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The time for "playing nice" has long past. Other user groups are aggressively fighting to have our access taken away. We need to be equally aggressive in our fight to preserve it.
 

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Trail Traveler said:
The time for "playing nice" has long past. Other user groups are aggressively fighting to have our access taken away. We need to be equally aggressive in our fight to preserve it.
i agree, lets fight to get rid of all the horse riders and mall cops and city central cops when we play in the urban jungle...

***they are all animals
 

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Toddski said:
Here’s my horse encounter story from last weekend – Bear Brook, NH.

I’m first in the group of riders. Come flying down the trail, super dense foliage, rocky rooty single track …trail not suitable for horses. So I’m shocked to see the 3 equestrians coming our way as I fly around a corner, but do stop a good 15 feet in front of them, everybody stops behind me as I give a warning, we dismount and stand to the side of this incredible tight trail. I say hello to the horse, First horse is FREAKING OUT, second horse is FREAKING out, third horse is FREAKING out. But we are all stopped and on the side of the trail off the bikes. The fist equestrian cannot get her horse to move forward as it’s stomping its hooves. I decide to talk to the horse in a friendly tone and let him know that I’m not a horse eating alien. This seems to work (kind of )and the first horse reluctantly stomps half kicking by us up the trail. Second horse, again it won’t respond to its rider’s commands, so I start up again in a soft tone. “it’s ok horsy, come on, let’s go.” And this is the part that pisses me off- the second equestrian says to me- quote “SHUT UP, my horse has never seen bikers before this is her first time out!” Now at this point I really wanted to get into a open dialogue about her I.Q. level and explain to her that where they were heading was not suitable for horses… also wanted to state that they were on a popular BIKING trail and they would encounter other riders in worse terrain as they further on, basically tell her that they should stop playing Louis& Clark and turn around!….. but the horse was really freaking out, there was nowhere for us to go, I did care about the rider’s safety… so I kept my mouth shut, stepped into the pucker brushes as far as I could go, used my bike as a shield for the kicking massive beast that finally went galloping by on his own terms. Third horse again went running by us with the half kicks, it was kind of scary, since the previous year I witnessed a horse actually go after and kick other biker as he stood to the far side (on a jeep road), the horses foot got caught up on the bike, and then the horse proceeded to stomp into the woods with bike still attached!, it was crazy!

so yeah anyways... I just thought a would share my recent horse encounter.

This is exactly the problem. There are places where horses and bikes are allowed that are simply not suitable for horses. I imagine in the more open areas out west that the trails can accommodate both beast and machine, but it is not like that almost anywhere on the east coast. The local trails that allow horses here in NoVA are DESTROYED by the horse traffic...and the only ones that are in any kind of shape are the ones that the Mountain Bike clubs have stepped up to rebuild/mantain.

The way I see it, horses are pets, and the rules about cleaning up after them need to be enforced. If you're riding your 1000lb rideable dog on public trails then you had best have a goddamn shovel strapped to your back or saddle. Because its not enough that I have to narrowly avoid slipping over the edge of a trail because the horseshoe holes have channel enough water to erode the lip of the trail only to land in a pile of filth at the bottom of the descent that kicks up onto my waterbottle and ruins my water supply.

And of course there is the issue of control. Im sorry...but you wouldn't walk your Great Dane/Rottweiler mix on a retractable leash on a public trail when it has a history of not liking other people/dogs and when you KNOW you are going to encounter other people/dogs. If you did and it overpowered you YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE, not the other person for being on the trail. If you know that horses are flighty and cannot be trained to NOT be flighty then common sense would dictate that you DO NOT RIDE YOUR HORSE SOMEPLACE WHERE IT MIGHT GET SPOOKED BY PEOPLE USING A MULTIUSE TRAIL.
 

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Masher
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The trouble is that people, and I mean people in general just, in this case, horse people, will not be swayed by logic or reason when it stands to take away something they have and want.

There isn't a good argument for what the horse community wants regarding multi use trails. Which is to say, they want things to stay the same. The only complaint as far as I can tell is that they want the trails to themselves. As far as their responsibilities, they have none.

In order for horses to exist in a multi-use setting other trail users must be held to a higher standard and the horse owners must be exempt from rules that others must follow.

And that makes other users mad.

Hikers may have a problem with MTBs on the trails but at least we have the same rules to follow as anyone else as well as a few specific to us and we are scrutinized under them.
 

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Masher
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I also want to post this just to give any of the horse people an idea of the time and effort we put in to not only maintaining our trails but how hard MORE is working educate and inform.

I removed the e-mail addresses for obvious reasons.



MORE Announces Fall 2009 Trailwork Series

All the parks in our area rely heavily on volunteer efforts to maintain the trails. A few hours of work from you will ensure that your favorite trails stay open and fun for everyone. You can also learn about trail building and maintenance techniques, scope out new places to ride and meet fun people. Hours worked in the Spring and Fall series will count toward MORE’s annual 20/25/25 Awards, which recognize those who put in over 20 hours of work and also support both MORE and the International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA) with their $25 membership dues. The 20-25-25 Awards include some great bike gear and discounts. Plus, you could be eligible to win a new frame or bike!

HOW? Bring work boots or sturdy shoes, work gloves (an old pair of cycling gloves will do), plenty of water, and lunch or a snack. MORE and local land managers will supply the tools, but feel free to bring your personal favorite (shovel, pick, metal rake, hand saw, etc.).

