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  1. #1
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    Mud ban in Fells

    Is riding the (fire) roads kosher while the March mud ban is in effect?

  2. #2
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    As long as the Nazi F.O.F. stop hiking the trails as well...
    Lynn Woods:yikes:
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  3. #3
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    MT biking in the Fells is prohibited in March. There are plenty of other places to ride once this "snow" melts away and dries up in a week or so.

  4. #4
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    it's easy enough to avoid the muddier areas

  5. #5
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    MT biking in the Fells is prohibited in March.

  6. #6
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    Please avoid the Fells until April.

    I know there isn't a lot of mud, but NEMBA mountain biking advocates have recently made a lot of strides in opening up mountain biking in the fells. Let's not hurt their momentum by ignoring this restriction.

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    I agree, we need to be good citizens in the Fells for our long term benefit. But since MT biking is not prohibited on paved roads, a ride up the Bear Hill RD should be perfectly legal, no? FOF should not coerce us to rules existing only in their own little minds.

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    You guys are all talking about doing the right thing, however until the FOF prohibits all activity during mud month, it's not being environmentally conscious or realistic. Only selfish, self serving and unpractical. They are the biggest closed minded group with too much influence on the dcr. They won't listen to factual studies only making a stink at what offenders mtn bikers are to the Fells.
    The head of FOF must go.....
    Lynn Woods:yikes:
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  9. #9
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    It's such a nice day to ride. I was planning on going to the fells and then ran across this thread.

    It's probably not worth the 'political' fallout to go check out the trails.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scarsandtears View Post
    You guys are all talking about doing the right thing, however until the FOF prohibits all activity during mud month, it's not being environmentally conscious or realistic...
    I agree with everything above, but it seems to me that the FOF are losing at their attempts to limit mountain bikes in the fells.

    Why give FOF possible ammunition in their ridiculous fight by riding restricted singletrack in March, when their influence is diminishing fast.

    read this:
    Fells Update 2/11/2012 - Welcome to GB NEMBA! - GBNEMBA - NEMBA Greater Boston Chapter

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    Quote Originally Posted by StiHacka View Post
    I agree, we need to be good citizens in the Fells for our long term benefit. But since MT biking is not prohibited on paved roads, a ride up the Bear Hill RD should be perfectly legal, no? FOF should not coerce us to rules existing only in their own little minds.
    The paved roads are open year round at the Fells, but personally I'd rather drive a little further up to HP and ride singletrack.

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    Quote Originally Posted by antonio View Post
    The paved roads are open year round at the Fells, but personally I'd rather drive a little further up to HP and ride singletrack.
    I am with you but Fells are on my doorstep so I do not have to drive to ride at all. It's quite handy for a quick after work cardio before it gets dark. That GBNEMBA site has some good stuff, I guess I should offer some contribution, too. Thanks Antonio!

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    I was not insinuating riding during a banned period. I was simply pointing out the hypocrisy of the FOF.
    Lynn Woods:yikes:
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  14. #14
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    Why aren't there any posted signs at the trail heads for 'mud ban'?

  15. #15
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    Why anyone rides the Fells at all is beyond me
    Voltron

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    Quote Originally Posted by yogreg View Post
    Why anyone rides the Fells at all is beyond me
    Where do you recommend riding?

    I ride in The Fells because I can ride to the trail head from my apartment in Somerville. Is there somewhere else I should be riding to?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aceldama View Post
    Where do you recommend riding?

    I ride in The Fells because I can ride to the trail head from my apartment in Somerville. Is there somewhere else I should be riding to?
    mogreg didn't mean anything by his comment. Sounds like your new to the whole Fells things so I'll provide some backfill:

    For as long as I can remember the crackpot group "Friends of the Fells" have been the unofficial custodians of the Fells. The MDC, who are supposed to be the official custodians of the Fells, doesn't have the money to manage this property so they let the FOF do whatever they want. This is bad for us because the FOF consists of really old crack potty folks who think they own the place and they don't like mountain bikers. So they've lobbied the MDC to get us banned in anyway possible. NEMBA stepped in for awhile and attempted to work with the MDC to build/maintain/repair trails. MDC seemed on our side for awhile but FOF put the kibosh on pretty much everything NEMBA tried to accomplish. NEMBA pretty much gave up a bunch of years ago and focused on smarter projects. Every other year or so the MDC has a public RFC to get input on the direction of the Fells and some MTBR's rally and attend meetings and sign petitions, but the FOF always wins out in the end.

