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  1. #1
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    M.O.R.E. IMBA Chapter Meeting

    IMBA Chapter Meetings- SAVE THE DATE | MORE-MTB

    Hello all,

    M.O.R.E. will be holding a general membership meeting where we will discuss the current proposal for M.O.R.E. to become an IMBA chapter.

    There are two meetings:

    Saturday December 1st
    Stacy C. Sherwood Community Center
    3740 Old Lee Highway
    Fairfax, VA 22030

    Sunday, December 2nd
    Pfeiffer's Corner Schoolhouse
    Rockburn Branch Park
    6109 Rockburn Branch Park Road
    Elkridge, MD 21075

    Members are welcome to attend. We hope to see you there.

    *edited for accuracy*
    Last edited by scorchedearth; 11-28-2012 at 06:13 PM.
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    Thank you scorched!

    Above is the official flyer advertisement.

    Please do note that there is a limited capacity on this event. Once occupancy/capacity has been met, I will personally shut the doors as I am authorized to by the venue owners, the City of Fairfax, Virginia.
    Last edited by mtbfyrefyter; 11-28-2012 at 05:57 PM. Reason: being specific.
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    The meetings have now passed us. If you are a MORE member and came out to the meetings, thank you. If you are not currently a MORE member, please do consider joining the club and help support our mission. Good things are happening in the Mid-Atlantic region.
    Thank you for participating.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbfyrefyter View Post
    The meetings have now passed us. If you are a MORE member and came out to the meetings, thank you. If you are not currently a MORE member, please do consider joining the club and help support our mission. Good things are happening in the Mid-Atlantic region.
    Thank you for participating.
    So, have you all decided if you are going to become an IMBA chapter?
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kapusta View Post
    So, have you all decided if you are going to become an IMBA chapter?
    Thanks for the inquiry. Since the meetings, I have heard and read a lot of back and forth discussions, however, I have not heard of 100% answer yet. I will update this thread accordingly when I get a proper answer.
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  6. #6
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    It's official... MORE will become an IMBA Chapter Club.

    Important Announcement - IMBA MORE Chapter | MORE-MTB

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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    It's official... MORE will become an IMBA Chapter Club.

    Important Announcement - IMBA MORE Chapter | MORE-MTB
    So, despite all their claims of openness and wanting input, the board of directors makes the decision at an unannounced closed door meeting while the discussion is still ongoing. Not shady at all, no sir.

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    The MORE board gave members an opportunity to attend two general membership meetings over a week ago and posted in the MORE forum to contact them directly with concerns. None of the relatively small group of attendees voiced any major objections to becoming an IMBA chapter at the VA meeting. Certainly there was "lively discussion" however all seemed satisfied with the responses. I assume the same was true of the MD meeting the next day.

    I don't follow MORE board activities that closely (beyond reading all the forum posts- even when they get moved around w/o any notification at times!) and came up with:

    o The next BoD meeting would be sometime in early Dec.
    o Time was of the essence for some components of the latest IMBA proposal
    o It was clear both in the meeting that I attended and from what board members posted on the forum that even with my input and others, a membership vote wasn't going to happen

    The conclusion I came to was that the BoD would vote on it in December.

    While I am not a fan of some of the board members personally, I have the view that it takes all kinds of people to get the job done. After reading all the materials, current and past forum posts and speaking with some of BoD in person (that I know reasonably well and others I have had little interaction with), I'm fine with all of them voting and moving forward with a majority in agreement.

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    They kept saying time was of the essence, but got evasive when asked what the deadline actually was. They never stated (that I can find) that this was being voted on this week. Given how active the thread was (and the board members were within the thread), its hard to draw any conclusion other than that the meeting was deliberately kept from the membership. That doesn't sit well with me, but to be honest thats pretty standard operating procedure for MORE.

    Fortunately, some of the folks running for the board of directors have said they will be making it a priority to change the club bylaws to force a membership vote on big changes like this. Its a shame that doing the right thing has to be forced on them, but hopefully it will get done.

