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Are mtn. bikes and personal water craft the same?(17 posts)

Are mtn. bikes and personal water craft the same?RoyGBiv
Apr 16, 2002 12:16 PM
Just took a spin over at MTBReview - sorry, the Colorado Cyclist babe is getting tired - and was struck by the passion there. One fellow posted several fine photographs of he and his buddies climbing rocks and trees in a forest somewhere in the States.
I imagined myself walking in that forest and a thought occured: Are mountain bikes in the same league as personal water craft? Some of you may have read about a fight in Texas over jet skis and their ilk harming wildlife, damaging the environment and generally making a nuisance of themselves. Can the same be said of a posse of mountain bikers gallivanting through a forest?
Just a thought.
(And if a mountain biker falls on his head in a forest and no one is there to observe, does he/ she swear?)
guns don't kill people...mr_spin
Apr 16, 2002 12:34 PM
It's not about the bike or the jetskis. It's the idiots that ride them.

I don't see any parallel between a jetski and a mountain bike. A jetski is a powered device that can't help but add pollution to the water and air. The ones with two-stroke engines are horrible polluters and have rightly been banned from places like Lake Tahoe. They're fun and they have their place, but there's no comparison to a mountain bike.

If you are off in the forest cutting your own trails and riding with no respect to the enviornment, I might have a problem with that. If tight-ass land managers have banned bikes and only bikes for no quantifiable reason then I'll look the other way. Ridden properly, mountain bikes leave almost no trace on the land.

Anywhere you go, whatever you do, someone will find a problem with it. Some of the trails near me have been almost destroyed by equestrians, believe it or not. All those hooves tromping through the mud have left the trails looking like a cratered moon. And barely ridable.

It would be nice to gather all the idiots and their toys and ship them off somewhere where they can't ruin it for all of us, but it would be a lonely world. Some of those idiots are us.
Maybe, but you kill thousands of things walking across the lawn.IAM
Apr 16, 2002 12:37 PM
I'll be the first to admit that PWC's can be very annoying and have read that they have scared the hell out of the bonefish on the flats in some places to the point that they are no longer there.
Anything that is not ridden/drove responsibly can do harm and be an annoyance. If MTB's are ridden on proper trails with groups like IMBA or local cycling clubs doing some trail maintenance I don't see the harm.
I think that if some people rode PWC's with the concerns of others in mind they wouldn't be hated so much.
My .02 anyway
If drivers applied the same standards to some of us...Jekyll
Apr 16, 2002 12:47 PM
As you do to MTBikers we would be all condemned to bike trails with barb wire fencing and spike strips to keeps us in. Idiots in every endeavor. Don't condemn the bunch for the acts of a few.
BTW, the passion board over there has an average age of 15 and an IQ to match room temperature.
Its pretty obvious thatSteve_O
Apr 17, 2002 1:01 PM
Its pretty obvious that you haven't spent much time on the mtbr Passion board. If passion is juvenile then what about discussions on "sex vs. cycling" and the constant discussion about the Colorado Cyclist woman? There's a pretty dedicated group there with a real community.

BTW... I ride both road and mtb and I agree with your point about drivers, as well as your views mtbing...
Nopegrzy
Apr 16, 2002 1:39 PM
PWC's pollute - MTB's don't.

The MTB arguement that they tear up the trails is a bunch of crap foisted on the uninformed by the hateful old hikers and equestrian groups - and the Sierra Club. might as well complain that the MTBers are using up all the oxygen.

That you even ask the question demonstrates a complete lack of knowledge, experience or understanding on your part. But that's OK, as long as our goverrnment continues to give away vast tracks of our public land to the logging industry it's irrelevant. Ever checked out the clear cutting going on in the Pacific Northwest? How about the massive deforrestation of the Phillipines?

That you don't appear to MTB makes me wonder how much of a cyclist you can really be.
Grzy hurt my feelings. Waaaa!RoyGBiv
Apr 16, 2002 2:37 PM
Do you know why?Miklos
Apr 17, 2002 7:15 AM
Do you know why, here in the Pacific Northwest, they clear-cut forests rather than selective cutting? The vast majority of what they are logging is fir trees. Fir trees will not grow in the shade and therefore cant be selective cut. When an area is clear cut, the replanted fir trees grow back very fast.

One other fact is that a properly managed forest, with its rotating clear cuts does support much more wildlife. The clearcut areas provide feed for deer and elk that normally wouldn't be there unless a forest burned.

While I support "controlled" and managed logging in the national forests, I do not support the logging of TRUE old growth forests.

I also support the new "Back Country" designation as proposed by the Blue Ribbon Coalition, that allows recreation in areas but makes then off limits to logging.

Miklos
Roadie, MTB'er, X-C skier, Snowmobiler, Hiker
More than you might imagine.grzy
Apr 17, 2002 10:43 AM
Your statement is non-sensical: "Fir trees will not grow in the shade and therefore cant be selective cut."

