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Next door to Forest Park, North Tualatin Mtns hold opportunity for off-road bike access

Posted by on September 18th, 2014 at 11:45 am

tualatinmap

1,300 acres just north of Forest Park.

Just north of Forest Park in northwest Portland lies 1,300 undeveloped acres spread across four separate properties. The land, which was historically a logging area and can be currently accessed from either Skyline or McNamee roads, is owned by Metro and is known as the North Tualatin Mountains natural area.

Metro is embarking on a planning process to figure out what to do on the land and there’s a great opportunity to include bicycle access in the equation. Advocates have been fighting for years to improve bike access in Forest Park but have made frustratingly slow progress.

The Tualatin Mountains natural area offers a fresh start and a new political context since it’s under Metro jurisdiction and not managed by the City of Portland (the current Parks Commissioner, Amanda Fritz, has all but shelved the Forest Park debate calling for “a citywide Master Plan for cycling recreation… prior to embarking on individual projects.”).

“We’re asking two questions: What’s important to people about these properties and what would you like to do here?”
— Dave Elkin, Metro senior park planner

The planning process for the North Tualatin Mountains is just getting underway. Dave Elkin, senior park planner at Metro, told us during an interview yesterday that an advisory committee set up to determine its future has met only once (in July).

“We’re just beginning our comprehensive planning process and we’re asking two questions: What’s important to people about these properties and what would you like to do here?”

Elkin said it’s obvious to him there’s potential for excellent connections to the existing Wildwood Trail in Forest Park. “There are also opportunities for mountain biking, bird watching… The intent for us is to open up the conversation and listen to the public and see what the consensus is.”

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Metro images of North Tualatin Mountains natural area.

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The Northwest Trail Alliance, a local non-profit that works to help maintain trails and improve off-road cycling access, has already had discussions with Metro about this project and their advocacy director, Jon Pheanis, sits on the advisory committee. (We’ve contacted the NWTA for comment and will update this story when we hear back.)

In the end, Elkin says the conversation around how this land is developed will be familiar to bike advocates. “How do we balance natural resource protection with these recreational opportunities, and where can both intersect and create a dynamic space.”

Tonight’s meeting (6:00 pm at Skyline Grange Hall – 11275 NW Skyline Blvd) is the first of four planned open houses. Metro hopes to have a comprehensive plan completed by Spring 2015.

Learn more about this project on Metro’s website. Details on tonight’s meeting can be found on Facebook.

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pabstslut
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pabstslut

MTB Trails please! After riding in Bend and Hood River, Portland’s lack of bike accessible trails is embarrassing.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

From the Metro web page:

“…Just north of Forest Park, a collection of four voter-protected properties form the North Tualatin Mountains natural area. …”

Voter Protected. More details on how voters came to offer their protection to this land, and for would purposes would be helpful.

Note also that Metro has already been designated the land as natural area, which doesn’t necessarily mean that biking on some trails built on the land couldn’t be an appropriate use, consistent with what the voters understood they’ve lent their protection to.

I think some of the standing questions surrounding desire some people have to use Forest Park for mountain biking, will be raised with questions about what form of mountain biking will be appropriate for this land as well. Since park development of this land is in its very early stages though, it may very well be that vehicular recreation in the form of single track mountain biking on the land, could mange to find broad support among voters.

I still hope that somehow, a substantial section of the remaining undeveloped south face of the Tualitan Mountains can be acquired for natural area parkland.

spencer
Guest
spencer

a reasoned approach wsbob, I appreciate the open mindedness of your comment.
you are correct, there is no reason the needs of the mountain bike community, the hiking community, the wildlife protection advocates, etc, cant all find a mutually exclusive compromise with this property. Its not a pristine wild land (nor is Forest Park), but we can all find ways to experience nature, protect wildlife corridors, protect watersheds, and keep user conflicts to an absolute minimum.

This property would provide that, and it would also expand the protected greenspace of the Tualatin mountains.

davemess
Guest
davemess

This looks like somewhat similar terrain to the trails at Scappoose (which are pretty good). Hoping for some good things for mountain bikers here.