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    I'm not a MORE member (was one several years ago) and not really active all that much on their forum anymore since the new re-design so I missed any discussion of this. Maybe this was explained before, but from what I understand, they are just signing up for admin support from IMBA (and IMBA gets access to their members), correct? What makes this a big change for them seeing as they already include IMBA in everything anyways? Are there some cons to this I'm not seeing?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobby_tables View Post
    I'm not a MORE member (was one several years ago) and not really active all that much on their forum anymore since the new re-design so I missed any discussion of this. Maybe this was explained before, but from what I understand, they are just signing up for admin support from IMBA (and IMBA gets access to their members), correct? What makes this a big change for them seeing as they already include IMBA in everything anyways? Are there some cons to this I'm not seeing?
    I'm not sure if MORE worked some other deal out, but as an IMBA chapter, you split membership dues with IMBA 60/40 in IMBA's favor.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    Operationally the change will not be dramatic from what I understand (as a grunt member who enjoys riding and volunteering time to help maintain and build trails).

    I'm a bit concerned about IMBA pushing initiatives that could potentially take away from the close-to-full bucket of what MORE manages now. Some appear worried that MORE will only be able to create machine made trails from now on (which is ludicrous), the grassroots feel of the club will evaporate, "big business" is infiltrating, IMBA won't remain hands off, etc. There are always tradeoffs though in this case, the positives far outweigh negatives IMO.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Operationally the change will not be dramatic from what I understand (as a grunt member who enjoys riding and volunteering time to help maintain and build trails).

    I'm a bit concerned about IMBA pushing initiatives that could potentially take away from the close-to-full bucket of what MORE manages now. Some appear worried that MORE will only be able to create machine made trails from now on (which is ludicrous), the grassroots feel of the club will evaporate, "big business" is infiltrating, IMBA won't remain hands off, etc. There are always tradeoffs though in this case, the positives far outweigh negatives IMO.
    I'm with Roanoke IMBA, we formed a chapter about a year ago. IMBA has virtually nothing to do with what we choose to do as a club in terms of advocacy (unless we call on them) what trail projects we do, rides we organize, etc. I guess if we started doing something that was in direct conflict with their mission, they might want to discuss our status as a chapter.

    Being a chapter has in no way made this a less "grass roots" thing. It's just plugging you in to a good support system.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kapusta View Post
    I'm with Roanoke IMBA, we formed a chapter about a year ago. IMBA has virtually nothing to do with what we choose to do as a club in terms of advocacy (unless we call on them) what trail projects we do, rides we organize, etc. I guess if we started doing something that was in direct conflict with their mission, they might want to discuss our status as a chapter.

    Being a chapter has in no way made this a less "grass roots" thing. It's just plugging you in to a good support system.
    Awesome- thanks...

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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Awesome- thanks...
    Of course, our club is small peanuts compared to MORE. We are likely not worth their time to worry about

    I think they offered MORE a few things to sweeten the deal (did I read something about a dedicated paid staff member?), so they might have expectations?
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kapusta View Post
    Being a chapter has in no way made this a less "grass roots" thing. It's just plugging you in to a good support system.
    This was one of my biggest concerns about becoming an IMBA chapter. Glad to hear that it hasn't changed your club. Thanks for posting!

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    Just because it hasn't happened, doesn't mean that it can't/ won't in the future. And yes, those who were gung ho about passing this were leaving the board first of the year and afraid others wouldn't want it. Whether this was in the clubs best interest, I don't know, but it seemed to be in the best interest of a few board members. What rubbed me wrong was that some of these zealots had been mountain biking for less than 5 years and pressing issues that affect all of us. Please keep this in mind when voting for new board members. While the majority of MOREs members seem to be novice/ intermediate riders, there are those of us who have been doing this for many years who the club doesn't seem too concerned about representing. Just because you can't ride it doesn't mean it shouldn't be there for others to enjoy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    Just because it hasn't happened, doesn't mean that it can't/ won't in the future. And yes, those who were gung ho about passing this were leaving the board first of the year and afraid others wouldn't want it. Whether this was in the clubs best interest, I don't know, but it seemed to be in the best interest of a few board members. What rubbed me wrong was that some of these zealots had been mountain biking for less than 5 years and pressing issues that affect all of us. Please keep this in mind when voting for new board members. While the majority of MOREs members seem to be novice/ intermediate riders, there are those of us who have been doing this for many years who the club doesn't seem too concerned about representing. Just because you can't ride it doesn't mean it shouldn't be there for others to enjoy.
    There were long timer's in support of joining IMBA as well. I bought my first MTB in ~1996; as if that matters

    Scud was the main presenter at the meetings. He's got a few years MTB riding under his belt (and stated that joining IMBA has been a long term goal). The Dave's were positive about the concept in general during the summer/autumn. I look at it as: the folks on the Board volunteered to do the job which nobody else stepped up for and they made it happen. If others want it different then by all means, submit a nomination (deadline is COB today I think).

