Sunday, June 1, 2008

unintended consequences

from an email received earlier this week:

And finally and perhaps unfortunately, I believe that the Working Group's effort has -- inadvertently or otherwise -- provoked or maybe intensified some friction between mountain bikers and hikers/dog walkers by appearing to define trail braiding, etc, as "dog problems." I've seen plenty of speeding, out-of-control mountain bikers and new trails created by these folks. Our dogs and I have always done our best to share the trails with mountain bikers, but we sometimes don't receive the same respect. Today's "Outdoors" supplement to the Statesman was all about mountain biking, and I found myself gritting my teeth -- something I likely would not have done prior to the "blame the dog" approach of the Working Group. Maybe the time has come to simply have separate trails for separate uses, or an "even-odd" day use allocation. Bummer if it's come to that, but perhaps we've just reached that point.

this is precisely the reason we need a comprehensive plan from a task force of all user groups. singling out one group for special attanetion does not foster the spirit of cooperation and civility we need to make the resource work for everyone.

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