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  1. #1
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    NY Times article- When Biking and Bears Donít Mix

    "Conservationists worry that the popularity of recreational mountain biking and e-bikes in public lands leads to unsafe conditions for humans, as well as for bears and other wildlife." and "Some mountain bikers revel at bombing down trails at 20 or 30 miles per hour on single-track trails that hikers also frequent."
    http://https://www.nytimes.com/2019/...nal-parks.html

    Seems like a anti-bike piece that will find a receptive audience unfortunately...
    Buy the ticket...take the ride.

  2. #2
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    The biologist they interviewed is our local anti bike nut job. They've been pumping anti bike propaganda out of the biker that died a few years ago since before he was even buried. They are, of course, perfectly happy to overlook the fact that the vast majority of bear maulings are hunters and hikers. But whatever. Bikes are bad.

  3. #3
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    the article tries very hard to link together mountain biking and e-biking, which is completely disingenuous, considering how few popular mountain bike trails in the west allow e-bikes. most mountain bikers don't want e-bikes on their trails, and anti-biker types REALLY hate e-bikes, and mountain bike access is a separate issue from e-bike access. to someone who doesn't bike or doesn't spend any time on public land in the west, they might assume that e-bikes are common on USFS land in sensitive wildlife habitat.

    the concern that bikers are being unsafe by going 20-30mph is ridiculous. should we stop people from rock climbing and mountaineering on public lands? should we stop elderly frail men from walking on pathways in grand canyon national park in 110 degree heat? the concern about bikers encountering bears is also obviously overblown from a statistical perspective. elk hunting in grizzly country is very dangerous too, but we let hunters accept those risks.

    I would like to have more data on the impacts of recreation on wildlife, but the current data is very inconclusive. the vail elk study they cite is also questionable, considering that rampant real estate development along the i70 corridor and adjacent valleys has greatly impacted winter range for elk.

    elk respond to recreation, but there is no evidence that it is this response that results in increased mortality or reduced populations, which the article does admit. elk seem to prefer certain areas for calving and you really don't want to disturb them during calving season, so it's not difficult to close trails during elk calving season in specific areas where that's a concern. the skyline trail in Jackson is closed until July 1st specifically because of concerns about elk calving. the elk are gone in July and August, so there is no concern about bikers causing harm to elk populations.

    damn this article

  4. #4
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    The forest service put out a reply that basically said, "nah, don't worry about it."

    https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.town...t23R2unohKcob4

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamal View Post
    The forest service put out a reply that basically said, "nah, don't worry about it."

    https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.town...t23R2unohKcob4
    It appears that the way they segmented the activities people were doing when killed cuts the documented risk in half of what it seems to actually be for biking and running They had hiking and walking together as 12% However they put biking and running separate with biking at 3% and running at 4%. Why separate the fast moving activities but combine the slow moving ones? It should really be biking and running at 7% and hiking or walking at 14%. It still seems like biking and running are probably more noisy and bears have great hearing. Walking/hiking you might be more likely to catch a bear by surprise. If they hear you coming they tend to go the other way.
    Go that way really REALLY fast. If something gets in your way, TURN!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BobbyBill View Post
    "Some mountain bikers revel at bombing down trails at 20 or 30 miles per hour on single-track trails that hikers also frequent."
    I take exception to that.

    The true reveling doesn't happen until I'm tickling at LEAST 35mph.
    Besides the comet that killed the dinosaurs nothing has destroyed a species faster than entitled white people.-ajp

  7. #7
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    The last bear encounter I had on trail was on a really fast one where I regularly see 30+ and that bear was already running the other way. Unfortunately it was running straight down the trail and went around a corner so I was stopped there for a bit wondering where it went and what I should do. Kept going after about a minute. Didn't see it again.

    My thought is that a fast moving, quiet mtb potentially has less impact on wildlife. A bike zips by at 15-20mph, does the bear or elk or whatever 50 yards off trail even notice or care? It probably notices the group of loud, slow moving hikers or horse riders.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamal View Post
    The forest service put out a reply that basically said, "nah, don't worry about it."

    https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.town...t23R2unohKcob4
    It seems weird they would lump black and grizzly bears together. Their reactions to bikes and moving people are so different.
    Besides the comet that killed the dinosaurs nothing has destroyed a species faster than entitled white people.-ajp

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterSmoove View Post
    the article tries very hard to link together mountain biking and e-biking, which is completely disingenuous, considering how few popular mountain bike trails in the west allow e-bikes. most mountain bikers don't want e-bikes on their trails, and anti-biker types REALLY hate e-bikes, and mountain bike access is a separate issue from e-bike access.
    Well except that e-bikers and manufacturers are trying their hardest to play it off like e-bikes are no different from regular mountain bikes and should have the same access. It doesn't help that outside of the USFS, treatment by land managers is completely inconsistent with many simply sticking their heads in the sand. Then you have e-bikers themselves who ignoring rules and riding where ever they want. All this is going to turn access for mountain bikes and e-bikes into the same issue. We may not lose access to areas we can currently ride, but this will make it a lot harder to gain access to things like WSA's, Wilderness, PCT that some are fighting for.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidwoo View Post
    It seems weird they would lump black and grizzly bears together. Their reactions to bikes and moving people are so different.
    At what latitude do black bears turn brown?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by grskier View Post
    At what latitude do black bears turn brown?
    It's not latitude, it's elevation. They get burnt and crispy up high.

    About 9,500ft
    Besides the comet that killed the dinosaurs nothing has destroyed a species faster than entitled white people.-ajp

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidwoo View Post
    It's not latitude, it's elevation. They get burnt and crispy up high.

    About 9,500ft
    Oh, I thought that was deer to elk.

    Speaking of which, do you know where they store the brake bumps during winter?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by grskier View Post
    <snip>
    Speaking of which, do you know where they store the brake bumps during winter?
    On the Front Range! Duh.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by skaredshtles View Post
    On the Front Range! Duh.
    Yeah I'd always assumed they just keep them in longmont at vail headquarters.

    Not sure where ikon keeps theirs. Storage space in aspen is too pricey.
    Besides the comet that killed the dinosaurs nothing has destroyed a species faster than entitled white people.-ajp

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidwoo View Post
    <snip>
    Not sure where ikon keeps theirs. Storage space in aspen is too pricey.
    Green Mountain in Lakewood.

  16. #16
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    Bears have as much right to ride bikes as anyone else.

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    Mister Man! Mister Man! Mister Man. They left this card.

  17. #17
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    I thought this thread was about burly gay dudes. NTTAWWT

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by evdog View Post
    Well except that e-bikers and manufacturers are trying their hardest to play it off like e-bikes are no different from regular mountain bikes and should have the same access. It doesn't help that outside of the USFS, treatment by land managers is completely inconsistent with many simply sticking their heads in the sand. Then you have e-bikers themselves who ignoring rules and riding where ever they want. All this is going to turn access for mountain bikes and e-bikes into the same issue. We may not lose access to areas we can currently ride, but this will make it a lot harder to gain access to things like WSA's, Wilderness, PCT that some are fighting for.
    But ebikers keep saying that any concerns over land access are just "whataboutism" and aren't real! Good to highlight situations like this and throw it back in their faces. I don't even blame the industry at this point but annoying as hell when consumers tout that BS.

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