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  1. #1
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    Philadelphia Mountain Bike Parks Permit

    Hey everyone, it looks like the city of Philadelphia is starting to crack down on their policy and are enforcing their trail permits in the Wissahickon Valley Park as well as Pennypack. The rangers are out in force, especially on weekends when most people reading this forum may travel to Philly to hit the trails. Please hit this link and sign up for a annual permit, which costs a $20 donation. While it is really hard to prove that this money goes back into the actual trails, like a donation to PMBA does, they do own the land and it's their decision, agree with it or not...

    https://events.membersolutions.com/e...ntent_id=13806
    bike = good

  2. #2
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    Good job!

    Lou:

    I hope Greg will "Sicky" this as it is important to all traveling Philly to ride.

    By the way are they handing out fines or are they warning first? How much is the fine?

  3. #3
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    Great post - very useful.

    BTW - if you follow that link you can request 2 passes.
    Kenn Rymdeko
    "It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare." - Mark Twain

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenn72
    Great post - very useful.

    BTW - if you follow that link you can request 2 passes.
    X2. I guess it's time to head up to Tyler State Park in Newtown or even better, White Clay in Delaware or some other places in Bucks or Montgomery County. I wonder if they are still allowing free riding on the paved trails/roads in Pennypack?? I don't mind paying the $20...but anually? for sure.
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  5. #5
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    A friend and I were approached by a park ranger today and asked to see our permits. Neither of us had one and all she did was tell us to goto the website and get one if were going to continue to ride there. She wasn't confrontational at all and was actually pretty cool . She did say that they are going to be cracking down and they will be writing tickets in the future. That was it and then she left.

    Also we were riding in that jump bike pit area. She did say to enjoy the jumps while they're still there because their are plans to get rid of that spot. FWIW.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky351
    Also we were riding in that jump bike pit area. She did say to enjoy the jumps while they're still there because their are plans to get rid of that spot. FWIW.
    Of course. People have fun on public land? Can't have that.

  7. #7
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    man i'm glad i live on the left side of pa. the county here is in the process of working with our local trail group to approve and expand freeride trails (with big drops and features and such) in our parks. all of which are free to ride.

    phuck philly. move to the burgh. you'd be closer to snowshoe anyway...

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky351
    Also we were riding in that jump bike pit area. She did say to enjoy the jumps while they're still there because their are plans to get rid of that spot. FWIW.

    While I don't ride 'the bowl', that is utter BS.

    Lou - any comment? The last I heard there was going to be a bike park. Is that replacing the bowl?

    Also, what Kenn72 said...find a buddy and order 2 to split the cost.

    If it was going back into the park, no problem giving them $20, but it's probably a way the city is try to generate revenue to fix it's budget woes. And it's not the $20 they want, it's the money from the tickets, which will be way more.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by zarr
    X2. I guess it's time to head up to Tyler State Park in Newtown or even better, White Clay in Delaware or some other places in Bucks or Montgomery County. I wonder if they are still allowing free riding on the paved trails/roads in Pennypack?? I don't mind paying the $20...but anually? for sure.
    I thought mountain bikes weren't allowed off the paved trails at Tyler?
    "It never gets easier, you just go faster." - Greg LeMond

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    Quote Originally Posted by nHurD
    I thought mountain bikes weren't allowed off the paved trails at Tyler?
    I have to look into that. I only rode there a few times actually with my wife (who loved it. ) We were never stopped or anything. Maybe we just didn't get caught. Anyway if I find some more nice places to ride in our area, I'll post them up here or on another thread. Please remember though I don't ride any real rough trails, so don't judge my preferences by those standards. Even if I find some tough trails I'll post them up too though. (Even though what's tough to me may be tame to others.) I been living in NE PA for 11 years now and haven't ridden the Towpath that goes from Bristol up to Lawrenceville yet either. I like to ride with my wife at times and that one seems a prime spot. *P.S.- be careful in Pennypack. I heard about a gruesome crime that was committed there about a year or so ago. (...just be careful. )---zarr
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  11. #11
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    The cost of the permit is free. However, we request a minimum donation of $20.00 to help support the Trail Program.
    Wait, is the permit free or not? If the "minimum donation" is mandatory, then the permit isn't free.... Can somebody clear this up? To me, a request for "donation" just means that if you can afford it but don't pay it, you aren't an appreciative person (or are financially troubled at that time). However that doesn't mean that you don't still get the permit.

    So do people who are down on their luck and cheapskates get to ride the trails for free?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by zarr
    I have to look into that. I only rode there a few times actually with my wife (who loved it. ) We were never stopped or anything. Maybe we just didn't get caught. Anyway if I find some more nice places to ride in our area, I'll post them up here or on another thread. Please remember though I don't ride any real rough trails, so don't judge my preferences by those standards. Even if I find some tough trails I'll post them up too though. (Even though what's tough to me may be tame to others.) I been living in NE PA for 11 years now and haven't ridden the Towpath that goes from Bristol up to Lawrenceville yet either. I like to ride with my wife at times and that one seems a prime spot. *P.S.- be careful in Pennypack. I heard about a gruesome crime that was committed there about a year or so ago. (...just be careful. )---zarr
    Did you try Core Creek? It's right down the street from Tyler and offers both paved trails and single track. There are a few obstacles in the single track, but there's always bailout paths that you can take if you'd rather not go over them.
    "It never gets easier, you just go faster." - Greg LeMond

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    Quote Originally Posted by nHurD
    Did you try Core Creek? It's right down the street from Tyler and offers both paved trails and single track. There are a few obstacles in the single track, but there's always bailout paths that you can take if you'd rather not go over them.
    Thanks for the tip. I'll definitely look into it.
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  14. #14
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    Its free if you live within the city limits. Otherwise the $20 is mandatory. And you cant get away with claiming you're a city resident, buddy of mine tried it to see what would happen and he never got his permit.

