikers support to rid the motos then after that they work to get the bikers off too while the moto guys say F you you never stood up for us.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    Recently, in one municipality a new subdivision and golf course was built adjacent to the land. Few of the new residents ever ventured on to the land but they did lodge a complaint with the local municipality. Their complaint was simply that they didn't like the noise of the motors. As a result of this complaint, the municipality decided to pull their support. The other 3 municipalities quickly followed suit.
    That's eerily similar to what's been happening in NorCal for the last 30 years... rich lady moves to the Sierra foothills, right next to an OHV park. Hates the noise. Does everything in her power to not just get the motos banned there, but essentially get OHV banned on any forest road/trail that crosses a meadow or stream. It's been working. She's sue happy. She's Enemy #1 in the OHV community around here! (And rightly so!). MTB's are next
    Google "Karen Schambach".

    Trail Ninja - just curious, what are the motos doing that destroy your trails so quickly? Roosting uphill? Or just general weight of the moto?

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by 77charger View Post
    I do both moto and ride my mtn bike.Both have their places to play but moto aint as bad as most think either.

    As far as fighting together it wont happen thats why the sierra club and similar are succesful in shutting trrails down they know how to divide and conquer and do well.They can single out motos on trails and get bikers support to rid the motos then after that they work to get the bikers off too while the moto guys say F you you never stood up for us.
    I don't know if it's by design but it certainly works out that way.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
    You may be happy to hear that my dad has kicked cancer's ass. Now he's looking for whoever sent it.

  24. #24
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    Oh its by design. That why the 2 groups should work together.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_Beer View Post
    That's eerily similar to what's been happening in NorCal for the last 30 years... rich lady moves to the Sierra foothills, right next to an OHV park. Hates the noise. Does everything in her power to not just get the motos banned there, but essentially get OHV banned on any forest road/trail that crosses a meadow or stream. It's been working. She's sue happy. She's Enemy #1 in the OHV community around here! (And rightly so!). MTB's are next
    Google "Karen Schambach".

    Trail Ninja - just curious, what are the motos doing that destroy your trails so quickly? Roosting uphill? Or just general weight of the moto?
    Different areas have different problems but it's mostly roosting. Not necessarily uphill. They like to drift the corners under power. I'm not sure what the term for that is. That action will tear out a small berm in one pass. There are some trials riders who also use the trails. If I didn't hear them, it would be hard to tell they were there. If they were all like the trials guys I'd have no problems.

    I've dealt with my share of Karen Schambach's over the years. None of them have been successful but it's a long hard battle nonetheless. I'm not an advocate by choice. I'm a builder. Advocacy is a necessary part of building that I would much rather have MTB groups do.

    When I started building bicycle singletrack, it would be another 10 years before the term "mountain bike" would be coined. Then another 10 years before people started building mountain bike specific trails. Then another 10 before they started to do it legitimately.

    In the area where "my" trails are, (Vancouver Island, B.C.) most riders either think that trails just "happen" or that you need to sneak on to private property and crown land and build renegade trails. Even though they ride on about 30 miles of trail that was built legally with the land managers blessing.

    On an unrelated note.
    I had the pleasure this summer of riding on a trail that I built 46 years ago in Eastern Ontario. Somebody else has been maintaining it for the last 35 years or so but it's holding up quite well. I could still see my rock work. It just needs brush trimming every year.
    Last edited by Trail Ninja; 12-19-2012 at 11:01 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
    You may be happy to hear that my dad has kicked cancer's ass. Now he's looking for whoever sent it.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    On a related note.
    There is a local situation that is ongoing. The end result is going to be bad. I'm not involved as this area is 3000 miles away from where "my" trails are. It's just where I happen to be living at the moment.

    A local trail system is on a very large piece of land owned by the federal (Canadian) government. It crosses 4 different municipalities and up until about 10 years ago was not officially anything. It's part of the St. Lawrence Seaway. It has been used by hikers, horses, motos, OHV's and MTB's for many years. About 10 years ago the federal government was to close access to this land due to lawsuits leveled by people who had injured themselves while using the land. The 4 municipalities approached the federal government and made an agreement to allow public access to the land in exchange for the municipalities taking responsibility for the land.

