So I know some of us ride illegal (I call them undocumented) trails. I don’t advocate it but I understand it. In many communities even skateboarders get more love than the lowly mountain bike rider. Look at the proliferation of skateparks that allow skaters to do their sport the way they want and to progress it. There are few examples of similar public agency support for MTB riders so I understand the frustration – I was young once.
So now that is said, what if I told those people riding undocumented trails to do the following right after every single ride:
- Call the local Sierra Club chapter and tell them where you rode
- Let all your Facebook friends know, too
- Email the local land manager – she is interested, too
- Since your at it, tweet the cops
Give them information like: number of riders, your speed and don’t forget to let them know about any new trails you found.
Sound ridiculous? Nobody would ever do that, right? Well, every time you upload your ride on an undocumented trail that is what you have done.
So here are the new rules:
- Ride open trails only and use Strava
- Otherwise turn off your tracking device and don’t give the people who work against MTB access ammunition
And on the subject of using ‘handles’ on Strava rather than your real name – it may protect YOU (probably not) but it doesn’t protect the SPORT. Don’t be your own worst enemy.