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Discussion Starter #1
Proposed mountain biking sites:
Henry Cowell State Park, Fall Creek unit.
Portions of Henry Cowell State Park, main branch.
Big Basin State Park, Skyline-to-the-Sea trail.

Front page news yesterday in the Santa Cruz Sentinel:

http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/archive/2006/October/15/local/stories/01local.htm

Mountain bikers hope new law wins new riding trails
By ROGER SIDEMAN
SENTINEL STAFF WRITER
A new state policy has mountain biking enthusiasts looking to expand their turf in the county's State Parks system.
One group of bikers is seeking access to roughly 15 miles of local trails currently off-limits to bicyclists, a pursuit that isn't likely to come easy in a county where feuds over trail use have frequently erupted as mountain biking has grown in popularity.
A trail policy put on the books last year for the state system's 278 parks forces park administrators to be more responsive to requests for new trail access.
"These are our parks, too," said Tom Ward, who has long felt mountain bikers have gotten short shrift and is helping local bikers as a lobbyist in Sacramento for the International Mountain Biking Association.
Mountain bikers have been associated with aggressive trail use and environmental damage to trails.
Ward helped establish the State Parks trail policy when he worked as a top official for the agency last year. By establishing an appeals process, Ward said, the current policy has put in place a system of checks and balances to ensure that public requests are heard by local districts.
The Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz, an advocacy group with 163 members on its mailing list, hopes to give bikers new access in Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park Fall Creek Unit, where mountain biking is illegal, the Skyline-to-the-Sea trail, which connects Big Basin State Park's headquarters to Highway 1 and is mostly off-limits to bikes, and areas of Henry Cowell's main branch.
Existing "multi use" trails open to a growing number of bikers are too congested and need expanding, advocates say.
"Big Basin is a large park that will give mountain bikers a solitary experience," said Mark Davidson, a software engineer and head of Mountain Bikers Of Santa Cruz.
From the perspective of many bikers, the sport's rise in popularity has drawn new-kid-on-the-block treatment and they have to fight for access to trails traditionally enjoyed by hikers and horseback riders.
"Basically the situation is that mountain biking has evolved since the State Parks were acquired and, since the government is slow and resistant, it's hard to open trails," said Patty Ciesla, director of the Northern California Mountain Biking Association.
Before the new trail policy, proposals could be sat on indefinitely by a cash-strapped parks system with more pressing priorities.
Steve Musillami, State Parks trail manager, acknowledged the need to address trail designation.
"There's been more concerns with local trails systems in the past five to 10 years," Musillami said.
Proposals for expanded mountain biking have been challenged in the past, and almost certainly will face problems in the future.
Critics don't want to be spooked or forced off trails by aggressive mountain bikers; they say the high-tech activity isn't always in keeping with the sanctity of wilderness areas.
Aldo Giacchino, director of the Sierra Club's local chapter, said he wouldn't take a position on the Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz proposal until he sees it but said the Sierra Club is generally against adding new mountain biking trails.
"People don't want to be surprised by fast moving objects in tight situations," he said.
Others are concerned about trails and the erosion and damage caused by the ruts left by tires.
Other groups also have taken issue with allowing mountain bikes, including the local chapter of the California Native Plant Society, the Rural Bonny Doon Association and several UC Santa Cruz ecology professors.
Mountain bikers are quick to cite scientific studies suggesting equestrians cause as much, or more, trail damage than bikes. Davidson says that most mountain bikers are environmentalists, too.
The mountain bike group is also eyeing trails at the Coast Dairies Ranch, in the "Gray Whale" area adjacent to Wilder Ranch State Park and the off-road footpaths above UCSC.
Contact Roger Sideman at [email protected].
Proposed mountain biking sites
Henry Cowell State Park, Fall Creek unit.
Portions of Henry Cowell State Park, main branch.
Big Basin State Park, Skyline-to-the-Sea trail.
 

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Fireball in the Night
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Hiked it once from Castle Rock.
I'd love to be able to bike it now.
This has been ongoing for yearrrrs.
Thanks for the update, Zignzag.
 

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EEP-OPP-ORK-AH-AH
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incredible!

This would be the best xmas present ever to MTB'ers! S2C (skyline to the sea) is an incredible ride. though mostly illegal now, I recall at one time it was (in the long long ago) accessible to all users - even remember some MX back there ...

the trail itself is really no great shakes, there are much better maintained trails for MTBs - but to be able to get to the ocean from skyline makes it an instant epic.

we should all do whatever necessary to help this pass (though it seems unlikely). a few bucks to IMBA or MBOSC will help, and it's always a good idea to attend local advocacy meetings and community committee meetings - if for no other reason than to hear the unbelievable rants issued by 'local land owners' and 'communiy leaders'. You may actually be surprised to hear just how much the 'Vande-ites' hate us - and these folks are at every meeting!
 

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bikerbert
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Try the entrance from Waddell Beach on HWY. Great 5.5 mile ride, and short hike to a 50-60' waterfall. You can lock your bike up, and off you go! One of my wife's favorite places for us to ride.
 

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Fart smeller
Tell us what parts you're using.
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Thanks for the news!

Also wanted to say "thanks" for selling me the Bonty bars at the MBTB. I'm putting the 28" of width goodness to good use on my On-One SS :thumbsup:

fp
 

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12 years later, still "no bikes" on what would be one of the greatest singletracks in the area. Rare to see people on those 30+ miles. If hikers ain't hiking, what would hurt to let the bikers ride?
 