    Recently, in one municipality a new subdivision and golf course was built adjacent to the land. Few of the new residents ever ventured on to the land but they did lodge a complaint with the local municipality. Their complaint was simply that they didn't like the noise of the motors. As a result of this complaint, the municipality decided to pull their support. The other 3 municipalities quickly followed suit.

    As of a week ago, the federal government has announced that they will close access to the land. For everybody. Fences and gates will go up and security will patrol.

    Is this the fault of the motorized users? Absolutely not. They were legal users of the land. They weren't doing anything different than they had been doing for years.

    Did they get blamed for it? You bet.
    I'm assuming you're referring to the Eastside Canal Trail system in Niagara.
    Im very interested in hearing where you got this information from as its not what I've been hearing from behind the scenes on this trail issue with all parties involved.

    For the record the Eastside Trail system is located on Transport Canada property (Federal Crownland) and is managed by the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC).
    The Niagara Regional Government holds a lease agreement with the SLSMC on this property covering the trail system. The Niagara Regional Government subleases it to the three Cities that the trail system spans. Port Colborne, Welland and Thorold.
    The trail system is overseen by a Regional Government Committee called the Greater Niagara Circle Route Committee (GNCRC).

    Welland recently decided to back away from this sublease for several reason given, liability (a recent fatal accident by a highpowered dirtbiker that was actually not even using the trail system but using the stone service road nearby and hitting a concrete vehicle barrier block in the dark) and noise complaints from a new housing development across the canal from part of the Welland section of the trail.

    The trail is a show piece example of users groups coming together.
    Below is a quote from one of the local users groups website that helped develop the trail system and help maintain it.
    They are a Motorcycle Club.

    Quote Originally Posted by Timberline Riders

    The East Side Trail

    This section of the Welland Canals Parkway Trail, which is part of a network of trails, is unique in Niagara Region. It accommodates many outdoor enthusiasts on parallel but divided trails, including: equestrians, off-road motorcycles, hikers, mountain bikers, snowmobilers and cross country skiers. The East Side Canal Trail sits on a leased parcel of land on the east side of the Welland Canal.

    It is exactly 100 meters wide starting at the canal edge, beginning at Hwy. 20 in Allanburg through to Ramey's Bend in Port Colborne (essentially ending at Concession Rd. #2). What we call the East Side Canal Trail is just over 20 Kms. long, but you could double that length as there there are basically 2 parallel trails in that 100 meters right of way.

    There is a trail for motorized vehicles (off-road motorcycles and snowmobiles that have insurance and are licensed , green or white plates) and the other for non-motorized activities (equestrians must carry proof of liability insurance). The Single Track/Equestrian Trail generally follows the edge of the Canal southward to a staging area north of Highway 3 near Port Colborne.

    For safety reasons, all-terrain vehicles (ATVís) and 4x4 trucks are not permitted on the trail. Any trespassers using these vehicles will be ticketed by Niagara Regional Police.

    NOTE : There is currently NO FEE to use the East Side Trail.

    I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PUBCRAWL View Post
    I'm assuming you're referring to the Eastside Canal Trail system in Niagara.
    Im very interested in hearing where you got this information from as its not what I've been hearing from behind the scenes on this trail issue with all parties involved.

    For the record the Eastside Trail system is located on Transport Canada property (Federal Crownland) and is managed by the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC).
    The Niagara Regional Government holds a lease agreement with the SLSMC on this property covering the trail system. The Niagara Regional Government subleases it to the three Cities that the trail system spans. Port Colborne, Welland and Thorold.
    The trail system is overseen by a Regional Government Committee called the Greater Niagara Circle Route Committee (GNCRC).

    Welland recently decided to back away from this sublease for several reason given, liability (a recent fatal accident by a highpowered dirtbiker that was actually not even using the trail system but using the stone service road nearby and hitting a concrete vehicle barrier block in the dark) and noise complaints from a new housing development across the canal from part of the Welland section of the trail.

