Hikers Oppose Allowing MTBing in Catkills (deadline 6/3)



Hikers Oppose Allowing MTBing in Catkills (deadline 6/3)

The local hiking club (NY/NJTC) is mounting opposition towards a NY State DEC plan that will allow mountain biking in the Catskill Mountains Wilderness areas.

Please help NY MTBers by sending in your comments.

Deadline has been extended to June 3rd.

Do it today!

Catskill Park State Land Master Plan, revised draft 2008

DEC has released its revised draft master plan for state lands in the Catskills. Among its provisions, the plan proposes to:

Expand the West Kill Wilderness Area to include most of the Hunter Mountain Wild Forest; create Windham Blackhead Range Wilderness Area by combining the former Blackhead Range and North Mountain Wild Forests with portions of the Windham High Peak and Black Dome Wild Forests.

The DEC is facing strong pressure to open up some Wilderness trails for mountain bike use, including on Windham High Peak and portions of the Long Path along the Escarpment Trail. There is also an innovative plan to allow mountain bicycling within "primitive bicycle corridors" within wilderness areas that could connect mountain bike trail systems with other trails in non-wilderness areas.

Public comments are due by June 3 and should be sent to:

Peter J. Frank
Bureau Chief
Forest Preserve Management
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233-4254

Comments may also be sent to him via email at lfcat@gw.dec.state.ny.us.

Sample comments should include: sharing of trails in remote areas should be encouraged. Mountain bikers deserve the same access rights as any other user group. The upstate economies can benefit from the tourism generated by mountain bike adventures. It's a low impact positive recreational activity that should be promoted to increase the health and well being of state residents.

Talking Points:

-Please improve trail maps and signage to better show trails specifically marked and designed for mountain biking.

-Please improve bicycle access at my favorite parks. (Provide specific locations.)

-Parks around the country know mountain biking can help improve visitation, volunteer stewardship and tourism-based local economies.

-Scientific studies have shown the environmental impacts of bicycling are similar to hiking and far less than other uses.

-Please promote broad trails communities by implementing equitable trail access policies for all user groups. State Parks are public lands that should be enjoyed by all non-motorized users, including bicyclists.

And if you missed it, here's the IMBA action alert:

Top Bottom