    I'm feeling positive waves and hoping for the best. It will take effort like anything else.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    There were long timer's in support of joining IMBA as well. I bought my first MTB in ~1996; as if that matters

    Scud was the main presenter at the meetings. He's got a few years MTB riding under his belt (and stated that joining IMBA has been a long term goal). The Dave's were positive about the concept in general during the summer/autumn. I look at it as: the folks on the Board volunteered to do the job which nobody else stepped up for and they made it happen. If others want it different then by all means, submit a nomination (deadline is COB today I think).

    I'm feeling positive waves and hoping for the best. It will take effort like anything else.
    None of those names are on the board so in reality, they have no say. I am not in favor or against the "takeover." Its the process and what happened behind closed doors I take issue with. As for submitting for the Board, I was on it and quit when I felt things previous votes were completely ignored. When i pointed this out, it was also ignored. Funny that it was presented a s long term goal. For who? IMBA? It has been a long term discussion with the club. A goal for some members of the board

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    None of those names are on the board so in reality, they have no say. I am not in favor or against the "takeover." Its the process and what happened behind closed doors I take issue with. As for submitting for the Board, I was on it and quit when I felt things previous votes were completely ignored. When i pointed this out, it was also ignored.
    A Dave IS on the board...

    I'm not in the loop on what all went on behind closed doors though some of the board members were forthcoming about enough of the sorts of things plain old members (like me) frown upon to put it politely.

    I am hopeful and optimistic that less (BS) will be MORE going forward

  21. #21
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    Washed Up is right, becoming an IMBA chapter has not been a long term goal of MORE, but IMBA has certainly been pursuing MORE for a long time. I know this first hand as I served on the 2010 and 2011 BOD.

    Dave F., current MORE prez made it his highest priority to make MORE an IMBA chapter - I'm not exactly sure why to be honest. At last year's December board meeting Dave wanted the board to vote on the Chapter proposal they had at the time without even presenting it to membership. Curious how there were never any board meeting minutes published from the December 2011 meeting...(you'll need to be a MORE member to access those links which are threads in the member area)
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    And with Dave being "MORE Prez" and all, his priority should have been to have a decision of such magnitude done right, rather than to push forth his agenda. Some folks know how to play the political game, but it doesn't sit well with everyone, including some people we work with outside of the MTB world. Im not one for sales pitches and when people start politicking me first inclination is to check my shoe to see if I stepped in something.

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    Quote Originally Posted by riderx View Post
    Washed Up is right, becoming an IMBA chapter has not been a long term goal of MORE, but IMBA has certainly been pursuing MORE for a long time. I know this first hand as I served on the 2010 and 2011 BOD.

    Dave F., current MORE prez made it his highest priority to make MORE an IMBA chapter - I'm not exactly sure why to be honest. At last year's December board meeting Dave wanted the board to vote on the Chapter proposal they had at the time without even presenting it to membership. Curious how there were never any board meeting minutes published from the December 2011 meeting...(you'll need to be a MORE member to access those links which are threads in the member area)
    Hmmm - the way Scud presented it sounded different. I'm not sure why it was pushed so hard either along with another initiative up North. I still see joining IMBA as an overall positive so long as autonomy remains - which kapusta indicated holds true for Roanoke.

    Like I said don't know much about the behind the scenes stuff. At least some of the board and other members posted info that was informative and helpful. Hopefully additional balance will come to the board (along with better communications) for next year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    And with Dave being "MORE Prez" and all, his priority should have been to have a decision of such magnitude done right, rather than to push forth his agenda. Some folks know how to play the political game, but it doesn't sit well with everyone, including some people we work with outside of the MTB world. Im not one for sales pitches and when people start politicking me first inclination is to check my shoe to see if I stepped in something.
    Agreed. I hate politics but they are an unfortunate fact of life. The best way to counteract them is nominate someone to advocate for us

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Hmmm - the way Scud presented it sounded different. I'm not sure why it was pushed so hard either along with another initiative up North. I still see joining IMBA as an overall positive so long as autonomy remains - which kapusta indicated holds true for Roanoke.