Since when did the method of cutting have any impact on the trees ability to grow big enough to cut?lOh I get it - if you clear cut then the remaining trees that will be cut in the next hour can grow bigger. Yeah, that's it. So is the corralary true - trees that grow in the shade can be slectively cut? Think about it. Fi you selectively cut then the fir trees left standing have less shade and therfore can grow - by your very own statement. Where's that virtual dunce cap.....I know it's around here somewhere.

The fir trees you make reference to are actually replanted second growth after they clear cut the ancient forrests in the previous centuries. Take a good look at those old logging photos and you'll notice that they're not fir trees, but rather redwoods and sitka spruce. The fir trees are what grow back afterwards assuming there is any topsoil left, and since they grow faster they crowd out the other slower growing species. It's also pretty well criticised that planting acres and acres of just one type of tree, rather than mixing the species as found in nature, actually has a negative impact on wildlife and biodiversity. The American agri-business model of minimal variation and genetically altered high yield crops isn't a good thing. In any event after years of the lumber industry telling us that clear cutting is good, they've suddenly changed their tune and are now doing slective cutting. You can't get away from the fact that the politicians for hire ensure that the logging special interests get sweet-heart deals which ultimately results in the Ameircan public providing fat profits to the logging industry and subsidizing the rest of the world's thirst for cheap wood. It's as if we should amend the constitution that we have a right to all of the world's cheap wood and oil, no matter the impact or true cost. Hey, it's in our self intrest so it becomes a national security issue and if you speak up to oppose this you must be a commie, democrat or a terrorist. It is an undeniable fact that clear cutting practices around the world have negatively impacted the environment, wildlife and the indigenous humans that live in the area.
More than you might imagine.Miklos
Apr 17, 2002 1:13 PM
grzy-

I am not going to turn this into a personal attack, like you did to me.

"Your statement is non-sensical: "Fir trees will not grow in the shade and therefore cant be selective cut.""

Fact- Fir trees need full sunlight to grow. They will not grow in the shade. I sure wish they would, because I have a few areas that I would plant them in on my property. In these shady areas, I can only get hemlock to grow, although cedar would grow, but very slowly. Anyway, back to the clear cut/selective cut thing. When fir trees are selective cut, they can not replant and have any fir trees grow in the shade of the remaining trees. Its been tried, it just doesn't work. Clear cutting allows all of the replanted trees to grow and mature at a uniform rate. You do realise they they replant after logging, don't you?

Hemlock and pine can be selectively logged and replanted because these species dont require full sunlight.

Yes, many of the original forests were cedar and sitka. It is a crying shame that all of that is gone and can never ever be replaced. When I was growing up, right behind our house in the Willapa Hills were cedar stumps 10 to 15 feet in diameter, complete with buck-board notches.

"Hey, it's in our self intrest so it becomes a national security issue and if you speak up to oppose this you must be a commie, democrat or a terrorist."

I don't know about commie, democrat or terrorist, but it does seen that most of the radical environmental idealisms come from folks born and raised in the city and have no real first hand knowledge of anything they support. If some wacko puts it in print, then by god it must be true.

One issue I am much more worried about is urban sprawl since this gobbles up land and leaves it covered in strip malls, blacktop and houses. I think land use issues are much more out of hand than logging practices.

Miklos
America - Home of the Free...as long as your on my sidelnin0
Apr 16, 2002 3:05 PM
I do all three and no matter where I go, be it road, trails or lake you will run into your fair share of idiots. You will also run into your fair share of nice caring people to.

Although I think it is an unfair to compare a non-motorized vehicle to a motorized one let me just share a few similarities that bond us all together.

Like road bikers (or motorcycles) the PWC is a ghost to anything larger. People ignore them, turn right into their path and are often involved in accidents with them. Who is usually injured worse? Who usually takes the brunt of the blame even when not at fault? If you think it's bad on the roads, imagine riding your bike around a parking lot full of mostly drunk drivers who have no official laws to follow - only suggested passing patterns that they may or may not apply to other cars let alone a bike.

Also, much as a mountain biker fears being banned from local spots (based on uneducated superstition), so to do PWC. Both groups are stereotyped as young and dangerous daredevil types. While these sports do have a fair share of wanna-bees trying to live out a MtDew lifestyle it is not representative of the entire group.

So - in the end I think all of use should be a little more respectful of some of these other sports because sometimes they are closer than you think. Don't let a few cast an impression for the whole.
nogtx
Apr 16, 2002 8:42 PM
jet skis are like motorcycles--they make noise, pollute, etc. Mountain bikes are, well, they are bikes. And, used properly, they don't piss off others or cause erosion. You should try it some time and become a more well rounded cyclist.
To some "groups", yes!Miklos
Apr 17, 2002 6:54 AM
Almost all of the radical environmentalist groups have grouped MTB's in with other motorized recreation. They have an agenda to eliminate ALL of these user groups from national parks and national forests.

