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#283354 - 03/14/07 10:01 PM Tread Lightly!
tracetrimble Offline
Gang Boss

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 311
Loc: Austin
I want to generate some discussion on protecting our access to Emma Long City Park. I personally have been mountain biking and offroading at CP for over 12 years. With the recent construction right next to the parking lot, we are that much closer to losing this gem of an ORV park, and we should do everything we can to protect it. I have heard that this is also an endangered species habitat, which is the only reason needed to close it to ALL human activity.

I will first admit that I am guilty myself of riding a loud bike a few times, and taking some of the cutarounds on my dirtbike at the most difficult spots (I've cleaned the whole loop on a couple good days lately, though). Taking two or three cutarounds is practically unavoidable for the majority of riders in a few spots, and really, having an easy way up helps preserve the tough lines.

Still, it seems that the trails have been getting torn up and sanitized much more recently than in the past. I think some of this came from all the ice storm damage, but there is more to it than that.

I also read bikemojo (AFAIK the biggest local mountain bike forum), and here's a recent discussion over there of the same topic. Please don't register over there just to throw rocks, so to speak. We all need to work together on this.

http://www.bikemojo.com/speak/showthread.php?t=59654

Although some people on the thread are pretty combative, I think there are some great points made, like nobody is maliciously trying to tear up the trails - most of it is just due to ignorance. I think a good positive start would be just coming up with ways to educate other / new riders. I really just wanted to get some kind of discussion going on the topic, because I think it's very important.
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Trace
TORCS #598 Open A, KTM 300XC
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#283355 - 03/15/07 06:08 PM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: tracetrimble]
Kingham Moderator Offline
Gang Veteran

Registered: 02/01/02
Posts: 812
Loc: Austin
I posted my thoughts on that board. it just pisses me off that the MTB think they have more right to be there than the MC.

I really think that everyone needs to work together to solve the problem.
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#283356 - 03/15/07 08:13 PM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Kingham]
Dave Offline
AMSA Gang Boss

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 2349
Loc: Spicewood
Let's plan a weekend to go out there and reverse the loop (if it has not been done yet). I think that would go a long way to cure a lot of the problems with novices cutting bypasses of the really tough ledges on the loop. We definately all need to work together to take care of a real gem of a moto riding area. I love to ride CP on my "motocross" bike and can make it up the ledges without much trouble or the need to bushwack to get around them but used to ride there all the time and practiced my rock ledge skills alot while there. I haven't been to CP in a while due to my other commitments with the club but I will make it a point to do so very soon. I will get with the park manager and get some feedback from him and post it hear if we can organize a work day/weekend. AMSA and many of it's long time members have done more work out there than most folks know about over the years, long before mountian biking became popular. Heck, several our founding members layed out that trail 25 - 30 years ago. Just about two or three years ago we organized a big work crew to help the City improve the parking lot when no other clubs showed up help. But, there is no need to bash each other. Anyway, we got it done and were proud to help out. We must ban together to keep this place open for the future riders and I am willing to do my part. As we all know, a few bad apples can spoil it for the whole bunch. Stay on the trial, DON'T BUSHWACK - Tread Lightly at City Park!!
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Dave
Austin MotoSports Association


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#283357 - 03/15/07 08:28 PM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Dave]
Dave Offline
AMSA Gang Boss

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 2349
Loc: Spicewood
Update: I just spoke with the park manager and unfortunately, we cannot reverse the trail for 2 more years. It's on a 5 year plan. 3 down, 2 to go. Anyway, we had a good conversation and I reminded him that we are hear to help in anyway we can to maintain the motorcycle trails at CP. He has plans for some upcoming work projects as we get closer to summer and will call on us then. I am looking forward to it. We will talk about this and the current issues at our next club meeting.
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Dave
Austin MotoSports Association


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#283358 - 03/16/07 12:03 AM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Dave]
Greg Offline
Vet AMSA Director

Registered: 12/18/00
Posts: 1277
Loc: Austin, TX
The trials club did a lot of work there after the ice storm. There were a lot of large limbs and whole trees laying across the loop. That was right before we had an AMA-sanctioned, state championship two-day trials event there. It was raining and/or muddy the last month before the event, which included that ice storm. Then about 80 riders descended on the park for two days of competition. On Saturday, every rider made three laps of the four miles we used on the main loop. That's about 240 laps on Saturday. We only used a short part of the loop on Sunday before we ducked up the creek bed for the sections there.