    Like I said don't know much about the behind the scenes stuff. At least some of the board and other members posted info that was informative and helpful. Hopefully additional balance will come to the board (along with better communications) for next year.
    Well, Scud hasn't been on the board for quite a few years. I know he is a big proponent of MORE becoming a chapter. I personally haven't talked to him about. I haven't seen him much since he retired and moved to C-ville.

    There had been a big effort on the part of the board to have better and more open communications over the last several years due to accusations of not being transparent enough in the past (a somewhat unfair accusation at the time IMO). A lot of progress was made, but I think the last several weeks set that progress back significantly.
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    Which initiative up north? The Shed "master plan?" I will be honest, that is a huge concern of mine and if it goes through, i would bet my bottom dollar some of the best stuff in there will get shut down. But, to be fair, I cannot believe it has lasted as long as it has.

    And the presentation? Presentations are usually made in a matter to sway people's opinions on something; not unlike a sales pitch, so yeah, Scud liked the idea so it's no surprise his presentation painted chapterization as a good idea. Good idea or not, it was the means in which it all went down that chaffed me as well as others. It seemed a done deal when presented to the board in October for round 2.

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    No master plan exists for the Shed or has been proposed. A proposal to blaze another trail besides the Catoctin Trail was put out there but it wasn't any kind of master plan.That would have been a loop made of long existing trails but was rejected. The closest thing to a master plan is the forest management plan DNR has for the property (see the recent logging at Sand Flats and now over by Lawnmower). I can tell you this, I was invited to a meeting with the city and DNR yesterday where a hot topic with them was the "rogue trail" issue and one of their suggestions was to come with a comprehensive recreation plan for the area which involves all users groups. Not sure if that will happen or not.
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    I would be very sad to have things with the Shed go sour or neutered but that is for another thread.

    What it is it about IMBA that has folks so worried? I've really only ridden in the D.C./ Frederick/WV area and I have no experience with IMBA. Do they have a reputation of working their way into areas and clubs and then changing trails, dumbing things down, and homogenizing trails? I know that is what I hear from folks but is it really the case?

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by CGrr View Post
    What it is it about IMBA that has folks so worried? I've really only ridden in the D.C./ Frederick/WV area and I have no experience with IMBA. Do they have a reputation of working their way into areas and clubs and then changing trails, dumbing things down, and homogenizing trails? I know that is what I hear from folks but is it really the case?
    Thats a part of it. They have a certain type of trail they seem to prefer to be built (contour following, machine built, flowy, flat, fast) and are very good at pushing that under sustainability grounds, though its worth noting that they have a for-profit trailbuilding company (trail solutions) that specializes in those types of trails. Look at pretty much everything they've done in NoVA over the past several years for examples. I enjoy a lot of the trail they build, but I do find it to be very easy. I'd be very sad if all the trail in my neck of the woods were built that way.

    IMBA is also a somewhat of a corporate, political organization. I personally would much prefer MORE stay as much of a local, grassroots org as possible.

    That all said, I totally recognize that many of these concerns seem to be addressed in the chapter proposal. My concern was more with the fact that this was pushed through so quickly, without (IMO) proper member participation. Its totally clear that before it was even put in front of the membership, the board intended to pass it and did not intend to put it to any sort of vote. Further, I was a bit annoyed by the disdain some of the BOD seemed to have for the membership (basically saying "we can't put it towards a vote, because you plebs probably don't understand it properly).

    I'm also a bit concerned that an anonymous private doner was so easily able to influence the whole process (the money for the staff position was not provided by IMBA, but by a private doner, who said the only way it could go towards the staffer was if MORE became a chapter). Said doner could easily have donated the money straight to MORE and accomplished the same thing (hiring a staffer), so why force the whole chapter process on us?

    We will see how it all works out. I'm definitely disappointed in the process. IMO, MORE needs to revise its bylaws to force the BOD to work a bit differently when it comes to this, because this wasn't handled nearly as well as it could be.

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    To be honest, it seemed a done deal before being presented to the BOD round two. Kevin and Dave were always die hard advocates of the big takeover. I dunno, the doner money is shady. I cant help but wonder who else came out of this with some scratch in their pockets. Politics at its best ladies and gents. In the discussions, it wasn't a matter of "is this a good idea," but what is it going to take for you to change your vote to a 'yes.' I'm just glad to see Frank jump in there for VP. Most solid guy on the board.

