Marin County booby trapped trails

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Sunday, August 30, 2009
By Yokota Fritz


The conflict between hikers and mountain bikers on Marin County open space trails has escalated where booby traps are apparently being placed to clothesline mountain bikers. Video at KTVU - "Mountain Bikers, Hikers Vie For Space On Marin County Trails". Props to Paul W.


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Comments:
That is messed up. The worst I've seen on my local trails is when people put branches across shortcuts. Pretty innocuous but still annoying. My biggest complaint these days are the horse folks who leave huge piles of crap on the trail.
 
...there's been action like this for years & seems to go in phases...

...i'm sure it's justified by the perpetrators as a countermand to cyclists building illegal trails, as well the the "moronic element" of the cycling community, be they locals or "out of towner's" who generally have no consideration for hikers or other cyclists for that matter...

...marin county has always been contentious...after more than a small number of "klunkerz" started showing up, the horse set & the "sierra clubbers" tried to have us outlawed...

...so, despite the best efforts & resources of those of us concerned, it seems marin will always remain contentious due to rogue elements from both perspectives...

...myself, i'm long tired of the politics & try, through my attitude & riding style to encompass & encourage all users of this amazingly beautiful area...

...a simple bit of friendly-ness, a "thank you" or maybe "isn't this a beautiful day" in passing folks that you've informed you'll be "passing on the left" actually gets responses of "hey, thank YOU", which prob'ly says a lot about their previous encounters...

...i'm generally "kitted up" in colorful lycra & yet i haven't had a negative encounter in ages...there are & prob'ly always will be the occasional hikers who refuse to respond to "niceties" but they just kinda speak for themselves...

...it's all in the attitude, no matter what your stance...
 
...when i say "...i'm sure it's justified by the perpetrators as a countermand to cyclists...", i hope it's understood i'm saying "i'm sure the perpetrators see it as justified"...

...in no way do i advocate any type of action that causes harm to any person enjoying the use of the land...
 
Reply to Erik Orgell:

Many of those people putting branches across trails are rangers or other people with long-term erosion in mind. Don't get me wrong, I'm a mountain biker too, but erosion is a real issue if we're going to keep these places maintained for generations to come. Many 'short cuts' are trails straight up or down a hill that wash out with the first good rain.
 
Ditto Tommy's note to Erik - please don't cut across switchbacks! Switchbacks and water bars are very important to prevent erosion on the trails.

I was a hiker long before tried mountain biking; I assumed everybody who regularly enjoyed the trails knew the reasons to use only established trails.

In my part of Santa Cruz, you kind of know where to expect to find people and where not. Henry Cowell, for example, tends to be crowded with hikers because it's such a small park so I know to go slow, while the upper reaches of Wilder Ranch is hot and dusty and not so attractive to walkers, plus the sightlines are generally very good, so I can open up and let her rip.
 
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