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ChopStiR's picture

By ChopStiR - Posted on 03 May 2014

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

I had a thought that it would be good if in our profiles below the "favourite places to ride" there was a "Trails I have helped maintain" field.

This would give the opportunity for those who have helped maintain a track show they have helped in some way and even write a little blurb about what they have done.

For those who haven't done any Maintenance, this may help spur them on so they don't have that blank field in their profile.

Like I said, was just a thought and curious of your thoughts.

Andy Bloot's picture

Can't hurt - except that the vast majority of maintenance and building is done on trails that have no formal authorisation
With the paranoia around our opposition and their apparent power, this may be a problem if the trails are named.

On this subject, I see a big problem with trail maintenance on many authorised trails - it hardly ever happens
And when it does, it seems everybody needs to tick all the OH&S boxes before a start can be made
For a lot of people it just makes them feel like unpaid workers and can spoil what is actually a really enjoyable and rewarding thing to do

I've put in many hundreds of hours of trail work over the last 5 years, and despite hobbling back to the car in the dark totally exhausted on many occasions, I love doing it.
In my experience, this same level of reward is not present when overseen by an 'authority'.

During the knapsack ongoing debacle, it was mentioned that 'team leaders' would be appointed to take out groups on maintenance days
This never eventuated of course, but the idea is good
This way, work can be done more 'off the cuff'

Rainy days for example are the best for digging
The team leader (who is a rider and not an employee) sends a text to all the others asking who's in
Each person can put in as much time as they like and, once confident, they can head out on their own when something needs to be done

But there seems to be no trust towards us or even amongst ourselves
We are threatened constantly with 'illegal trails lead to less access' which leads us to argue amongst ourselves and brand each other as criminals, selfish - whatever
And all this plays into the oppositions divide and conquer strategy

Let's face facts
Demand outweighs supply by about 5-1 at least
Unauthorised trails pop up because there's nowhere else to ride
Except of course the fire roads that we should be falling over ourselves in gratitude for
Either provide the funding for it, trust us to do what we do, or come to terms with unauthorised trail building

If the authorities don't like it, it's up to them to do something about it - not us!

Rob's picture

In Rotorua, each section of the trail has a known 'guardian'. The local club has their contact details. If you find a problem with a section of trail, you notify these guys and they sort it out. Appears that people take pride in 'their' section of trail and the system really works.

Well... least that's what I was told last time I chatted to locals there.

The point is, we could easily have advocates names next to each trail segment here and a 'flag problem with this trail' button.

As Bloot says though, this would be practically impossible given the way things are right now. Even places like Manly Dam need a council ranger to authorise work. God forbid someone (who would have been properly trained and certified, etc.) notice a problem and fix it themselves Sad

kitttheknightrider's picture

It is better to ask for forgiveness than seek permission, just saying.

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