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Impacts of motorized recreation vs non

offworlder

Moderator
Hypothesis:
Motorized recreation may not be any worse (than non-motorized), and may actually be less disturbing:
- animals may be able to adjust sooner (to motorized) vehicles
- animals perceive greater risk from the human form
Take aways: Long established ideas may no longer be valid- we need to have a new conversation about recreating and conservation :clap:

A differing, and educational perspective. Excellent info, thank you !
 

bkoz

Member
I spent some time on the Juan de Fuca trail this summer. A lot of it was as wide and beat up as a quad trail. But, a study like this is a little alarming. It will give some groups ammo to shut people out of the back county entirely, whether mechanized or human powered.
 

tomcycle

Past President DSBC 2004 -2018
Staff member
Remember the true tree hugging granola crunching bunch already have 10% of this province locked down as provincial parks. They will have to make sure they protect that first before using something like the attached info to close areas outside of parks.

This is only one report and will soon disappear with the passage of time
 

redpillar

Member
I have to call bullshit on this one. They are not taking into account the long term destruction of habitat that off road vehicles cause. The soil erosion from one ATV or a dirt bike spinning it's tires up a hill is probably equal to a hundred years of foot traffic not to mention crossing fish bearing streams. They don't take into account the countless tons of garbage trucked into wilderness areas by motorized vehicles ridden by people that would never dream of actually hiking into the same area. How many fire pits have you seen with a bunch of cans and broken beer bottles and burned up deck chairs left out in the woods. The problem is that offroad vehicles take a lot people into areas that they have no respect for, whether it is a logging road or into an ecologically sensitive area. Mud bogging through wetlands or ripping up grasslands or destroying root systems of forests are all things that are done by off road vehicles and they have huge effects on nature. Calling people tree huggers and granola crunchers is not only disrespectful but does not do anything to help the issues of keeping riding areas open. It just makes us sound like hillbillies. We should be better than that.
 

TW_rider

Member
I'm also a hiker, and I've found dozens of Timmy and Starbucks cups at summits...along with Subway wrappers and yes, even cigarette butts.
I've seen remote destinations trashed by those who obviously didn't/couldn't get there by ORV or other motorized means (unless they parachuted).
I've also found remote firepits where no ATV could possibly go, as well as remnants of camps with abandoned tarps, cutlery and every other "sign" that humans can leave behind...so vilifying an entire group for the actions of a few, also doesn't help either one's cause.
 
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redpillar

Member
I am not vilifying an entire group, I am just stating that the easier it is for people to get into the wilderness the more likely it is for the assholes that would normally not go there, if it took the effort of hiking, to do damage. Unfortunately those few miscreants that do the damage are seen to be on our side which really pisses me off. I have climbed and hiked extensively on Vancouver Island for a great deal of my life and not run into much in the way of refuse or damage out in the wilderness, maybe that is because the places that we go are not used by many humans of either ilk. The fact that you see trail heads littered only shows that because you can drive to the trail head it brings all sorts of people to them. Cabins on Arrowsmith mountain that were great for 50 years started to get torched and vandalized once the logging roads went in and there was vehicle access. Every time it snows any decent amount around here it somehow makes it OK for jerks on sleds and ATVs to ride them through our parks and school grounds. Those are the people that I am speaking about. We need to reign in the turds that make us look bad, quit riding bikes with horrendously loud exhausts and make our sport less aggressive. I know that most of us stop and speak to hikers and mountain bikers as they go by and stop and take off our helmets when horses go by etc, but there are a few that are not courteous on the trails and those are the ones that we are judged by. I have seen many times, big donuts and roosts in Harewood Meadows that have torn up the moss and soils leaving scars that last for many years, just thoughtless acts by people with no respect for other peoples enjoyment of the outdoors. Those unfortunately are the ones that also do damage to our chances of keeping trails open.
 

