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Expanding wilderness in Summit County = Less mountain biking?

1823 Views 45 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  hardtail05

Sounds like it could have some effect on mountain biking in Summit, but probably not in the most popular spots.
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The article makes it sound like they are working around mtn bike trails

Here's a map of the proposed areas...

Yellow Colorfulness Line Purple Ecoregion
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Based on the individual proposed wilderness area maps, they have identified trails that are currently open to MTBing but would be closed under their proposal. I wonder if someone from COMBA could contact them and find out how many miles of trails will be lost to MTBing if this proposal goes through. It appears like they really want our support so they may be willing to modify the WA boundaries to accomodate our requests.
Wow, enough with the wilderness designations or should I say publicly funded exclusive country clubs for hikers and equestrians. Every year they just keep chipping off more and more land. Even if they accommodate existing MTB trails, that land is verboten to mountain biking for what is in effect eternity.

Why don't they just designate the entire national forest system a wilderness area and then we'll mountain bike as an act of civil disobedience.
The folks with the Hidden Gems Wilderness group have been working closely with the Summit Fat tire Society and other mountain bike groups. They've been very sensitive to not impacting MTB access as much as possible. In fact, some of them are serious mountain bikers. It's my understanding that there are some trails, mostly in the Roaring Fork and Eagle valley area that have proven contentious but I'm not familiar with the specific trails. The Summit County areas that are on the above map do not contain any significant mountain bike trails.

Top mounter: Wilderness advocates propose wilderness designation because they feel passionately about protecting intact lands that are relatively pristine in as close to that state as possible. It has nothing to do with creating "publicly funded exclusive country clubs for hikers and equestrians". That's an incredibly ignorant and immature statement. While I may not agree with some of the specifics of how the wilderness act has been interpreted, (I don't however, feel that I have some entitlement to ride my bike everywhere I want) I do understand and largely agree with the overall aims and I do respect those who devote their lives to the long time preservation of wildlands.
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Jeeze, not just a double post... What happened there?
I consider a complete and total zero compromises ban on mountain biking now and forever rather ignorant and immature... granted the Wilderness Act and its language pre-dates the advent of mountain biking. However there are alternatives to Wilderness designation that do not blindly perma-ban any and all mountain biking on that land now and literally forever.

And I'm not saying I should be able to ride my mountain bike "anywhere", but what I am saying is that there should at least be an option for permitting back-country mountain bike access on specific trails now or at some point in the future as deemed appropriate and/or desirable. I'm also coming from the perspective and opinion that the trail impact of back-country mountain biking is something slightly greater than hiking and dramatically less than horseback riding.

Of course that is just my opinion as a tax paying mountain biker and if I was a hiker or an equestrian I'd think Wilderness designation was the greatest thing ever and would do everything in my power to expand Wilderness areas as much as possible.

That being said, I do appreciate the recent attempts to better accommodate existing mountain bike trails during the Wilderness designation process. I know the ship has already sailed on this topic and it is absolutely impossible, completely improbable and will never happen, but my pipe dream would be for an accommodation in the Wilderness act to be made to at least make it possible to allow mountain biking on specific trails so I could fully support Wilderness expansion... I just find it patently offensive that back-country mountain biking is lumped in with motorcycles and snow mobiles when it comes to trail use.
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Looks like Ptarmigan trail will be off limits. That's a shame, I used to ride that trail a lot since it was right behind my house. Williams fork too.

All this Wilderness expansion is getting old. Once you give it up you will never get it back.
I find THIS very intersting... in their "Myths vs Reality" page there is not ONE single mention of mountain biking.

Hmmmm... conspiracy?
Myth: Recreation is restricted in wilderness.
Fact: Recreation is enhanced is wilderness. Hunting, fishing, horse riding, hiking, camping, canoeing, and many more activities are all allowed in wilderness and wilderness assures a high quality experience for these uses.


I'm all for protecting land, but don't BS me like this....

Put us on the same level as horse riders (not motos), and I'll call it fair.
wouldn't a canoe/paddle be considered a mechanical advantage?
I'm starting to think that the right way to approach this is to get things CHANGED so that we're allowed in Wilderness Areas...
SkaredShtles said:
I'm starting to think that the right way to approach this is to get things CHANGED so that we're allowed in Wilderness Areas...
Surely you jest... :rolleyes:
WKD-RDR said:
Surely you jest... :rolleyes:

Grass roots.

We can do this.

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