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"These are our parks, too,"

12 years later, still "no bikes" on what would be one of the greatest singletracks in the area. Rare to see people on those 30+ miles. If hikers ain't hiking, what would hurt to let the bikers ride?
"These are our parks, too,"

Hope it won't happen, it has been shown that mountain bikers do NOT respect the trails. In aptos & santa cruz the new DH crowds are creating tons of down hill short cuts.
The current trails where designed in such a way that they need very little up-keep. Now we have tons of DH short cuts all over the place - Nice Job Mountain bikers....

If skyline is opened, we would have hundreds of shuttle services and tons of new illegal trails....... I am a mountain biker, but we can not trust the mtn bike at large.
 

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I was not talking about "those" mountain bikers you refer to, as they need none of your sympathy nor authorization - they are likely riding it already.

I was just commenting on how nice was that dream, 12 years later, and how little sense it makes to me, keeping trails to hikers only, and then hikers just don't show.

Maybe something like one day a week? Tuesdays 5AM to 9PM, hikers resupply at REI, bikers enjoy some beautiful singletrack.

I know. Let's let this thread hibernate for another 12 years.
 

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Over it
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It may have happened somewhere, but I'm not aware of any "hiking only" trail in a state park being changed to multi-use. It seems to be a bureaucratic cul-de-sac. And, evidently, we can't be trusted! Of course, those darned hikers can't be trusted either. I've spent a bunch of trailwork days fixing their shortcuts.
 

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This would be the best xmas present ever to MTB'ers! S2C (skyline to the sea) is an incredible ride. though mostly illegal now, I recall at one time it was (in the long long ago) accessible to all users - even remember some MX back there ...

the trail itself is really no great shakes, there are much better maintained trails for MTBs - but to be able to get to the ocean from skyline makes it an instant epic.

we should all do whatever necessary to help this pass (though it seems unlikely). a few bucks to IMBA or MBOSC will help, and it's always a good idea to attend local advocacy meetings and community committee meetings - if for no other reason than to hear the unbelievable rants issued by 'local land owners' and 'communiy leaders'. You may actually be surprised to hear just how much the 'Vande-ites' hate us - and these folks are at every meeting!
Not a buck to IMBA. They did nothing and worse all those years.
 

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Mtbr Founder
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Interesting thread from 2006.

It displays the futility of our struggle here in the Bay Area, stronghold of the hiker elite.

I always thought the fight for trails was a fight for our children aka, the next generation. But now it seems not doable. Efforts and funds are probably better mobilized for Santa Cruz and many other parts of the country.

Midpen, Marin and East Bay Parks are F- imho.

Santa Clara County Parks, Demo, Santa Cruz are much better.
 

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Moab shares trails with jeeps, motorcycles, atv's. No problemo. Here trails are closed because some snake wants to cross it or hikers don't want to share.

Might be better to teach our kids how to ride without damaging trails, without crossing hikers or rangers, etc. Sorry state of affairs... vive la résistance!
 

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Formerly of Kent
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Moab shares trails with jeeps, motorcycles, atv's. No problemo. Here trails are closed because some snake wants to cross it or hikers don't want to share.

Might be better to teach our kids how to ride without damaging trails, without crossing hikers or rangers, etc. Sorry state of affairs... vive la résistance!
Perhaps it would be worth considering the myriad differences between what was a failed uranium town of 4,000 people in the middle of nowhere, surrounded as far as the eye can see by USFS, NPS and BLM land, and the situation you’re dealing with in CA.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Interesting thread from 2006.

It displays the futility of our struggle here in the Bay Area, stronghold of the hiker elite.

I always thought the fight for trails was a fight for our children aka, the next generation. But now it seems not doable. Efforts and funds are probably better mobilized for Santa Cruz and many other parts of the country.

Midpen, Marin and East Bay Parks are F- imho.

Santa Clara County Parks, Demo, Santa Cruz are much better.
Mountain bikers are growing in numbers, age and influence. Things will change. An interesting article. Like the old saying, 'Those who show up, are those who rule the world.'

https://www.bikemag.com/lines-in-the-dirt/the-vitality-of-trust/
 

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I used to ride the skyline-to-sea trail with a couple of cousins in the early 90s. We generally rode the section near China Grade. Awesome trail. Haha. It was illegal back then but we were young kids looking for thrills.

Once we rode the Skyline-to-Sea section to the Waddell Beach. The downhills were super fun. I remember it having some rocky loose technical steep sections. However the fun was brief because we were stupid. We were expecting a store at the sea and there was nothing. Had no food or water on the brutal trek back and barely crawled back to the car. Still good MTB memories.

It would be great if they opened it. Definitely one of those epic type rides.
 

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California State Park Wilderness designation. That's it. Change the Wilderness standard to allow for bicycles and the whole S2S *could* be legal.

Personally I'm much happier putting my energy with MBoSC and LToSCC / BLM to open San Vincente & Coast Dairies with trails designed for mountain bike use by some of the best trail designers in the area (MBoSC and Sierra Buttes).
 

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Perhaps it would be worth considering the myriad differences between what was a failed uranium town of 4,000 people in the middle of nowhere, surrounded as far as the eye can see by USFS, NPS and BLM land, and the situation you’re dealing with in CA.


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Yes, the main difference is that there are many more people here who need access for outdoor recreation.
 
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