WHEN? Check the dates below for your favorite park or trail and mark your calendar NOW! Schedules are subject to change, please double-check the MORE website www.more-mtb.org for last-minute schedule changes. Unless otherwise noted, all workdays begin at 9:00 AM.



Saturday, September 12—Upper Rock Creek


Saturday, Sept 19th —Colt’s Neck/CCT


Saturday, Sept 26th—Wakefield


Saturday, Sept 26th—Patapsco


Sunday, October 3rd—Greenbrier


Sunday, October 4th —Cabin John


Saturday, October 10th—Loch Raven


Saturday, October 10th—Hoyle's Mill


Saturday, October 10th—Laurel Hill


Saturday, October 17—Black Hill


Saturday and Sunday, October 17-18—Rosaryville


Sunday Oct 18th— Gambrill


Saturday, October 24th—Ft. DuPont


Saturday, October 25th—Schaeffer


Saturday, Oct 31st -- Lake Fairfax/Colt's Neck


Sunday, November 1st—Frederick Watershed


Saturday, November 7th—Fountainhead 9:30am start


Saturday, November 7th—Upper Rock Creek


Sunday, November 8th—Patapsco


Saturday November 14th Fairland

Saturday, November 14th--Greenbrier


Saturday, December 19th—Upper Rock Creek
 

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LuMach said:
Around here we have issues with the Horsey crowd actually working to get MTBers banned from a local public park, pretty ironic when they're the one's who show the least respect for the enviornment by damaging the trails more than anyone (sandy soil+horseshoes+1000lbs. animal = serious trail destruction) and disrespecting everyone by leaving huge piles of dung behind for others to deal with.

Exactly how it stands with our local community too

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Mr. OCRider
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MisterC said:
The trouble is that people, and I mean people in general just, in this case, horse people, will not be swayed by logic or reason when it stands to take away something they have and want.

There isn't a good argument for what the horse community wants regarding multi use trails. Which is to say, they want things to stay the same. The only complaint as far as I can tell is that they want the trails to themselves. As far as their responsibilities, they have none.

In order for horses to exist in a multi-use setting other trail users must be held to a higher standard and the horse owners must be exempt from rules that others must follow.

And that makes other users mad.

Hikers may have a problem with MTBs on the trails but at least we have the same rules to follow as anyone else as well as a few specific to us and we are scrutinized under them.
Well said MisterC!
 

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Even though it isn't my highlight of a day of riding, I can avoid the horse crap that consumes many of the trails I ride. The thing that really gets me is when the equestrians use their horses to pull logs and trees across the trails so no one else can enjoy the trail. If I am hiking or biking, I shouldn't have to climb over or carry my bike over trees that were laid across the trail. I have had friends injured on singletrack because of people placing stuff in the middle of that the horses can easily step over but to a biker flying around the corner, could be deadly. I wouldn't even consider tying cable 2' above the trail to trip horses or put pungee sticks in the middle of the horse trails but what would the difference be? In my experience, equestrians just seem like snobs that want trails all to themselves. Of course all of "them" aren't like this but most of the ones I have come across are.
 

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BreatholdiveRI said:
In my experience, equestrians just seem like snobs that want trails all to themselves.
They do not "seem", they in fact are. Just attend any land management agency meeting.

They want to destroy trails in solitude and the rest of us have to foot the bill and stay home.
 

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Masher
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I need to go to one of these things. I am just dying to know what they say when we bring up these points. I can't imagine it makes sense at all.
 

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We need to elect mountain bikers to positions of influence, county commisioners ,state reps , congress etc.
 

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He wasn't really a mountain biker....

That dumb sum***** wasn't a real mountain biker. He never came and rode with us here in Sedona during his entire eight years...
 

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Old goat
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I've ridden horses, cleaned their stalls, brushed and fed 'em because my family has had them. Personally I don't like the beasts very much. But I do respect them on the trail. I always slow down and sometimes stop for them. No way in hell am I going to make a lot of noise so they notice me. What are ya, new?
Look at the horse's behavior. Look at the RIDER'S behavior. If they are in synch you are golden. Take it easy and your encounter will be null. If they are having challenges with your presence- don't be a jerk. Nobody needs to get injured in the cohabitation of trail space. Exercise even a modicum of common sense and everyone will be just fine. This goes for the horse rider too btw.
FWIW- I'm not out there to enjoy nature, that's just a by-product. It's beautiful and all but make no mistake- Nature is coming for you. I've got my own reasons for being out there.
 

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I Void Waranties
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c_rex said:
I've ridden horses, cleaned their stalls, brushed and fed 'em because my family has had them. Personally I don't like the beasts very much. But I do respect them on the trail. I always slow down and sometimes stop for them. No way in hell am I going to make a lot of noise so they notice me. What are ya, new?
Look at the horse's behavior. Look at the RIDER'S behavior. If they are in synch you are golden. Take it easy and your encounter will be null. If they are having challenges with your presence- don't be a jerk. Nobody needs to get injured in the cohabitation of trail space. Exercise even a modicum of common sense and everyone will be just fine. This goes for the horse rider too btw.
FWIW- I'm not out there to enjoy nature, that's just a by-product. It's beautiful and all but make no mistake- Nature is coming for you. I've got my own reasons for being out there.
smoking pod doesnt count.
 

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Masher
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Once the thread gets this long people just glance over it. His post addresses none of the real questions posed to equestrians.

Just more telling us what we need to do as if we don't already know.
 
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