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  1. #1
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    The Culture of Mountain Biking has Gone Astray

    https://www.adventure-journal.com/20...g-gone-astray/

    First, get off my lawn.

    Second, if there is truth to this, then I think it all started way back in the early 90’s with the introduction of suspension and disc brakes. For those too young to remember, the introduction of suspension to mountain biking was quite controversial and very similar to ebikes today.

    The Culture of Mountain Biking has Gone Astray-a79bc9b1-e7c8-4725-8e80-43ae60216ac9.jpg

    (Mod edit: Oh, look! Copy & Paste)


    The Culture of Mountain Biking Has Gone Astray


    Earlier this week, at the end of a particularly exhausting workday, I wheeled my bike out the back door of the shop, turned out the lights, closed the door, and pedaled in the general direction of dirt. I didn’t have a set target in mind, just knew that I needed some downtime to decompress, sort out the chaos in my head, incinerate a few endorphins, hopefully even take a break at a silent overlook. All in the name of recharging the spirit within.


    The closest trailhead is less than a mile away and my most frequent objective: Getting onto dirt ASAP tops all else, usually. But as I approached Highway 340 I could see a line of cars stretching all the way back to Riverside Parkway, all lined up to turn left, all heading more or less for that same trailhead. I aborted that plan and stuck to the bike path awhile longer, thinking I could head up Miramonte—a less used entrance only a little further away—but heavy traffic deflected me away from there, too. So as the bike path ran out I found myself merging onto Little Park Road.


    LPR is fairly steep as roads go in these parts. I’ve climbed it literally hundreds of times in the 20 years I’ve lived nearby. It used to be my preferred training ground, then when racing ended it became the quickest way of getting to some of the lesser used trails. That would be it’s purpose yesterday. As I labored up the grade, breath ragged and sweat stinging my eyes, I was passed by a virtually endless stream of diesel dualies, #vanlifers, and mini motorhomes, seemingly all with a pile of bikes hanging off their back ends. Shards of music pierced the air as each motored past, puffs of cigarette and dope smoke escaped the windows, there was even a (potentially unrelated?) stereotypical Red Bull can in the gutter adjacent to the steepest bit.

    Given that it was 5 p.m. on a weekday I had no good reason to expect any of this to be different. People—you, me, us —have been blowing off steam after work since forever.

But something about this day really made it obvious that the demographic that is “mountain bike users” has changed, shifted. My hope is that there still exist people who use bicycles to get out, get away, to find silence and solace in the mountains and the woods. I know that they must exist, I just don’t ever seem to cross paths with them no matter how far out I go. Thus their existence remains hypothetical and seems less likely by the day, as each successive ride shows more evidence of shredding endurbros skidding into corners and cheater-line creating (and maintaining) dolts veering off the trail and through sensitive soils — all in the name of shaving a few seconds so that their name climbs higher on an online list populated by similar miscreants.



    When did we become this crowd? How are these actions in any way morally defensible? Has our demographic gone completely batshit in the past few years, selling our soul in exchange for a map that no longer shows us the way?
    These were the questions swimming through my head as I did, eventually, find a sliver of silence and solace on last night’s ride. I can’t say that I discovered any answers—I don’t even think I’m yet
    asking the right questions—but I did, in that one silent moment spent catching my breath while overlooking the Gunnison River, draw one solid conclusion:
    
We are failing.
    Failing to educate new riders on etiquette.



    Failing to criticize the actions of fellow riders.
    Failing to listen when they criticize us.
    
Our trails are being systematically shredded—yes, by skidding endurbros, straightlining shuttle monkeys, and shortsighted stravassholes. And by an industry that “sells” the sport largely by glorifying the above abusers. But also by you, and by me, by remaining complicit in the shadows and not saying “enough.”
    Please note that in every way here I have said “we” and “our” and “us,” because while it’s easy to point a finger and place blame on others, doing so solves nothing. The problem is us as a user group. Ignorance is ruining the trails: Whether we’re actively doing the damage or standing idly by and letting it happen, we’re all to blame.

    Riding bikes is something I’ve done my whole life. In ways big and small, intentional and not, bikes have defined the trajectory of my time on earth. I wouldn’t change that for anything.
    Not to say that I don’t have regrets—I do. I regret that our sport hit the mainstream doing 100 mph and totally unprepared for the havoc that was about to be wrought. That our trails are being flooded by people who don’t understand what it took to get said trails, nor what it takes to keep them, nor do they seem to care. Mostly I regret that we don’t have the infrastructure to educate these people—not that many of them would listen.

    What I would do, given a time machine and the ability to change the conversation in some meaningful way, is to slip back in time and plant some sort of a seed of understanding — some way of grasping what was coming—in the mind of someone influential in the sport 20 years ago. A John Tomac or Juli Furtado or Don Cuerdon or even—gasp_Zapata Espinoza. Maybe they could have done, or said, or pushed for something that would change the reality of where we are right now.

    I don’t know exactly what I would say to them then. Nor does it matter now. Our sport has fundamentally changed, leaped the tracks you might even say, and nothing short of a wholesale reckoning is going to change that. Whatever words I might have conjured then would and do ring utterly hollow today, as we veer recklessly toward an unsustainable future.

    I think most of us have been in denial about this wave of change even as it steamrolls our beloved local trails. It’s time to move on to acceptance—recognizing that the problem is real and not going away—so that we might begin to think about and craft a long-term plan. The biggest focus of such a plan would be on education, and specifically on recognizing that
    just getting people outdoors is no longer enough—you have to prepare them to behave appropriately and respectfully, toward both the land and each other, once out there.

    I know better than to think that this little essay is going to be widely read. Nor do I believe that it will open the eyes of many who read it. But if it only reaches a few, and if a handful of those point the finger at themselves in recognization of the fact that we’re all to blame for our current state, then maybe we can begin to gain momentum toward a more sustainable future.

    Last edited by AVL-MTB; 1 Week Ago at 07:44 PM.
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  2. #2
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    Wouldn't it have made sense to post the full story here instead of sending us off to a 3rd party site that many of us won't bother clicking to ?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by singletrackmack View Post
    https://www.adventure-journal.com/20...g-gone-astray/

    First, get off my lawn.

    Second, if there is truth to this, then I think it all started way back in the early 90’s with the introduction of suspension and disc brakes. For those too young to remember, the introduction of suspension to mountain biking was quite controversial and very similar to ebikes today.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I don’t recall any controversy. Certainly nothing to the same extent as the whole e-bike thing. That said, that’s right when I first got serious about mountain biking so maybe I just flat out missed it.

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    That's when I started riding. Right before the introduction of front sus.

    Off road riding, even fire trails, was extremely challenging back then.

    -gearing was extremely steep. My lowest gear was a 26/30. I had no knee injuries back then and I was also 25 lbs lighter, so while very challenging, steep climbs were still possible.

    -the lack of suspension meant fast speed downhilling was a no-no. You had to be extremely careful picking your lines and proceed cautiously.

