Denver Post article on self-supported MTB racing- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    Just go ride!
    Reputation: Stefan_G's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    616

    Denver Post article on self-supported MTB racing

    http://www.denverpost.com/outdoors/ci_6117399

    Even a pic of Dave Harris at the start of the GL. I had to laugh when I read the part of the caption that said "The 340-mile singletrack race..." Hmmm, I guess I was going so hard I had doublevision the whole way.

    Anyway, the article is on how self-supported racing is struggling to fit into the government's management policies. Or maybe I should say how the government is struggling to manage self-supported racing.

    Seems to me they are struggling to manage something that doesn't need to be managed, solely because the buzz-word "race" is involved.

    "Regardless if it's grassroots or organized, these kinds of events include a great number of people who are impacting public lands, and we've got to find a way to minimize the impacts," said Mel Lloyd, public affairs specialist for the Grand Junction.
    ...
    The field office counted 65,370 users of the Kokopelli Trail originating from the trailhead outside Fruita last year.
    So, on average, this means there are 179 users of the Kokopelli Trail per day, 365 days per year. In reality, those visits are concentrated during the weekends, especially in the spring and fall. In any case, assuming that their count is accurate, even as big as the KTR was this year, it only accounted for ~1% of the use. And the 7 GLR riders aren't even a blip on the radar.

    So, these events include a "great number" of people who are impacting public lands!? The numbers speak for themselves. And as far as impact goes, 100+ MTBers on the KT probably have less impact than 1 moto or ATV. Citing "impact" as the reason these events need to be managed makes absolutely no sense to me. Why does the government and/or any bureaucracy have this intrinsic need to manage some event when they can't even present a rational reason for why said event needs to be managed?
    The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not. -TJ

  2. #2
    .......................
    Reputation: ionsmuse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    3,049
    I think the practicalities are to a large extent irrelevant. The man wants a piece, and a piece he shall have (one way or the other).

    We need to either "get legit" and organize within the rules, or stay within the group ride paradigm (say, 15 or less?).

  3. #3
    feel the Force
    Reputation: mtbjedi1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    546
    Quote Originally Posted by ionsmuse
    I think the practicalities are to a large extent irrelevant. The man wants a piece, and a piece he shall have (one way or the other).

    We need to either "get legit" and organize within the rules, or stay within the group ride paradigm (say, 15 or less?).
    We can even do it on the same day, just schedule these 15 or less groups to leave on a designated hour. Of course, some will say even this violates the spirit of the event. Truth is, the original spirit is already compromised.

  4. #4
    Grizzly
    Reputation: alizbee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    695
    "We need these grassroots racers to help care for the public lands they recreate on," Lloyd said, citing safety, vegetation and wildlife concerns that go unguarded when groups rally without BLM approval. "Bottom line is they are impacting the resource, and if you allow this kind of use to continue without regulation or monitoring, the areas won't be very fun to visit and people won't want to go there."
    Once again the logic of the BLM just baffles me. How is it that a permit would prevent or ease any " safety, vegetation and wildlife concerns" ? As far as us caring for the land, I don't think there is a group of users that are more active in trail building/maintenance, advocacy and low impact use than MTBers.

    I guess that 40ft motor home I passed the night of the race parked out in the brush in rabbit valley has no impact on the land or vegetation.

    If the BLM wants the Kokopelli Trail to still be a nice place to visit in 10 or 50 years, get the jeeps and trucks and motos out of there. Let it be a place to reach under ones own power.

    Under the current system, the BLM would rather have 50 under prepared, novice riders who know little about the trail, the desert, or the bikes they rented, but have a permit, out on the route, than 50 experienced, low impact riders who if the need arises, can get to safety without calling in the national guard.

    I am curious how they come up with the number of trail users on the KT. I have never passed through a ticker gate.... It would also be interesting to know how many of those users venture beyond the Loops area, and onto the rest of the trail.

    I think beyond safety and impact, the real issue is that the Government does not like things going on that they do not know about, that they do not approve of, and that they are not asked permission for. They hate the words underground, grassroots, and unsupported.

    At any rate, a nice article....
    GrizzlyAdam.net
    Read my book
    Follow me on Twitter

    "The only thing better than solitude, is society."

    ~Ed Abbey

  5. #5
    Exactly 1/2 of 2-Epic
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    750
    Quote Originally Posted by ionsmuse
    I think the practicalities are to a large extent irrelevant. The man wants a piece, and a piece he shall have (one way or the other).

    We need to either "get legit" and organize within the rules, or stay within the group ride paradigm (say, 15 or less?).
    I wouldn't say it's a one-size-fits-all prob/solution. As you've seen, dealing with the forest service is relatively painless. The Bureau of Logging and Mining (and grazing really needs to fit in there somewhere) is proving to be MOST unreasonable.

    As I just related to Stephan via email...there was this spot on the Paradox where this rancher ran his cattle - pretty much destroyed miles of of the Paradox from above Nucla to Glencoe bench. Yet, his no trespassing signs made the shortcut to Nucla unavailable to riders...

    Still more of a rant/sorespot...but anyway the point there is that the agency that allows cattle to obliterate large areas of the West's public lands has an issue with cyclists leaving a few tire tracks that'll be blown away in the next strong gust?

    NFW.

