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Author Topic: Heartbreak at Croom  (Read 2484 times)

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Offline old gray goat

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Heartbreak at Croom
« on: November 23, 2008, 07:16:18 PM »
A couple of my riding buddies and I went riding in Croom Saturday morning.  I had not been there since September, before the enduro race.  We usually ride yellow at the trailhead to red then to blue.  We ride the whole southside.  We headed out east out of the trailhead by the tower.  Less than a mile in we hit the worst trail destruction I had ever seen.  The motorcycles tore up roots, created big burms, and ruts. The trail base is nothing but a sand pit. They look like a they were in a war zone.  The trail is barely ridable.  We were heartbroken.  These are the trails where I discovered my love for the sport. 

How can we stop this crime to our trails in the state forest?  This must stop. 

Comments !!!!!

Bill Hoover

Offline catman

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2008, 10:29:09 PM »
One problem with "How can we stop this crime to our trails in the state forest?  This must stop" is the the dirtbikes were there first. They made most of the trails at croom.

I certainly understand that you'd be upset about the damage to your favorite riding area but I'm gonna play devils advocate here and say that there are many people out there who would just love to close down ALL trails to mountain bikers in favor of making them hike/horse only. The answer is to not to keep others from enjoying what they do but instead find a way to make them follow up on the clean up. Or maybe have a massive Swamp club clean up day at Croom after the dirtbike races each year (if there is no other option). I think Croom is the red headed step child to some of our other more popular trails so I imagine it might be quite neglected. I've never even been to the mtb trails at croom but have ridden the motorcycle side since I was a kid.......oh crap that just slipped out. I'll have to look out the peep hole before leaving the house now. Actually I was surprised to see quite a few mountain bikers at some of the dirtbike races I've been in. They'll pre-ride the trail on the mtb to scout out good lines and danger zones. It is not uncommon for dirtbike racers to train on mtb or road bicycles.

I don't think they will stop holding races on the mtb side because the dirtbike/four wheeler side is a disaster zone beyond repair (hence your complaint). I think they are looking for mileage as well since the fenced dirtbike area is relatively small. Dirtbikers have a similar complaint on there end. Four wheelers ruin the trails for them. 

Funny, the hikers hate the mtbr's, the mtbr's are annoyed but not exactly hateful towards the dirtbikers, and the dirtbikers just put up with the four wheelers because everyone knows you only ride a four wheeler if you don't have good balance and you just gotta have your beer cooler on the trail with you. The hunters think we are all a bunch of pansys.

But if they start letting dirtbikes into Alafia/boyette/Santos I'll be the first one on the forum saying  "This must STOP!"

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Offline Garry

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2008, 08:14:02 AM »
We are having discussions with the Department Of Forestry who is in charge of that property about this trail damage, and the fact that nobody from the motorcycle groups has gone in and repaired the damage to it's pre-race condition.  Let me say upfront that personally I do not want to oust any user from enjoying their sport and having a place to do that.  We do however take a firm stand against conflict of use.  There is enough room for separate trails and I feel that should be the ultimate concession here.  We enjoyed last year with no enduro and the trails were in the best shape that I can remember.  One weekend in September and the trails that they commandeered were unrecognizable. If you have never ridden Croom you are missing out on the longest mountain bike trail system we have, with some fun features tossed in here and there.  The dirt bikes may have been there first as that sport is older than mountain bikes.  But if you want to take up that argument, then the hikers and equestrian were there first as they started before the combustible engine was invented, so who actually made the trails first?  The thing is there is room to get mileage in and not use (read destroy) another user groups trails.  Plain and simple that's all we ask.
Every year for as long as I can remember we HAVE done a massive SWAMP clean up after the enduro race.  The people who DID the damage don't even bother to nod a thank you; let alone come out and help.  The SWAMP volunteers are understandably fed up with months of trail repair, then waiting on the rains of Mother Nature for 5 months to heal the land, then more repair - only to ride it a short time before the next enduro.  The damage lasts a real 5 to 8 months before it is in prime riding condition again. I know because we do this over and over year after year.  Me thinks the s%#@ has hit the fan.  Once again we will be calling for volunteers to come out and fix the destruction.  With determination and a moving forward attitude lets hope this is the final time we will have to waste our precious days off to fix our trails from the uncaring attitude of another user group.
Croom is not neglected at all.  We have a very active team of trail maintenance folks who trim, move fallen trees, address poor trail condition issues and conduct group workdays.  They are very good at keeping this jewel of a trail system (60 miles) up and running for us.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2008, 08:16:36 AM by Garry »

Online chisel

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2008, 09:31:13 AM »
If they don't shut it down to the enduro then drop maintaining it for a year and see how those punks like it next race day! it just sucks!