    -I had little company when riding. The silence and the views were amazing.

    Now, with 150mm travel trail bikes and 170mm travel endure bikes, carbon frame and wheels, not to mention 29er or 29+ wheels, feeling bumps, much less riding around them, are a thing of the past. Bombing down trails at ski resorts or anywhere else at 30 mph is the norm.

    The current iteration of mountain bike riding feels like a foreign sport to me in many ways. But I still love to ride in nature. There's nothing like it. I still love to ride and always will, suspension or no suspension.

  5. #5
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    I dunno about that, I got into mtbing in the early 90's and suspension was just arriving (in my first year I saw 1 set). We all wanted suspension, like everyone, I don't recall anyone not wanting some.
    To me the change happened towards the end of the 90's, when XC and DH went their separate ways (racing). Before you did DH it was part of mtbing, you did XC it was part of mtbing, but then suddenly you either DH'd or you XC'd, you didn't both and it became "lycra clad" XC and "Moto pant" wannabes in DH and things have just gotten worse since then.
    All the gear and no idea.

  6. #6
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    No trails were ever directly threatened by suspension. I guess you could say that you could ride a little faster with it than with out, but its not a motor on a bike (motorbike)
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    Can we stop making up various “crises” in mountain biking? Geez, just go ride your bike and don’t be a dick on the trail.

    I’ve been riding for over 20 years and live in mountain bike focused area and have encountered zero of the problems the author of that article stated. Sounds like someone needed to fill up space on a website and was short on ideas.


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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTSession View Post
    I’ve been riding for over 20 years and live in mountain bike focused area and have encountered zero of the problems the author of that article stated. Sounds like someone needed to fill up space on a website and was short on ideas.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Also one thing I don't get about the article...he's riding to the trailhead, there's all the cars parked there, so he detours to next trail head, where he's passed by cars going to trail head, so he detours again...etc... he's on a flippin bike, he can just ride by all the cars, he doesn't need to park, and while they're unloading, he's hitting the trail. Sure that means they'll be people out riding, but more people riding (and maybe getting in your way) is better than nobody riding in the grand scheme of things.
    sounds more like I've been riding for years, therefore they're my trails so get off them so I can have them to myself.
    All the gear and no idea.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by singletrackmack View Post
    For those too young to remember, the introduction of suspension to mountain biking was quite controversial and very similar to ebikes today.



    Not similar at all. In the beginning lots of people hated front suspension because the first forks were pretty sucky, not because they were contriversal.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkrmike View Post
    I don’t recall any controversy. Certainly nothing to the same extent as the whole e-bike thing. That said, that’s right when I first got serious about mountain biking so maybe I just flat out missed it.
    that's because that statement is bs. The main controversy of ebikes is because of the internet and the culture of exaggerating everything into a threat. 40mm of front travel didn't make bikes exponentially faster, and there weren't idiots on the internet back then to claim it did the way there are now claiming that a small, speed-regulated power boost is making bikes as fast as motorcycles.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joules View Post
    40mm of front travel didn't make bikes exponentially faster, and there weren't idiots on the internet back then to claim it did the way there are now claiming that a small, speed-regulated power boost is making bikes as fast as motorcycles.


    I've never heard anyone say that either, though I have have seen several pro-ebikers somehow extrapolate that from a completely dissimilar sentence.
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    Oh good this stupid article again.
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  14. #14
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    The only controversy I remember was about the reliability of suspension and disc brake products. I had so many failures with forks, shocks and brakes in the late 90s that I took a hiatus. I came back around 2001-2002 hoping the growing pains were over. Bought an Intense Tracer frame. The first fork I remember buying post 2001 was a Manitou. I installed it, took the Tracer off of a small curb outside my house and the fork exploded. Returned it, bought a RS and some Avid brakes and all was good for quite some time. I think I rode that bike for 4 or 5 years.
    How can this mean anything to me, if I really don't feel anything at all. I'll keep digging, till I feel something.

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    I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to have started off with a rigid frame and cantilever brakes, and ride continually until now, witnessing first hand and being part of all of the industry developments along the way. It’s been an incredibly interesting ride.

    But yeah. No e-bike like controversy with the onset of front suspension.

    I recall an early Manitou fork that may as well have been a rigid fork (the pink “softest” elastomers were rock hard and it weighed a ton). I replaced those elastomers with Speed Springs. I basically converted it into a pogo stick. But man, I will never forget how much fun I had first discovering an active front end. Exciting times. But no controversy.

    As for the article, I love the fact that more people ride in my area. I think it’s awesome.

  16. #16
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    So the Author works in a Bike Shop in Grand Junction CO and is butt hurt about all the MTB tourists riding "his" trails, grow up. He makes his living off them, he is part of the "problem". The only person who has lost their way is Mike Curiak.

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    Quote Originally Posted by screamingbunny View Post
    So the Author works in a Bike Shop in Grand Junction CO and is butt hurt about all the MTB tourists riding "his" trails, grow up. He makes his living off them, he is part of the "problem". The only person who has lost their way is Mike Curiak.
    There's nothing worse than shop workers/owners that hate their customers.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by weeksy950 View Post
    Wouldn't it have made sense to post the full story here instead of sending us off to a 3rd party site that many of us won't bother clicking to ?
    When I click on the link it goes straight to the article also, seemed. A bit long to post the whole thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Joules View Post
    that's because that statement is bs. The main controversy of ebikes is because of the internet and the culture of exaggerating everything into a threat. 40mm of front travel didn't make bikes exponentially faster, and there weren't idiots on the internet back then to claim it did the way there are now claiming that a small, speed-regulated power boost is making bikes as fast as motorcycles.
    Ok, maybe suspension was not as controversial as ebikes, I remember at least a few articles about how it would ruin the sport and remember die hard hold outs that wanted nothing to do with suspension. Also, we didn’t have forums like this back then to scream and yell about change. And am not saying that the RS1 allowed us to ride like we do now, but is was the beginning and that is where it started.


    Quote Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
    I did a search to see if the article was posted on here and it did not come up. Now I see the link you posted went to a thread with a title “articles advenure mag”. Pretty poor thread title. If I had found I wouldn’t have posted.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by mik_git View Post
    I dunno about that, I got into mtbing in the early 90's and suspension was just arriving (in my first year I saw 1 set). We all wanted suspension, like everyone, I don't recall anyone not wanting some.
    To me the change happened towards the end of the 90's, when XC and DH went their separate ways (racing). Before you did DH it was part of mtbing, you did XC it was part of mtbing, but then suddenly you either DH'd or you XC'd, you didn't both and it became "lycra clad" XC and "Moto pant" wannabes in DH and things have just gotten worse since then.
    This ^

    I was around mtbing all through the 1990’s. I watched the sport grow via going to the races. Although I didn’t buy my first mountain bike until 2000 I rode in the 1990’s many of the early version suspension forks and early rear suspensions from family members, friends and rentals. The early DH group wore MX garb and the XC riders in Lycra. One or the other. Then in the early 2000’s other terms describing types of bikes came into play to separate them out even more. Like “all mountain” or “free ride” bikes. A bike meant to be between a downhill bike and a XC bike. Since then the industry has gone crazy with terms and bike specific categories.
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    I started Riding in 1998. I had V-brakes (not Cantis) and 80mm elstomer fork. Between now and then not that much has changed on the trail side of things except for being more trails here where I live. Back then we had shuttle bunnies and we still do today. Bikes have changed, but scene has not. What we call out bikes has changed, but scene has not. People hated climbing back then and they still do today. Some people loved climbing back then and still do today. Some people were a-holes back then and still are today. People bought bikes for what they wanted to ride not for their needs back then and still do today.

