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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anybody know who/why someone dumbed down the Lilac trail?

There used to be one rocky section (near the end Eastbound) that was challenging. Someone smashed out and removed several rocks. Now it as smooth as silk!

Also, just after that section (going West) that same person removed a big rock making the slightly tight exposed section way too easy.

Neither of these sections was dangerous. They weren't even that challenging. There was no reason to dumb them down.

Keep an eye out for people ruining trails!

Doug in PQ
 

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That older section was "dumbed down" many months ago. Don't know of the second rock you're talking about. I maintain that trail as time permits but I was not the one that did either of those items.
I've cleared back both ends but still have to complete the middle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The sections in question

If you are headed Eastbound, right before and just after the 2nd bridge. There was one section with rocks that were challenging to get over/through. Had two big rocks that you had to squeeze through.

The other part was just after the bridge and you had to do an S-turn through big rocks that were right on the edge. Probably the most "exposed" section of the trail. I use exposed very lightly :)

I know the other section was dumbed down a while ago.

Just kind of a bummer that someone decided to make the trail easier for themselves. Sadly, all it did was make an already busy trail faster on the corners.
 

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I find that someone moves rocks ON the trail, not off plus riders (I'm guessing here) are blowing corners and knocking the rocks on the side of the trail down off the edge. Most were placed there to hold soil and keep single track single.
 

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I saw the same modifications. The recent changes to the rocks by the bridge make it very easy to ride in both directions. It used to be a challenge to climb, now it's smooth. Even though I've crashed and fallen into that ditch, I liked it better the way it was.
 

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When we built the trail we purposely routed it through that narrow section to add some challenge. There are two different factions creating problems.

For the last couple years, as dirtrider stated, there have been individuals walking and rolling rocks off of the trail. The rocks served dual purpose; soil retention in the steeper sections and outer edge markers to keep the trail narrow. Vandals have found it fun to dislodge them and roll them down the side. They have torn out the berm on the point. They have made a point to knock down crib walls. It is frustrating but it is expected on trails in urban areas that are easily accessible. There is little respect for trails or understanding of feature purpose.

The second is riders who feel a section or feature is too difficult. I saw the latest about a week ago. It is sad because that was more likely a rider modifying the trail to their ability. I designed the trail and I walk that section. There is no shame in it and gives me a sense of accomplishment when I occasionally make it.

It is just sad that people will put so much effort to lower the bar rather than taking the time to build their skills.
 
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Rode Black Mtn tonight. Pics are of the sections being discussed, in order heading west. I've noticed rocks removed from this section before but it looks like more have now been removed as claimed. I recall a couple rocks that were quite toothy but were easier to get over/around than they looked. Seemed there was another rounded rock it was much easier to ride over than next to. I don't recall exactly but there are definitely rocks missing here. Likely the ones you see thrown off to the side in pic 4 and 5. This is a section I worked on during trail days when we built the trail so it is disappointing to see it dumbed down like this. Definitely unnecessary. Matt, are you sure this is not the rangers? City rangers have been known to go in and remove "hazards" from trails from time to time.

Can't get them to load upright, sorry.











This is the other section that has been smoothed out. It probably gave a lot of people trouble initially but there's nothing wrong with that. It was smoothed out a year ago or so. It might have even been dumbed down twice. It is super smooth now.

 

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Wow! The OP was so on point. This is a trail I've spent a lot of time on riding and maintaining. It's the closest one to home and my go to for a quick ride.
This afternoon I did 3 out & backs on it and cleaned it every time. That tight, rocky area has been highly modified to allow lessor skilled riders (like me:cool:) go right through. I always wanted to remove that stump right next to the last bit going westbound by this person(s) did it for me. The rest to total BS. They removed a row of rocks that served as a water diversion. I've worked that trail in the rain to help control fall line ruts and create runoff areas.
There were many areas that someone changed to make it easier to ride. I thought about it a lot this afternoon and it seems like that person knew a far amount of how to build it since rocks weren't just tossed to the side.
I can't imagine the rangers doing this but it looks like the work that they would do. The wooden bridge has been replaced with a larger, better one with SDMBA stickers on it.