TW_rider

Member
Something that TPTB don't seem to understand is that you can regulate and legislate until the cows come home...but if you don't provide the means for ENFORCEMENT, all the rules in the world won't make a bit of difference.
Sure 95% of us will obey the sign that says: "No motorized traffic beyond this point"...but it's the same 5% that will ignore this sign, as will ignore every other law written.
If there is little or no chance of getting caught and/or being fined...the stupidity will continue and yes, if the neanderthal happens to be riding a quad/bike/sled, THAT group will get stereotyped.
 

tomcycle

Past President DSBC 2004 -2018
Staff member
Mr redpillar, you better settle down or you might burst an artery:gaah::gaah:

You and many others (you know the granola group) make lots of claims, and I am not doubting the claim, but most I hear over and over again that they are anecdotal. Now there is no doubt that we have a small group within society that will always be bad, no matter what we do. I am against the idea that if you are not in good enough physical shape or have the right skills that an area (crown land) should be closed to you. Now we have to protect many of the wilderness areas and we do with many parks and specifically closed areas.

What I get really upset with is this anecdotal evidence of motorised damage, let's take a balanced scientific approach to off road motorised recreation. I have no evidence but I know if you stuff all the dirt bikers into one small area ie Tansky, you will have trashed trails in no time. When we talk about garbage and vandalism its all about the numbers, and they continue to grow every year. There will never be a way to enforce all the areas people want closed for whatever reason, in fact government does have the resources to manage the resources already set aside. So why even go down that path.

Its unfortunate that too often government and special interest groups want education thru enforcement. This is very expensive and has been proven time and time again that this will not work.

It's time to take on a new strategy
 

offworlder

Moderator
With the hope that this remains a place where dissenting voices can and will be not just heard, but welcomed - lets try and refrain from name calling.
To me the most salient point redpillar brings up is road access. Its a double edged sword, we (responsible riders) leverage the roads to explore, while a subset of others selfishly take advantage of them, without any consideration of others.

I think we're all agreed that the few spoil it for the many, so the question we need to ask ourselves is - are we going to leave the "enforcement" to others (read: govt, read, wont happen), or recognize the role that can we play ? Its not easy (or even safe at times) to engage with irresponsible folk in remote areas, as they're more prone to "react" vs even listen. Hence, if we leave the stewardship of the future of our sport to those we claim to but dont represent us, we know what to expect.

I'd again direct everyone to the many threads that are in fact opportunities for us to take the helm ( this is not an exhaustive list, ie: just search for "BCORMA"):
http://www.dualsportbc.com/forums/showthread.php?15250-Back-Country-Power-Sports-Coalition-of-BC
http://www.dualsportbc.com/forums/showthread.php?15255-How-do-we-fit-into-the-Motorsports-Pie-2016
http://www.dualsportbc.com/forums/s...k-Recreational-Advisory-Group-Meeting-Minutes
 

tomcycle

Past President DSBC 2004 -2018
Staff member
Tom, I only go till the left side of my face gets numb...

I use a similar tactic
 

DirtClunker

Active member
Keep in mind that the researchers comments about off road as being less impactful than hiking was *only a theory*. In other words a guess. It is irresponsible to take this as any kind of truth.

And yes, I am a granola crunching hiker who loves to ride dirt bikes (horses and MTB too). I play for all sides. I sure hear a lot of hate and misinformation from one group to another.
 

TW_rider

Member
Keep in mind that the researchers comments about off road as being less impactful than hiking was *only a theory*. In other words a guess. It is irresponsible to take this as any kind of truth.

When I see words like EVIDENCE and OBSERVED:
"Counter to public perception, non-motorized activities had more evidence for a negative effect of recreation than motorized activities, with effects observed 1.2 times more frequently. Snow-based activities had more evidence for an effect than other types of recreation, with effects observed 1.3 times more frequently.”

This suggests to me that it isn't a"guess"...
 

KTM-Bryon

Member
Funny thing is we're fighting with the hikers, horse riders, and mtn bikers over who does the most damage in the back-country while the logging and mining companies build roads, clear out entire valleys, then decommission the roads and let mother nature erode the slopes and roads. Of course this habitat destruction is big tax money generating industry and we are small potatoes in comparison.
Too bad we all couldn't get along and enjoy the back country, BC has a lot of it, while realizing that pristine wilderness will only exist where people are not allowed to go.
 
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