    That writer sounds like a just grumpy complainer. He cites nothing to back up any claims and just bitching and moaning because he got up on the wrong side of the bed I guess. He comes off not with an argument about something, but just that he is upset at the world. So what. You can't please all the people all the time.
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    Mikesee posted this in passion when he placed it on his blog last year. If you can pull up that thread in Passion (RIP) you'll get more details on Mike's perspective.

  22. #22
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    I started mountain biking in 1988. What I recall throughout that entire time is that people hate and/or fear change. Anything new and different is met with initial repulsion, skepticism, and disdain. Be it front suspension, full suspension, aluminum frames, disc brakes, Shaun Palmer, 29ers, downhilling, shuttling, lift assisted riding, aluminum spokes, 1x drivetrains, droppers, and currently e-bikes, people as a whole immediately find reasons to not like it. At first.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by mik_git View Post
    We all wanted suspension, like everyone, I don't recall anyone not wanting some.
    Not everyone embraced the introduction of suspension...all the XC racing guys I rode with, did not use it at first. I loved it; I had a moto background. I think my first full suspension bike was a 95 or 96 GT...it was a piece of junk

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    I have ridden lots in Grand Junction and Fruita. I have no idea what the author is talking about. I witnessed none of that. Must have gone at the right times.

    My most vivid memory is hammering Zippity Do Dah in an evening ride after riding earlier that day in Moab...hanging on for dear life riding at speeds right on the edge of disaster. Priceless.

    Then again, I like the idea of more people riding. The trails in my area can be a little busy at times, but certainly not to the point of impacting my enjoyment on rides.

    Like I said, I love the fact that the sport has grown and evolved over the last few decades.

  25. #25
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    The culture of mountain biking hasn't changed any more than the rest of our culture.


    It's funny to me, now that we are all connected all the time we spend that time inventing reasons to separate ourselves from other everyone.



    I do think the shift in style came in the mid to late 90's, but I think it was more because of the Rocky Mountain Fro Riders, Brett Tippie, Richie Schley, and Wade Simmons. I think they were the first mountain biking "stars" who made money by having fun on the bike instead of racing the bike.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MOJO K View Post

    It's funny to me, now that we are all connected all the time we spend that time inventing reasons to separate ourselves from other everyone.
    I've thought about that too. We're looking for separation from others not only in category but also in the physical. We say we want solitude ("I went for a ride and saw only one other person. It was great!") yet at the same time we want camaraderie. Let's all go out for a solo ride then post about it on social media so we can share with others. Odd...

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkrmike View Post
    I have ridden lots in Grand Junction and Fruita. I have no idea what the author is talking about. I witnessed none of that. Must have gone at the right times.
    The author is a local. He lives in/near Grand Junction.

    Were you a visitor or do you live nearby?

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    A lot of nostalgia going on here....the sport is evolving if you like it or not, I can't wait until I can buy an all mountain e-bike that rides like my retro mechanical bike does today, for under 1k.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    I've thought about that too. We're looking for separation from others not only in category but also in the physical. We say we want solitude ("I went for a ride and saw only one other person. It was great!") yet at the same time we want camaraderie. Let's all go out for a solo ride then post about it on social media so we can share with others. Odd...
    Between those two extremes, I will take camaraderie any day. I generally don't like doing rides where I see nobody the entire time. I time my rides so that will NOT be the case.

    In bear country, seeing the odd person on trails is a very good thing. My riding enjoyment goes way up when I see human life forms at least every now and then out there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bingemtbr View Post
    The author is a local. He lives in/near Grand Junction.

    Were you a visitor or do you live nearby?
    I was a visitor. Up until recently, a group of us hit Moab, Fruita and Grand Junction at least once a year, every year.

    It may be that we lucked out on our timing.

    That said, I try to not let shit like that interfere with the stoke. I am usually in my own zone and couldn't care less about people yelling Stravaaaaaaa. Not that I have ever witnessed that in 25+ years of biking throughout North America.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkrmike View Post
    Between those two extremes, I will take camaraderie any day. I generally don't like doing rides where I see nobody the entire time. I time my rides so that will NOT be the case.

    In bear country, seeing the odd person on trails is a very good thing. My riding enjoyment goes way up when I see human life forms at least every now and then out there.
    This is classic example of different user experiences. Some riders want to be groups other solo. It has been this way since the dawn of mtn biking. Heck it has been this way since the dawn of man. Some like to be around people others rather get away. So if the author is thinking this a new thing he is sorely mistaken.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkrmike View Post
    Between those two extremes, I will take camaraderie any day. I generally don't like doing rides where I see nobody the entire time. I time my rides so that will NOT be the case.

    In bear country, seeing the odd person on trails is a very good thing. My riding enjoyment goes way up when I see human life forms at least every now and then out there.
    I (usually) enjoy chatting with others out in the woods. There are enough miles of trails here that congestion doesn't get to me. I'll admit that I sometimes feel annoyed if I'm constantly having to stop for trail traffic. I'm conflicted.

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    So, am I correct that the article can be summarized as follows?

    1) MTB riders are using vans and trucks to get to the trailhead, and
    2) Riders are skidding and taking cheater lines, and
    3) More and more riders are into the sport to feed an adrenaline rush rather than commune with nature.

    If so, my response is...

    1) The same thing is happening in the skiing, moto, camping world. People's choices in vehicles evolve. It's not specific to biking at all.

    2) This has been happening since the dawn of the sport (FWIW, I grew up near the Appalachian Trail in NEPA and started riding it on a rigid Univega back in 1985).

    3) Again, same thing is happening across ALL so-called adventure sports. Sh*t, even fly fishing has become more "aggressive" over the years.

    The world is becoming smaller and more crowded. There's simply less opportunity, in many places, to easily access the solitude of nature. The author could address his issues by riding farther away from the crowds but presumably he doesn't have the time or space to do so anymore. It's not the fault of "culture gone astray", it's just what happens over time.

    Imagine a hiker from the 1930's seeing what trail use looks like today.

  34. #34
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    I live and ride a lot in a MTB destination. We have issues with people putting in a cheater line here and there, but I believe it's less skilled riders who don't want to go over slippery off camber roots or rocks. That and in spite of being a rain forrest, plenty of folks don't like riding through puddles. If you ride year round plan on getting wet and filthy. If you can't bear this, stay home. We have a major stage race once a year and this does more to rip up trails than anything else. A lot of these people are just crappy riders who skid down anything that looks scary.