Bankerboy- Any insight on who did the trail mods?
 

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I redid the bridge. It was always too off camber to be safe. I built both so it was an easy call.

I highly doubt it was the rangers however there was an A.C.E. crew there about 3 weeks ago that were supposed to do only brushing. I will double check with Ed to see if they had anything to do with it the rock removal at the choke point.

The rock stepdown before the first bridge out of Miners parking lot has been hacked out at least twice in the last two years, leaving a large scree pile over the rock steps. I have cleaned it out twice now.

Will report back what I find out about A. C. E.
 

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I always liked Lilac to Miners because of the little challenges along the way and I was always [pleasantly] surprised that the rocks had been left in. I've lost a lot of daylight refusing to carry on until I clean a section. Sometimes that results in a sense of accomplishment, and other times it means I go home with a desire to come back and do better. Even though that section wasn't all that hard, I was pretty sad to see it dumbed down, and I stopped and almost started rolling rocks back in. In the end, I chose not to because either way, it's still modifying someone else's work. But if you needed a hand moving rocks sometime in the near future, message me :)
 

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Took some time and spoke with Ranger Ed today. He was as shocked as most of us. I verified it was NOT the ranger staff or the ACE crew out there. Somebody did some serious de-rocking. There is a FB post that talks about one rider seeing another doing some of the work and regretting not saying anything.

I am not advocating violence on the trail. If you are riding a bike, you should be a passive trail advocate. If you do not stand up for our trails and at minimum document the person (cell phones have camera) and/or report it to the rangers directly or via proxy, this sort of thing will not get better. The one time we had such a report, we were able to get all of the person's identity to the the ranger staff and they addressed it.

Finally, if you cannot ride it, LEARN TO RIDE BETTER instead of modifying the trail to fit your abilities. Yes, I know you already know this, just pass it along ;-)
 

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It's not shoddy work by just removing rocks. They (more than one I'm guessing) took the time to pack it down and clear stuff off the trail.
Another guess is it WAS a MTB'er because I just can't think of any other user type putting in this much effort to modify the trail.

I trim the brush back and try to pop out the stumps left from the original build when i have free time. Most people that go by say nothing but some thank me but only once did someone ask me "what are you doing?". He was an old man like me and I told him I was doing trail work. He stated "you can't do that!' and I replied "If I don't, who will?" :D. I told him if he wanted he could speak to Ranger Ed but Ed would tell him to go back and help out;)
 

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Late to the party, but sorry to hear this is happening, particularly altering elements of the trail work that were purpose-built.

… I told him if he wanted he could speak to Ranger Ed but Ed would tell him to go back and help out;)
Maybe a silly thought, but you could print a few "business cards" with rangers' contact info (and info for relevant PQ/BM trail orgs). Folks like you, bankerboy, evdog -- anyone who's approved to do ad-hoc trail work -- could carry a few with you to hand out if challenged. Maybe hand-write the dates of upcoming trail work days on the back. :)
 

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^^ Where was that done??
On the switchbacks portion of Miners. It's been there for several weeks now, you can actually see it on Google Maps at 32.989389,-117.114455

We rode BM this afternoon and somebody totally sanitized the rock garden on Manzanita as well. I used to have to carefully time my pedal strokes and control my speed to clear it, and even then it wasn't a guarantee. Now you can practically roll a stroller through it. Whoever did it took the time to remove the rocks and carefully pack the dirt down in between the remaining stones, just like on Lilac. Sucks...
 

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We rode BM this afternoon and somebody totally sanitized the rock garden on Manzanita as well. I used to have to carefully time my pedal strokes and control my speed to clear it, and even then it wasn't a guarantee. Now you can practically roll a stroller through it. Whoever did it took the time to remove the rocks and carefully pack the dirt down in between the remaining stones, just like on Lilac. Sucks...
Dang, thanks for deflating my ego bro. I cleaned that section last Saturday and I thought I was having a strong riding day :D but it must have been cleaned beforehand. :blush: I thought it had changed a bit
 
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