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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    To be honest, it seemed a done deal before being presented to the BOD round two. Kevin and Dave were always die hard advocates of the big takeover. I dunno, the doner money is shady. I cant help but wonder who else came out of this with some scratch in their pockets. Politics at its best ladies and gents.
    I've seen the term "takeover" several times here. Can you explain what part of becoming an IMBA chapter is a "takeover".

    Have you read the details of the chapter agreement with IMBA? Or talked to other clubs that have become an IMBA chapter?

    Maybe MORE signed up for a very different agreement than we did, but there is nothing "takeover" about what we signed up for.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    Well, it's no longer just MORE. It's a part of a larger organization. A merger of sorts. Part of a larger governing body. You may see it as just a label, but I have also seen mergers or chapterizations change entire governing bodies. I think autonomy is super important especially in something like mountain biking where the region and terrain dictates how you build trail. There has been a recent fad of formulating trails and generating pumptracks on a computer, which may not be a bad guide line, but there must be room for adjustment. I will say every single pumptrack I have ridden that follows a computer model is little more than a turd lacking any sort of flow, having shallow,tight turns which don't allow one to carry speed through the turn. A properly built track should not need rollers in the berm if built properly. A berm contains flow and pump in and of itself. Anyone who knows how to rail a berm halfway decently will tell you the same. The problem is, you have people who are mediocre at best at riding these who are all of a sudden "experts" on the topic. And yes, IMBA flow trail is fun, but i dread the day it starts popping up in the Frederick Watershed or in Fort Valley. Like Jabberwocky said, it's easy. MORE's two major points of interest in becoming a chapter were a paid staffer and membership generation, however, they should have taken the membership into consideration a bit more in making this decision. People do not like the way it was handled an my guess is the organization will lose some members out of it. I could be wrong tho.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    Well, it's no longer just MORE. It's a part of a larger organization. A merger of sorts. Part of a larger governing body. You may see it as just a label, but I have also seen mergers or chapterizations change entire governing bodies. I think autonomy is super important especially in something like mountain biking where the region and terrain dictates how you build trail.
    I think you need to look at the particulars of the chapter agreement. Unless it differs from ours, there is nothing "merger-like" about it. We are in complete control of what we do, and we can leave if we want. I assume the same applies to MORE.

    I am in no position to weigh in on MORE's situation, or whether being an IMBA chapter was a good idea, or how the decision got made. I am just trying to clear up something about what it does and does not mean.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    [QUOTE=CGrr;9972196

    What it is it about IMBA that has folks so worried? I've really only ridden in the D.C./ Frederick/WV area and I have no experience with IMBA. Do they have a reputation of working their way into areas and clubs and then changing trails, dumbing things down, and homogenizing trails? I know that is what I hear from folks but is it really the case?[/QUOTE]

    This is part of why I have been reluctant to get involved with MORE. I have heard from more than a few people that their basic agenda is to create easy, "family-friendly" trails that basically dumb down the better features. The "improvements" at Fountainhead, while fun for the speed, have basically turned a large part of it into a (uphill) BMX track. I also don't see anyone from MORE coming on this forum to dispute this assertion. I would like to give some $ and participate in some work days, but not if it's to dumb down the only (somewhat) advanced trail in Northern VA. It would seem that some of these fears expressed might be justified, based on the apparent "railroading" of MORE by their board into IMBA membership without consulting the larger membership body. Perhaps someone from MORE would be willing to speak to this publicly and help alleviate some of these concerns?

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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    Which initiative up North
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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by washedup View Post
    Well, it's no longer just MORE. It's a part of a larger organization. A merger of sorts. Part of a larger governing body. You may see it as just a label, but I have also seen mergers or chapterizations change entire governing bodies. I think autonomy is super important especially in something like mountain biking where the region and terrain dictates how you build trail. There has been a recent fad of formulating trails and generating pumptracks on a computer, which may not be a bad guide line, but there must be room for adjustment. I will say every single pumptrack I have ridden that follows a computer model is little more than a turd lacking any sort of flow, having shallow,tight turns which don't allow one to carry speed through the turn. A properly built track should not need rollers in the berm if built properly. A berm contains flow and pump in and of itself. Anyone who knows how to rail a berm halfway decently will tell you the same. The problem is, you have people who are mediocre at best at riding these who are all of a sudden "experts" on the topic. And yes, IMBA flow trail is fun, but i dread the day it starts popping up in the Frederick Watershed or in Fort Valley. Like Jabberwocky said, it's easy. MORE's two major points of interest in becoming a chapter were a paid staffer and membership generation, however, they should have taken the membership into consideration a bit more in making this decision. People do not like the way it was handled an my guess is the organization will lose some members out of it. I could be wrong tho.
    Honestly I do not think they will lose many (if any) members. The "takeover" scuttlebutt is baseless and does nothing more than spread fear uncertainty and doubt (FUD). Other clubs that have joined IMBA have not become part of a syndicate. I am also not a fan of "flow trails for all" and do not have nightmares that joining IMBA will turn the Shed and other wild 'n wondeful trails into machine cut mediocrity.