Offline catman

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2008, 09:47:17 AM »
Man 5-8 months.....that is the better part of a year. If there is no rain could be longer. Certainly not fair regardless of who made the trails. Chiselchest has a good point. Swamp club rebuilds the trails after the race, pack it down by riding it months later after it recovers.The trail is primo for the enduro every year. They show up to a great trail then cut and run.
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Online chisel

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2008, 09:57:04 AM »
Well, there would be limbs and trees and lots of overgrowth which would not be ideal for them.

Offline treadlight

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #6 on: November 24, 2008, 10:19:32 AM »
Garry discussed these concerns in detail on a previous thread but I could not find it.

The argument will not end especially on a multi-use trail system on who's responsible on who's action. Common sense teaches us that if you messed it up fix it but I am sure they have "good reasons" why such follow up actions were not done to undo the damage to the trail.

As what Garry also mentioned, SWAMP has been fixing these problems every year after the motorized activity. I don't know how we can compromise but I will just do my small part by cleaning as much as I can when I ride the trails.

Hopefully somewhere in the future a compromise can be reach for them to restore the trails state of condition after using. Eventhough they can comeback by saying that they only use it once a year and there are enough days per year for us to ride after Mother Nature heals it self, not a good argument, but for outside the mtbing community it sounds plausible enough. 

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #7 on: November 24, 2008, 10:25:07 AM »
I haven't been to Croom since early summer...how many miles of trails were actually impacted by the enduro?

Offline Garry

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #8 on: November 24, 2008, 10:32:21 AM »
I haven't been to Croom since early summer...how many miles of trails were actually impacted by the enduro?

It's looking like 19.

Offline Garry

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2008, 10:36:30 AM »
If they don't shut it down to the enduro then drop maintaining it for a year and see how those punks like it next race day! it just sucks!

Unfortunatly it doesn't work that way.  They would be perfectly fine with riding it once a year and in between nothing happening but Mother nature.  To a motorcycle it is fine to do that.  To a bicycle it needs constant maintenance.

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2008, 10:39:27 AM »
It's looking like 19.

Wow, didn't realize it was that much!   >:(

Offline treadlight

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2008, 10:44:35 AM »

To a bicycle it needs constant maintenance.


....trail sustainability issue?

Offline Garry

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2008, 10:49:38 AM »

To a bicycle it needs constant maintenance.


....trail sustainability issue?

Over growth, blow down from storms - fallen trees and limbs, erosion, soft sand.  That is just normal stuff over the whole trail system.  Then throw on top of that months of repair from the motorcycles and you have a never ending chore.  This last year was the least amount of maintenance we have had to do because of no motor cycles.  September started that up again.  We have months of work ahead.

Offline old gray goat

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2008, 08:07:52 PM »
Catman,

I also did my share of enduro riding on the east end of Long Island when I was a kid.  The east side of Croom has a whole area that the dirt bikes have already destroyed.  Let them use that area since there is 100’s of acres out there for that use.

Garry,

I have worked with Bob on trail maintenance.  He does a great job.  There are so many miles, so few volunteers.  We should set aside a weekend after the enduro and get as many volunteers as we can muster up.  I know it would be a massive undertaking but well worth the effort.  I just started with the club last summer and I can see from the volunteer roster that not too many members do their part. This is a shame.  Croom is too nice of an area to let it go to waste. 

We as mountain bikers, I think, do a good job sharing the trails with equestrian and hikers alike. But I also think the dirt bikes’ time is up.  It is time to think “green” out there.  I do not think the dirt bikers will miss one weekend a year and it will not take us a year to fix the damage they leave behind. 

Thanks.

Bill

Offline Garry

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Re: Heartbreak at Croom
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2008, 08:38:28 PM »
...We should set aside a weekend after the enduro and get as many volunteers as we can muster up.  I know it would be a massive undertaking but well worth the effort.  I just started with the club last summer and I can see from the volunteer roster that not too many members do their part. This is a shame.  Croom is too nice of an area to let it go to waste....

We are full bore into trying to finish the trails at Boyette.  We hired a guy with trail digging equipment for this week and still have more work that needs to be done by hand.  Once we finish that project we can focus on do the enduros folks work and fixing their damage.  If anyone has time available this week and can help it would be great.

 

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