    The thing is, these issues have been with MTBing since the beginning. Mountain biking is much more popular now than it was when I started back in 87. It's not the bikes, but the volume of riders. When I started I met zero other riders out on the trails around Victoria BC, try that now.
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    Oh, this article again.

    I live in the middle of one of the most heavily visited complexes of public land in the country. Great Smoky Mtns NP (busiest NP), Cherokee NF, Nanatahala NF, and Pisgah NF, and Blue Ridge Parkway (NPS). Sure, the trailheads can be busy. VERY busy, depending on which trailhead, and when you go. The busiest trailhead I've seen so far was actually outside the tourist season, just this past weekend (sunny winter day with a high in the 50's), at one of the trailheads closest to town. It was all the locals who NEEDED to get outside after being cooped up due to a combination of bad weather going back a few weeks as well as the holidays. Tons of families with kids (on bikes!). I loved seeing it. I'm not a cranky old SOB, so yeah.

    But there's so much trail and public land that it doesn't make much to get out into the woods where it's not so busy. Sure, you'll see a few people here and there (more on the corridor trails before people disperse), but people disperse well here. Put in the effort and you'll find your solitude if you want it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by singletrackmack View Post
    For those too young to remember, the introduction of suspension to mountain biking was quite controversial and very similar to ebikes today.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    This makes no sense. There was no controversy.

    Signed,

    Not too young to remember the Rockshox rep guy bringing a bike, with the above-pictured RS-1, in to our shop in Marin for us to demo.

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    Quote Originally Posted by weeksy950 View Post
    Wouldn't it have made sense to post the full story here instead of sending us off to a 3rd party site that many of us won't bother clicking to ?


    lol, for every person that says the above, there is someone that says "No need to copy and paste the article, we are more than capable of clicking on a link".
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    Quote Originally Posted by dir-T View Post
    So, am I correct that the article can be summarized as follows?

    1) MTB riders are using vans and trucks to get to the trailhead, and
    2) Riders are skidding and taking cheater lines, and
    3) More and more riders are into the sport to feed an adrenaline rush rather than commune with nature.
    Thank you for summarizing. I didn't get past the fourth sentence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VTSession View Post
    Can we stop making up various “crises” in mountain biking? Geez, just go ride your bike and don’t be a dick on the trail.

    I’ve been riding for over 20 years and live in mountain bike focused area and have encountered zero of the problems the author of that article stated. Sounds like someone needed to fill up space on a website and was short on ideas.


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    EXACTLY!!!

    The rule is: don't be a dick on the trail. Words of wisdom. If I may also add, don't be a dick in the trailhead parking lot, or on the street curb next to the neighbors that are adjacent to the start point. Be respectful to EVERYONE, whether they are a fellow rider or not.

    Most mountain bikers that I've met are pretty nice. They may not always keep to the designated trails, but that's a different story. Then there are 'the bros' that ride fast in large groups. Call them DH bikers if you want, I call them the bros. You know the ones, they make a bet on who is getting back to the truck or van first, and then they run everyone else off the trail on the way back. Including horses, dog walkers, hikers, families with children, and anyone else. They act like a pack of road bikers, but the difference is that road bikers don't have anything obstructing them in the bike lane, and mountain bikers do often have people or pets obstructing them. A polite mountain biker will slow down and ride around that issue, or even get off the bike if they have to. 'The bros' don't do that. They think have the right of way over everyone else, they don't care. Strength in numbers I guess. After all, there is a bet to get back to the trailhead first, that's all that counts. Or their KOM Strava bragging rights. This is what I feel the gist of the argument is, whether the guy in the link made that argument clear or not. The fewer MTB'ers in a group, the nicer they are, the more in a group, the more they morph into dickish road biker packs.

    Don't try to deflect this real, current problem to the lone e-biker that may ride too fast on a trail. No comparison. Now, if there were 15 e-bikers doing that like the bros do, then there would be a real problem. That's ironically the real fear: that the e-bikers will pack up later and act like the bros do now. Like the bros have a monopoly on being dicks to others on the trail, and somehow e-bikers will infringe on that monopoly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mik_git View Post
    suddenly you either DH'd or you XC'd, you didn't both

    Speak for yourself.

    I and most of the people I ride regularly with do both, and have for ages.
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Speak for yourself.

    I and most of the people I ride regularly with do both, and have for ages.
    Why wouldn't ya?
    Sorry shouldn't have you didnt both, just more that you became either a DHer who also XC's or an XC who also DH'd and it became very separate. We used to turn up and do the DH in the morning then race the Xc in the afternoon, then you XC one week, DH the next, now you have completely different series, and not so many people do both (not saying nobody).

    It just that Dh and XC are now very different, where as they used to be very much 2 parts of 1 thing.
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  42. #42
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    Why give a spit about where the sport 'is at'? Especially if you think it is a bad place?

    Get this, you can go back in time and it is dirt cheap. Get on a used bike for a few bucks and ride like it is 1999. The way I rode as a teenager is still my favorite way to ride. Adding that experiece to my "quiver" cost like $200 with all fit and contact points included, so it is a no brainer to embrace it.

    It is your experience that matters, not what the magazines say the scene is up to. IMO keep your mind on your ride and let the world fly by.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mik_git View Post
    Sorry shouldn't have you didnt both, just more that you became either a DHer who also XC's or an XC who also DH'd and it became very separate. We used to turn up and do the DH in the morning then race the Xc in the afternoon, then you XC one week, DH the next, now you have completely different series, and not so many people do both (not saying nobody).

    It just that Dh and XC are now very different, where as they used to be very much 2 parts of 1 thing.
    Uhhh, I just ride bike in the woods, does that count?

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    Quote Originally Posted by richj8990 View Post

    Don't try to deflect this real, current problem to the lone e-biker that may ride too fast on a trail. No comparison.




    lol, "no comparison"


    Weird how you totally agree with a post that says not to make up crisis and just ride your own ride and then you go on a rampage against strava bros ruining your ride.
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTSession View Post
    Can we stop making up various “crises” in mountain biking? Geez, just go ride your bike and don’t be a dick on the trail.
    I thought this was the golden rule?

    on another note, I like turtles.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I've never heard anyone say that either, though I have have seen several pro-ebikers somehow extrapolate that from a completely dissimilar sentence.
    Pro-ebikers? Is ebiking now a pro race discipline? Sort of like moto-x, but electric? Or maybe a style competition like Red Bull Rampage, except up-hill? Good for them - stay off my trails.

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  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by burtronix View Post
    Pro-ebikers? Is ebiking now a pro race discipline? Sort of like moto-x, but electric? Or maybe a style competition like Red Bull Rampage, except up-hill? Good for them - stay off my trails.

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    He meant people in support of e-bikes (pro vs. con).