Oregon Mamcita
Guest
Oregon Mamcita

What is the soil like? Hopefully there are some “tough” areas that will hold up. A chance to write on a blank slate and put the single track trails
where they would do the least damage would be cool. We may want to ban dogs to reduce conflicts and protect wildlife & sensitive areas.

Brian
Guest
Brian

In addition to finding good areas, there are a number of ways to increase the sustainability of trails-small bridges, bringing larger rocks in, adding 1/4-, proper trails design for run-off, etc.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

Information on Metro’s site about this newly acquired natural area isn’t very detailed, but in case it may help to answer your question, on the ‘Background’ page, it says the area is comprised of:

“…the Burlington Creek Forest, the McCarthy Creek Forest, the Ennis Creek Forest and the North Abbey Creek Natural Area. …” http://www.oregonmetro.gov/public-projects/north-tualatin-mountains-natural-area/background

Consists of a fair amount of creek drainage areas, it would seem, with characteristic soil accordingly.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

Engineers can build to deal with nearly any solid condition, for any designated use, so soil quality really is almost a secondary consideration.

The bigger question is whether the Metro measures for protecting these lands, were passed by voters that knew and approved their possibly being used for vehicular recreation such as mountain biking on single track.

If so, build away. If the voters considered and were favorable to the lands being used for some type of mountain biking, even possibly as extensively as at Stubb Stewart, or Sandy Ridge, soil and drainage protection measures can most likely be managed to handle the use.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

Correction: “Engineers can build to deal with nearly any soil condition, …” wsbob

Alex
Guest
Alex

People voted to have increased single track access to FP and it hasn’t happened and you stand against that. Why the difference here?

Oregon Mamacita
Guest
Oregon Mamacita

I am not a soil scientist, but Forest Park just looks so much more delicate than other places. Moss. Also- the proximity to the city means that there will just be too many cyclists. So, a thoughtfully built trail on less delicate land in an area a bit further from the city is good, imho.

I believe that land has a carrying capacity, so to speak, for bikes. Too crowded is not good. And, I am not impressed with Portland’s bike culture and I guess I don’t trust a lot of the voices that argue for opening up Forest Park. Portland is in a very narcissistic phase, and some folks put their interest first- damn the rest of us. Mountain bikers are a minority- largely white, and sometimes very macho in a weird way. So- reject my comments as you wish, but I may represent the larger community in some of my views. The anti-car position is not winning hearts and minds, and the hikers don’t trust you …

TrailLover
Guest
TrailLover

Oregon Mamacita expresses a perspective that seems to be fairly common. Many people – perhaps coaxed and influenced by some of the common anti-bicycle rhetoric – imagine hordes of cyclists descending on Forest Park and negatively impacting the ecology. But that begs the question of whether it’s bicycles that are the problem or if it’s sheer numbers of visitors. Oregon Mamacita seems to have decided it’s the narcissistic, damn-the-rest-of-you, weirdly macho, white (hmmm) personalities of cyclists – in addition to their numbers – that is a big part of the problem. But even for those folks who may have a less prejudicial view of their fellow trail users, the volume question seems legitimate.

But is singling out one user group at the expense of another a legitimate solution? If the problem is the number of users, then shouldn’t we look for ways to limit their numbers in a less lopsided way than just kicking one group off the land?

Oregon Mamacita says the land has a limited carrying capacity, but that limit seems to apply only to bicycles. Would an infinite number of pedestrian users be ok then? Not likely. So, if we’re really concerned about total numbers of park users, maybe we can sit down and figure out how to manage their use of the park in a more comprehensive and even-handed manner. Some trails open and some trails closed? Regulated by day of week, hour of day or by season? Directional travel? Improved access points to diffuse impacts, reduce crowding, improve parking, etc?

It’s not a trivial task, but figuring that stuff out is something the cyclists have been asking for and volunteering to do for two decades now. We can all understand the impulse for some kind of quick fix (e.g., let’s just kick those pesky cyclists out) but does anyone really believe that represents sound land management policy? Even the proponents of such policy probably know it’s wrong but they’ve enjoyed free rein for so long that it seems they’re committed to clinging to their guns despite the change that’s a comin’. And that’s a shame because the end does not have to be a bitter one for anybody. Diverse trail users cooperate and get along in countless other places.