Do you know that you CAN NOT take a MTB into ANY designated "Wilderness" area? With each tract of forest land that they successfully campaign to get placed into the "Wilderness" blanket, you loose riding area.

Several years ago, they changed the designation of "motorized" to "mechanized" specifically to include MTB's.

I personally think that if allowed in a wilderness area, a MBT'er would have less impact than a hiker when the same amount of ground was covered. In a days worth of ride the bike you can cover more ground than a hike could in three. That hiker would have to camp in the wilderness two nights, which leaves much more of a human impact.

Miklos
Roadie, MTB'er, X-C skier, Snowmobiler, Hiker
Quit generalizing and get a clueStine
Apr 17, 2002 2:07 PM
I can't believe this old topic of MTB'rs vs. anything and everything is still brought up.
Do you admire Lance? He mtb's also. What's with this generalization that all mountain bikers are evil-nature killing 15 year olds??

I have been on the Passion board over there for about 4 years now.
I am 51. Infact, there are many folks there over 30.

Listen to the other posters here. Bad people are everywhere. Good thing there are more good folks that ride that care about the trails.

Sorry, but I really take personal offense to your post. Lots of "us" work hard to keep mountain biking available to ourselves and future riders who love being out in nature.

Personally, I have always thought both road and mtb riding was cool, and most of the riders I know do both.

(and yes, I have fallen alone in the forest and sworn... big time.)
Are road bikes and cars the same?Kellum1969
Apr 17, 2002 2:15 PM
What kind of statement is that? Because mt bikers don't use traditional thoroughfares (i.e., roads), we get lumped into the environmentally harmful category along with dirt bikers, 4X4ers (and dare I say hikers). Can I make that same statement about road bikes and cars, because the both use roads, which contribute to air pollution? No roads=no cars=no pollution.

I can't speak for all of us (oh, and by the way, I also road bike), but most bike on man made trails, which are put in so we don't destroy the wildlife. (Oh, and by the way, mt bikers are usually the ones who maintain the trails. So, next time you decided to go for a hike, and decided to sneer at a mt biker, just remember who made the trail your walking on. Oh, and look out for the fallen pine cone, it has feelings too.)

Are you saying that nobody should go out in the wilderness because it may be harmful to the environment? That we should stay in our sheltered cities, and ride our bikes on roads, and sidewalks, and such? And what was here before those roads? Wilderness.

And hell yes, I swear when I fall. What, am I a bad person for that now too?
re: Are mtn. bikes and personal water craft the same?Yeti_Rider
Apr 17, 2002 2:16 PM
In a word, NO!

First and foremost, most (and I say most because I know that not everybody is involved) MTB riders are involved in some way, shape, or form of supporting trail maintenance either by direct involvement or indirectly through a variety of local and national mountain bike coalitions. These groups are out assuring that the trails we all use (hikers, runners, and equestrians) are in the best possible shape for all people to enjoy by repairing rain damage, eliminating problem areas, and generally making the trail a better place for everybody. PWC users generally aren't out neutralizing the water to eliminate the pollution they've put into it by their activity.

Second, if you want to say that and MTB harms the environment by it's presence, what about the hikers and equestrians? Have you ever seen a trail after a rain where a horse has been on it? A horse weights what, 2000 pounds? Those feet dig in DEEP and what happens when that soil dries out? The trail is left with numerous holes that are now petrified because the earth has dried. You don't see any bike tracks on these trails, but many footprints of the horse variety.

Third. What exactly constitutes galivanting? Riding peacefully along? Enjoying the great outdoors instead of chocking down a lungful of diesel exhaust?

I ride a mountain bike AND a road bike. I prefer the mountain bike any day of the week but I do enjoy a good road ride as well. However, I've seen my share of stupid behavior by riders of both types of bicycles. No real mountain biker would ever think about riding without a helmet yet I see roadies do it all the time. Maybe becasue it's the cool euro thing to do but it's still stupid. And what about when there's a club ride going on. The law says that a bicycle gets two feet of working roadway with which to travel but the local clubs take up an entire lane of traffic and still weave in and out of traffic which scares the bejesus out of motorists.

What's worse? riding a trail that's been in existence for many years or riding on a road that destroyed the earth beneath it and added how many tons of pollution to the environment to create it. Using your argument road riding is WAY worse than MTB-ing simply because it's benefiting from the destruction of the environment that humanity required to grow and criticizing the use of an MTB in the natural environment is quity hypocritical

We're all cyclists and if you ever got out on a mountain bike you'd realize how much fun it is.

I will also take exception to the post about the average age being 15 adn the IQ being comparable to the room temperature. I'm 31, a mechanical engineer with one year to go for an MBA and have had more stimulating conversation on that board than I've ever seen on this one. No, I'm not a regular on this board, but I've lurked for some time and although most people who ride a road bike are fine, there's a reason the term "road weenie" came about.
WOW! Standing applause!! thank you(nm)canafornian
Apr 17, 2002 4:30 PM