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    Tyler & pavement

    I hear the state rangers will not hesitate to cite you for being on the dirt trails at Tyler. In some cases they may seize your bike.

    Where is the political correctness in that in this day of not offending anyone?

    We should lobby for multi-use trails.

    Quote Originally Posted by nHurD
    I thought mountain bikes weren't allowed off the paved trails at Tyler?

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    Quote Originally Posted by trekmike
    I hear the state rangers will not hesitate to cite you for being on the dirt trails at Tyler. In some cases they may seize your bike.

    Where is the political correctness in that in this day of not offending anyone?

    We should lobby for multi-use trails.
    I bet pretty soon it will be illegal to ride your bike ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD without buying a permit. Think about it though...an International Bike Riders' Permit. hahahaha ?...Oh Shi
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by dagmz6s
    Its free if you live within the city limits. Otherwise the $20 is mandatory. And you cant get away with claiming you're a city resident, buddy of mine tried it to see what would happen and he never got his permit.
    Apparently my work computer wasn't displaying the OBVIOUS RED statement that explained that....

  18. #18
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    Wink

    Oh Wait... So, Lou what is your address?...LOL!

  19. #19

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    I remember the first time they tried to enforce permits for the Wiss trails, it was about 10 - 15 years ago. I am not sure when they stopped requiring a permit. I wonder how long this time will last

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    From what I understand, they never "stopped" requiring a permit. They just weren't enforcing it.

  21. #21
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    More info on Wissahickon, Tyler and White Clay

    I read all the above posts and I have some info to add. Ironically last night I was talking with a friend about all the trail work and pulled out my map of the Wissahickon from 1998, as produced by the Friends of the Wissahickon.

    On the back of the map there is a section titled : Wissahickon Valley Trail Rules. There are only 12 of them - nice and simple right? The sixth one states -

    "All trails users over the age of sixteen (16), except pedestrians, must have a permit."

    If my memory is correct (I could be wrong, I often am) they stopped enforcing this because of funding cuts. But they never stopped requiring permits.

    By going to the link Lou posted above ( https://events.membersolutions.com/e...ntent_id=13806 ) you can go online and get a the yearly trail pass, and you get a temporary pass which you print out and carry with you. Not that hard to do, and keep in mind this is a city park, not a state park so the money goes right into the trails.

    Someone mentioned going Tyler or White Clay in an above post.
    - At Tyler it is illegal to ride a bicycle on any non paved trail. Plus, are the trails there that good they are worth poaching? Go to Neshaminy instead. Only a few minutes away, free, fun, challenging sections, and easy section.
    -White Clay requires a $3 a day donation. I know a lot of people don't make that donation, and shame on them. Also, if you ride there when the rangers feel the trails are soft you can get fined too - really. Plus, like the Wiss, all trail work is done by volunteers - Delaware Trail Spinners, and I think it is awesome they protect their work. If you have been at a trail maintenace day, you know its back breaking work.

    Now here's the important part... If you aren't happy with these rules, join the PMBA (www.phillymtb.org) or IMBA, and get involved. The more we show the powers that run the parks with trails that we are responsible trail users, the more we can make these changes. But no one is going to do it for us, so lend a hand.

    Hope this helps.
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  22. #22
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    I bought 2 passes last year for me and my wife. Unfortunately were too strapped for cash to buy them this year, at least for the time being. I guess I'll only ride Wiss afterdark for now, not that I get out there very often.

    I didn't know White Clay had a $3 donation. Where are you supposed to pay/
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  23. #23
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    Kenn-

    All good points.

    My cynicism comes from:
    1. the money collected is not going back into maintain the park or to those who do.
    2. while always on the books, it's enforcement oddly coincides with the cities well publicized budget woes.

    I can see the city grasping at new potential revenue streams; they seeing ticketing mountain bikers as a source of money. Don't fool yourself. They aren't looking for $20 from any of the regular involved riders. They want the ticket money.

    I wonder if they will be ticketing non-compliant horse riders.

  24. #24
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    I guess now you might have to go to jail for unpaid bike tickets. And underage kids will have to go to juvenile detention centers for unpaid tickets. Isn't that just great.
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    Although my wife and I live in Philadelphia and apparently are not absolutely required to pay for them, we have paid or "donated" the fee for our trail passes. I don't know exactly where our money is going but I do love the fact that we live in a city that has such a great resource as Fairmount Park. Like every other municipality in this city there is money wasted but also money well spent. I feel like it's important to have these rangers on duty in the park. If some of our money helps keep them working then I'm pleased.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by dagmz6s
    Its free if you live within the city limits. Otherwise the $20 is mandatory. And you cant get away with claiming you're a city resident, buddy of mine tried it to see what would happen and he never got his permit.
    that may go to explain why i haven't received mine. should have paid closer attention to the red text.

  27. #27
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    Wink

    OK, so I will throw my "dumb" hat in, and as an outsider I might have foggy glasses on so bear with me we have way different rules in Wyomingtucky Valley!