    So most MTB folks drive a little further to get to better trails. I used to ride the Fells about 12 years ago when I moved to Somerville. It was nice to be able to just hop on the bike and ride trail. As I learned the area I found pretty much everywhere else was better riding and there was no politics involved. Harold Parker and Lynn Woods were the easiest places for me to drive to from Slummerville, but if you're willing to go further there are tons of options.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodyak View Post
    mogreg didn't mean anything by his comment. Sounds like your new to the whole Fells things so I'll provide some backfill:

    For as long as I can remember the crackpot group "Friends of the Fells" have been the unofficial custodians of the Fells. The MDC, who are supposed to be the official custodians of the Fells, doesn't have the money to manage this property so they let the FOF do whatever they want. This is bad for us because the FOF consists of really old crack potty folks who think they own the place and they don't like mountain bikers. So they've lobbied the MDC to get us banned in anyway possible. NEMBA stepped in for awhile and attempted to work with the MDC to build/maintain/repair trails. MDC seemed on our side for awhile but FOF put the kibosh on pretty much everything NEMBA tried to accomplish. NEMBA pretty much gave up a bunch of years ago and focused on smarter projects. Every other year or so the MDC has a public RFC to get input on the direction of the Fells and some MTBR's rally and attend meetings and sign petitions, but the FOF always wins out in the end.

    So most MTB folks drive a little further to get to better trails. I used to ride the Fells about 12 years ago when I moved to Somerville. It was nice to be able to just hop on the bike and ride trail. As I learned the area I found pretty much everywhere else was better riding and there was no politics involved. Harold Parker and Lynn Woods were the easiest places for me to drive to from Slummerville, but if you're willing to go further there are tons of options.
    woodyak, thanks for the thought out reply.

    I'm pretty new to the area so I'll definitely be checking out your recommendations this season.

    I've been riding The Fells for probably 5 weeks and I've hiked there a bunch throughout the Winter. I realize there are a lot of people who spend time lobbying for their own special interests in public parks but luckily everyone I've encountered at The Fells has been friendly.

    Hopefully all of the lobbyists will continue to spend all their time at the computer and not actually out on the trails where I won't have to deal with them in person.

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    I agree that there are much, much better places to ride, especially for what I like to ride. But to not ride the place just gives more empowerment to the FOF. I ride the Fells about twice a year, as I am Lynn Woods born and bled.
    I am blown away at how spent the trails are there, shows lack of involvement with knowledgable trail buiders and no plan for maintenance.
    Lynn Woods:yikes:
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  20. #20
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    So I had an incident with a DCR sheriff today.

    He ambushed me in the Sheepfold parking lot and accused me of committing an illegal act. I asked for explanation, he said the entire Fells and roads around are off limits in March because of the mud ban and threatened me with $200 fine. I explained I planned to ride mostly outside and on paved roads, he threatened me with fine again and told me being in the parking lot with a bike is illegal. I asked him to show me the official rule prohibiting me from being on paved roads and if the road to the parking lot is paved or not. He made a few more comments and accused me of riding on sidewalks outside the Fells (WTF?!), then he jumped back into his truck and rode to the sunset.

    I understand they have a job to do but I was not really impressed with his professional attitude.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by StiHacka View Post
    So I had an incident with a DCR sheriff today.
    He ambushed me in the Sheepfold parking lot and accused me of committing an illegal act. I asked for explanation, he said the entire Fells and roads around are off limits in March because of the mud ban and threatened me with $200 fine. I explained I planned to ride mostly outside and on paved roads,
    Where are the "paved roads" in the Fells? Are you talking about the old soap box derby track? That's about 1/8 of a mile long. (or less)

    If you are looking to ride pavement why not go to the Minute Man or Charles river bike path?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by StiHacka View Post
    I understand they have a job to do but I was not really impressed with his professional attitude.
    There was nothing professional at all about his attitude. Are you sure it wasn't a mall cop?
    I can barely get my mouth around it.

  23. #23
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    Buy a cheap light and ride a night - if you are going to do something illegal then do it when no one else can see you except other like minded people, but watch out for the naked Fells runner - ran into him two times in Nov/early December on night rides when the temps were around 55-60

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodyak View Post
    mogreg didn't mean anything by his comment. Sounds like your new to the whole Fells things so I'll provide some backfill:

    For as long as I can remember the crackpot group "Friends of the Fells" have been the unofficial custodians of the Fells. The MDC, who are supposed to be the official custodians of the Fells, doesn't have the money to manage this property so they let the FOF do whatever they want. This is bad for us because the FOF consists of really old crack potty folks who think they own the place and they don't like mountain bikers. So they've lobbied the MDC to get us banned in anyway possible. NEMBA stepped in for awhile and attempted to work with the MDC to build/maintain/repair trails. MDC seemed on our side for awhile but FOF put the kibosh on pretty much everything NEMBA tried to accomplish. NEMBA pretty much gave up a bunch of years ago and focused on smarter projects. Every other year or so the MDC has a public RFC to get input on the direction of the Fells and some MTBR's rally and attend meetings and sign petitions, but the FOF always wins out in the end.