About 1/4th of the riders found the four miles of the loop to have ledges that were harder than what they faced in their sections. I haven't been back since we cleaned up the loop markings that weekend, but I would not be surprised to find that some people went around ledges. They might not be from around here and could probably be forgiven considering the wet conditions.

I saw that post on Bike Mojo. I thought about responding to that post twice. I decided against it since the tone was really quite cool. I've been to ridge riders meetings where they were more annoyed about cp than that. The posters seemed to understand that it's a motorcycle park and they have to take it in the condition they get it in. I think they are just as worried about losing it as we are. It is a fantastic place that few can ride without getting hurt. Just like dirt bikers, the majority of mountain bikers won't ride there. The ones that do ride there know how great it is. I really think we have more in common than we know. They just don't like having to stop all the time to block off bypasses. They rightly feel that those bypasses would leave the impression that unapproved trail cutting is being done and they don't want that to cause everybody to lose it.

I'd spend a day out there fixing go-arounds. I was already planning to do it the next time I went, and that is going to be this Sunday. No cutting, just a warm-up loop with some stops along the way to block bypasses.

Dave, if you can schedule a trail work day with Albert and get some dirt bikers out there, I'll bring some trials riders to pitch in. Try for April. We'll all be competing in another trials event at Rio Bravo on 3/24-3/25.

Greg

PS. Trace - you're an animal! And those dual-sport maniacs I've seen out there too!


Edited by Greg (03/16/07 02:46 PM)

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#283359 - 03/16/07 02:53 PM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Greg]
Greg Offline
Vet AMSA Director

Registered: 12/18/00
Posts: 1277
Loc: Austin, TX
I'll be there Sunday.

One thing mentioned in that thread was the creation of "pansy lines" at a few of the multi-step ledges. Just a few rocks in the right place would make all the difference in allowing someone to get up. The flip side is that it is, in fact, an advanced trail. Trying to make it easier would invite more traffic consisting of people who probably shouldn't even be there. In reality, blocking off the bypasses is a better idea.

I liked when the trail went the other way and the sign at the first ledge right out of the parking lot said something like "If you don't like the looks of this ledge, you won't like the rest of the loop". That was probably the best thing to have - turn the beginners back before they get a mile out and realize they're in trouble.

Greg

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#283360 - 03/16/07 03:05 PM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Greg]
Dave Offline
AMSA Gang Boss

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 2349
Loc: Spicewood
I totally agree, Greg. The current direction is what it causing newbies to create new lines around the bigger ledges. The sign you are referring to goes a long way to let riders know what to expect on the loop. The current direction has you missing that sign all together. The other direction is no doubt easier for the average rider. 5 years per direction change is too long, in my opinion. I wonder who decided on that time frame?? I will ask Albert when I talk with him.
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Dave
Austin MotoSports Association


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#283361 - 03/16/07 05:11 PM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Dave]
MXerDude Offline
Veteran Lunatic

Registered: 12/25/01
Posts: 3007
Loc: Almost there.. 8)
yea it does seem a bit long winded, i wonder if this is what the standard is for trail reversal?
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#283362 - 03/18/07 03:22 AM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: MXerDude]
Greg Offline
Vet AMSA Director

Registered: 12/18/00
Posts: 1277
Loc: Austin, TX
Ok, I went out today and I have to retract one thing I said. It was not trials riders at the last event who made the bypasses. And it wasn't people who were bushwhacking in a desperate attempt to get around the ledges at that moment. Whoever did it had saws and spent some time on it. Worse, the lines would have been bad mountain bike lines. So dirt bikers - stop with the trail alterations. Read the rules on sign in the parking lot.

That said, the two houses that are being built with direct visibility into the City Park parking lot, and the way the construction company cut down all the foliage that would have served as a buffer between the park and the houses, is much worse for our future use of the park than the bypasses. I actually felt sick when I saw how many houses will be built right next to the park and how close they are.

Greg

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#283363 - 03/18/07 06:20 AM Re: Tread Lightly! [Re: Greg]
MXerDude Offline
Veteran Lunatic

Registered: 12/25/01
Posts: 3007
Loc: Almost there.. 8)
In reply to:

That said, the two houses that are being built with direct visibility into the City Park parking lot, and the way the construction company cut down all the foliage that would have served as a buffer between the park and the houses, is much worse for our future use of the park than the bypasses. I actually felt sick when I saw how many houses will be built right next to the park and how close they are.




with that said ... thumpers get you a 94 decibel muffler!!!! , if not it wont be long until they DO take the park away from the dirt bike riders, heck maybe even for everybody...
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