    Giving money to the Philly club is an excellent idea! Giving money out to nowhere is not. Philly provides lot's of help, maintenance, and stewardship, great bunch of guys. Come full circle and we all know it's about getting your guy in the correct office to help you out from the top. All the bla bla in the world "won't get ya nothing"(Wyomingtucky valley lingo, just translate) but sore ears...Vote Vote Vote... looking up is more difficult than looking down from the top! So per say the Philly club stopped all maintenance and just became a fun loving riding club? Where would the maintenance duties fall then? and on who? The city? the friends of Wiss? How does IMBA stand on this are they in the duck and cover mode?...LOL

    On the other hand there are other places to ride and maybe it might be worth it to drift away for a while, let things go and view from another perch. Looking across from a high is just as good as looking down from there!

    GOD, I am a genius! Is anyone listening? I really am all alone?

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    Where do our tax dollars go? Pretty soon you'll have to have a permit just to GO into the park. Everybody break out your picnic permits.
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    Sure, it's also a great idea to donate money to pmba. And it's more obvious to see where that money goes especially if you're coming here just to ride trails. I agree too that the permits are kind of stupid but the city needs money. Look at all the funding being cut for public pools and libraries. They're gonna collect where they can. There seems to be more mountain bikers in the wissahickon than ever. Being that the permit rule has already been in place for many years to them it's just neglected revenue. At least some of that money will assumedly go into the park. Probably a larger percentage than my city wage taxes do and let me tell you, city wage tax is a big chunk. So yeah, it's blind faith but all I know is that the money is worth it for me to live here and have this great park system outside my back door.

  30. #30
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    Amen Ed, excellent thoughts and observations. Think about it for a little while, it's not that big a deal when the rubber hits the dirt. I ride in the Wiss at least 4 days a week, all year. So $20 for me is nothing, but I can see if you drive here from Pennsyltucky or Dirty Jersey and have to spring $20 is asking a little much, and I think they should have a day pass for visitors for like $3-$5, albeit that is hard to administer, and probably costly. But the policy needs to be fair.

    Get a permit and come ride here 4 times throughout the year and make it worth it! We love having visitors here and you can always find someone to ride with who knows the trails on the PMBA website and forum. The trails arenít going anywhere and they are getting better every month because of all the bikers who volunteer here. We have 30-50 volunteers each month. To date we have just been doing small projects, but we are gearing up to do a 1+ mile NEW TRAIL in 2010, which will eliminate the need to have to ride your bike on Summit Ave with the road-raging public trying to get home from work.

    Anyway, the FPC is allowing us a lot of leeway in the trail work we do so itís not asking a lot to get the permit. Look at how many log rides there are now, like over 10! I used to not agree that mountain bikers and equestrians are required to have a permit, especially because there are so many more bikers than horse riders. But they are looking to try and account for how many of us there are and probably make a little revenue as well.

    What irks me is that the equestrians have 3 complete stable facilities on the park property with their own little ďstunt parksĒ where they jump the horses.
    It is very obvious that this situation is unfair and that the ever increasing amount of mountain bikers need to be treated better and need their own bike park, which we are working on and making some progress. Park officials and the FOW fully realize that if they destroy the bowl that a new one will appear within days at the same or another location which they will not know about until itís done. They are unofficially allowing the bowl to remain in its current state, but they just donít want us to enlarge it. Believe me when I tell you it is very difficult to convince the guys who use it (including myself) not to make it bigger. I feel like I am holding back huge flood gates, and when they break, hopefully at our own legitimate bike park, it will be world class and people will travel far to ride this baby.

    But I digress and ask everyone to please try to stop fighting the ďmanĒ and do your duty and play by their rules and show them how good of people we are and we will get what we want. Believe me that it helps our cause when we are making a presentation to these people. They are getting a much better picture of who we are: mothers, fathers, professionals, productive & healthy citizens looking to enjoy the outdoors. They just have a hard time understanding how we ride our bikes so well on dirt and rocks and get back up and ride more after a crash. Itís all good.

    But like Kenn says, it's ALL UP TO US!
    bike = good

  31. #31
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    As awesome as it is, $20 would be a little steep for one ride in the Wissahickon. From what I can tell most people who ride there come back frequently. Honestly though, it's crowded as hell in there on nice weekend days. To worry about deterring new riders from coming may not be of the utmost importance. With the number of us who frequent already twenty bucks a head is a lot of revenue. There's no doubt that if most of us comply and buy the passes that we'll be taken more seriously by park officials. I agree though that a couple dollars for a day pass would be an excellent idea and could generate even more money.

  32. #32
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    $20.00

    For as little as $20.00 a year you can ride one of the best parks on the east coast. I think that is a bargain!! I would pay much more if I had to. Think about your gym memberships...cost me $56.00 a month and not nearly as much fun. Fairhill and White clay are up to $4-6 out of state to park each visit.
    PMBA is doing a great job, not only with trail work, but with the relationships between the bikers and the rest of the user groups in the park. I have been riding the Wiss for 17 years, and the friends of the wissahickon really had a bad image of the mountainbikers a few years ago. Is it so nice to see that bikers are becoming a legitimate user group that also gives back to the park.
    So, wherever the money goes does it really matter ?..it is only $20.00....stay away from wawa for a week and you will have enough to give back.