    So most MTB folks drive a little further to get to better trails. I used to ride the Fells about 12 years ago when I moved to Somerville. It was nice to be able to just hop on the bike and ride trail. As I learned the area I found pretty much everywhere else was better riding and there was no politics involved. Harold Parker and Lynn Woods were the easiest places for me to drive to from Slummerville, but if you're willing to go further there are tons of options.

    Thanks for deciphering my feeble attempt at sarcasm

    In all seriousness the Fells is a great spot very close to many metropolitan areas. BUT like stated there is a ton of baggage that come with the Fells as well. Political posturing, lying, Trail Sabatage, all wrapped up in beat down trails due to lack of proper trail work (that NEMBA or other trail advocacy groups are more than capable of doing) No Thanks
    Voltron

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    StiHacka, uh, maybe ride someplace where biking is not prohibited? The mud ban is there for a reason. We are making some good positive steps in regard to increasing legal mt biking singletrack at the Fells. Remember last year, 4 months of "challenging" winter conditions. April is only a couple of weeks away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by leeboh View Post
    StiHacka, uh, maybe ride someplace where biking is not prohibited? The mud ban is there for a reason. We are making some good positive steps in regard to increasing legal mt biking singletrack at the Fells. Remember last year, 4 months of "challenging" winter conditions. April is only a couple of weeks away.
    Really, you saw me on the trails? I did not do anything against the rules, believe me or not. I am well aware that this is as close as it gets to provoking the powers at be, but it is not my problem that the rules may be hard to enforce without getting one's arse out of the truck. OTOH, it would be perfectly okay if he politely asked me what I intended to do with my bike, if he told me a few facts about the ban (and not his fabricated stories), if he kept his personal comments to himself, and instead perhaps he could put up a sign at the trail head explaining what is going on there in March. There is no way of knowing without running a research on intertubes.

    IMHO, they are after conflicts in the first place. A practical solution for Fells problems is a secondary priority for those mall cops (can you picture them on Segways with Nevegals? I can).

  27. #27
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    I have no idea why anyone would ride the fells, I've lived here for 3 years now and I rode there a total of 5 times, the trails were okay, I guess in a pinch, but not really technical enough to be interesting and after getting yelled at at least a half dozen times by hikers who are unfamiliar with any of the strides NEMBA made I decided to skip it except for hiking going forward. It's not worth the battle for that kind of riding, if LW was under the same type of scrutiny I would be front and center fighting that war, but this isn't LW.

    I say skip it in March for sure, if you want to ride there stick to the open dates and don't risk damaging riders reps even further. The users in the area already seem to think were the span of satan just for being on 2 wheels.

    The north shore is littered with great trails and much friendlier users. Try lynn when it opens, bruce and toms, school street, greenwood, gordon college, etc...

  28. #28
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    FYI: During the next few weeks there will be enforcement present that will primarily be targeting unleashed dogs. However, if bikers are present they could get tagged. I have spoken to a few riders about the March ban when I ran into them while walking my dog. I politely explained about the March ban and that I was a fellow rider. On both occasions I was rewarded with a bunch of abuse and arrogance. I don't know if they were just DB newbies or slummerville slacker types but I was bummed by the responses.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrsbike View Post
    FYI: During the next few weeks there will be enforcement present that will primarily be targeting unleashed dogs. However, if bikers are present they could get tagged. I have spoken to a few riders about the March ban when I ran into them while walking my dog. I politely explained about the March ban and that I was a fellow rider. On both occasions I was rewarded with a bunch of abuse and arrogance. I don't know if they were just DB newbies or slummerville slacker types but I was bummed by the responses.
    Next time you should just take their bikes for having a DB attitude. Really, that's pretty crappy to hear, most riders I meet are pretty cool and laid back. They will be the reason the place gets completely shut down to riders and destroy any type of progress NEMBA and others made with FOF and DCR.

  30. #30
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    StiHacka, there are so many other excellent places to ride without any conflicts and overcrowded trails. Belmont has some. The Land Locked forest, can pedal there from the mm bikeway, Harold Parker SF in Andover. At hp you could get 30+ miles there and surrounding trails. Lowell Dracut Tynsboro SF, 20 miles of trails, etc. We have had 2 years of meetings and public input, forums and RMP's,. New single track at the fells comming soon. Please be patient. Believe me, it has been a 20 year struggle. I would be glad to give you a tour of some great trails. Check out some of our upcoming regular rides in the Greater Boston, North Shore and Merrimack Valley Nemba chapters.

