Wilderness Ban in the US


This doesn’t affect us in Canada unless you happen to be travelling in the states of course, but it is interesting. This is happening in the country where mountain biking is huge.

Bikes are already banned in Wilderness Protected areas here, maybe if they are successful that can be used as added support to re-define rules here…or just go ride/make trail in the woods anyway, there’s pretty much no one there except during hunting season. I don’t care what anyone says about environmental damage, in the grand scheme of all the crap people do to this world biking on a single track trail is nothing. Hell, I bet the environmental damage from one can of any popular soda is more damaging than any km of any trail in the woods.

Yes bikes are banned on Wilderness Areas but in the Wilderness Act it states that the managing group (i.e. trail association etc.) can allow MTB in certain areas of their land if they so choose. So the default policy is ‘no-bikes’ but it does not seem too difficult to get permission for bikes to be allowed if the managing group is cool with it. (probably easier said than done :wink: )

The latest environmental assessments show that MTB has almost an identical impact footprint as hiking so if someone is saying that MTB should not be allowed because it is a sensitive area than really hiking should not be allowed in that area as well!

Really WPA’s aren’t much of an issue here in NS as there are not really any popular mtb trails located within their boundaries. Still the Wilderness Act is a barrier Blue Mountain Birch Cove Lakes being a prime example.

According to the yellow signs posted on every second tree around Suzie Lake, No Motorized vehicles are allowed. Nothing singling out bikes there but I’m sure our “mechanical advantage” is of concern to someone. Our MTB media doesn’t do us any favours, we don’t come across as being stewards to the environment while flying through the air backed by screaming guitars. The very few encounters I’ve had with hikers in this area have been nothing but pleasant. I just don’t see many. When I biked out west, Jasper and Banff were a bit different and trails were already being closed to cyclists when I was there in the late 90’s.