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    Quote Originally Posted by mik_git View Post
    I dunno about that, I got into mtbing in the early 90's and suspension was just arriving (in my first year I saw 1 set). We all wanted suspension, like everyone, I don't recall anyone not wanting some.
    To me the change happened towards the end of the 90's, when XC and DH went their separate ways (racing). Before you did DH it was part of mtbing, you did XC it was part of mtbing, but then suddenly you either DH'd or you XC'd, you didn't both and it became "lycra clad" XC and "Moto pant" wannabes in DH and things have just gotten worse since then.
    I rode full rigid until from 85-97 watching suspension technology develop. I watched the magazines push cool looking, heavy, flexy, shocks that died fast, and poor designs that came and went. I was also poor, going to school and raising a young family so there's that too. It wasn't like i was on a shit bike though. I was on a Bridgestone MB1 when I was 27 in 97. Suspension designs started settling down, I found MTBR, and went full on freeride. My next bike was a 1998 Rocky Mountain DH Race with a Fox Vanilla RC and a Marzocchi Z1; both with SpeedSprings. Kranked came out that year as well ushering the video age and "extreme" mountainbiking.
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  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    He meant people in support of e-bikes (pro vs. con).
    But it's not as funny when you read it that way.

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    I started mountain biking in 1982, first to train for motocross, but eventually gave up motocross and jumped fully into cycling.
    Back in 1982/83, there used to be no one on the trails, actually it was kind of creepy at times. I think about 1985/ 86, I started to see more people on the trails, which I welcomed. I think it was 1989 when I saw and first rode a RS fork, which was on a pro riders bike. I got my first suspension fork in 1991...a Manitou.
    To this day, I've never really had a day as where I thought that the trails are getting too crowded, although tourism in my town is getting out of control.
    As far as ebikes are concerned, I really don't like them, but my friends wife, who broke her femur a few years back, was never able to continue mtbing, got an ebike and is back riding again.
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  51. #51
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    Somebody shared this article last year when it was published. Are the trails being overrun out west by misfits? I'm not experiencing that on the east coast.
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    The more I read on MTBR the more I realize how lucky I am in my little sweet spot of CT. Never see any of the hassles you guys are always posting in the high traffic locales and I feel bad for you!

    I have 6-8 very different and challenging singletrack areas within 30 minutes drive. A typical 2-3hr ride it's rare I see ONE person on trails. Classic XC singletrack...no shuttling or groomed flow trails but it will kick your butt and there's plenty to challenge you every time. I understand many are downhillers and XC terrain isn't their thing but if the object is to get away, challenge yourself and have some fun in the woods for a few hours...mission accomplished every time.

    I've done many 2-3hr road trips North to VT or NH lift-served downhill/flow terrain over the years which is a cool change of pace. But it's just so easy to stay local with none of the hassles and great riding right in my back yard.
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  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    Somebody shared this article last year when it was published. Are the trails being overrun out west by misfits? I'm not experiencing that on the east coast.
    Quote Originally Posted by sturge View Post
    The more I read on MTBR the more I realize how lucky I am in my little sweet spot of CT. Never see any of the hassles you guys are always posting in the high traffic locales and I feel bad for you!

    I have 6-8 very different and challenging singletrack areas within 30 minutes drive. A typical 2-3hr ride it's rare I see ONE person on trails. Classic XC singletrack...no shuttling or groomed flow trails but it will kick your butt and there's plenty to challenge you every time. I understand many are downhillers and XC terrain isn't their thing but if the object is to get away, challenge yourself and have some fun in the woods for a few hours...mission accomplished every time.

    I've done many 2-3hr road trips North to VT or NH lift-served downhill/flow terrain over the years which is a cool change of pace. But it's just so easy to stay local with none of the hassles and great riding right in my back yard.
    I also am lucky that I have not experienced the "Bro Overload/Binge-Drinking/Trail Killer etc" crowd on trails where I ride...but I do experience that crowd sometimes at the campsites. I agree with the author of the article that when the people who are just dabblign in the activity "get into the pool", they bring a certain amount of unwanted and unwashed dirt/baggage to the picture. I do think the operative word for this crowd is "dabbling". My home trails, and the places we vacation tend to be untouched by the masses, and I am fine with that. That is actually part of the reason I target those areas to ride.

    The Bro's tend to only stick around as long as it is trendy - like most mainstreamers do - and will move on to the next thing eventually...but, while they are here, they do tarnish, or sully the activity a bit. Yes I am old, yes I am grumpy, but to me it is a cop out, and honestly not fair to the activity, to just take the very VERY common viewpoint if "it is what it is. Just let them do their thing" F that. I think those if us who grew up in the first era of off road biking have a right to get angry when certain rules of respect from the past are broken.

    I also don't necessarily think that it is instantly a positive thing to have "as many people as possible" be involved in an activity. To me, there is such a thing as overpopulation diluting the integrity of an activity. Just like a large population of humans overrunning an ecosystem, exploiting it, killing it, and moving on (the buffalo depletion of the early Americas; Ice Age humans killing off the large mammals etc...)....that is not a good thing in reality

    in the end, it always boils down to a lack of respect, that is usually the result of a lack of enforcing and educating about trail laws, culture and responsibility, and passive "it is what it is" attitudes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    downhilling, shuttling
    Neither of these are examples of 'change' or new things; they've been there since the very beginning. Much of the "XC" crowd (descendants of roadie crossovers from bitd) tends to like to reinvent history when it comes to denying that the whole gravity aspect of the sport has roots just as deep, if not deeper, than the cross-country apsects.
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    It was very controversial when I switched out the elastomers on my Judy XC to Englund air cartridges.

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    Quote Originally Posted by richj8990 View Post
    Then there are 'the bros' that ride fast in large groups. Call them DH bikers if you want, I call them the bros.
    Not remotely the same thing.
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  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Neither of these are examples of 'change' or new things; they've been there since the very beginning. Much of the "XC" crowd (descendants of roadie crossovers from bitd) tends to like to reinvent history when it comes to denying that the whole gravity aspect of the sport has roots just as deep, if not deeper, than the cross-country apsects.
    That wasn't really the point of the post but sure, fine. Delete "downhilling, shuttling."

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by sfgiantsfan View Post
    No trails were ever directly threatened by suspension. I guess you could say that you could ride a little faster with it than with out, but its not a motor on a bike (motorbike)
    Are trails actually threatened by E-bikes?

    My experience so far with E-bikes is that their exists trails that E-bikes have been banned from, but I am yet to find a trail that is now closed to bicycles because motorized bikes have been using them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    That wasn't really the point of the post but sure, fine. Delete "downhilling, shuttling."
    If the point was that adding motors is just another new thing in mountain biking, that's also not the case. Once you add a motor, it's simply no longer the same sport at all.
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  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    If the point was that adding motors is just another new thing in mountain biking, that's also not the case. Once you add a motor, it's simply no longer the same sport at all.
    Strike two. The point was that people hate change.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    Somebody shared this article last year when it was published. Are the trails being overrun out west by misfits? I'm not experiencing that on the east coast.
    Only when there's a festival or demo day. Other than that, within an hour there's a couple bike parks, a couple lift accessed bike parks, organized shuttles, epics and secret shit. There's something for everyone. Drive for half a day in any direction and the world is your oyster.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Strike two. The point was that people hate change.
    It’s more than that. There’s a legal aspect to the e-bike controversy that is of greater concern than all the so-called controversies over mundane things like the introduction of front then full suspension, specialization of categories of bikes into DH, All Mountain, Freeride, Cross country, than introductions such as disc brakes, electronic shifting, changes in wheel sizes, etc..... all which are just variations in a theme of human powered bicycling on dirt.