  33. #33
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    How about $10 for a 6 month permit from April to September? Sounds a liitle more cool.
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    problem is

    why don't all users need a pass??seems unfair to me.if i run the park i dont need it,if i ride my bike i do?

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    That's a good point. I think the thing is a bicycle is a vehicle and when you're riding a horse you're operating it as a vehicle. But when you're walking or running you're simply a pedestrian. And if there were as many people riding horses in the park as are riding bicycles then trail passes would be enforced on the horses too. Lets hope that never happens.

  36. #36
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    Permits are lame

    I don't like to get into pissing contests, especially on the internet, but paying to ride anywhere is totally against what riding a mountain bike is all about, at least to me.
    Another issue is that their trails bring money to their local economy. Why would you establish something that might change that? I know it's only $20, but it's more than that. I've been riding the Wiss for close to ten years. It was home to me when I lived in the city for a decade. It's good to see the improvements in the trails, but the permit system is a bad idea.
    Where's the money going? If I run the trails do I have to pay? How about hikers? Do horses have to pay $20 too?

  37. #37
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    Yeah, it's kinda nice to see the park rangers back in the park after them not being around much the last few years.

    That said, if it comes down to them just policing bike permits it will be totally lame. There are many things the rangers could do to generate revenue that would be much more beneficial to the park than giving tickets for no permits. Summer is coming around again and that probably means another year of trash and vandalism at Devils Pool as one example. Fines for littering and vandalism ($$$) could go a lot further, and be more productive, than 20 buck a pop tickets to MTBers....

    Time will tell I guess. It does suck for those from out of town....which could eventually be lost revenue for the city from loss of visitor spending (tho obviously a drop in the bucket, everything counts).

  38. #38
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    Registered even though I haven't used the Wiss since early February.

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    Quote Originally Posted by onegeargood
    I don't like to get into pissing contests, especially on the internet, but paying to ride anywhere is totally against what riding a mountain bike is all about, at least to me.
    Another issue is that their trails bring money to their local economy. Why would you establish something that might change that? I know it's only $20, but it's more than that. I've been riding the Wiss for close to ten years. It was home to me when I lived in the city for a decade. It's good to see the improvements in the trails, but the permit system is a bad idea.
    Where's the money going? If I run the trails do I have to pay? How about hikers? Do horses have to pay $20 too?
    I'd be pretty vexed about the permits too if I were you. They're especially lame if you're not gonna ride here a lot and even more so if they used to be your local trails and you want to hit them just a few times a year. One of my close friends is in your boat too. He and I haven't discussed it but I know he's not gonna buy a pass just to come up and ride every once in a while. Not because he doesn't have the money but just out of principle. The passes are worth it for me but not so much for you guys.

  40. #40
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    As concerned taxpayers you should ask to be shown where he money goes! Hit the meetings! Don't stand by like sheep in a snowstporm just cause your warm and afraid to make a move. Permits should be for everyone and there should be a garage/shop/warming hut type set up for Mt Bikers/hiikers also. Hum... there's where the money could go. I would check the bilaws of your cities charter and see if citiy parks are ruled under free recreation use.

    You alerady pay taxes for parks in your local tax collection... double taxing?

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    I have only been to wiss once last year and plan to go there again once this year with three other riders like last yr. Does every rider need a permit or just one of us?

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkerkonadawgdeluxepaul
    I have only been to wiss once last year and plan to go there again once this year with three other riders like last yr. Does every rider need a permit or just one of us?
    every rider needs a permit, technically.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdburch
    man i'm glad i live on the left side of pa. the county here is in the process of working with our local trail group to approve and expand freeride trails (with big drops and features and such) in our parks. all of which are free to ride.

    phuck philly. move to the burgh. you'd be closer to snowshoe anyway...
    when I read about this stuff over in Philly I think to myself WTF?

    PTAG and PORC do a good job of keeping good PR with the local parks around here.

  45. #45
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    They better not get rid of the bowl. That place has the best "freeride" in the city. Why are they getting rid of it? Sure, people have gotten hurt there, but they all know that it was they're fault, etc.

    EDIT: Ahaha! I'm free from having to have a permit! I'm 16 now, and can look 16 next year too.

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    Can someone PM me directions to the bowl. I have been to the Wiss 3 times and never encountered the "bowl". I heard its on the southwest end of the park, but haven't found where.

  47. #47
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  48. #48
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    OK...so I DID get ticketed a few Sundays ago....

    Quote Originally Posted by kenn72
    I read all the above posts and I have some info to add. Ironically last night I was talking with a friend about all the trail work and pulled out my map of the Wissahickon from 1998, as produced by the Friends of the Wissahickon.

    On the back of the map there is a section titled : Wissahickon Valley Trail Rules. There are only 12 of them - nice and simple right? The sixth one states -

    "All trails users over the age of sixteen (16), except pedestrians, must have a permit."

    If my memory is correct (I could be wrong, I often am) they stopped enforcing this because of funding cuts. But they never stopped requiring permits.

    By going to the link Lou posted above ( https://events.membersolutions.com/e...ntent_id=13806 ) you can go online and get a the yearly trail pass, and you get a temporary pass which you print out and carry with you. Not that hard to do, and keep in mind this is a city park, not a state park so the money goes right into the trails.