Alex
Guest
Alex

Moss nor proximity make a place delicate and trails can be built to handle specific traffic and handle appropriate amounts of traffic. If you look at the damage the hikers do in FP, I would assume you would be appalled. So many unsanctioned trails to nowhere, cutting switchbacks, the wide gait of hikers and people walking side-by-side all contribute to the damage hikers and runners are doing, but I hear nothing about that from you. Why is that?

To be quite frank, I am not impressed with car culture, nor the hiking culture, nor the “ecological groups” culture that Portland has cultivated. I don’t trust their arguments for keeping FP closed to bikes – they haven’t brought science, reason and have more often than not shut down a fair discussion of allowing cycling in FP that shows any favor for it. I am not anti-car, but I really would prefer to use my car less frequently – it really benefits society as a whole and the numbers are there to prove it.

I am going to leave your comments regarding race and your view of mtbers as “weirdly macho” alone as I think those comments show a clear reflection of where you are at in regards to how you think of and treat others.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

“…So, a thoughtfully built trail on less delicate land in an area a bit further from the city is good, imho. …” Oregon Mamacita

Their distance from the city, and that the recently acquired lands aren’t part of Forest Park, may help increase chances they’ll be developed in part to be used for some type of mountain biking.

Metro’s website for the North Tualitan Mountain lands mentions they’re accessible by McNamee Rd, but the Washington County Bike Map I have, shows them to be very close to, if not directly adjoining Cornelius Pass Rd. If so, that makes for good access for visitors to these parklands and less disturbance for neighborhoods closer to the city.

That picture of a brown field or dry meadow accompanying this bikeportland story may or may not indicate that these lands are overall any less delicate compared to those of Forest Park. Though as I basically wrote earlier, delicate ecosystems are not an insurmountable problem for engineers.

My guess is that the issue with these park lands is probably going to be, if it’s concluded by Metro after they’ve done their public surveys that mountain biking on single track on these lands is something voters did approve, will be how much mountain biking, and what type will be developed there.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

“…So, a thoughtfully built trail on less delicate land in an area a bit further from the city is good, imho. …” Oregon Mamacita

Their distance from the city, and that the recently acquired lands aren’t part of Forest Park, may help increase chances they’ll be developed in part to be used for some type of mountain biking.

Metro’s website for the North Tualitan Mountain lands mentions they’re accessible by McNamee Rd, but the Washington County Bike Map I have, shows them to be very close to, if not directly adjoining Cornelius Pass Rd. If so, that makes for good access for visitors to these parklands and less disturbance for neighborhoods closer to the city.

Brian
Guest
Brian

Hey OR Mamacita,
I’d like to invite you to the next NWTA meeting to learn a bit more about the local mtb scene and its participants. Social hour starts at 6pm, on the last Tuesday of the month in the banquet space at Hopworks on Powell. Hope to see you there.
Brian

TrailLover
Guest
TrailLover

I hope Oregon Mamacita takes you up on that suggestion. Even better, perhaps she would like to come out to an NWTA trail work party. I know I give Oregon Mamacita a pretty hard time for some of her comments, but I do believe she genuinely cares about the health and long-term preservation of Forest Park and other lands. I think if she met some of the people who build and maintain trails in the region and if she participated in some of the technical aspects of trails management, she would have an enriched view of the community of conservation-minded trail users that she belongs to.

Alex
Guest
Alex

This is definitely a huge part of building trails and anyone that is going to be in there digging would take this into account. On top of that, there are many ways to mitigate the potential damage done by building trails that drain correctly and armoring the trails in such a way as erosion doesn’t occur. It really has less to do with “tough” areas and more to do with going in and building a trail that is sensitive to the ecosystem it exists within.

davemess
Guest
davemess

Scappoose is actually one of the best places to ride in the winter. Many of the trails are in pretty dense thickets of evergreens, so the trails have a really nice base of pine needles that absorb water and cover up any potential mud.

I agree with others, proper trail design can alleviate most issues with poor soil.

