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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
From IMBA:

The U.S. National Park Service (NPS) has proposed an important rule change
that will make it easier for parks to open trails to mountain biking. IMBA
urges mountain bikers to register comments in support of the new rule. We
have been asking the NPS to make this change since the 1990s - we now enter
a 60-day commentary period to make the change official.

Take Action Now!:

http://tinyurl.com/a5xqvo

We know that several groups are working hard to defeat this proposal. It
will take thousands of comments supporting the NPS to ensure the rule is
approved. Please lend your voice to the discussion today.

Bicycling broadens recreational offerings in national parks and helps
Americans get much-needed exercise. It connects people with the natural
world and is a fun, low-impact activity. Observers of national parks worry
that the NPS is losing relevance with today's youth - bicycling can help
address that problem. Mountain biking is a great way to help kids fall in
love with parks. According to the Outdoor Industry Foundation, bicycling is
a leading "gateway activity" that gets kids outside and interested in
outdoor pursuits, such as hiking, camping and fishing.

Many trails will not be good candidates for bicycle use. IMBA recognizes
that bicycling will not be considered in Wilderness Areas or Wilderness
Study Areas, and that many historic parks and battlefields will not be
suitable for mountain biking. We also know, however, that shared-use trails
have proven successful in thousands of locations, including many federally
managed parks.

The most promising properties offer a combination of non-Wilderness lands
and underutilized facilities that make them good candidates for expanded
mountain biking opportunities. IMBA-affiliated clubs can assist the NPS in
identifying the best locations for mountain biking. If the local NPS staff
agrees an opportunity exists, our clubs stand ready to provide park staff
with volunteer resources.

As the proposal explicitly states, none of the NPS procedures for
environmental review - or opportunities for public commentary - will be
diminished by this rule change. What it achieves is a more manageable system
for adopting mountain biking trails. The proposal states, "As a general
matter, the proposed rule provides park superintendents with a more
efficient and effective way to determine whether opening existing trails to
bicycles would be appropriate in the park unit they manage."

Thanks for taking action,

Mike Van Abel
Executive Director
International Mountain Bicycling Association

----------------------------------end

See the ruling here:

http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2008/E8-29892.htm
 
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