    Someone mentioned going Tyler or White Clay in an above post.
    - At Tyler it is illegal to ride a bicycle on any non paved trail. Plus, are the trails there that good they are worth poaching? Go to Neshaminy instead. Only a few minutes away, free, fun, challenging sections, and easy section.
    -White Clay requires a $3 a day donation. I know a lot of people don't make that donation, and shame on them. Also, if you ride there when the rangers feel the trails are soft you can get fined too - really. Plus, like the Wiss, all trail work is done by volunteers - Delaware Trail Spinners, and I think it is awesome they protect their work. If you have been at a trail maintenace day, you know its back breaking work.

    Now here's the important part... If you aren't happy with these rules, join the PMBA (www.phillymtb.org) or IMBA, and get involved. The more we show the powers that run the parks with trails that we are responsible trail users, the more we can make these changes. But no one is going to do it for us, so lend a hand.

    Hope this helps.
    In case anyone was wondering, warnings were NOT being given. The ticket was $25.00.

    Our group is from outside of the area...all of us from the Lancaster/Lebanon/Lititz areas. Although I've ridden the park before...(Last year's Rally in the Valley)...my two friends hadn't and we still played the, "But, we're from Lancaster and didn't know." card. No dice. Even after the rangers said that they could ask us to show them ID's (I guess to prove our story about where we were from.) we were all trying to be cool about it and be cooperative.
    The Rangers explained that ALL users of the "upper trails" .... anything off of the gravel road by the river need to have a pass. Now...did I see any hikers, trail runners, equestrians being stopped? Nope. Some of the same in full view of where I was standing, getting written up. Effin' targeting.
    After I commented, "Jeez, we should've just turned off on the way here and hit French Creek." one of the Rangers said "sorry" multiple times about having to issue the ticket.

    But, after seeing the "Park Rules" that Kenn posted....Thank God that I didn't get nailed for TWO fines that day.... I DEF. didn't abide by number 2 on the list!!!!!

    Lou,
    Thanks for starting this Thread and taking the time to post.

    Eric
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckUni
    Yeah, it's kinda nice to see the park rangers back in the park after them not being around much the last few years.
    Besides writing tickets, will they be doing anything else, like preventing people's cars from getting broken into?

  50. #50
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    Thanks. A couple of the guys from the bike shop I work at told me about it after Rally in the Valley.

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    maybe someone can set up a few rental passes from out of towners for like $2 a day and all the money collected from it goes directly into funding trail improvements through the PBMA

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    This is all very perplexing to me. In 15 years I've never seen a single ranger in wiss. Only city cops driving down the gravel road, taking extended coffee break scenic drives.

    I'd bet the house that the rangers will disappear again by June, once the spring fever wears off for the general public.

  53. #53
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    Someone above asked me to post when I got my permits in the mail. A nice little envelope arrived today from the Farimount Park Commission. And in there was the TWO permits I requested, a map of the Wiss, a map of Pennypack park, and a Fairmount Park map and Visitor's guide(15 pages!!!). So the system does work. I wonder what retail value is on one of these maps?

    Someone made a comment above about the Rangers. Cars get broken into because there is no funding for more Rangers to patrol, and they get broken into by criminals - not rangers. They are doing their job. Reminder - there is only 1 full time Ranger at the Wiss. Imagine if we all paid for the permit, then there would be support out on the trails and patrolling of the parking lots.

    Someone else mentioned the FOW. At trail maintenance days, they are out there in force too. Kind of like a partnership. You see how that works? Play nice, and they play nice.

    So please, help us play nice.

    Yeah, its a pain. Yeah $20 seems like a lot to some (not compared to a $38 day pass at Diablo). But its the law. Try and imagine what happens if no one buys permits, the ranger gets laid off, they close the park to biking (and yeah - it happens), and then sell off the land to a developer. I'll pay my $20 again gladly next year. I hope you make the same decision.
    Kenn Rymdeko
    "It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare." - Mark Twain

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    one last thing - just a reminder that donations are tax deductable.
    Kenn Rymdeko
    "It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare." - Mark Twain

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    Compared to all the cash we spend on our bikes and gear I find it hard to believe anyone could complain about paying $20 to ride there all year. Its money well spent since certain advocacy groups would like to see mountain biking eliminated from Wiss.

  56. #56
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    Anyone have a photo of the "prominent signage that's everywhere...at every trailhead" according to the Rangers that ticketed us? (That explains that trail passes are required.)

    In all honesty, if it is there...we could've poss. missed it. Just out of rolling along, talking, excitement to be there and riding after our long drive....any number of things. I just don't recall seeing signs at each trailhead, that's all.
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  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by adoble
    Compared to all the cash we spend on our bikes and gear I find it hard to believe anyone could complain about paying $20 to ride there all year.
    I think the people who are upset about it are the people who ride there only once or twice a year, like me. And I don't ride at wissahickon because I want to, I ride there because all of my riding friends are tired of coming out to downingtown or french creek.

    If somebody asked me to pay $20 a year to ride at downingtown or french creek, I'd have no problem paying. But if I have to pay to ride somewhere only once a year (and theres no lift access provided), then $20 is steep. How about a 1 day pass for $5?

  58. #58
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    Good job!

    How about: A free pass to anyone who buys an EWR?

    How about: designing trails for electric bicycles for people to use to get places instead of fuel vehicles? How about the electric vehicles we are all supposed to be driving right now? Where are they? I though Eddy said we are going to be the greenest state?