Oregon Mamacita
Guest
Oregon Mamacita

Hey- I trust you Dave, so I am going to vote for use of the Metro land for bikes as long as we protect wildlife. I would suggest restricting dogs to minimize disruption for wildlife.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

“…I would suggest restricting dogs to minimize disruption for wildlife.” Oregon Mamacita

Absolutely restricting dogs from the park probably wouldn’t go over well. Insisting dogs be on leashes at all times in the park, seems wise.

Rumor is that unleashed dogs in Sandy Ridge mountain bike park, were part of the source of the problem between two people walking together, equipped with mace and a pistol, and other people in the park. The two people were arrested on two or three charges. I’m looking forward to further news about the couple’s day in court, whether they’re convicted and son on. And of course, their account of the incidents associated with their arrest, which has yet to be told, that I’m aware of.

Alex
Guest
Alex

Oh how I wish information about meetings like this would get posted more than just a few hours before they happen. It makes it difficult to make it.

MaxD
Guest
MaxD

I hope the ecologists and the recreational people have some conversations about yearly schedules. So much habitat sensitivity is for limited times during the year. Trails could have temporary closures for nesting, mating, migration, etc. I am sure some great compromises could be reached if the conversations could be facilitated.

dave
Guest
dave

YES – I recently rode Flagline in Bend, which is a great example of that. The trail is effectively only open for a few weeks every year – it’s closed to cyclists until Aug 15th to avoid disturbing calving elk, and high altitude enough that snow ends the party not too long after. And yet it’s popular, well maintained, and has plenty of mountain-bike specific features built into it. This idea that trail access is a black & white, zero-sum game played between cyclists and other users is as false as the cars vs bikes dichotomy.

Dwaine Dibbly
Guest
Dwaine Dibbly

If you get lots of MTB trails here, it’ll give the Forest Park Nazis all the more reason to never give an inch there. Maybe that’s a reasonable compromise. I don’t know. Just saying….

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

Dibbly, whether or not your intent is to kill any constructive discussion here about what development of this land could offer people looking for more mountain bike opportunities close to Portland, you’ve certainly put your foot in that direction.

Given your display of animosity and name calling, I suggest your comment, in entirety, be deleted. Lacking that, at least, the self serving name calling should be blocked out. As well as those comments of any other people that follow suit.

Alex
Guest
Alex

wsbob,

you do a fine job yourself killing any constructive discussion – your selective memory, your completely biased view of what “vehicular” transport is and whether it should belong in FP and the disruption you think it would bring to hikers who somehow have more of a right to that land (which makes no sense at all).

Have you participated in any of the meetings in the past? Were you at the single track advisory meetings? Have you seen how Houle acts? The people against mountain biking in FP have proven to not want a civil discussion time and again. Once they and you start acting civil perhaps you will get civility in return.

Lunchrider
Guest
Lunchrider

Alex you are just plain wrong about Marcy Houle she was the one treated unfairly and I have NEVER seen her be anything but civil. Name calling is not productive.
Seems to me that this new area would be a perfect area for single track. why not work to make it happen?

Matt F
Guest
Matt F

Are you joking? I know for a fact that people got up and walked out of one of the single track advisory meetings a couple of years back because of Houle’s uncivil behavior.

Alex
Guest
Alex

He (or she) must not have been at those meetings. It was ridiculous.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

Houle is well researched, well informed. Some people disagreeing with her opinions, apparently are unable to successfully counter them, so instead resort to name calling, malicious and mean behavior. As if they somehow believe such behavior will successfully persuade people that using nature parks for mountain biking, is a good idea.

TrailLover
Guest
TrailLover

Houle may be well researched and well informed on issues of wildlife and, somewhat selectively, Forest Park history, but there are only two choices when it comes to her perspectives on recreational trails management. She is either well researched and well informed on that topic as well but chooses to mislead and spread falsehoods intentionally OR she is simply ignorant on the topic of recreational trails management but believes she should be allowed to set recreational trails policy nonetheless.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

“…but chooses to mislead and spread falsehoods intentionally OR she is simply ignorant on the topic of recreational trails management but believes she should be allowed to set recreational trails policy nonetheless.” TrailLover

You’re waxing insubstantial rhetoric. Do some research on Houle. Find and browse, or read her book. Houle was hired in a professional capacity as a consultant on Forest Park, by the city. I think I have this right, but it’s from memory, and I may not be absolutely correct on this.

