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Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.



 
 
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  #1  
Old September 4th 14, 07:27 AM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
EdwardDolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 538
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

Blackblade and his ilk are trespassers and despoilers of nature. Here is an article I pulled out of my stream of such articles expressly for him to read. Will it do any good? Probably not, but the truths stated in this missive will be apparent to anyone with a functioning brain in his head. It also assumes a heart and a soul, things which mountain bikers have ever shown to lack. God Damn their rotten souls all the way to Hell and back!

http://www.earthisland.org/journal/i...ticket_to_ride


Mountain Biking Is Inappropriate In Wilderness
by George Wuerthner

George Wuerthner is an ecologist and former hunting guide who has written or edited many books including, Thrillcraft: The Environmental Consequences of Motorized Recreation. He has personally visited more than 400 designated wilderness areas.

I just got back from a mountain bike ride. The trails outside of my hometown of Bend, Oregon have numerous loops and degrees of difficulty, and riding my mountain bike is a pleasant way to unwind, get some exercise, and enjoy pedaling without the fear of being hit by a car. The trails are located in previously logged forests on the edge of town. These lands do not qualify for wilderness or other special protection, and thus are an appropriate location for mountain biking.

The key words here are “appropriate location.”

That is the same qualifier I would have for my four-wheel drive vehicle as well other “thrillcraft.” I am grateful to have a four-wheel drive vehicle when driving in snow, muddy roads and the like, but that doesn’t mean I feel it’s appropriate to drive it everywhere it can go. Similarly, just because my mountain bike can climb steep hillsides and traverse meadows, doesn’t mean I think it’s appropriate to use wherever I might feel like it.

Although I can’t speak for all mountain bikers, I think my experience while on my bike is representative of most cyclists in that I am more focused on the trail and the sense of movement than I am aware of and in tune with my surroundings. In other words, the natural world I am traveling through is more a stage for my cycling experience. Whether that stage is wildlands or not is irrelevant to my biking experience. This fundamental indifference to landscape is the primary conflict between mountain biking and the Wilderness Act’s goals.

This is not to say that mountain bikers do not enjoy wildlands or that they are immune to the beauty of nature. Indeed, when I stop cycling, I often look around and appreciate the setting. But the reason I am biking is not primarily to observe nature, and I think it’s safe to say that most mountain bikers would agree. When careening down a mountain we must, by necessity, be focused on the trail in front of us, not the natural world around us.

Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks. Part of the rationale for wilderness designation is to provide an opportunity for people to contemplate and observe natural systems.

It is clear from a reading of the debate around the creation of the Wilderness System that recreation is not the prime rationale for wilderness designation. The act says little about preserving recreational uses or adapting new types of recreation. In testimony before Congress in 1962, Howard Zahniser, the chief architect of the Wilderness Act, stated clearly: “Recreation is not necessarily the dominant use of an area of wilderness.” In an essay he authored in 1956, Zahniser wrote about the spiritual benefits of wilderness, which he considered one of its highest purposes: “Without the gadgets, the inventions, the contrivances whereby men have seemed to establish among themselves an independence of nature, without these distractions, to know the wilderness is to know a profound humility, to recognize one’s littleness, to sense dependence and interdependence, indebtedness, and responsibility.”

I do not believe mountain bikes contribute to the development of humility, nor a sense of dependence, interdependence, and responsibility. There are four major reasons why mountain biking should not be permitted in officially designated wilderness areas or in any areas that are strong candidates for wilderness designation.

Legal. The Wilderness Act is unambiguous about the kinds of activities that are deemed acceptable in designated wilderness – namely travel without “mechanical advantage.” The rationale for the law, as stated in its opening paragraph, is “to assure that an increasing population, accompanied by expanding settlement and growing mechanization, does not occupy and modify all areas within the United States and its possessions, leaving no lands designated for preservation and protection in their natural condition.” Mountain bikes are part of that growing mechanization. The sophisticated advancement of mountain bike technology reduces the natural limits imposed by primeval character, whereas those walking or traveling by horse remain within natural limits.

Ecological. Bike proponents often suggest that mountain bikes may do less damage than a pack of horses or even a Boy Scout troop. This is a specious argument. The cumulative effects of numerous tires create additional erosion, sedimentation in streams, and potential for trail damage. The idea that some activities do more damage than another is not a reason to expand damaging activities. There is a cumulative impact from all uses, and adding to existing use can only increase impacts. The main goal of wilderness designation is to preserve wild nature, not to preserve recreational opportunity.