    How about: The county, city, state, hiring guys to maintain the trails, pay their health care, sick leave, bonuses, and vacations! They bag on small business' to hire people and create jobs then instititute outrageous rules and taxatuion that said business can't survive. I'm really sick of the state, city, county, crying and hiding behind the excuse "We can man the whatever"

    How about: "Many can't afford your permit but will ride there anyways, funny they have "people" to "fine" you in this situation though. Seems a little counterintuitive to me! I thought they were shorthanded?

    I will end my How about with: They see $ with the mt bikers! So just go be a sheep and follow the wolf to dinner! By the way your on the menu...LOL!



  59. #59
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    How about this thought:

    Since the members of the PMBA have been so active in getting things done in the last two years (including more trail maintenance than in the last 15 years combined) that they are taking a look to see if we keep our word and abide by the rules.

    What do you think that says about us as a group when we are trying to get an mtb park built and be good citizens, then they are start auditing us to see who on bikes have permits. Personally I think that sets a pretty bad tone.

    Adoble said it well: "Compared to all the cash we spend on our bikes and gear I find it hard to believe anyone could complain about paying $20 to ride there all year. Its money well spent since certain advocacy groups would like to see mountain biking eliminated from Wiss."
    Kenn Rymdeko
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  60. #60
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    I'll toss my hat in and hope this helps.

    Yes it stinks they are enforcing permits, and it appears they are targeting mtbikers. But we have to play by the rules. This is just a small drop in the bucket of what we are trying to get done at Wiss. The trails at wiss are being worked on by members of PMBA almost daily, and our volunteer force is constantly growing and becoming more skilled. And thanks to our members donations, our tool arsenal is constantly growing. This is what bugs me the most! I want riders to donate to our club so they can join the efforts and help us to get things done, but these permit cost may cut into the help that we really need. But it is tax deductible, as is a donation to PMBA.

    One thing to do for those of you who know someone in Philly and feel $20 annually is too much to pay to ride 50 miles of sick trails (really?). Whether it's a friend or a relative, or maybe a co-worker that does not even ride. Since Philly residents do not have to donate, ask them if you can use their address to mail the permit, and when you do, ask for extra so you can give them to your road trip buddies (a friend of mine used my address and it worked). Then go to PMBA and donate the money directly to us. Your tax deductible donation will go right back into the sweet trails we have here, and eventually a bike park. Admit it, the trails here are worth it! And they are always getting better.

    Looking into the future, when we do get all the pieces together to build a bike park here (many of us will not rest till we get it) I'm sure many riders that only come here once a year will start to come here more. Best thing we can do is play by the rules for now so we can keep moving forward. I honestly don't believe this enforcement is going to last, but unfortunately the permits are required according to the current park rules. This IS typical of many other parks around the country.

    About the bowl - It's not going anywhere. Trust me.
    Last edited by lust4singletrack; 05-11-2009 at 11:54 AM.
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    Maybe I lucked out, but I didn't give any donation to them and still got a permit.

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenn72
    How about this thought:

    Since the members of the PMBA have been so active in getting things done in the last two years (including more trail maintenance than in the last 15 years combined) that they are taking a look to see if we keep our word and abide by the rules.

    What do you think that says about us as a group when we are trying to get an mtb park built and be good citizens, then they are start auditing us to see who on bikes have permits. Personally I think that sets a pretty bad tone.

    Adoble said it well: "Compared to all the cash we spend on our bikes and gear I find it hard to believe anyone could complain about paying $20 to ride there all year. Its money well spent since certain advocacy groups would like to see mountain biking eliminated from Wiss."
    Agreed! Even tho I was one of the ones "blindsided" by the new, start up of the enforcement of needing these tags....and, as mentioned in another post by PMBA's tool guy, the targeting of mtb'ers......let's turn this into something POSITIVE.
    Let's ALL have tags, and it'll give the "haters" absolutely ZERO to be able to gripe about.
    And...make us as a user group look GREAT! THEN....maybe we could even turn it around on them....forcing enforcement on the other "upper level" user groups!
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  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastcoaster
    ......let's turn this into something POSITIVE.
    Let's ALL have tags, and it'll give the "haters" absolutely ZERO to be able to gripe about.
    And...make us as a user group look GREAT! THEN....maybe we could even turn it around on them....forcing enforcement on the other "upper level" user groups!
    I bow to you Eastcoaster (Eric) in your being fined and able to see the greater good for all the other mtb'ers out there. I'm proud to call you a friend.

    Kenn
    EWR Bikes LLC
    Kenn Rymdeko
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  64. #64
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    I remember getting stopped probably about 10 years ago on the trails by a ranger and was given an application (no ticket). I got a permit and gave the 20 bucks (I think it was actually 25) for the next five years or so.

    Didn't think it was that big a deal. They sent me something in the mail every year until I didn't renew it once (had stopped riding for a while). Anyway, I got one again this year. 20 bucks really isn't all that much.

    There are other places where you're supposed to pay a day use fee, as well. If you park in the lots at Fair Hill, they want a daily use fee and places like Round Valley and Blue Marsh require the same daily if you park in the lots.

    20 bucks for a year really isn't much to complain about, IMO.

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenn72
    I bow to you Eastcoaster (Eric) in your being fined and able to see the greater good for all the other mtb'ers out there. I'm proud to call you a friend.

