this subject has been touched on already in a few other threads:
*One site that supports MTB bab in Mass.:: One site that supports MTB bab in Mass.
* Do you drift( power slide)??:: Do you drift( power slide)??
but i am curious how much the BF riders here know about trail protection...
i learned the following for off-road dirt/rock Single Trails:
1) ride in the existing trail and do not make the trail wider by going around obstacles or mud puddles. if it's just a little wet, you can go through the puddle and too bad if you get muddy (you're riding a mountain bike what do you expect?) and if it's simply too muddy to ride through then you shouldn't be riding that trail on that day.
2) do NOT lock up the rear tire and skid, especially in corners or steep descents. on downhills, always use both brakes together. the skidding severely damages and rapidly destroys the trail by tearing the surface away and heavily contributiing to erosion.
3) clear the trail of fallen trees or litter or debri that should not be there (a glass bottle, fallen tree trunk)
4) do NOT make the trail easier by removing rocks or obstacles that are a permanent part of the trail. If you are not skilled enough to ride the section, too bad, someone else probably can and do not make the trail easier!
5) if there are water barriers or bridges or other structures to fight erosion, do not ride around them and circumvent the facilities - ride or walk over the bridge or erosion barrier
are most of you familiar with these "principles"?
do you disagree with some?
do you have others?
Interestingly, in Europe (from my observation), single-track (true off-road) mountain biking is less popular and the "average" rider only rides on paved bike trails and fire roads and wide gravel trails and has never really experienced the beauty of riding on Single Track... but, also from my experience, the riders who do ride single track in Europe are much less conscious and concerned about trail ettiquette and protection than American mountain bikers --- maybe there are just fewer so damage is less of an issue? for example, in an advanced technical skills riding course this summer as part of my MTB Guide Training, my highly, highly skilled Austrian instructor (awesome wheelie-drops, front and rear wheel hops, hopping log-climbing, picnic tables, etc) TAUGHT us to lock the rear wheel and weight the bike and slide it around tight corners on Single Track and our group of 10 rode this one downhill singletrack zig-zag trail section about 10 times in an hour --- SOOO bad for the trail!
up until recently when the tide of public opionion in the US has turned b/c of the increasing popularity of mountain bikes, it was a real danger that mountain bikes would be permenantly banned from most trails and many advocacy groups like IMBA worked very hard to help improve the image of mountain biking by doing lobbying, public opionion information and lots of public service mostly in the form of trail maintenance!
Do mountain bikers do enough to protect the trail? are we still in danger of being banned from the coolest and most fun Single Tracks b/c of trail damage and careless riding?