Sociological. Any mechanical advantage – whether it is a dirt bike or a mountain bike – shrinks the backcountry. This has several effects. Those walking are easily surpassed by those using mechanical means, which can psychologically dismay other users. On heavily used trails, the threat of a fast moving bike changes the experience for other trail users. If you are a hiker, the ability to relax and soak in the natural world is impeded when one is anxious about having to jump out of the way of a bike.

Philosophical. The spirit and letter of the Wilderness Act is to protect lands that retain their “primeval character and influence.” The more advanced the technology that we drag along with us, the greater our alienation from the spiritual values of wilderness areas. To many who are walking in quiet contemplation of nature, mountain bikes are an intrusion. They are no different to many wildlands enthusiasts than if a bike were to invade the Sistine Chapel or were ridden in the Arlington National Cemetery. The fact that many mountain bikers are oblivious to the spiritual values inherent in wildlands is one reason why those walking find mountain biking obnoxious at best, and even disrespectful.

For me – and many of my fellow wilderness advocates – the goal of conservation is to preserve the remnants of wild nature, not to protect self-indulgent recreational opportunities. With ever more technological gadgets available for distraction and diversion, we need the sanctity and self-restraint that Wilderness Areas represent more than ever.


Mountain bikers are barbarians and have no right to be on any trail used by hikers – unless they want to get off their god damn ****ing bikes and walk like everyone else. When they crash and injure themselves, I rejoice! If and when they manage to kill themselves, I say good riddance to bad rubbish! Death to mountain biking!

“Tread softly! All the earth is holy ground.”
~ Christina Rossetti (Psalm 24),
from "A Later Life: A Double Sonnet of Sonnets"

Mountain bikes have wheels. Wheels are for roads.

Trails are for walking. What’s the matter? Can’t walk?

Ed Dolan the Great
aka
Saint Edward the Great


  #2  
Old September 4th 14, 12:44 PM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
Blackblade[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 214
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

Blackblade and his ilk are trespassers and despoilers of
nature. Here is an article I pulled out of my stream of such articles expressly
for him to read. Will it do any good? Probably not, but the truths stated in
this missive will be apparent to anyone with a functioning brain in his head. It
also assumes a heart and a soul, things which mountain bikers have ever shown to
lack. God Damn their rotten souls all the way to Hell and back!


You keep forgetting that I, too, am also a hiker and, perhaps surprisingly to you, I agree with quite a lot of what is written in the article. I have never advocated for universal access ... I've simply pointed out how ridiculous your ubiquitous assertions are. You don't want mountainbikers on ANY trails ... irrespective of wilderness designation.

And, since you take that view, you do exactly what I warned you about; you create extremism to counter it.

If you were prepared to concede that some of the trails where, clearly, you would prefer that there were no mountainbikers were open then, I suspect, the mountainbikers might be rather more open to accepting that other trails were off limits such as wilderness trails.

Of course, this all presupposes that people don't, as has been the case in the past, mis-use wilderness designation simply to try and get mountainbikers off historic trails. If all could agree a 10-year grandfathered rights clause I think that would resolve that one.

But, no, you take an absolutist position which means that even reasonable mountainbikers like me, who do enjoy hiking and do accept the 'cathedral of nature' proposition, find ourselves resolutely opposed to your selfish and irrational response to anything to do with mountainbikes.

If you want mountainbikers to act reasonably then you have to too. Fight us and, guess what, we fight back. Compromise and you will achieve far more of what you want.
  #3  
Old September 21st 14, 10:49 PM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
EdwardDolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 538
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

"Blackblade" wrote in message ...

Edward Dolan wrote:

Blackblade and his ilk are trespassers and despoilers of
nature. Here is an article I pulled out of my stream of such articles expressly
for him to read. Will it do any good? Probably not, but the truths stated in
this missive will be apparent to anyone with a functioning brain in his head. It
also assumes a heart and a soul, things which mountain bikers have ever shown to
lack. God Damn their rotten souls all the way to Hell and back!


You keep forgetting that I, too, am also a hiker and, perhaps surprisingly to you, I agree with quite a lot of what is written in the article. I have never advocated for universal access ... I've simply pointed out how ridiculous your ubiquitous assertions are. You don't want mountainbikers on ANY trails ... irrespective of wilderness designation.


