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Old 02-25-07, 07:54 AM   #1
stapfam
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Bl**dy MUPS

Took an offroad ride today and I did not feel like pushing it at all. Still took in a couple of stiff hills but the mud today was exceptionally bad. Anywhere that the trail was not chalk- it was deep slippery mud. Nearly had a couple of incidents but my Mud Pro tyres are still the tyre to get me out of trouble. Then down to Fuscardi's for a coffee and apple pie and home. A few miles on the road and we hit the MUP. You have to accept that pedestrians, kids and dogs are going to be on this trail but today we met a##holes. First five were 14 year olds that did not and would not hear us. My riding partner yelled out "Wakey Wakey" and he got an earfull of swearwords from them. I was following and gave them an earfull myself. Then a Motorbike was using the trail- He was stopped and I got the phone out and reported him to the police-and told him to push the bike until he got off the trail. Then there was a tunnel and 3 kids playing football in it. One turned round and saw me and blocked my path. I did not stop and hit him. It must have hurt as the bar end went into his stomach. He swore at me so as the football was loose, it got kicked way up into the brambles and it was pointed out to them that if they do not respect other trail users- Don't go on it. Then there is a section of road. On the entrance to the mup a car was parked. Just as I passed it- it pulled out onto me. Thats a nice scratch he has on his bumper now. The owner was not pleased but it was pointed out- he has mirrors so use them, don't block pathway entrances and give other user an indication of his intentions by indicating. He apoligised so no harm. Then I got home to find a dog running loose in the road and the owner letting it do so. To make it worse- I ran over the dog cr*p with my back wheel that the owner had not cleared up. After the ride I had just had- you can guess that it was not a friendly conversation that was had between us. Don't think we will be on his christmas card list this year.

One of these days I will have a good ride- in fact I normally do but that MUP is not going to be on my route home unless it is raining and I can miss the other idiots that are using it
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Old 02-25-07, 08:16 AM   #2
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After a ride like that, the only way you can go is better. ... ... ... I hope.
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Old 02-25-07, 10:07 AM   #3
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I'm a Brit too. But what's a Mup?
Have I been away too long?
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Old 02-25-07, 10:09 AM   #4
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I'm a Brit too. But what's a Mup?
Have I been away too long?
Multi Use Path
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Old 02-25-07, 10:22 AM   #5
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That was a long set of nasties on a single ride. Not quite a peaceful, relaxing day out on your bike. I suppose a long-standing urban MUP has a lot of users who have determined what its purpose is. And that purpose might not be in line with the original intent.

One big benefit of living out in a lightly-populated rural area is that there are not a lot of people on the rail trails / MUPs. From my house riding south on the rail trail, one passes through only one town in the first 15 miles and that town's population is 1200. Then you hit a town of about 800 before hitting another 12 mile or so stretch to the next town. About 50% of the time when I ride 12 miles on this trail, I see no one.

I'm starting to better understand how different people have very different concepts of what a MUP is like.
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Old 02-25-07, 10:26 AM   #6
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http://www.craigslist.org/about/best/bos/70245362.html
is one of the best antiMUPS rants I've ever read.
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Old 02-25-07, 10:57 AM   #7
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MUPs have their time and place, but they will never replace decent on-road accommodations.
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Old 02-25-07, 11:01 AM   #8
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Stepfan,
For clarity to us in the"colonies",your reference to a football is what we call a soccer ball?
It appears your mup are quite crowded over there,would road riding be a better choice?Are the auto drivers respectful of bike riders in England?
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Old 02-25-07, 12:49 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by spry
Stepfan,
For clarity to us in the"colonies",your reference to a football is what we call a soccer ball?
It appears your mup are quite crowded over there,would road riding be a better choice?Are the auto drivers respectful of bike riders in England?
Soccer is what you call it and your American football is played with a "Rugby" ball- now that is a mans game. Our MUP's- Officially called Leisure trails are for all users. Cycles are only part of it and most users respect each other. Unfortunatley they are also very handy for the "Youth" of England to do what they want to do without respect for other users of the trails. This morning was exceptional but there is always the element of society that wish to use it for riding illegal vehicles- Motorbikes etc- without licence or insurance- Burn the seats that are put there for the Legal users to rest upon- or just abuse other trail users. Just the youth of today letting off steam but they are a menace.

One reason I use offroad trails is that there are no cars. Cars are dangerous and are bigger than me. Mostly car drivers keep their eye out for cyclists but it only takes one idiot- like the car this morning- and I could be in trouble.
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Old 02-25-07, 04:50 PM   #10
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Gee, you had more trouble on that one ride than I've had in the last 4 years!
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Old 02-25-07, 06:43 PM   #11
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Stapfam, Around here they let horses ride on the MUPs. Give a new meaning to riding through droppings!
Like someone said, "Smile, things could be worse, so I smiled. Sure enough, they got worse."
Tommorrow will be a better day.
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Old 02-25-07, 09:36 PM   #12
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Some of the MUP's here are really bad, some not so bad. The Fish Creek Park trail passes within 2 miles of my house, but with its easy access from streets all along it, it is a dangerous place. We rode this path regularly when we first started riding, and learned about it the hard way. There were always mini-motorcycles on it, 4 wheelers, dogs off leashes, we never rode it without smelling dope smoking somewhere along the way, and my wife was hit by a kid on a bmx bike, coming down a steep illegal dirt trail that dumped onto the path. She ended up with terrible road rash, and two broken bones in her hand which required a titanium rod and 7 screws. We gave that path up.