    My take? Go legit on FS lands, on BLM lands "organize" via invitation/email/word of mouth and meet under moonlight, as we like to do anyway.

    No way will this cycle take us back to circles at ski areas. It just ain't gonna happen.
    Dave

    Anything is possible. The impossible just takes longer.

    2 Epic

  6. #6
    Scott in Tucson
    Reputation: Krein's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    1,331
    Quote Originally Posted by Stefan_G
    Thanks for posting that. Interesting article.

    I will not be surprised if you hear from someone about the CTR. At least the issue about carrying bikes through the 6 mile dirt road Lost Wilderness will be brought to the front, I guess. I'll be willing to bet that raised a few eyebrows.

    I hope that the future of this stays reasonable. Nothing wrong with the various agencies asking to be contacted about these events. Matt T's recent Cochiti 100 race had the FS at the start, checking for the 75 person limit. But there were no problems in the end (maybe Matt can chime in here).

    Hopefully the BLM can evolve their rules similarly -- so they can know about the events, yet not charge fees or unneccessarily limit them.

    I have to laugh whenever I think about making the GDR more 'official.' It would probably be a year+ of work just contacting and working with every BLM, FS, Fish/Wildlife, private, reservation, county, and state land agency the 2500 mile route covers.
    Author of TopoFusion GPS Software. MTB+backpacking = bikepacking.net. Ride Diary.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,892
    Quote Originally Posted by Stefan_G
    Seems to me they are struggling to manage something that doesn't need to be managed, solely because the buzz-word "race" is involved.?
    Exactly. We should call these Derbys or Rallys to at least get rid of some of the hysteria.

    We had the USFS Law Enforcement show up for a local underground 100-miler this last weekend and their sole purpose was to count heads to make sure we did not exceed the magical number of 74 people. Their rules are less strict than BLM that's for sure.

    They had a printed copy of our website in hand and had spent time researching the event and the people involved. The officer admitted to me that because this was on the internet it appeared like we were promoting a major race (with whatever definition one uses to form an image in their head).

    They were cordial, polite, and even offered suggestions in order to protect organizers (sign up sheets before hand, etc) - but the fact of the matter is that the US government saw fit to pay 2 individuals to come out on their day off at 6:20 in the morning to count the number of bikers heading out of a parking lot! One would think there might be a better way to use resources. We had 60 people so it was tight, but not enough to get a fine ala KTR.

    Part of this is that perhaps in their eyes we are brazen and flaunting this in front of them. I'm thinking that words like race just set off unwanted alarms.... The more low key, the better...

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,892
    Quote Originally Posted by Krein
    Matt T's recent Cochiti 100 race had the FS at the start, checking for the 75 person limit. But there were no problems in the end (maybe Matt can chime in here).
    .
    Ummmmm....my name is Marco Esquandolas.

    See thread above - sorry scott missed your reply before I jumped on the soapbox.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    39
    Tell them you'll be providing an ORV shuttle service from from Moab to GJ for a "wise use" group and the bikes and lycra are a ploy to keep SUWA off your trail. They'll leave you alone...

  10. #10

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    110
    Quote Originally Posted by far twiggle
    Tell them you'll be providing an ORV shuttle service from from Moab to GJ for a "wise use" group and the bikes and lycra are a ploy to keep SUWA off your trail. They'll leave you alone...
    I wish there was less truth to this quote than there is. I think we're all smart enough to realize that the Bureau of Land Mismanagement doesn't give a rat's behind about limiting cycling on their lands as a means of protecting the land. It's sad really that anyone can claim this and expect to be believed. If they cared that much about protecting the land doesn't it seem as though they might first attempt to limit grazing, mining, ORV use, and any of the other many uses that all impact the health of the land infinitely more than cycling? Why do they care then? simple, MOST (hopefully not all) at the BLM don't differentiate between we cyclists and any other human powered land use groups. as far as they are concerned if you want to use the land under your own power and in a low impact way then you must automatically want to stop use of the land in ways which are high impact. That is you have a land use preference that is 180 degrees from the way in which the BLM has been managing it for decades. The BLM doesn't take the time to see if perhaps there is a difference between cyclists, backpackers, hikers, SUWA, rafters, kayakers, Earth First, Sierra Club, etc, etc. To put it in really general terms, we're all a bunch of hippies (or eco-terrorists if you prefer) as far as they are concerned. What the BLM wants is for us to go away, to go back to riding around in circles on private or municipal land. if they implement use fees and restrictions they hope that we'll simply decide it's too much effort to use their lands for our "races." After all this is pretty much how they've dealt with other low impact user groups in the past, they say and do just enough to keep enough of them away or satisfied so as to avoid too much revolt to the way in which they ravage the lands that they claim to "manage." The next couple years will be interesting though. As fewer and fewer cyclists become content to ride around in circles and more and more of these underground "races" pop up something will have to give sooner or later. I would assume that it'll just mean that more and more of these "races" will have to be more underground than they already are. Remember, none of this is new to the BLM as it is to us cyclists. they've been dealing with all this for years, just with other user groups.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    523

    What's SUWA?

    Sorry to be out of the loop, but I've never seen this acronym.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    39
    http://www.suwa.org/site/PageServer

    Wouldn't it be cheaper (than the ticket anyway) to apply for an oil/gas lease and "hire" some folks to do an Environmental Impact Statement over a weekend?

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.