And, since you take that view, you do exactly what I warned you about; you create extremism to counter it.


If you were prepared to concede that some of the trails where, clearly, you would prefer that there were no mountainbikers were open then, I suspect, the mountainbikers might be rather more open to accepting that other trails were off limits such as wilderness trails.


Of course, this all presupposes that people don't, as has been the case in the past, mis-use wilderness designation simply to try and get mountainbikers off historic trails. If all could agree a 10-year grandfathered rights clause I think that would resolve that one.


But, no, you take an absolutist position which means that even reasonable mountainbikers like me, who do enjoy hiking and do accept the 'cathedral of nature' proposition, find ourselves resolutely opposed to your selfish and irrational response to anything to do with mountainbikes.


If you want mountainbikers to act reasonably then you have to too. Fight us and, guess what, we fight back. Compromise and you will achieve far more of what you want.


My position is that there is an inherent conflict between hikers and bikers on trails just as there would be between bikers and motorcyclists on trails. It really has nothing to do with the ease or difficulty of a trail (although the danger factor is a good argument to use to get bikers off of trails), but to WHY you are on the trail in the first plaice. Purpose is everything. Very strange that you can’t see it from this perspective.

Unlike Mr. Vandeman, I am not opposed to bikers having their own trails. He is more right than I am of course, but that is the only compromise I am willing to make. Bikers use nature as a playground. With natural spaces becoming ever more rare, it is a desecration to use natural spaces for playgrounds for adults with toys.

The most precious resource in the world are natural spaces where what you can do and what you can’t do is closely regulated. Let everyone do whatever he wants and the resource is destroyed. Walking a trail is the least harm that can be done. I am far more right than you are. There is nothing extreme about my position on how we should use natural spaces. The only extremist here is you.

Mountain bikers are barbarians and have no right to be on any trail used by hikers – unless they want to get off their god damn ****ing bikes and walk like everyone else. When they crash and injure themselves, I rejoice! If and when they manage to kill themselves, I say good riddance to bad rubbish! Death to mountain biking!

“Tread softly! All the earth is holy ground.”
~ Christina Rossetti (Psalm 24),
from "A Later Life: A Double Sonnet of Sonnets"

Mountain bikes have wheels. Wheels are for roads.

Trails are for walking. What’s the matter? Can’t walk?

Ed Dolan the Great
aka
Saint Edward the Great


  #4  
Old September 23rd 14, 11:10 AM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
Blackblade[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 214
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

Blackblade and his ilk are trespassers and despoilers of

nature. Here is an article I pulled out of my stream of such articles

expressly

for him to read. Will it do any good? Probably not, but the truths

stated in

this missive will be apparent to anyone with a functioning brain in

his head. It

also assumes a heart and a soul, things which mountain bikers have

ever shown to

lack. God Damn their rotten souls all the way to Hell and back!




You keep forgetting that I, too, am also a hiker and, perhaps

surprisingly to you, I agree with quite a lot of what is written in the
article. I have never advocated for universal access ... I've simply
pointed out how ridiculous your ubiquitous assertions are. You don't want
mountainbikers on ANY trails ... irrespective of wilderness designation.



And, since you take that view, you do exactly what I warned you

about; you create extremism to counter it.



If you were prepared to concede that some of the trails where,

clearly, you would prefer that there were no mountainbikers were open then, I
suspect, the mountainbikers might be rather more open to accepting that other
trails were off limits such as wilderness trails.



Of course, this all presupposes that people don't, as has been the

case in the past, mis-use wilderness designation simply to try and get
mountainbikers off historic trails. If all could agree a 10-year
grandfathered rights clause I think that would resolve that one.



But, no, you take an absolutist position which means that even

reasonable mountainbikers like me, who do enjoy hiking and do accept the
'cathedral of nature' proposition, find ourselves resolutely opposed to your
selfish and irrational response to anything to do with mountainbikes.



If you want mountainbikers to act reasonably then you have to

too. Fight us and, guess what, we fight back. Compromise and you
will achieve far more of what you want.



My position is that there is an inherent conflict between
hikers and bikers on trails just as there would be between bikers and
motorcyclists on trails. It really has nothing to do with the ease or difficulty
of a trail (although the danger factor is a good argument to use to get bikers
off of trails), but to WHY you are on the trail in the first plaice. Purpose is
everything. Very strange that you can't see it from this
perspective.