    The trail is a show piece example of users groups coming together.
    Below is a quote from one of the local users groups website that helped develop the trail system and help maintain it.
    They are a Motorcycle Club.
    I'm glad you weighed in on this. All of my information was what I heard in conversation and an article in (I think) the Welland Tribune. I guessed on the timeline. I wasn't aware the Niagara Regional Government was involved. What else am I missing?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    I'm glad you weighed in on this. All of my information was what I heard in conversation and an article in (I think) the Welland Tribune. I guessed on the timeline. I wasn't aware the Niagara Regional Government was involved. What else am I missing?

    From behind the scenes I can tell you to my knowledge nothing is closing as of yet. All the user groups involved have banned together to get to the issues with the parties involved.

    This was a stupid knee-jerk move by one City's Council to try to "save" themselves the liability and headaches of residents complaining.
    Their action will NOT change the noise issue and may actually make things worse but they can wash-their-hands-of-it saying they aren't involved with it any longer.

    I can tell you that there was a plan to have all three Cities pass identical bylaws to restrict unwanted users from the trail system.

    This is what the Regional Police were after to aid in their enforcement or laws for the trail. Loud offroad motorcycles not meeting current noise and emission laws and not having insurance and offroad license plates would be heavily fined.

    Since the fatal accident the service road access point in that area has been properly fenced. However the trailhead is still accessible and unrestricted.

    BEFORE THE ACCIDENT


    AFTER THE ACCIDENT



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    Around here I know trail builders that ask moto guys to ride in new trail for them, depending on the terrain it works pretty well, a rider intentionally hitting a trail with a lot of throttle and a lot of brake does a lot of work that a person won't have to do.

    Do motos damage trails? Not really, IMO. Motos can make a trail loose, but not as bad as a horse, a horse will turn every inch of a trail moon dust, when it rains all that moon dust washes down the trail, motos can/do make steep sections loose, where they are more likely to spin their rear tire, but any/all "not super steep" sections of trail are unaffected by motos.

    Motos were banned from some trails here years ago, and now those trails are gone, without motos those trails didn't get enough traffic and they were overgrown.
    Last edited by jackbombay; 12-20-2012 at 09:20 AM.

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    Thanks Pubcrawl. I was going to bring up "The Hood" (in the same area) as another example of motos and MTB cooperating in the same space, but that situation is so confusing to me. I'm not sure who has permission to do what there.

    If you could explain it here? This is the sort of thing ironbrewer is looking for.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
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    Here in Flagstaff Arizona we do get along more so than other places. The local moto club Coconino Trail Riders CTR does actual trail maintenance and are working hard to separate them selves from the rest of the OHV / ATV users. Every year we even have a pedals vs pistons, vs hooves vs hiking boots trail build day challenge. The user group with the most participants takes home the trophy. Yes it is mountain bikes and motos that do the most trail work all year round here. CTR even helps out with trails not open to moto's some times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    Thanks Pubcrawl. I was going to bring up "The Hood" (in the same area) as another example of motos and MTB cooperating in the same space, but that situation is so confusing to me. I'm not sure who has permission to do what there.

    If you could explain it here? This is the sort of thing ironbrewer is looking for.

    The dirty old Hood...
    Well that one is a totally different animal.

    Officially it is OFF LIMITS to any motorize vehicle.
    This is the official stance of the property manager. The Regional Police do monitor and enforce this trespassing issue on Crownland. The have been onsite ticketing motorized vehicles off and on during the year... usually on their ATV's. The fines are for trespassing and vandalism and if they don't have a license plate and insurance even hefter fines are given.

    The ShortHills Cycling Club (SHCC) gets signed usage agreements to hold their MTB race events on this property on a yearly basis. So far they have been tolerant to mountain biking and in general turn a blind eye to mountain biking as the sanctioned Greater Niagara Circle Route paved trail crosses the land as well.

    The SHCC has apporached the City of Port Colborne several times now and have received the backing of the City to pursue official trail status for what's there.
    Currently the process is still on going.
    We do know that the City would like to promote the area as a mountain biking destination but we aren't there yet with the Land manager.

    Many of the trails located on that property were made by members of the Timberline Riders motorcycle club long ago.

    The biggest issue in there has been illegal ATV usage wrecking sections of trail and tearing down signs, wrecking bridges and damaging trees.
    The few people still dirtbiking in there don't really do much damage and most of the mountain bike single track trails are not much fun for dirtbikers as they are tight and twisty in spots.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PUBCRAWL View Post
    ...