Houle has offered opinions about mountain biking and Forest Park, that have infuriated and exasperated some people, as the expression of opinions will sometimes do. I’ve not heard any mention that she believes she should “…be allowed to set recreational trails policy nonetheless. …”. Those kinds of accusations just seem like more sour grapes.

One of the best things for possibly gaining mountain biking opportunity in North Tualitin Mountains, would be to focus on persuading people that mountain biking there will be a completely upbeat, positive activity accessible to a wide range of people, of a wide range of abilities.

Alex
Guest
Alex

Well researched and well informed to what? How to politically block access to Forest Park? She hardly lets any counter her arguments by raising her voice and cutting them off. This isn’t about having a reasoned, thoughtful discussion, it is pure politics on her side. Please point me to some her scientific research and reasoning (not opines) regarding mountain bike access in Forest Park. I haven’t seen any. The only reason we don’t have access to FP is not because people didn’t want it, it was only politics coming from that side of the aisle. I guess they would prefer we have to drive 100 miles in order to ride bikes and destroy the environment that way instead of not wasting resources and enjoying what we have locally. FP is not some fragile eco-system that can’t handle well designed usage – it has been drilled for oil, cut down and the land is still used for commercial reasons within the park.

wsbob, you really haven’t added anything to these conversations of use, just a lot of passive aggressiveness. How you find the energy, will and focus to get in the middle of a discussion that you don’t seem to have any stake in is beyond me. And PLEASE, provide those links to Houle’s research that we all seem to be missing…

GlowBoy
Guest
GlowBoy

I have to at least chime in with Alex and object to wsbob’s repeated use of the term “vehicular recreation” to describe mountain biking.

Yes, bikes are vehicles in a transportation sense, and it was important that we had a national movement back in the 1970s to emphasize that they are indeed vehicles and should have equal safe access to the road (not that that has actually been accomplished, of course, but that’s beside the point).

But continually characterizing mountain biking as “vehicular recreation” is just a silly trick to lump bicycling in with motorized sports like ATVing, snowmobiling, jetskiing and motorboating with which it does not belong.

Yes, I suppose technically mountain biking is “vehicular,” since the conveyance of a bicycle is a vehicle. But so are skis and snowboards. So are snowshoes. So is a kayak or a canoe. Believe me, I grew up doing a lot of canoeing, and if a canoe isn’t a vehicle I don’t know WTF human-powered vehicle IS a vehicle. At least when not involving a shuttle (a disclaimer that also applies to snow and paddle sports, BTW) mountain biking is still human-powered recreation: quiet, clean and good for you.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

“…But continually characterizing mountain biking as “vehicular recreation” is just a silly trick to lump bicycling in with motorized sports like ATVing, snowmobiling, jetskiing and motorboating with which it does not belong. …” GlowBoy

That mountain biking is vehicular recreation, is a simple objective fact. Bikes are vehicles, whether off road or on. Their design and function makes them inherently incompatible with foot travel on trail, and in general, with nature parks.

TrailLover
Guest
TrailLover

Oh for god’s sake, WSBOB. It is the very design and function of off-road bicycles that makes them inherently COMPATIBLE with foot travel on trail, and in general, with nature parks. That’s exactly what the bikes are designed for. Please explain to all of us how the “inherent incompatibility” you’re imagining does not exist on the thousands of miles of trails that are successfully and sustainably shared by trail users all over the country and the world.

wsbob
Guest
wsbob

“…Please explain to all of us how the “inherent incompatibility” you’re imagining does not exist on the thousands of miles of trails that are successfully and sustainably shared by trail users all over the country and the world.” TrailLover

I just did explain it to you, though I don’t expect you’ll be willing to make the recognition that I have. Especially considering the mean and abusive manner in which you’ve made reference to me elsewhere in this comment section.

Bikes are vehicles. People on foot are not vehicles. People riding vehicles that bikes are, are vehicle operators. Riding a bike on narrow trail requires coordination, balance skills different than walking. It’s possible to confine riding mountain bikes to a character that which would be compatible with people walking, but the resulting type doesn’t represent much of the range of mountain biking that enthusiasts seem to expect to be able to enjoy.