Your purpose is recreational ... just as mine is. You don't NEED to be there any more than I do. We both choose to be there because we enjoy it. You are presuming that your recreation is superior to mine ... but you have no logical basis for doing so. Hiking and biking have similar environmental impacts so there is no objective measure for preferring one over the other..

Unlike Mr. Vandeman, I am not opposed to bikers having their
own trails. He is more right than I am of course, but that is the only
compromise I am willing to make. Bikers use nature as a playground. With natural
spaces becoming ever more rare, it is a desecration to use natural spaces for
playgrounds for adults with toys.


An hiking is what ? A job ? !!! Get off your high horse and accept that you, too, are pursuing a recreational pastime not doing anything that benefits nature ... hikers create similar levels of erosion.

The most precious resource in the world are natural spaces
where what you can do and what you can't do is closely regulated. Let everyone
do whatever he wants and the resource is destroyed. Walking a trail is the least
harm that can be done. I am far more right than you are. There is nothing
extreme about my position on how we should use natural spaces. The only
extremist here is you.


Ed, you froth at the mouth at the mere mention of mountainbikes and they cause you "mental torture". If that's not extreme I don't know what is.
  #5  
Old September 25th 14, 05:31 AM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
EdwardDolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 538
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

"Blackblade" wrote in message ...
[...]

Edward Dolan wrote:

My position is that there is an inherent conflict between
hikers and bikers on trails just as there would be between bikers and
motorcyclists on trails. It really has nothing to do with the ease or difficulty
of a trail (although the danger factor is a good argument to use to get bikers
off of trails), but to WHY you are on the trail in the first plaice. Purpose is
everything. Very strange that you can't see it from this
perspective.


Your purpose is recreational ... just as mine is. You don't NEED to be there any more than I do. We both choose to be there because we enjoy it. You are presuming that your recreation is superior to mine .... but you have no logical basis for doing so. Hiking and biking have similar environmental impacts so there is no objective measure for preferring one over the other.


We are doing two entirely separate things when we are using a trail. You are doing a sport. I am doing an appreciation of nature, which can only be accomplished by moving slowly on your own two feet. They don’t mix. You disturb and destroy what I am doing just as a motorcyclist would disturb and destroy what you are doing, although he is also doing what you are doing - engaging in a sport - but on a different level. All recreations are NOT equal. The expert on environmental impacts is Mr. Vandeman. I am the expert on what trails are for based on philosophical considerations.

Unlike Mr. Vandeman, I am not opposed to bikers having their
own trails. He is more right than I am of course, but that is the only
compromise I am willing to make. Bikers use nature as a playground. With natural
spaces becoming ever more rare, it is a desecration to use natural spaces for
playgrounds for adults with toys.


An hiking is what ? A job ? !!! Get off your high horse and accept that you, too, are pursuing a recreational pastime not doing anything that benefits nature ... hikers create similar levels of erosion.


You can do what you do in a million different places. I can only do what I do in a few rare places left on this earth where the natural scene has not been corrupted by mankind’s constructions and practical usages.

“All recreations are NOT equal. The expert on environmental impacts is Mr. Vandeman. I am the expert on what trails are for based on philosophical considerations.” – Ed Dolan

The most precious resource in the world are natural spaces
where what you can do and what you can't do is closely regulated. Let everyone
do whatever he wants and the resource is destroyed. Walking a trail is the least
harm that can be done. I am far more right than you are. There is nothing
extreme about my position on how we should use natural spaces. The only
extremist here is you.


Ed, you froth at the mouth at the mere mention of mountainbikes and they cause you "mental torture". If that's not extreme I don't know what is.


I have a mountain bike myself which I ride on the gravel roads here in Nobles County, Minnesota. The only extremist here is you.

Mountain bikers are barbarians and have no right to be on any trail used by hikers – unless they want to get off their god damn ****ing bikes and walk like everyone else. When they crash and injure themselves, I rejoice! If and when they manage to kill themselves, I say good riddance to bad rubbish! Death to mountain biking!

“Tread softly! All the earth is holy ground.”
~ Christina Rossetti (Psalm 24),
from "A Later Life: A Double Sonnet of Sonnets"

Mountain bikes have wheels. Wheels are for roads.

Trails are for walking. What’s the matter? Can’t walk?