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    I am staying away from the Fells except for streets near my home. I know there are many riding opportunities within 20 miles, but trying to get to them in workdays between 5 and 7PM is a little inconvenient as roads are jammed solid with commuters and I do not have a half of a day for my daily ride.

    So I ride the Fells when it is legal and around my town during mud bans, it will not make me a trail champion but it has certainly helped me lose inches off my waist and plenty of pounds so far this Winter. I do not care what some of you champs on your high horses say about the Fells, it is a prime daily workout for me!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aceldama View Post
    Where do you recommend riding?

    I ride in The Fells because I can ride to the trail head from my apartment in Somerville. Is there somewhere else I should be riding to?
    I'm also in Somerville (Davis Square) and I like riding the Western Greenway for my "go to" easy ride, and if I'm feeling like I want more of a work out I'll go the land locked forest or bike all the way up to Great Brook. I'll do the Fells if I'm bored of my normal rides, but only on a weekday when traffic is low. I've literally had people sit Indian style on the path acceptable for bikes and not move. They ignored my trying to talk to them and I eventually just got off my bike and walked around them... That place isn't worth the trouble for the most part and the riding is pretty boring...

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by StiHacka View Post
    I am staying away from the Fells except for streets near my home. I know there are many riding opportunities within 20 miles, but trying to get to them in workdays between 5 and 7PM is a little inconvenient as roads are jammed solid with commuters and I do not have a half of a day for my daily ride.

    So I ride the Fells when it is legal and around my town during mud bans, it will not make me a trail champion but it has certainly helped me lose inches off my waist and plenty of pounds so far this Winter. I do not care what some of you champs on your high horses say about the Fells, it is a prime daily workout for me!
    Get some lights on come on some night rides.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhasdrums View Post
    I'm also in Somerville (Davis Square) and I like riding the Western Greenway for my "go to" easy ride, and if I'm feeling like I want more of a work out I'll go the land locked forest or bike all the way up to Great Brook. I'll do the Fells if I'm bored of my normal rides, but only on a weekday when traffic is low. I've literally had people sit Indian style on the path acceptable for bikes and not move. They ignored my trying to talk to them and I eventually just got off my bike and walked around them... That place isn't worth the trouble for the most part and the riding is pretty boring...
    Boring???? You must be on the wrong trails. Try the white.

  35. #35
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    Fells is Open

    The fells is open. It was opened early due to current conditions.
    Ride on!

  36. #36
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    It's hot of the presses.

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    Woo hoo! Thank you SofaKing. I was checking the DCR website yesterday and saw nothing posted there.

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    It was a sh*t show when i drove by on Sunday on route to Boston, cars parked all down the Fellsway with many, many bike racks... Must have been rush hour traffic in there...
    Lynn Woods:yikes:
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  39. #39
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    Luckily, it's almost totally empty on my lunch break. The trails are bone dry and fast this week.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aceldama View Post
    Luckily, it's almost totally empty on my lunch break. The trails are bone dry and fast this week.
    I guess it is a good opportunity for me to improve my best time for the Bear Hill rock garden!

  41. #41
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    Muskrat?

    I was on this sweet unmarked trail:
    42.443823, -71.117831 - Google Maps
    Near the green arrow, something big jumped into the reservoir.

    Odds are it was a muskrat. Or was it?

  42. #42
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    Where did you hear that the trails had opened up early? Does this also apply to the Blue Hills?

  43. #43
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    No traffic to speak of early in the morning. Everything is quiet and cool, just right for a quick ride.

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    March Mud Ban is officially lifted in DCR North Region (i.e. Fells) and South Region (i.e., Blue Hills) due to dry conditions.

    Go ride! But please observe DCR's posted trail rules - help us out, more legal singletrack will be opening up at the Fells! Mark your calendars: May 6th, Fells Kickoff MBAS when Orange will become legal. Keep an eye on the GBNEMBA website, www.gbnemba.org, for details shortly. Come pitch in on Trail Work days to help us improve trail conditions at the Fells, too (also posted on GB website)

    -Adam, President, GBNEMBA

  45. #45
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    Nice!
    Guess I get to start my (semi) regular 8am Saturday rides early this season.

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    I'm glad I stumbled across this thread. I was going to avoid the Fells until April but I may go for a ride up there today.
    Vermonter - bikes, beers and skis.

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