    What I'd like to see is a unified club- no XXL and others (who boycott club events like the MoCo epic for example).
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Honestly I do not think they will lose many (if any) members. The "takeover" scuttlebutt is baseless and does nothing more than spread fear uncertainty and doubt (FUD). Other clubs that have joined IMBA have not become part of a syndicate. I am also not a fan of "flow trails for all" and do not have nightmares that joining IMBA will turn the Shed and other wild 'n wondeful trails into machine cut mediocrity.

    What I'd like to see is a unified club- no XXL and others (who boycott club events like the MoCo epic for example).
    It will be interesting to see what this does to membership numbers. A huge number of MOREs current membership were signed up during the MoCo epic (346, which is damn near 1/3 of MOREs membership). Its not clear whether they can offer the discounted membership through the IMBA deal. MORE is gaining some members (folks who were members of IMBA but not MORE), but the price for membership is increasing, which will undoubtedly have some negative effect. Of course, now there will be a paid staffer, with a lot of incentive to expand the membership base.

    I guess we'll see how it all shakes out a year from now.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    What I'd like to see is a unified club- no XXL and others (who boycott club events like the MoCo epic for example).
    I find it hard to believe that anybody would boycott great events like the MoCo epic, etc., that would just be childish and pointless.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by progfan1 View Post
    This is part of why I have been reluctant to get involved with MORE. I have heard from more than a few people that their basic agenda is to create easy, "family-friendly" trails that basically dumb down the better features. The "improvements" at Fountainhead, while fun for the speed, have basically turned a large part of it into a (uphill) BMX track. I also don't see anyone from MORE coming on this forum to dispute this assertion. I would like to give some $ and participate in some work days, but not if it's to dumb down the only (somewhat) advanced trail in Northern VA.
    The Fountainhead Project did solicit opinions from the community as to what should be done to the black trail in their construction over the coming winter. I wrote in and encouraged them not to dumb down the trail and to keep it difficult for those of us who enjoy technical challenges. If they were asking for public comment, I assume the builders may actually care about our opinions.
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  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by progfan1 View Post
    This is part of why I have been reluctant to get involved with MORE. I have heard from more than a few people that their basic agenda is to create easy, "family-friendly" trails that basically dumb down the better features.
    I see this as part of the problem ( this is not directed at you progfan1, please don't take offense). Maybe I am just naive but when people say they won't get involved with MORE, won't renew their membership, quit, boycott, etc. because of this or that, all you do is take your voice and opinion out of the equation. What you're left with is the folks you disagree with and you'll just have to live with whatever they decide.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    What I'd like to see is a unified club- no XXL and others (who boycott club events like the MoCo epic for example).
    A unified club doesn't mean everyone having the same opinion or falling in line with leadership.

    XXL is a team where most (maybe all) members are MORE members and support MORE, they are not competing with MORE. I am unaware of them or any other group boycotting the MoCo Epic. What's your source?
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  43. #43
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    No offense taken, CGrr, but from the way the IMBA motion was apparently ramrodded through, it doesn't seem like the larger MORE membership has had that much say. A clear impression is being sent that the agenda of a small power group is always going to carry the day. This is not just my impression either. I have talked to several people on the trails that have this perception of the way MORE does business. They assert that a certain group wants to make the trails more "accessible" by dumbing down technical features, etc., and I still have yet to see anyone from MORE coming out to vehemently deny this. It is true that by not getting involved in the organization one's voice may not be heard, but it also seems that if members' opinions are not in line with the agenda of the board's power base then their voices are not heard either. I would like for such assertions to be proven wrong before I commit my time and money to an organization. I have already heard rumblings that proposed re-routes on the Black Trail will make certain features easier. I am not opposed to beginner and intermediate trails, but there are already two great options for these riders within shouting distance of Fountainhead in the form of Wakefield and Laurel Hills, and more advanced riders are being squeezed out. Turning most of the trail into a BMX track and then sticking a couple of teetertotters and ramps in does not an advanced trail make. Again, I would be happy to have these assertions proven wrong.