Ed Dolan the Great
aka
Saint Edward the Great


  #6  
Old September 25th 14, 10:34 AM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
Blackblade[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 214
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

My position is that there is an inherent conflict between

hikers and bikers on trails just as there would be between bikers and



motorcyclists on trails. It really has nothing to do with the ease or

difficulty

of a trail (although the danger factor is a good argument to use to

get bikers

off of trails), but to WHY you are on the trail in the first plaice.

Purpose is

everything. Very strange that you can't see it from this


perspective.


Your purpose is recreational ... just as mine is. You don't

NEED to be there any more than I do. We both choose to be there because we
enjoy it. You are presuming that your recreation is superior to mine ...
but you have no logical basis for doing so. Hiking and biking have similar
environmental impacts so there is no objective measure for preferring one over
the other.

We are doing two entirely separate things when we are using a
trail. You are doing a sport. I am doing an appreciation of nature, which can
only be accomplished by moving slowly on your own two feet. They don't mix.


Yes, we're doing different ... RECREATIONS ! Unless and until you can show that you NEED to be there this is axiomatically the case. Nature doesn't need you to appreciate it ... in fact, your appreciation creates erosion and disturbs nature ... you WANT to go there for your own purposes.

You
disturb and destroy what I am doing just as a motorcyclist would disturb and
destroy what you are doing, although he is also doing what you are doing -
engaging in a sport - but on a different level.


I agree that, in your case, there is a degree of conflict. So, we need to find a compromise. As I've already said, I'm not at all averse to having some hiker only trails and some biker only trails. However, what I am vehemently against is your attempt to annexe the entire trails network for your recreation only.

All recreations are NOT
equal. The expert on environmental impacts is Mr. Vandeman. I am the expert on
what trails are for based on philosophical considerations.


I have never said that all recreations are equal ... I think mountainbiking is a better recreation than hiking ... and, yes, I do engage in both.

You keep opining that hiking is better but fail to understand that this is simply your opinion which, therefore, no one else is required to share. You are going to keep flailing around unless and until you accept that different people have different opinions and that, no, you are not axiomatically right anymore than anyone else is ether.

Vandeman is an expert on internet trolling ... and nothing else.

Unlike Mr. Vandeman, I am not opposed to bikers having their


own trails. He is more right than I am of course, but that is the only



compromise I am willing to make. Bikers use nature as a playground.

With natural

spaces becoming ever more rare, it is a desecration to use natural

spaces for

playgrounds for adults with toys.


And hiking is what ? A job ? !!! Get off your high

horse and accept that you, too, are pursuing a recreational pastime not doing
anything that benefits nature ... hikers create similar levels of erosion..

You can do what you do in a million different places. I can
only do what I do in a few rare places left on this earth where the natural
scene has not been corrupted by mankind's constructions and practical
usages.


Ed, we are talking about trails ! They are man-made constructions to allow people to get to natural places but, in and of themselves, they are a corruption too.

If you really cared about nature that much then you would eschew hiking too..

The most precious resource in the world are natural spaces


where what you can do and what you can't do is closely regulated. Let

everyone

do whatever he wants and the resource is destroyed. Walking a trail is

the least

harm that can be done. I am far more right than you are. There is

nothing

extreme about my position on how we should use natural spaces. The

only

extremist here is you.




Ed, you froth at the mouth at the mere mention of mountainbikes

and they cause you "mental torture". If that's not extreme I don't know
what is.

I have a mountain bike myself which I ride on the gravel roads
here in Nobles County, Minnesota. The only extremist here is you.


I didn't put the words in your mouth ... it was you who wrote that the presence of a mountainbike on a trail caused you "Mental Torture".

I call you an extremist because you are. You want to never have to share a trail with a mountainbiker. That's just not feasible. I'm not saying you have to share them all though ... because, unlike you, I'm not an extremist.
  #7  
Old June 6th 16, 09:52 PM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3,345
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

On Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at 11:27:16 PM UTC-7, Edward Dolan wrote:
Blackblade and his ilk are trespassers and despoilers of
nature. Here is an article I pulled out of my stream of such articles expressly
for him to read. Will it do any good? Probably not, but the truths stated in
this missive will be apparent to anyone with a functioning brain in his head. It
also assumes a heart and a soul, things which mountain bikers have ever shown to
lack. God Damn their rotten souls all the way to Hell and back!