Maybe it will be determined that North Tualitin Mountains should host a wider range of mountain biking types than only one that’s compatible with walking. I think some people are undoubtedly wondering whether the lands could come to have trail allowing a wide range of mountain bike trail types. Possible too, I suppose. Depends in some part, on feedback Metro gets from the people that voted to protect these recently acquired lands in their natural character.

GlowBoy
Guest
GlowBoy

No one is arguing the fact that bikes are vehicles, bob. We’re just questioning why you feel the need to keep repeating this “vehicular recreation” mantra. You haven’t provided any justification for your claim that human-powered vehicles are incompatible with natural areas. If there were any truth behind it, then we’d need to limit all travel in natural areas to walking and swimming.

Skis are vehicles, too: mechanical devices designed to amplify and transform human muscle power into movement; and like bicycles, they provide the ability to coast on flat and downhill ground, potentially resulting in significant speed, where walking (or snowshoeing) cannot. Where I come from parks, trails, woods, lakes – anywhere outdoors – are filled all winter with people enjoying the snow using both modes. And they do come into (I suppose “inherent,” as you seem to want to put it) conflict on lots of occasions.

But snowshoers, the less vehicular users with probably more human tradition behind them, don’t go around trying to ban skiers – even track skiers – because they are vehicular. You do have mandatory separation of modes in busy areas, not that’s not unlike with hikers vs bikers in Pacific NW natural areas too (at least in the sense that land managers have reduced the conflict potential by simply banning bicycles from 90% of trails).

For that matter, as I mentioned above kayaks, canoes and rafts are all vehicles of various types. I was more of a lake canoeist when I was younger, so I’m only speculating that on PNW waterways there are sometimes conflicts between floaters and paddlers, but I certainly haven’t heard of one or other mode being banned from the waterways even in the most wild and natural areas.

fivefrud
Guest
fivefrud

WSBOB, whether or not your intent is to kill any constructive discussion here about what development of this land could offer people looking for more mountain bike opportunities close to Portland, you’ve certainly put your foot in that direction.

Given your display of animosity by calling for peoples’ comments to be deleted, I suggest your comment, in entirety, be deleted. Lacking that, at least, the passive-aggressive playing of devils’ advocate above and beyond all normal reason should be blocked out. As well as those comments of any other people that follow suit.

Brian
Guest
Brian

Did anyone attend the meeting? Report?

Alex
Guest
Alex

I would love to hear this as well!

BB
Guest
BB

As exciting as this is to hear there’s an opportunity for some actual trails close by, I won’t get my hopes up, as we’ve been let down way too many times. I love birds and hiking as well, but there’s no reasoning with these folk.

TrailLover
Guest
TrailLover

The North Tualatin Mountains natural area should be just one element of a regional recreational trails network that strives to meet the needs of the community as well as serving conservation goals. That would be the proper way to manage scarce resources and to ensure the preservation of those resources for future generations.

Unfortunately, the anti-sharing voices who have always opposed bicycles in Forest Park will do whatever they can to stifle such planning efforts by insisting that the largest parcel, Forest Park, remain off limits for any consideration at all. The fact that such a perspective represents a horribly defective land management policy won’t bother those folks who have had no qualms at all about spreading false information and perpetuating fear and uncertainty regarding bicycles and trails. They may actually believe they are somehow serving a higher goal but it doesn’t take X-ray glasses or much imagination to see that they are actually doing little more than trying to preserve – at the exclusion of the rest of us – their own personally favored mode of transportation.

Regarding WSBOB who likes to post on these topics, make no mistake about the fact that he has been an avowed anti-bicycle voice in virtually all discussions of local trail access issues. His intentionally inflammatory use of the term “vehicle” – language that virtually no land management agency uses when talking about trail users who happen to ride bicycles – is a transparent effort to incite and antagonize. As pointed out already by another commenter, WSBOB’s self-professed allegiance to the will of the people goes straight out the window if – as is the clear case in Forest Park – the people happen to express, above all else, a desire for greater cycling opportunities. WSBOB is very much in favor of exploring – although not likely supporting – singletrack cycling opportunities in the North Tualatin Mountains just as long as it helps maintain the second-class status of cyclists and keeps them off of HIS trails in Forest Park.