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    It looks as though some things may be changing on the Board based on some of the members who have stepped up to run for positions. That is what it takes, for people to step up and change the course of action. It's hard to do though because free time can be hard to come by and most of us just want to ride.

  45. #45
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    I hope you're right, because I have some free time to give to an organization like this, and if they are truly interested in serving ALL levels of riders effectively, count me in! The Black Trail work will be the test for me.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by CGrr View Post
    I find it hard to believe that anybody would boycott great events like the MoCo epic, etc., that would just be childish and pointless.
    Not a single one of them did the epic and there were a gaggle of 'em at the fall camping gig. Go Figure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by edubfromktown View Post
    Not a single one of them did the epic and there were a gaggle of 'em at the fall camping gig. Go Figure.
    Not seeing how that equates to a boycott.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by jabberwocky View Post
    It will be interesting to see what this does to membership numbers. A huge number of MOREs current membership were signed up during the MoCo epic (346, which is damn near 1/3 of MOREs membership). Its not clear whether they can offer the discounted membership through the IMBA deal. MORE is gaining some members (folks who were members of IMBA but not MORE), but the price for membership is increasing, which will undoubtedly have some negative effect. Of course, now there will be a paid staffer, with a lot of incentive to expand the membership base.

    I guess we'll see how it all shakes out a year from now.
    Yup.

    Something else to consider:

    I had to stop in at work on Saturday and did a roundabout ride through Cabin John N on the way (the new trails that start by the campsites across the street from Cabin John Park and follow along the "bluff" above Rt. 270 are awesome if you are looking for summin new and different). I came upon 4riders up by Goya Dr. and stopped to chat. None of them were MORE members and one said he's been a lurker for a while. Main reason he stated for not joining MORE was that there seemed to be a lot of political BS and he didn't want to deal with it!

    I encouraged them to consider joining now that IMBA is in the picture and they seemed positive about the new development.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by progfan1 View Post
    They assert that a certain group wants to make the trails more "accessible" by dumbing down technical features, etc., and I still have yet to see anyone from MORE coming out to vehemently deny this.
    I've been involved in MORE for 10 years so I'll step up and deny that (although I currently have no official position, so don't think I'm the spokesperson or anything like that). Trail redesign depends on a number of things including what park management wants, existing terrain, who the user groups are, what the trail experience should be like, sustainability, and also who is leading the project. The project lead usually is not a MORE board member or even getting direction from them, they have wide descretion and it usually comes down to what park management will let them build.

    There are plenty of people in MORE who ride technical stuff, support difficult trails and want to ride difficult trails. There are far fewer who step and and do the work necessary to make them happen or help guide park management see that angle in their vision. That is the nature of volunteerism

    When I hear complaints about Fountainhead I think people have unrealistic expectations for that place. It's got roots and a couple hundred feet of elevation change max. It is never going to be a downhill destination or have epic technical riding. If you want that you've got to go to Eliz. Furnace or the Shed. I know the new stuff has changed the flavor, but let's not expect a true mountain experience from terrain that doesn't even remotely resemble a mountain. You also need to consider it surrounds a resevoir so erosion issues are a concern of the park management.

    Accessibility or easy trails is usually on the low end of the list for the trail designs, but my understanding of the Fountainhead redesign is they are taking that into consideration for this particular redesign and doing a stacked loop approach (easy/moderate/hard). As to why, I'd talk to the project team to find out why that was done.
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  50. #50
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    riderx,

    Thanks for this clarification of at least your point of view. I understand that Fountainhead can't be the Shed or Eliz Furnace, but many challenging rooty sections were smoothed over (I understand that some, but not all of this was for erosion protection) and certain challenging climbs (Cardiac Hill, for example) were rerouted to make them easier. If they are planning on accommodating more advanced riders on the Black Trail redesign the way they have done for beginning and intermediate riders on the Green and Blue Trails up to this point, I have high hopes. I have heard many express concerns, however, that this will not be the case. Time will tell. Thank you again for clarifying your position as a long-time MORE member. I hope the leadership will prove to be as forthcoming as you have been.

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