River Legacy Park, in far north Arlington, isn't bad. It has the same brain dead pedestrians, loose dogs and kids, but with fewer access points, only cyclists reach the far ends of it, and although you do have to take it slow in much of it, it is a fun place to ride.

But I like the Joe Pool Lake dam road the best of the local MUP's. It is a road that is fenced off on both ends of the dam, and it is wide enough that, even with the kids, dogs, and unpredictable walkers, there's usually enough room to dodge everyone. If I'm not able to ride local roads at times of less traffic, I usually ride the Joe Pool dam. I rode 70 miles on it today, in 3:55. Theres no way I'd make that kind of time if I had to slow down often.
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Old 02-25-07, 10:46 PM   #13
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Stepfam,
Rugby mans sport,no,I believe icehockey to be the ultimate challange.I noticed 2 universities in England have stepped up to have hockey as a varsity sport.

Here in Ohio they police the mups quite well with regard to dogs on leashes,no motorized bikes,but we do have the occasional turd.There are seperate unpaved trails for hayburning poop squirters. If you visit our trails,there used to be inexpensive direct flights between Cleveland and England during the summer.The only drawback is the language barrier
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Old 02-26-07, 10:49 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by spry
Stepfam,
Rugby mans sport,no,I believe icehockey to be the ultimate challange.I noticed 2 universities in England have stepped up to have hockey as a varsity sport.

Here in Ohio they police the mups quite well with regard to dogs on leashes,no motorized bikes,but we do have the occasional turd.There are seperate unpaved trails for hayburning poop squirters. If you visit our trails,there used to be inexpensive direct flights between Cleveland and England during the summer.The only drawback is the language barrier
Ice hockey and American football are where the players use body armour- Mind you- I don't fancy a hockey stick or puk hitting unprotected parts. Football used to be a good game but I think the players are up for the oscars half the time. the other half they are at the bank counting their money. Rugby is a hard game- like your American Football without the body armour.

The problem with the Mups in the UK is that they are a very good place outside of towns for the community to partake of their leisure activities. For most this is walking the dog- cycling- taking family walks and is what the Paths are set up for. Unfortunately for others the Leisure activities are a bit less usual- underage drinking- Drugs- Vandalising the Seats and signs. They know that the police in our area do not have the resources to catch them or even do anything about them so I think it is about time I took a less dangerous route back from the hills. Saying that- A cyclist was killed on the road last night quite near where I live. No details known yet but those roads are dangerous.
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Old 02-26-07, 11:19 AM   #15
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Sounds like you were just having a crappy day. Here's to better days to come.
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Old 02-26-07, 11:48 AM   #16
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That is why they invented BEER.
after the ride of course.
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Old 02-26-07, 12:30 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Bud Bent
Some of the MUP's here are really bad, some not so bad.
We are currently trying to clean up a Rails to Trails MUP about a mile from my home. We are forming a Trail Watch group with volunteers, which use the MUP on a daily basis. We have safety vests with Trail Watch printed front and back and a First Aid cross and we carry basic First Aid supplies along with basic tools for patching tires and adjusting stuff like brakes, seat posts, and that sort of thing. We also carry Cell phones donated by people that no longer need or want them. All they will do is call 911 but thatís all we want them for anyway. We report motorized vehicles using the trail and anything else not allowed on the trail. It's beginning to have a positive effect and the Sheriffs department has confiscated 13 4-wheelers, 3 small motorcycles and one Harley Davidson motorcycle.
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Old 02-26-07, 06:22 PM   #18
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<< One of these days I will have a good ride- in fact I normally do but that MUP is not going to be on my route home unless it is raining and I can miss the other idiots that are using it>>

I think you got out on the wrong side of the bed! Be nice
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Old 02-26-07, 07:37 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n4zou
We are currently trying to clean up a Rails to Trails MUP about a mile from my home. We are forming a Trail Watch group with volunteers, which use the MUP on a daily basis. We have safety vests with Trail Watch printed front and back and a First Aid cross and we carry basic First Aid supplies along with basic tools for patching tires and adjusting stuff like brakes, seat posts, and that sort of thing. We also carry Cell phones donated by people that no longer need or want them. All they will do is call 911 but thatís all we want them for anyway. We report motorized vehicles using the trail and anything else not allowed on the trail. It's beginning to have a positive effect and the Sheriffs department has confiscated 13 4-wheelers, 3 small motorcycles and one Harley Davidson motorcycle.
Good for you. I started down that route, but it became pretty obvious that the City of Arlington had neither the manpower nor interest to do much. They did move some logs to block the dirt trail where my wife got hit, and told me to use 911 to report illegal activity on the path, but after a couple of calls, it was obvious that my fireman friend was right. He had told me that if I ever had a break-in or prowler at home, call the fire department rather than the police; the fire department would get there much quicker.
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