*http://www.earthisland.org/journal/i...ticket_to_ride


Mountain Biking Is Inappropriate In Wilderness


by George Wuerthner

George Wuerthner is an ecologist
and former hunting guide who has written or edited many books including,
Thrillcraft: The Environmental Consequences of Motorized Recreation. He has
personally visited more than 400 designated wilderness areas.

I just got
back from a mountain bike ride. The trails outside of my hometown of Bend,
Oregon have numerous loops and degrees of difficulty, and riding my mountain
bike is a pleasant way to unwind, get some exercise, and enjoy pedaling without
the fear of being hit by a car. The trails are located in previously logged
forests on the edge of town. These lands do not qualify for wilderness or other
special protection, and thus are an appropriate location for mountain biking.


The key words here are “appropriate location.”

That is the same
qualifier I would have for my four-wheel drive vehicle as well other
“thrillcraft.” I am grateful to have a four-wheel drive vehicle when driving in
snow, muddy roads and the like, but that doesn’t mean I feel it’s appropriate to
drive it everywhere it can go. Similarly, just because my mountain bike can
climb steep hillsides and traverse meadows, doesn’t mean I think it’s
appropriate to use wherever I might feel like it.

Although I can’t speak
for all mountain bikers, I think my experience while on my bike is
representative of most cyclists in that I am more focused on the trail and the
sense of movement than I am aware of and in tune with my surroundings. In other
words, the natural world I am traveling through is more a stage for my cycling
experience. Whether that stage is wildlands or not is irrelevant to my biking
experience. This fundamental indifference to landscape is the primary conflict
between mountain biking and the Wilderness Act’s goals.

This is not to
say that mountain bikers do not enjoy wildlands or that they are immune to the
beauty of nature. Indeed, when I stop cycling, I often look around and
appreciate the setting. But the reason I am biking is not primarily to observe
nature, and I think it’s safe to say that most mountain bikers would agree. When
careening down a mountain we must, by necessity, be focused on the trail in
front of us, not the natural world around us.

Our wildlands are not
outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks. Part of the rationale for wilderness
designation is to provide an opportunity for people to contemplate and observe
natural systems.

It is clear from a reading of the debate around the
creation of the Wilderness System that recreation is not the prime rationale for
wilderness designation. The act says little about preserving recreational uses
or adapting new types of recreation. In testimony before Congress in 1962,
Howard Zahniser, the chief architect of the Wilderness Act, stated clearly:
“Recreation is not necessarily the dominant use of an area of wilderness.” In an
essay he authored in 1956, Zahniser wrote about the spiritual benefits of
wilderness, which he considered one of its highest purposes: “Without the
gadgets, the inventions, the contrivances whereby men have seemed to establish
among themselves an independence of nature, without these distractions, to know
the wilderness is to know a profound humility, to recognize one’s littleness, to
sense dependence and interdependence, indebtedness, and
responsibility.”

I do not believe mountain bikes contribute to the
development of humility, nor a sense of dependence, interdependence, and
responsibility. There are four major reasons why mountain biking should not be
permitted in officially designated wilderness areas or in any areas that are
strong candidates for wilderness designation.

Legal. The
Wilderness Act is unambiguous about the kinds of activities that are deemed
acceptable in designated wilderness – namely travel without “mechanical
advantage.” The rationale for the law, as stated in its opening paragraph, is
“to assure that an increasing population, accompanied by expanding settlement
and growing mechanization, does not occupy and modify all areas within the
United States and its possessions, leaving no lands designated for preservation
and protection in their natural condition.” Mountain bikes are part of that
growing mechanization. The sophisticated advancement of mountain bike technology
reduces the natural limits imposed by primeval character, whereas those walking
or traveling by horse remain within natural limits.

Ecological.
Bike proponents often suggest that mountain bikes may do less damage than a pack
of horses or even a Boy Scout troop. This is a specious argument. The cumulative
effects of numerous tires create additional erosion, sedimentation in streams,
and potential for trail damage. The idea that some activities do more damage
than another is not a reason to expand damaging activities. There is a
cumulative impact from all uses, and adding to existing use can only increase
impacts. The main goal of wilderness designation is to preserve wild nature, not
to preserve recreational opportunity.