    E-Bikes potentially threaten access to trails. A motor is a motor in many definitions and that’s going to be significantly more difficult to deal with than the difference between a DH and a Cross Country bike.

  63. #63
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    Blah blah blah you hate ebikes.

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    I've been riding bicycles in an adventuresome way since about 1963. I used to search out the most out of the way places to ride that I and my bike could handle, and as tech changed, it got a little easier to reach some out of the way places. I would chop up my old bikes to make them easier to take off the beaten track, altho purpose built trails did not exist where I lived, or hardly anywhere. People seldom took bikes off road so solitude was easy to find.

    When MTBs were 'invented' and became a thing, the sport exploded as people found out it could be a way to enjoy what some of us had already discovered. However, the fact I discovered riding off road long before many does not give me any rights over and above anyone else. I am happy that the growth of the sport has given us all many more trails to make use of, and I am glad that more people are into the sport.

    I personally choose to distance myself from the crowds, I still do this for the sense of adventure and solitude that is still as thrilling to me as it ever was as a child. If the trails around here became as congested as the writer describes, I would go ride somewhere else, and if there was nowhere else close by, a move would be made as soon as possible. When my wife and I moved house, MTB trails close by were a prime requirement, and would remain so when we next move.

    I do agree that many younger riders have not the same appreciation for the trails, how they come about, and what it takes to maintain them, but this is all of our jobs to educate and teach riders how to give back to the riding community. There are many such schemes, and long may they flourish. Personally I hate that people skid and cut B lines to save time or to save themselves from their own ineptitude, but with time, experience and edumacation, this will change too.

    Don't get me started on E-bikes... they have a place, but please keep them away from any trail I ever ride.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    Don't get me started on E-bikes... they have a place, but please keep them away from any trail I ever ride.
    Speaking of, a recent issue of BICYCLING magazine was highly dedicated to e-bikes. Most of it pertained to commuting, but the focus on the bike reviews was on wattage/power. One review even compared that particular e-bike to a moped.
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    I'm sorry I even mentioned that contentious subject, but e-bikes are powered 2 wheelers, and as such should be restricted to the same access rights as any motorcycles. I have yet to see any argument that convinces me otherwise, and even the one where people who are no longer capable of riding MTBs for some physical ailment or disability is invalid in my mind. There are plenty of other places these unfortunate people can go if they want to... I am rapidly approaching this stage, but I have no desire to head to the hills on singletrack on anything other than a pedal-driven bicycle or my own 2 feet.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    Speaking of, a recent issue of BICYCLING magazine was highly dedicated to e-bikes. Most of it pertained to commuting, but the focus on the bike reviews was on wattage/power. One review even compared that particular e-bike to a moped.
    I think e-bikes are great for commuting or running errands. If you have the right kind of commute a nice e-bike could make nice mix of bike simplicity, but not being all sweaty and stinky when you get there. If I had a 5-6 mile commute with good bike/lanes paths I would consider and e-bike commuter. I might be able to ride to work in work clothes and not be stinky/sweaty and save miles off my car. Unfortunately I have 35mile commute so it just won't work for me.
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    When people get to the point of constantly complaining about the hobby they*love* (or used to love), it's probably time for a change. Maybe just short term, maybe long term.
    But complaining about it on the internet helps nothing.

    Go ride a bike, or hike, or ski, or swim, or walk a cat. Whatever.

    You can sit around stewing about things you can't change, or you can go enjoy yourself instead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    Speaking of, a recent issue of BICYCLING magazine was highly dedicated to e-bikes. Most of it pertained to commuting, but the focus on the bike reviews was on wattage/power. One review even compared that particular e-bike to a moped.
    One of the reasons I let my subscription lapse after a decade. I don't want to pay money to read about ebikes.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oh My Sack! View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Blah blah blah you hate ebikes.
    Not me. I love motorized dirt toys in general, and have no problem sharing trails with e-bikes and may end up buying one (or two) at some point. But they're NOT mountain bikes, and don't think it helps anyone that some people insist on trying to pretend that they are.
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    So, even though its called an e-bike, and is targeted towards mountain bikers, and used by mountain bikers, who go in the mountains on them, its still not mountain biking?

    I can't wait to get an e-bike and go mountain biking on it. Hope you join me for a ride sometime

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by langster831 View Post
    So, even though its called an e-bike, and is targeted towards mountain bikers, and used by mountain bikers, who go in the mountains on them, its still not mountain biking?

    I can't wait to get an e-bike and go mountain biking on it. Hope you join me for a ride sometime
    Nope, it's mountain E-biking as you describe it. Whole different animal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    Nope, it's mountain E-biking as you describe it. Whole different animal.
    Oh, ok. Like Shark said earlier, time to move on to a new hobby, maybe mountain e-biking is the ticket... There's too much crying in mountain biking.

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    Quote Originally Posted by langster831 View Post
    Oh, ok. Like Shark said earlier, time to move on to a new hobby, maybe mountain e-biking is the ticket... There's too much crying in mountain biking.
    Well, you have fun out there on your MAC. Not my cup of tea.
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  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by langster831 View Post
    Oh, ok. Like Shark said earlier, time to move on to a new hobby, maybe mountain e-biking is the ticket... There's too much crying in mountain biking.
    Who are you suggesting is "crying"? This is a forum to discuss things, which seems to me to be precisely what is occurring here. People are bound to have differing opinions on things. So what?

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    The author of the article has a ton of experience, love the pics and the interesting posts, and builds awesome wheels (he's done a couple for me).
    But has he forgotten that what he is complaining about (too many people on his local trails) is what pays the bills? More people riding=more people wanting custom wheelsets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shark View Post
    The author of the article has a ton of experience, love the pics and the interesting posts, and builds awesome wheels (he's done a couple for me).
    But has he forgotten that what he is complaining about (too many people on his local trails) is what pays the bills? More people riding=more people wanting custom wheelsets.
    Agreed on all of that, although Dustin Adams at We Are One has been in charge of my last two wheel sets.

    I can't seem to relate to the article.

    West Bragg Creek in my area can get quite busy on certain weeknights with planned group rides. The most popular ride, Merlin View Loop, has an out and back before you get to the loop (the trail is shaped like a frying pan, with the handle being the common out and back). Sometimes, there is a fair bit of 2 way traffic on some narrow sections.

