Trail Vandalism

I wrote this a little while ago.  The matter was sort of resolved through other channels, so this email was never sent.  But, I put time and effort into this piece, and I thought it ought to see the light of day anyways.  Perhaps it will serve as an example for the future regarding diplomatic discourse about hot button issues:

Hello [name redacted],

My name is Zach.  I am a long-time trail builder and maintainer, as well as the team manager of the local race team Drummer Racing.  I was out on Drummer Hill on Sunday finishing some trail construction and maintenance.  Upon arrive to the trail head, I found that someone had taken the time to thoroughly trash the entrance and exit of two trails by dragging a fair few trees into the trail.  I was perturbed by this blatant disrespect of the tail network.  I understand that at times there are discrepancies regarding trail direction and such, but to purposely block the way of two well-made and thought-out high-traffic tracks through reclaimed logging corridors is puzzling and rather frustrating.  One track affected by this course of action replaced a trail lost in the logging, and the other is the exit of a main route up and down the hill, which has now been reconnected/rerouted to address some of the logging routes.  So, to have two well constructed trails, which neither add or subtract from the total network, to be targeted, is an issue that needs to be addressed.

Here is a flower, I hope you find it soothing.

I am not sure what about these trails caused such a stir on the end of the vandal, but throwing debris into the way of traffic is inappropriate and downright dangerous.  This seems to be a reoccurring theme out on the hill, and after several incidents last year (which were amicably resolved), I find it puzzling that this sort of action would take place again.  Whether these actions were seen in the eyes of the perpetrator as cautionary or something else, I can’t say.  But, the riding community will not progress if this is how new trails are treated, it will only create greater strife among the parties that govern the land use and the land users.  NEMBA’s role is to mediate and communicate, and it would seem that this is a good time to do so.  It is unfortunate that conversations like this even need to be had at this point, considering that up until the past two seasons, the Drummer Hill and Goose Pond areas have been a rather harmonious place for outdoor recreation, and it’s only since a formal group/committee has been formed that we have had problems with this sort of thing.  As someone who has been using the trail network and contributing to it with sweat equity for over a decade, I am not one to brush aside or take lightly this sort of incursion on the trails and rider safety. 

I look forward to hearing back from you regarding this incident and general concern.  Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
Zach 

One thought

  1. It seems a stretch to jump to the conclusion that this vandalism has anything at all to do with the “formal group”. I can only assume it is NEMBA you are speaking of and they have been working with the city and riding community for 7 years now. To my knowledge the NEMBA group hasn't ever closed or vandalized trail work done by others. Have you even contacted them or is this just a rant?

    Like

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