    The few people still dirtbiking in there don't really do much damage and most of the mountain bike single track trails are not much fun for dirtbikers as they are tight and twisty in spots.
    I had to cut my bars to ride in there.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironbrewer View Post
    Oh its by design. That why the 2 groups should work together.
    You would think but from the comments on this topic about motos gives you a good answer.Seen many moto riding places get shut down in my years forcing more riders into the areas left open.Yet year after year we pay more to do the sport

    With mtn biking getting more popular it will or may happen too.I like to do both and would hate to see trails get shut down or access limited.But going against enviros is very hard and they dont put money into preserving places they freeload of of the ones who actually use the land while trhowing their money at politicians instead.

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    Mtb is the only group with which Motos have any potential to ally themselves. They have much less in common with hikers and horsies. Motos gain by alliance with Mtb which is more closely associated with environmentalism, is human powered, is a large and growing constituancy, and enjoys the cache' of promoting good health. In addition Motos and Mtb share a desire to access more trails and run into the same resistance from the same groups. We also both love two-wheeled off-road sport.

    However, by allying with Motos, mtb is saddled with the negative impression left by the speed and power brought by a throttle, along with the noise and the destruction it brings. The case for their relatively moderate effect on trails is extremely narrow and overall very weak.

    With all due respect to a great sport, Mtb alliance with Motos is a net loss for Mtb and net gain for Motos.
    I don't rattle.

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    Oh-no, be very, very quiet around here. The "admins" will take down anything mentioning them!

    We have 2 different sports that require 2 different tracks. The same reason drag racing doesn't happen on an oval track.

    This spring I organized a work day that had 40+ people involved in building a 310' raised tread. There were over 75 tons of rock moved by hand that day. 10 tons of stone dust and 10 of inch to dust. We put in an average of 8 hrs each I think. 4 of us had a 13hr day. The results are a huge success! But if a dirt bike were to go on that, the weight of it, the tires and the little twist of a throttle would rip it apart in seconds. I spent 15hrs of prep work up there and 3hrs of meetings.

    We don't have hero dirt around here. We have rock, roots, and rock. The roots are medium and twisted together. The rocks are big, flat, slick and off camber- or tombstones that stick up 3-6". We can't dig in and put the rocks in ground all the time. We make the trail 2 1/2 feet wide for the reason that people will travel down the middle and not too close to the edge. Though these raised treads can handle heavy loads in the middle, the edges are looser due to not being able to anchor them into the ground. Since most motos have a larger wheelbase they would have to apply more weight on the edge of the trail leading to the destruction of the raised tread.
    Lackawanna State Park is known to be a mudfest when it rains. Bikes, hikers and horses can ruin a trail there quickly. I can't imagine what a dirt bike would do.

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    My area club, Gallup Trails (GT), works with the Red Rock Motorsports Club to ensure that we are both on the same page and to plan future expansions. We don't help each other build trail because they use heavy equipment and we use manual labor. Their trails would be boring and stupid for a bicycle and same same them on the bike trails. The presence of riders who do both moto and mtb really helps maintain the relationship, in fact their leader is also an mtb'er and attends our BOD meetings regularly. GT also maintains friendly relations and consults with the equestrian and rock crawler clubs too.
    I ride with the best people.




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    As a moto rider in days gone by and a MTB trail builder and rider for years, what was said about needing different trails is true, but it does not stop motos getting onto MTB trail in our local National Park. We know they are just exploring, but we also know they do destroy trail. If we meet, we are pleasant and just ask they don't start throwing roost and explain the trails are not made to suit or withstand motos.