It’s time for the majority of conservation-minded Portlanders to take the management of our local recreational trails out of the hands of the elitist minority that has dictated public trails policy for more than twenty years.

NG
Guest
NG

I agree with ‘pabstslut,’ Portland is an embarrassment when it comes to developing single track. Since PPR began talking/planning about what to do with the Riverview natural area, COTA has built at least 15+ miles of beautiful single track in Bend to add to the hundreds of miles that already exits. Lewis River, McKenzie River, North Umpqua, Oakridge – what does the Metro Area have that is more prestine than these areas and necessitates such protectionism? Portland does not need more trails open only to hikers. I wonder how much money in gas I’ll have to continue to spend in order to pursue my passion of mountain biking.

Trail Rat
Guest
Trail Rat

This is awesome news, more trails for mountain biking are sorely needed in this area.

Brian
Guest
Brian

Great points, everyone. The big question is- Now what? Do we need an activist group, similar to the one recently begun to address transportation issues, to take up the off-road side of things here in Portland?

Dabby
Guest
Dabby

46 comments huh?
I attended this meeting, as one of only Two mtb’ers that did so.
I am appalled with the rest of you and your obviously high opinions of what should happen, along with your obvious choice to let someone else make it happen for you. I could tell you what happened at the meeting, but if you really cared you would have been there.
Luckily the 2 that did show up have the drive and tenacity to attempt to speak for the probably 9,998 of you local Mtber’s that didn’t even try to make it.
And one of them was invited to fill a spot on this committee.
We are in a position, thanks to NWTA and the sweet people that were there from Metro, to really make a difference on these four parcels.
And you are still in a position to show up at the next three meetings with “constructive” (as opposed to negative) ideas as to what you would like to see on these parcels. Think of words like sharing, multi-use, XC…
Words that we all understand. Words that do not make the hair stand up on the back of peoples neck’s… Like downhill, dirt jump, mtb specific…
In response to some above comments, these lands, and Forest Park, are not pristine old forests to be protected. (Ok, the Balch Creek Trout are important, IMO, but the creek is short and can be managed properly, with the main threat being the NW Industrial Areas below) Beyond that, There is no special soil, no mosses to be concerned with. These are lands that have been trashed by squatters and illegal campers, clearcut a number of times in the last century, covered by nature with invasive species, and then labeled by neighbors and others who feel entitled as places to protect from those they don’t want to share them with. Those they obviously do not try to understand.
It is time to drop thoughts of entitlement. Time to stop denying user groups because they are misunderstood, or because we fear change.
It is time to “Futurecast”.
To start making our local forested recreation areas user friendly not only for us, but for users that have not even been born.
When the next Metro THRP meeting is announced, I will be at the Skyline Pub an hour before it happens, waiting for the rest of you……
We can all meet, get on “the same page” then head to the meeting together.
I was picked out immediately upon entry, as a mtb’er when I showed up, and thanked for representing mtbing. By more than one attendee.
Imagine if even just 50 of us show up next time.
This rant is over.
For now.

Zimmerman
Guest
Zimmerman

Boy, it sure would be nice if our local advocacy organization could announce such an important meeting through as many outlets as possible more than two hours before said meeting starts…

Glad you’re on the committee Dabby. Hope it works out for you Portlanders.

GlowBoy
Guest
GlowBoy

Dabby, some of us have lives, and kids, and stuff, and didn’t have enough time to rearrange things to make this meeting – so enough of the “appalled” criticism of those who weren’t able to make it.

Taking two hours out of our lives on extremely short notice is a little different than having a moment to comment on something online – and welcome to the Interwebs, if this is a surprise to you.

Alex
Guest
Alex

If I would have known earlier, I would have gone.

The next one is on the calendar:

North Tualatin Mountains (near Scappose)
Thu, 09/18/2014 – 6:00pm

Dabby
Guest
Dabby

I am not on the committee. A better man than me, Andy J. is however.
My plan is to do everything I can to help alongside of him.

I was also upset about the 2 hour notice, (the ball was dropped by someone?) but raced up and over scary Germantown Road to make it in the final hour..

Hope you are healing well Zimmerman!!!