Sociological. Any
mechanical advantage – whether it is a dirt bike or a mountain bike – shrinks
the backcountry. This has several effects. Those walking are easily surpassed by
those using mechanical means, which can psychologically dismay other users. On
heavily used trails, the threat of a fast moving bike changes the experience for
other trail users. If you are a hiker, the ability to relax and soak in the
natural world is impeded when one is anxious about having to jump out of the way
of a bike.

Philosophical. The spirit and letter of the Wilderness Act is to
protect lands that retain their “primeval character and influence..” The more
advanced the technology that we drag along with us, the greater our alienation
from the spiritual values of wilderness areas. To many who are walking in quiet
contemplation of nature, mountain bikes are an intrusion. They are no different
to many wildlands enthusiasts than if a bike were to invade the Sistine Chapel
or were ridden in the Arlington National Cemetery. The fact that many mountain
bikers are oblivious to the spiritual values inherent in wildlands is one reason
why those walking find mountain biking obnoxious at best, and even
disrespectful.

For me – and many of my fellow wilderness advocates – the
goal of conservation is to preserve the remnants of wild nature, not to protect
self-indulgent recreational opportunities. With ever more technological gadgets
available for distraction and diversion, we need the sanctity and self-restraint
that Wilderness Areas represent more than ever.

*

*

Mountain bikers are barbarians and have no right to be on any trail used by
hikers – unless they want to get off their god damn ****ing bikes and walk like
everyone else. When they crash and injure themselves, I rejoice! If and when
they manage to kill themselves, I say good riddance to bad rubbish! Death to
mountain biking!

*

“Tread softly! All the earth is holy ground.”

~ Christina Rossetti (Psalm 24),

from "A Later Life: A Double Sonnet of Sonnets"

*

Mountain bikes have wheels. Wheels are for roads.

*

Trails are for walking. What’s the matter? Can’t walk?

*

Ed Dolan the Great

aka

Saint Edward the Great


Sorry but in that manner equestrians are riding "thrillcraft" There is NO DAMAGE that is done to national Wilderness areas greater than the hiker/camper.

Just because you've found someone that agrees with your twisted viewpoint doesn't mean that it is any better focused than yours.
  #8  
Old June 7th 16, 01:18 AM posted to rec.bicycles.soc
EdwardDolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 538
Default Our wildlands are not outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks.

wrote in message ...
[...]

Mountain Biking Is Inappropriate In Wilderness


by George Wuerthner

George Wuerthner is an ecologist
and former hunting guide who has written or edited many books including,
Thrillcraft: The Environmental Consequences of Motorized Recreation. He has
personally visited more than 400 designated wilderness areas.

I just got
back from a mountain bike ride. The trails outside of my hometown of Bend,
Oregon have numerous loops and degrees of difficulty, and riding my mountain
bike is a pleasant way to unwind, get some exercise, and enjoy pedaling without
the fear of being hit by a car. The trails are located in previously logged
forests on the edge of town. These lands do not qualify for wilderness or other
special protection, and thus are an appropriate location for mountain biking.


Are these the sort of lands that hikers would find attractive? If not, who cares about bikes being ridden there.


The key words here are “appropriate location.”

That is the same
qualifier I would have for my four-wheel drive vehicle as well other
“thrillcraft.” I am grateful to have a four-wheel drive vehicle when driving in
snow, muddy roads and the like, but that doesn’t mean I feel it’s appropriate to
drive it everywhere it can go. Similarly, just because my mountain bike can
climb steep hillsides and traverse meadows, doesn’t mean I think it’s
appropriate to use wherever I might feel like it.


Four-wheel drive vehicles are an even greater menace to nature than mountain bikes, but as long as driven on roads however primitive, who cares!

Although I can’t speak
for all mountain bikers, I think my experience while on my bike is
representative of most cyclists in that I am more focused on the trail and the
sense of movement than I am aware of and in tune with my surroundings. In other
words, the natural world I am traveling through is more a stage for my cycling
experience. Whether that stage is wildlands or not is irrelevant to my biking
experience. This fundamental indifference to landscape is the primary conflict
between mountain biking and the Wilderness Act’s goals.

This is not to
say that mountain bikers do not enjoy wildlands or that they are immune to the
beauty of nature. Indeed, when I stop cycling, I often look around and
appreciate the setting. But the reason I am biking is not primarily to observe
nature, and I think it’s safe to say that most mountain bikers would agree. When
careening down a mountain we must, by necessity, be focused on the trail in
front of us, not the natural world around us.