    IMO it comes down to the following issues:

    Motos may cut trail, but moto riders never actually work on trails here, so I don't take the "motos made the trails" scenario as fact. Since June this year we have logged 1000 hours of MTB volunteer work and not one has been done by a moto rider - not unreasonable given they are not allowed in the park, but because they actually are there, that excuse is invalid

    Moto trails and MTB trails are leagues apart and cooperating only makes sense if the 2 groups are working on access to a parcel of land that will provide different trails and ideally, different parts of the property to build and be happy on

    Moto riders cannot be allowed on MTB trail for reasons of safety as well as trail sustainability

    The impact of motos, even if not being ridden in anger, extends over 3-10 x the distance any MTB can cover in the same time

    Sorry, but my opinion is that moto riders need to work toward their own future. Suggesting that MTB and moto have common ground and goals is like saying the dudes who have 10 automatic weapons with 30 round mags have the same motives as the farmer with one shotgun for vermin.

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    If you want to destroy all the good work that mountain bikers have done over the years and have them booted out of every trail, get together with motoX.

    I ride both, mountain bikes and motos dont mix, there not even on the same page, like apples and oranges.

    the reasons are so glaringly obvious its not funny and almost not worth talking about.

    OP i understand your rational behind thinking that the bigger voice the more power and thats correct, i agree, but motos are the last things on earth you want to join forces with.
    cheers
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    Our local State Forest is one of the last, if not the last, legal motorcycle riding spot in eastern Mass. 40 years of excessive moto use has done substantial damage to the trails, to the point that mountain biking there has all but ceased.

    I've been working on restoring a bunch of old moto trails in a part of the forest that is no longer open to motos. I pray that they don't start illegally riding it and wreak further havoc. To be fair, I understand that the motos made most of the trails (not all, they've wrecked plenty of bike and hiking trails too). I also understand that good, responsible riders do not do much damage. But too many motos, too many newbs and jerks, and a lot of poorly designed trails have lead to massive, depression-level trail damage. Don't get me started on quads, which are not allowed, but sneak in anyways.

    Anyway, this pic is straight from a site saying how great Freetown is to ride (on a moto). This spot used to be singletrack, or close to it at least. Want to hear mtber's opinions? Read the latest MTBR reviews.

    Freetown State Forest Massachusetts Trail Reviews




    To be fair, the motos do some maintenance, but its not enough, all too often a tree goes down and they just carve a new line around it, its an eroded trail braided hell out there.
    NEMBA Freetown VP

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    Quote Originally Posted by icecreamjay View Post
    40 years of excessive moto use
    Sounds like you are blaming the damage on the vehicle instead of the volume of traffic.

    40 years of excessive MTB use on trails will ruin your trails, if the trails aren't ruined after 40 years of excessive MTB use the use was not excessive.


    Most of our trails are multi use with the exception of ~15 miles of MTB only trails and a bunch of trails that are in wilderness area which is obviously only horses and hikers. The multi use trails get wrecked the worst by the horses, the motos don't really do much, yea, the shots that are so steep only a cat 1 racer can climb them do get loose and dusty from the motos, but so what? They're old trails that were "built" unsustainably, they are just too steep, %10+ grade. Why is it a big deal if the motos make a a "too steep to ride" section of trail loose and dusty?

    Around here there just isn't enough bike traffic to "keep trails open", without motos the trails would get overgrown, the one exception being the 15 miles of "no moto" trails we have which are "road biking on dirt" which get boring quick, IMO.

    We do have some "trails that don't exist" which are damn fun, but theres not much mileage there, so it all comes back to the multi use trails that are just fine for MTBing on even though the bulk of the traffic they see is burning dinosaur juice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jackbombay View Post
    Sounds like you are blaming the damage on the vehicle instead of the volume of traffic.

    40 years of excessive MTB use on trails will ruin your trails, if the trails aren't ruined after 40 years of excessive MTB use the use was not excessive.
    You're right that the problem is the volume of motorcycles. There are no other state parks where motos are allowed, so riders from all over southern New England come here to ride. The problems we face with motos are exasperated by the huge population and lack of other options for riders.

    To make matters worse, some trails were lost to a new highway ramp and we also got hit with a tent caterpillar infestation that killed thousands of hardwoods. Now that the trees have been dead about 8 years they fall like mad after every windstorm. Many trails have been blocked. The moto's went around as many blowdowns as they could, but once there are too many trees down they give up and the trail gets overgrown. This has led to concentrating the traffic on just a few trails.

