I'd like this to be an open letter to all motorized recreationalists in Utah. I'm the president of the Price Area Single-track Society, a single-track building/riding mountain bike club.
We in P.A.S.S. Have always taken the position that motorized and non-motorized folks can happily co-exist so long as we respect each other and our differences. We believe strongly that we must all stand together in defiance of attempts to pit "user groups" against each other by the establishment.
Having said that, I must say my personal commitment to unity has been seriously diminished by the actions of a few.
North of Price, we have developed a top-notch system of single-track non-motorized trails. Literally thousands of hours have gone into these trails. Three Boy Scouts have earned their Eagles helping build them. A lot of sweat and love went into them.
On May 7 our club-ride came upon a sickening sight. Someone on a 4WD OHV with Chevron-tread tires had maliciously and completely destroyed the whole south-west section of the Dead Dog loop. Large cairns were knocked-over and scattered; signs were run-over and broken, a campsite destroyed, and the trail obliterated.
I've been a "Mountain biker" for over 20 years. We old bike guys believe in "policing your own." More than once I've known of mountain bikers teaching other mountain bikers the perils of trail vandalism. Stomp the spokes out of a fellow's front wheel and he'll have a nice long walk to ponder his actions and their consequences. You have to deal with your bad apples before they spoil things for everybody.
I'm asking you, all of you, to police your own. Whoever the punk was who destroyed our trail has no-doubt bragged about it. People like that never shut-up.
Again, it is very important that motorized and non-motirized riders co-exist and stand together. The various "agencies" are looking for any reason to ban various "user groups" from areas, and a select few can cause everybody to be penalized. Let's all police our own.
And if you have any doubt that situations like this are being used to incite anti-motorized sentiments, please see Cycling Utah's May issue, page 5. An editorial written by a SUWA lawyer titled "Invasion of the off-road vehicles."