Mountain biking on single track trails is a sport, not any kind of communion with nature. It is why bikers and hikers cannot share trails.


Our wildlands are not
outdoor gymnasiums or amusement parks. Part of the rationale for wilderness
designation is to provide an opportunity for people to contemplate and observe
natural systems.

It is clear from a reading of the debate around the
creation of the Wilderness System that recreation is not the prime rationale for
wilderness designation. The act says little about preserving recreational uses
or adapting new types of recreation. In testimony before Congress in 1962,
Howard Zahniser, the chief architect of the Wilderness Act, stated clearly:
“Recreation is not necessarily the dominant use of an area of wilderness.” In an
essay he authored in 1956, Zahniser wrote about the spiritual benefits of
wilderness, which he considered one of its highest purposes: “Without the
gadgets, the inventions, the contrivances whereby men have seemed to establish
among themselves an independence of nature, without these distractions, to know
the wilderness is to know a profound humility, to recognize one’s littleness, to
sense dependence and interdependence, indebtedness, and
responsibility.”

I do not believe mountain bikes contribute to the
development of humility, nor a sense of dependence, interdependence, and
responsibility. There are four major reasons why mountain biking should not be
permitted in officially designated wilderness areas or in any areas that are
strong candidates for wilderness designation.

Legal. The
Wilderness Act is unambiguous about the kinds of activities that are deemed
acceptable in designated wilderness – namely travel without “mechanical
advantage.” The rationale for the law, as stated in its opening paragraph, is
“to assure that an increasing population, accompanied by expanding settlement
and growing mechanization, does not occupy and modify all areas within the
United States and its possessions, leaving no lands designated for preservation
and protection in their natural condition.” Mountain bikes are part of that
growing mechanization. The sophisticated advancement of mountain bike technology
reduces the natural limits imposed by primeval character, whereas those walking
or traveling by horse remain within natural limits.

Ecological.
Bike proponents often suggest that mountain bikes may do less damage than a pack
of horses or even a Boy Scout troop. This is a specious argument. The cumulative
effects of numerous tires create additional erosion, sedimentation in streams,
and potential for trail damage. The idea that some activities do more damage
than another is not a reason to expand damaging activities. There is a
cumulative impact from all uses, and adding to existing use can only increase
impacts. The main goal of wilderness designation is to preserve wild nature, not
to preserve recreational opportunity.

Sociological. Any
mechanical advantage – whether it is a dirt bike or a mountain bike – shrinks
the backcountry. This has several effects. Those walking are easily surpassed by
those using mechanical means, which can psychologically dismay other users. On
heavily used trails, the threat of a fast moving bike changes the experience for
other trail users. If you are a hiker, the ability to relax and soak in the
natural world is impeded when one is anxious about having to jump out of the way
of a bike.

Philosophical. The spirit and letter of the Wilderness Act is to
protect lands that retain their “primeval character and influence.” The more
advanced the technology that we drag along with us, the greater our alienation
from the spiritual values of wilderness areas. To many who are walking in quiet
contemplation of nature, mountain bikes are an intrusion. They are no different
to many wildlands enthusiasts than if a bike were to invade the Sistine Chapel
or were ridden in the Arlington National Cemetery. The fact that many mountain
bikers are oblivious to the spiritual values inherent in wildlands is one reason
why those walking find mountain biking obnoxious at best, and even
disrespectful.

For me – and many of my fellow wilderness advocates – the
goal of conservation is to preserve the remnants of wild nature, not to protect
self-indulgent recreational opportunities. With ever more technological gadgets
available for distraction and diversion, we need the sanctity and self-restraint
that Wilderness Areas represent more than ever.

[...]

Sorry but in that manner equestrians are riding "thrillcraft" There is NO DAMAGE that is done to national Wilderness areas greater than the hiker/camper.


Sorry, but you are an idiot! Hiking has the least impact of any human activity. Camping does have to be regulated as it can damage the natural resource.

Just because you've found someone that agrees with your twisted viewpoint doesn't mean that it is any better focused than yours.


There are thousands of great writers and thinkers who have come to the same conclusion. It is the reason for wilderness areas being set aside to begin with. You and your g.d. mechanical contrivances are despoilers of wilderness. Short of executing you for your sacrilege, I would put you in prison for 20 years. That would keep you out of mischief.

I suggest you read the above article a few hundred times until it sinks into your thick skull.

Ed Dolan the Great – Minnesota


 




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