    The trails were also poorly designed in the first place. But that still does not change the fact that 40 years of excessive bike use could not create the mess that the moto's did. Only motorized vehicles could do the damage that's been done. Whole hillsides ripped up as they go around each new rut, creating erosion nightmares. Climbs that used to be at ground level, but are now 6-8 foot deep trenches. The moto's also do very little maintenance, they fill in the worst ruts with logs and crap and repair some of their bridges, but I haven't seen evidence of them cutting a single blowdown, they just rip a new trail around it.

    The state is currently reassessing the state parks and their usage, I pray that the motorcycles will be kicked out. But seeing as this is their last spot as well as the fact that Fall River is considered by Boston to be the armpit of MA leads me to believe they are here to stay.

    On the other hand I do think that in areas that have less people and more open space motos and bikes can coexist peacefully, hell, we did it here for many, many years. But as there are less riding areas for motos, it has become a major problem for us and has pretty much resulted in mtbers abandoning Freetown/Fall river state forest. The trails have been ruined.

    And don't tell me moto's don't do trail damage because I can go take some more pics that make that last picture look like a nice trail. Maybe good riders don't wreck the trails, but for every good rider there seem to be an idiot that likes to shoot dirt all over the place and doesn't give a **** about staying on the official moto trail. Lets face it, the reason people use moto's to rip in new trails is because they can shred up the ground in seconds. There are a lot of ignorant people around here who think that just because they are in the woods they can do whatever they like. I've seen idiots roosting like mad while holding the front brake and sitting there flinging dirt, just digging holes, they're like "What? Its the fuc%kin woods, nobody gives a ****...."

    Maybe its just that there are too many people around here. .

    I guess after all that long windedness my point is that motos and bikes can work together in some places, but be careful making deals with the devil.
    NEMBA Freetown VP

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    Been thinking about that last post and I wanted to discuss this rationally and I ended up ranting. Sorry bout that. Am I frustrated and angry about the state of our trails? Yes, very much so.

    Anyways, the moto riders do do some work, I imagine it's like any other volunteer effort, probably 2 or 3 guys doing all the work and fighting the uphill battle. PSTR guys, thanks, you made and maintained a bunch of these trails and you aren't the guys causing problems.

    Also, MTBers have our share of blame to take. No organized maintenance has been done here for at least 10 years, until this past fall. Maybe if we'd been working all along the trails wouldn't be in the shape they're in. Hopefully that ball is now rolling and in a few years this will just be a bump in the road.

    And... my ranting is obviously due to our unique situation and the stresses of overuse. I also can't overstate the damage done by those fuc%in caterpillars. Rant over.
    NEMBA Freetown VP

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    We are lucky to have a lot of terrain and not too many users, you situation is pretty much the opposite :-/

    The mtbers around here do a fair bit of trail work, but there are moto organizations that work on trails as well, well, jI see signs stating they do but I am not familiar enough with those trails to know how much work is actually done.

    Around here the forest service rarely clears downed trees because motos pack in chain saws and do it before the forest service even knows the trees are down, at least that's how it goes on the more popular mtb trails.

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    Funny you post this. I've been working on building a network of trails off logging roads in this one area for over 8 months now. While I was working on my third trail, "third shake" yesterday, three motos came ripping by on the logging road adjacent to my trail. I'll occasionally hear them riding while I build. It's weird though, they've stayed off my trails so far. Two of the trails have been opened up to the logging roads for over 4 months now. The trail entrances are obvious. There's no way they can't see them. I don't know if it's because the local dirt bike guys respect mtb trail builders or if it's because they can't go as fast on the singletrack and it's boring to them? Or perhaps many of them are also mtbikers? I've run into another trail builder thats building trail near mine. He doesn't seem to worried about them. He rides a dirt bike on the logging roads to get to his trail to build.

    I often wonder what they'd say/think if I were to stop them and talk to them about it. See what they think of me building mtbike trails in the area.
    "Bound to cover just a little more ground"

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    Quote Originally Posted by playdead View Post
    Funny you post this. I've been working on building a network of trails off logging roads in this one area for over 8 months now. While I was working on my third trail, "third shake" yesterday, three motos came ripping by on the logging road adjacent to my trail. I'll occasionally hear them riding while I build. It's weird though, they've stayed off my trails so far. Two of the trails have been opened up to the logging roads for over 4 months now. The trail entrances are obvious. There's no way they can't see them. I don't know if it's because the local dirt bike guys respect mtb trail builders or if it's because they can't go as fast on the singletrack and it's boring to them? Or perhaps many of them are also mtbikers? I've run into another trail builder thats building trail near mine. He doesn't seem to worried about them. He rides a dirt bike on the logging roads to get to his trail to build.