    Whatever. It's nice sometimes to see lots of people out there enjoying themselves. I am generally on the trails often, plus I commute daily, so I don't always feel the need to go balls to wall on every ride. Doing the occasional ride at 3/4 speed can be a lot of fun too.

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    I ended up teaching myself to build a wheel, satisfying. And it's stayed true all year so I'm happy.

    Not all the time or places, but I think the majority have some type of option that is less traveled, less busy, less riders, if you are willing to go find them.

    I'll try and search these places out to hit on a Saturday or Sunday, when the"popular trails" tend to be busier.
    But at the same time, it's not a big deal to see other riders out. Say hi, smile, and continue on.

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by langster831 View Post
    So, even though its called an e-bike, and is targeted towards mountain bikers, and used by mountain bikers, who go in the mountains on them, its still not mountain biking?
    Here's a simple example to help your understanding:


    Chalk:

    The Culture of Mountain Biking has Gone Astray-hj-unknown-duke.jpg

    Cheese:

    The Culture of Mountain Biking has Gone Astray-img_9507_1400x.progressive.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    Not me. I love motorized dirt toys in general, and have no problem sharing trails with e-bikes and may end up buying one (or two) at some point. But they're NOT mountain bikes, and don't think it helps anyone that some people insist on trying to pretend that they are.
    The entire mt. bike community is at risk of losing hard won trail access if we embrace using motors on bicycles. I’d be pretty certain the Sierra Club and other similar originizations are watching closely how this all falls out. It’s a very slippery slope to go down by saying anything other than human powered mechanized wheeled vehicles should be allowed on trails. Where do you draw the line on ratings of motorized bikes ?, XX amount of horse power ? And how do you check that ?, needs to have pedals ?, even through they rarely get used ?.

    Easiest method is to just draw the line preemptivly and state if it’s got a motor, it’s not allowed.

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    ^ yep, remember, chalk< cheese

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catmandoo View Post
    The entire mt. bike community is at risk of losing hard won trail access if we embrace using motors on bicycles. I’d be pretty certain the Sierra Club and other similar originizations are watching closely how this all falls out. It’s a very slippery slope to go down by saying anything other than human powered mechanized wheeled vehicles should be allowed on trails. Where do you draw the line on ratings of motorized bikes ?, XX amount of horse power ? And how do you check that ?, needs to have pedals ?, even through they rarely get used ?.
    I'm not a land manager or LEO nor am I interested in pretending I am. If e-bikers can go through the process and convince LMs to grant them access, that's between them. As long as real mountain bikes (no motors) continue to be treated as a distinct user group from any motorized vehicles and e-bikers deal with their own issues without trying to force mountain bikers to take responsibility for them, then I really don't care about the details. As far as the issues you bring up regarding how they should be monitored or limited, or allowed/disallowed in the first place, that's not my concern as I'm not an e-biker or a policy maker.

    A lot of the anti-ebike sentiments I've seen expressed on this site are the exact same that people have tried to use against mountain bike access over the years. I try not to be a hypocrite when it comes to others wanting to recreate on public lands, so I believe that all user groups should be given a fair shake by LMs based on facts.
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  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by slapheadmofo View Post
    I'm not a land manager or LEO nor am I interested in pretending I am. If e-bikers can go through the process and convince LMs to grant them access, that's between them. As long as real mountain bikes (no motors) continue to be treated as a distinct user group from any motorized vehicles and e-bikers deal with their own issues without trying to force mountain bikers to take responsibility for them, then I really don't care about the details. As far as the issues you bring up regarding how they should be monitored or limited, or allowed/disallowed in the first place, that's not my concern as I'm not an e-biker or a policy maker.

    A lot of the anti-ebike sentiments I've seen expressed on this site are the exact same that people have tried to use against mountain bike access over the years. I try not to be a hypocrite when it comes to others wanting to recreate on public lands, so I believe that all user groups should be given a fair shake by LMs based on facts.
    I grew up riding mostly in the UK where trail access in the early days of MTBing was problematic to say the least. In such an ancient developed landscape, the trails that existed were very tightly regulated, and the Ramblers Association and equestrians were very hostile towards the influx of MTBers, citing all the same arguments we are seeing now and before, but with one huge exception: MTBs were not motorized and that fact alone dictated that we eventually won access to bridleways and some footpaths. These groups saw us as just another motorcycle at first, which was not the case. I even had one old lady rambler berate me for my bright colored gear, (it was the early 80s), saying I was an eyesore. Fair point given the then fashion!

    The US has a lot more trail of varying kinds with several different forms of ownership and administration, so fair point about e-bikers making their own deals with the LMs. I absolutely agree that e-bikes and MTBs are worlds apart, and should be treated as such. This is not a Luddite view on my part, after all I am an ardent 2 wheeler fan of all kinds, but in their rightful places.

    Being an MTBer has given me an appreciation for trail access and has taught me the value of helping maintain and build new trail. I am sure that many e-bikers who have made the transition from pedal power share the same mindset, but I wonder at those who will come fresh into the sport bypassing the years of self powered MTBing, perhaps never gaining the sensitivity to our surroundings that us old farts have learned.

    Now I expect hordes of youngsters will berate me for this; have at it I say! Prove me wrong, I'll be glad to be shown there is hope for the future!
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    Being an MTBer has given me an appreciation for trail access and has taught me the value of helping maintain and build new trail. I am sure that many e-bikers who have made the transition from pedal power share the same mindset, but I wonder at those who will come fresh into the sport bypassing the years of self powered MTBing, perhaps never gaining the sensitivity to our surroundings that us old farts have learned.
    I'd think if they don't regulate themselves and do what it takes to show that they're a responsible user group, they'll go the way of other user groups that haven't been able to figure out what it takes to keep their local LMs happy. Giving back to the trails is definitely one thing MTBers overall are really, really good at.
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  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by langster831 View Post
    So, even though its called an e-bike, and is targeted towards mountain bikers, and used by mountain bikers, who go in the mountains on them, its still not mountain biking?

    I can't wait to get an e-bike and go mountain biking on it. Hope you join me for a ride sometime
    I hope you stick to trails where motors are allowed.

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  87. #87
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    The circle of life ... holds out Simba... e-bikes are a different beast because they actually, not hypothetically, but actually DO have a motor!
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    I grew up riding mostly in the UK where trail access in the early days of MTBing was problematic to say the least. In such an ancient developed landscape, the trails that existed were very tightly regulated, and the Ramblers Association and equestrians were very hostile towards the influx of MTBers, citing all the same arguments we are seeing now and before, but with one huge exception: MTBs were not motorized and that fact alone dictated that we eventually won access to bridleways and some footpaths. These groups saw us as just another motorcycle at first, which was not the case. I even had one old lady rambler berate me for my bright colored gear, (it was the early 80s), saying I was an eyesore. Fair point given the then fashion!

    The US has a lot more trail of varying kinds with several different forms of ownership and administration, so fair point about e-bikers making their own deals with the LMs. I absolutely agree that e-bikes and MTBs are worlds apart, and should be treated as such. This is not a Luddite view on my part, after all I am an ardent 2 wheeler fan of all kinds, but in their rightful places.