    Kenn
    EWR Bikes LLC
    You're effin funny.....
    But, Thanks!
    I'll check with one of the other guy's that was with me opinion on the subject. We were over his house on Fri. night doing a little wrenching on bikes gathering and he pulled his ticket out of his pack...hadn't paid it yet..... Every so many days the fine jumps by $25...
    Wonder how much that sucka's up to $$$ now?????
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  66. #66
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    Got my tag yesterday.

  67. #67
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    What's your number? Just curious as to how many people are doing it. I got mine in early April and I am #196
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    Mine is #214 and I applied for it April 2nd. Somebody mentioned sheep a while back. So here we are with numbered tags. But seriously though, I don't see how this is so different from lots of other things we as adults are expected to register and pay money for.

  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by ed bush
    ...Somebody mentioned sheep a while back. So here we are with numbered tags....
    Well, now you know why your dog chases you everywhere...biting at your heels.

  70. #70
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    that's funny shizat... Wow I applied on April 1 and I am 196, so it looks like 18 more people registered in a day. Not bad. But I wanna see where we are now, out of curiosity.
    bike = good

  71. #71
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    New Member and rider in Philly here.

    I just signed up for the pass online and received the email confirmation but there is no info on a map or link to a map. I'd really like to try some new trails but don't want to get lost so I don't venture too far from my standard route. So is there any online map that is better than the red lines on page 8 of this pdf: http://www.fairmountparkconservancy....apBrochure.pdf ? Thats all I've been able to find so far.

    Thanks in advance guys - see you on the trails.

    EJ

  72. #72
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    you will get the map when your permit comes in the mail

    edit: ed beat me to it... oops
    Last edited by jakekenney; 05-15-2009 at 02:08 PM.

  73. #73
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    The maps will come in the mail along with your permit.

  74. #74
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    Here is a map courtesy of PMBA. Please check us out and you will find many people who know the trails and can show you around...

    http://www.phillymtb.org/images/stor...09rallymap.pdf
    bike = good

  75. #75
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    I'm number 1294.

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    that's awesome... 1000 people in a month? seems like word is spreading or the rangers are doing a decent job.

  77. #77
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    In my opinion, a lot of you are missing something here. It's not about twenty dollars. You're right, twenty bucks isn't a lot. But the principle is the issue. If everyone pays then I have no problem paying. To be targeted pisses me off. If everyone is using the trails then everyone should pay.

  78. #78
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    Cool-blue Rhythm

    Quote Originally Posted by onegeargood
    In my opinion, a lot of you are missing something here. It's not about twenty dollars. You're right, twenty bucks isn't a lot. But the principle is the issue. If everyone pays then I have no problem paying. To be targeted pisses me off. If everyone is using the trails then everyone should pay.
    ..............and this is how it starts soon it will be a fairly healthy fee to enter everywhere even if we already pay taxes for a park or area. 1,2,3,4 or 5 bucks? Not bad! How about the drain little leagues play on town/cities? Where do they return income to the town/city? Most don't! So lets charge every kid 20 bucks them to play ball!!!!!!!!! Want me to go on? Learn anything yet? This is what my sheep statement is about.

    At our county park first they closed it, no camping or swimming. NEPMTBA got it open on weekends, by petitioning 3600 names! Then NEPMTBA got it open Wednesday thur Sunday 7 to 7. Now we have it open everyday with camping back also. We might just get swimming back also! Has it been hard and lot's of work Yes! Newspaper articles, Magazine articles, Radio, TV Yes, Yes, Yes, to all....But we didn't just roll over and say OK BILL US! WE FOUGHT! We actually had a commissioner call us at the park on Friday afternoon and talk for an hour! ON A FRIDAY AFTERNOON!

    All done sans IMBA!

    Will we see a 1 dollar fee for entering the park? We might, and we agree they must do something to gain revenue to keep the park open, but it will be "everyone" who enters the park who pays! We even offered to do a MTB race and give them all the money! So, weather your local or travel from Philly or Mars it will be 1 dollar if they decide to even do this. That's 19 bucks in gas to put in your tank.

    Lou what's with? It says DONATION of 20 dollars? in your first post, Donation????????? Is this their way of beating around the bush to keep this money off the books? I would ASK! Show me where the money goes... If into the gen fund then some of the gen fund should be set aside to support mt bike projects.

    And you wonder why the horse people get a barn for their horses? Don't worry without a statewide functional MTB group we are just pissing in the wind! Sick of wet feet yet?

  79. #79
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    I need to use the paved paths at Pennypack so the $20 is theirs I guess. It just seems like a lot to pay for something I won't be using all year. $10 for 6 months somehow hits me more peacefully. Can't they break it down like that?
    roccowt.
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  80. #80
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    Man, I wish I had the time to fight city hall every day. Unfortunately I don't. But another PMBA member has started a dialog with the top 2 man at FPC, and this should get things going and get interesting.

    Don't forget that the FPC is being dissolved into the Parks and Recreation depatment as we speak and now they will be accountable to the new (yet to be named) Commissioner. This is a once in a lifetime change in the park administration so we hope this presents us opportunities.