    I often wonder what they'd say/think if I were to stop them and talk to them about it. See what they think of me building mtbike trails in the area.
    I've seen guys go off at moto riders and it makes me cringe badly. Firstly because it creates unnecessary ill will which is inevitably and immediately met with copious amounts of right hand and roost; exactly what you don't want on MTB trails and second, because it's always someone who doesn't work more than a token amount that does it.

    You should have a talk with them if they come by playdead. I am sure you will get more respect if you say hi, report any obvious issue if they continue (ie unfinished trail around a blind bend etc) and ask them to respect the trail construction by having a look/see ride but understand how much damage a blast of throttle can do. Most people are reasonable and the guys we have talked to offer to let us know if they see any problems around the trails. It's the best you can hope for when there is competition for terrain.

    I said earlier in the thread I don't believe we are on the same page as motos in terms of needs or impact, but fact is we are both out there in the bush.

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    Why can't we all get along?

    Why don't Hikers, motos, equestrians, skiers, snowmobilers,birdwatchers, hunters, trail runners, etc... all get along?

    First, its hard enough to get folks within each group to all get along. Each group is very diverse and all groups have good role models, the general population, and the bad apples.

    With in mountain biking we have cross county riders, free riders, down hillers, single speeders, racers, hard core riders, causal riders, bike packers, fat bike riders, and so on. So each trail we build may suit some groups more than others. When we build a beginner trail, we have advanced riders who cry that we are making mountain biking too easy; when we build an advanced trail, other riders complain that we are building trails only a small percentage of mountain bikers can ride; when we build an epic trail system in a rural area, we have urban riders wanting to know why we aren't building more pump tracks and gateway trails.

    We also have users conflict and issues with in our group. Riders not yielding going down hill, racers passing aggressively, rogue trail building, riders on muddy trails for example.

    And we as mountain biker have a diverse set of ethics and outdoor perspectives. Mountain bikers may feel strongly on both sides of motos, Wilderness, Sierra Club, logging, hunting, bird watching, global warming, politics, horse riding, etc....

    As the leader of an IMBA chapter, I have a plate that is always too full, so I don't have any spare time to fight other groups battles. I also don't have any shortage of conflict to deal with, so I am not interested in creating more with in my group in taking controversial stands.

    That said, I do work with what ever local groups who are able to be good partners. While several neighboring states are at odds with Equestrians, HMBA has a good relationship with them and we are partnered on several RTP grants. The Moto scene in Indiana is smaller than it is in other parts of the country. We have had issues with illegal atv riding at some of our properties, but there are organized Moto Groups in the State who we see occasionally and have a good relationship.

    But that is the scene in our State, which is very different that other parts of the Country,

    IMO, the groups that are the most successful have a diverse view, and are willing to work with as many other groups that are willing to play nice. But we also have to understand on the local level which groups aren't willing to play nice.

  48. #48
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    "Why don't Hikers, motos, equestrians, skiers, snowmobilers,birdwatchers, hunters, trail runners, etc... all get along?"

    I just pictured all those groups at one party. Motos, hunters and bird watchers all in the same room... classic
    "Bound to cover just a little more ground"

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by playdead View Post
    "Why don't Hikers, motos, equestrians, skiers, snowmobilers,birdwatchers, hunters, trail runners, etc... all get along?"

    I just pictured all those groups at one party. Motos, hunters and bird watchers all in the same room... classic
    Yeah, we could just simplify this thread to "why can't we all just get along?"

    Human nature I guess.
    NEMBA Freetown VP

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by icecreamjay View Post
    Yeah, we could just simplify this thread to "why can't we all just get along?"

    Human nature I guess.
    Be Nice - Jerry Garcia - YouTube
    "Bound to cover just a little more ground"

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