    Being an MTBer has given me an appreciation for trail access and has taught me the value of helping maintain and build new trail. I am sure that many e-bikers who have made the transition from pedal power share the same mindset, but I wonder at those who will come fresh into the sport bypassing the years of self powered MTBing, perhaps never gaining the sensitivity to our surroundings that us old farts have learned.

    Now I expect hordes of youngsters will berate me for this; have at it I say! Prove me wrong, I'll be glad to be shown there is hope for the future!
    This is all very true. My local club - CLIMB, The Concerned Long Island Mountain Bikers, are so named due to what we’re limits placed on trail riding by local public land managers in the early 1990’s. Every club manager since has had to be proactive to convince these managers that mountain biking could be an activity where damage to trails could be managed with a successful volunteer effort for maintanence as well as smart development that would minimize or fix damage from useage.

    There is no doubt that was a hard effort but it’s been a successful one and would not have happened if motorized bikes had been part of the equation. The potential for damage can be significantly greater once you start using motorized vehicles and this is readily apparent when you see trails used by dirt bikes and compare to a trail used by bicycles. In general, even mountain bikes cause greater erosion than a hiking trail, but that damage can be mitigated thru smart trail construction. That’s harder to do when you have more powerful motorized vehicles in use.

    That’s not to say that motorized bikes not be allowed access to trail systems, but it needs to be recognized that there will be more damage and faster that needs to be dealt with. All good, but existing mt. bike trails may not be the proper place to allow motorized use.

    There’s a fair amount of open space on the eastern part of Long Island and in the past 25 years there has been hundreds of miles of dedicated mt. bike trails built. There have been ZERO miles of trails for motorized dirt bikes built on any public lands and that is partly the fault of any user groups, who have not stepped up to the plate to get trails developed for their use. Would a user group that has issues with mt. biking then be confident that motorized users will be as proactive and responsible as the mt. bike group has been ? I’m thinking the land users and other concerned groups are having their doubts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    I think e-bikes are great for commuting or running errands. If you have the right kind of commute a nice e-bike could make nice mix of bike simplicity, but not being all sweaty and stinky when you get there. If I had a 5-6 mile commute with good bike/lanes paths I would consider and e-bike commuter. I might be able to ride to work in work clothes and not be stinky/sweaty and save miles off my car. Unfortunately I have 35mile commute so it just won't work for me.
    That was the gist of most of the reviews. I'm not sure they want to totally embrace them for trail use quite yet for fear of alienating many of us.
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  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    One of the reasons I let my subscription lapse after a decade. I don't want to pay money to read about ebikes.
    I hear you. I still enjoy reading everything else.
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  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by burtronix View Post
    I hope you stick to trails where motors are allowed.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
    I really try to remain open minded about e-bike trails users (where allowed) but can't get over the 'easy way out' vibe to them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    I really try to remain open minded about e-bike trails users (where allowed) but can't get over the 'easy way out' vibe to them.
    I know more than one legit mtbiker who has turned to e-bikes to stay in the game after the chronic injuries have taken their toll. It's been recommenced to me a ton of times not as the easy way out, but as a way back in. Probably only a small fraction of guys out there fit that situation, but it does happen.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankout View Post
    I really try to remain open minded about e-bike trails users (where allowed) but can't get over the 'easy way out' vibe to them.
    But why would you care about how hard (or not) some total stranger is working?

    The whole 'fitness police' angle is really weird to me.
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  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by MOJO K View Post
    I know more than one legit mtbiker who has turned to e-bikes to stay in the game after the chronic injuries have taken their toll. It's been recommenced to me a ton of times not as the easy way out, but as a way back in. Probably only a small fraction of guys out there fit that situation, but it does happen.
    None of my chronic injuries have been severe enough to keep me off my bike so I wouldn't be able to use that as a reason to buy an ebike at this point. In warmer months I ride 3-5 days per week so I' physically capable. All I know is that the one time I borrowed an ebike it was really fun. I haven't done so yet but "to have fun" is the reason I'd buy one.

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    I thought the other thread was the Ebike rant. This is the *get off my lawn* thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shark View Post
    I thought the other thread was the Ebike rant. This is the *get off my lawn* thread.
    Pretty much one and the same shark!
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    I have never lived anywhere where the trails were particularly crowded. For me, mountain biking has always been a solitary sport because I hardly ever see anybody else on the trails.

    I'm kind of excited now to live near a developed trial (the Holdridge Trail in Holly, Michigan) because this summer there were all kinds of people at the trailhead....and yet the trails themselves never felt crowded.

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    My first mtb was a '91 Bridgestone MB-2. I used to race XC, and did pretty well. Winning some state level expert events now and again. Nowadays, I just ride trails. I'll climb a few thousand feet at a go on my 29+ hardtail, and do what I can on the descent. I know that having 6" of travel at both ends would make 1/4 of my riding time more enjoyable, but I like cleaning techy climbs, and nothing does that better than my 29+. I'm 46 now, and maybe when I'm 80 or so, I'll think about an e-bike.

    Meanwhile, I enjoy doing what I do with my own power.

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  99. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shark View Post
    I thought the other thread was the Ebike rant. This is the *get off my lawn* thread.
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    (Mod edit: Oh, look! Copy & Paste)

    Thanks mod! (When I copy entire articles from my iPad, it usually includes all the ads in the article and then I have to go and delete all that out or copy and paste one little bit at a time and well...) I don’t have time for that shit.

    Sooo anyways, I still seem to remember suspension causing concern for some “die hard old skool” Mtbrs back in the early 90’s and I remember seeing a post with an article or link to one in the vintage forum about concerns with how adding suspension to mtbs could “change” the sport.

    But, me Google fu no good and I couldn’t find anything from back then, but did stumble onto this article https://www.independent.co.uk/enviro...g-9202637.html
    also concerning the “downfall” of mtb, but specifically calling out suspension as well as new materials as being the “beginning of the end” saying...

    “The 1990s were an exciting time in the world of mountain-biking. Since the 1980s, the bikes had all looked much the same – skinny steel tubes, fat tyres, cantilever brakes and a few gears. But by the time 1994 rolled around, suspension forks were beginning to appear, rear suspension was becoming more than a pipe dream, and new materials, such as carbon fibre, aluminium and titanium, were being employed to make bikes lighter, stronger, stiffer – and more desirable....”Back then it was seen as more of a fun thing," says Grace, "and when Trek and Fisher brought out the [full-suspension] Y-bike, that got a whole new bunch of people into it. It didn't look like a bicycle any more, it looked futuristic, and that really changed sales – everyone wanted one to hang off their car, to have in their garage or just to ride down the street." Looking back, that point may well have been the beginning of the end for mountain-biking.”

    Now, I personally don’t think there is anything wrong with the sport of mountain biking as it is today and don’t see the issues in the first article I posted a link to. However, I still contend that the sport of mountain biking changed with the introduction of suspension.
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