    We will try to contact this person and start a dialog and fight for justice. But like I said, this takes time so bear with us and thanks for the support and ideas. Remember that when we are fighiting for our cause, we will have a much better argument when we show them how much money we already gave them as well as the time we donate, which is excess of 3000 hours to date.
    bike = good

  81. #81
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    Just a clarification on few things regarding the permits. I got this info directly from two people responsible for all the operations in Wiss and the man in charge of the permits program:

    1. For the residents of the city of Philadelphia the donation is suggested, not required.
    2. For non-residents the donation is required.
    3. There is a limit of two persmits per person. The idea being that if someone has more than one bike they would be able to attach one permit to each.
    4. For family members they would like people to apply twice with two names, instead of once and requiest multiple permits. This way incase of emergence or any other issue they would be able to identify the person by the permit thru their records.
    5. The intent of th epermits is tri-fold : a) raise money for park operations b) education of the users, there are maps and rules of the trail, etc documentation included in the package c) to track how many users are out there in the park
    6. A print out of your on-line receipt from FPC web site is sufficient proof of having aquired a permit.


    Please, don't flame me with all the reasons why you feel these rules and regulations are stupid/wrong/unfair/etc... I'm neither defending/advicating these rules nor discarding them. I'm just trying to dispell confusion and misunderstanding and deliver accurate message.

    Lastly, as Lou (dirt_merchant) said in the above message, we [PMBA] had started a conversation with the two men in charge from FPC regarding working out a mutually agreeable cooperation program between PMBA and FPC regarding distribution and enforcement of the trail passes. I'm not ready to discuss the details yet, until we have something concrete worked out. But I will say that the initial reaction was very positive and they were open and interested in exploring various posibilities that would benefit everyone involved, PMBA members, park users and FPC, or whatever it will be called in the coming months.

    We will work hard to advocate on behalf of PMBA members and try to bring maximum benefits to our supporters! Please stay tuned.

    Regards,
    Dmitri
    I Crash Therefor I Am!!!

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    Good job!

    Lou & dzm3:

    No fear here, I know your on it! Great info also! Nice to see open discussion with all points of view. Not against paying just want to make them play by the rules they set for all! Too many times we(I) have seen it go astray and as a resident of Luzerne country I got the feel for it!...LOL


  83. #83
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    Good job! Added to PMBA Permit info to NEPMTBA Sticky

    Lou:

    I added your first post info to onr NEPMTBA sticky at the top of this thread page.

    See ya soon

  84. #84
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    What color are the permits you guys have? I have red and blue. I got the blue first, but it has a higher number.

  85. #85
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    I have a red one.

    I believe the blue ones are temporary tags - good for 2 weeks.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakekenney
    I have a red one.

    I believe the blue ones are temporary tags - good for 2 weeks.
    I don't remember seeing a date on it. I'll have to take it off of my stem tomorrow.

  87. #87
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    I could be wrong, but I remember when the rangers started cracking down a few weeks ago they gave people the blue tags which were temporary so they could go get the ones that lasted for a year.

  88. #88
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    This is a good thread and I'm glad to see you guys share both sides of the permit issue. I am the trail steward for SORBA at the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area in Atlanta (www.nps.gov/chat) and we're looking into different ways to help the position of mtn bikers in the park. I won't go into details because it would be too long but lets say that over the last 20 years, the view of bikers by non-bikers has been a tough battle. It doesn't help though, that many of the bikers have no regard for the other trail users in the park. Many riders ride in the rain, blast past hikers and runner, and ride on trails posted to be off-limits to bikes.

    Here's a couple questions I have:
    1. Does the permit application come with any online orientation or is it simply fill out the form and get your permit? If there is a review of park rules, rules of the trail, trails that are off-limits, etc, then I think the $20 is reasonable for an annual pass. I assume the included map details some of this information and they make you liable to read and understand that????

    2. Is there a parking fee for the park? If so, does your permit exclude you from having to pay that on top of the $20 permit fee? Since our park is NPS, there is a daily use fee of $3 or you can get an annual parking pass for $25.

    3. I agree that there should be an option for a daily permit and should be provided at the trailhead for visiting riders from out ot town. That's a good point to keep in mind.

    4. How often does NEPMTBA communicate with the park? Is there one person who is the designated POC for NEPMTBA?

    5. How often does NEPMTBA do work parties at Wiss? Are these coordinated with the park management so they know when, where, how much you're doing? Is there a report provided back to the park with information on total hours worked, # of volunteers, what was accomplished?

    Some of these may be questions directly to NEPMTBA but I figure you guys are on this thread so someone will speak up from their side. I'm just trying to figure out how to best present a permit idea to the park and to the local riders.

    Bear in mind, our park here (CRNRA) sees about 1.5 million visitors annually of a mixed use nature -- road and mtn cyclists, hikers, runners, tri-geeks, nature lovers, neighbors, paddlers, fishermen, etc. Many cyclists use only a gravel paved 5k loop or a 3k paved access road. The roadies / tri-geeks got smacked down last year on the paved road so hard that the local neighborhood association made such a stink that the state law allowing for cyclists to travel 2 abreast was modified for this 3k road and now you can only ride single file. I just say this to give a little background on ALL cycling in this park.

    Thanks for your feedback!
    Charles Myrick
    33North Adventures | Owner
    Bike | Climb | Hike | Paddle
    New trips: Tibet & Bosnia!

  89. #89
    NEPMCPMBA President
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    I think the PMBA is a more relevant group than NEPMTBA to ask...

  90. #90
    Ride da mOOn Moderator
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    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by RoyDean
    I think the PMBA is a more relevant group than NEPMTBA to ask...
    Yes, correct it's PMBA that does the work and contacts with the park in that area, but great questions indeed!

    Thanks RoyDean!

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