Friday, June 19, 2015
Thursday, June 18, 2015
A few weeks ago, we published a piece about the contentious ban on mountain biking in Wilderness areas. Dan Chu, the director of the Sierra Club’s, “Our Wild America” campaign, gave us the Sierra Club’s perspective on the issue. Here’s some additional food for thought on this complicated and thorny issue…
Vernon Felton: So, where does the Sierra Club stand on the issue of mountain biking in wilderness areas?The Wilderness Act actually states no mechanized means of transport can be used within wilderness boundaries, which is why mountain biking is not allowed in official wilderness. However, I can say that the Sierra Club has been involved with the mountain bike community to try and find some consensus whenever that’s possible.
Dan Chu: We try to step back and say, “What is the area we want to protect and how can we do that and still allow for different types of recreation?” There are a variety of conservation designations that allow for that, like wild and scenic river designations, national recreation area designations, and something we’ve been focused on these last few years with President Obama, national monument designations.
Here’s an example: This past December, the Alpine Lakes Wilderness was designated by Congress as part of the National Defense Authorization Act. Our volunteers on the ground worked with mountain bikers to sit down and identify areas that were popular with mountain bikers in the Snoqualmie area, and the Middle Fork Trail was identified as an important trail for recreational mountain bikers. So they worked together on an agreement that had the Middle Fork Trail fall into the wild and scenic river designation along the river instead of it falling within the wilderness. As a result, that trail remains open to mountain bike use. And in return, the mountain bike community supported the recommendation for the wilderness designation that was on both sides of that trail.
That’s an example, certainly, of where we are trying to find common ground and that means taking a step back, talking about the areas we want to protect, and taking into account trails mountain bikers are particularly passionate about using so that we can then figure out ways to keep those trails open while protecting the land. There are opportunities for consensus here. The Alpine Lakes Wilderness is a good example of that...
Posted by Bill at 10:00 AM
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
The Thousand Year Journey: Oregon To Patagonia from Kenny Laubbacher on Vimeo.
I hope that this film is a healthy nudge for people to shake up their lives a little bit.
Jed's radical choice to quit his job and ride his bike across the world is a perfect challenge to the rest of us to get out of the routine and make some scary decisions. If you're afraid of a decision ahead of you, you're probably on the right track. Choose it. !
Follow Jed's adventures @jedidiahjenkins
My Instaspam @kennyjamez