A six billion dollar biking industry needs to sell more bikes in this weak economy. BikesBelong is a bike industry lobby group started by the former president of the International Mountain Bike Association. It’s goal is is to get more people on bikes more often so that more bikes can be sold. BikesBelong trail grants have helped create 1630 miles of bike paths and trails. I believe this group is heavily involved in the current push to get more bike trails in the Fells, and this is an obvious conflict of interest. It would be one thing if biking were harmless, but studies cited by the DCR do not support this idea, and on-the-ground evidence shows biking has severely damaged this unique reservation.
Middlesex Fells draft Resource Management Plan by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation submitted on Sept 14, 2011. These are links to other important pages on this site.
- Studies debunked - flaky studies do not support claim the hiking/biking impacts are similar or that biking hiking should be treated the same. new trails unjustified, DCR has no power to even issue tickets to offenders, no funding or staff to implement plan.
- illegal trail use - bikers on closed trail, reviews of closed trails from bike websites, Fellsbiker encourages illegal use.
- NEMBA/Gary Fisher illegal group ride video -New England Mountain Bike Association brazenly shows their disregard for the Fells.
- impacts can last for centuries - one of many before and after photos showing the enormous impacts recreation is having on the Fells
- nature trail replaced with bike trails - DCR wants to closed Dark Hollow nature trail, one of the most ecologically diverse and important sections of the Fells with 12 distinctly different plant communities. Photos and info on each area.
- Bike lobby: more trails equals more bike sales - bike industry sales stagnate during recession, lobby has opening over a thousand miles of new trails which helps dealers and manufacturers sell more bikes. Gives trail grants and other assistance to members like the New England Mountain Bike Association. Fells critically important to success elsewhere, if Boston accepts bikes will easy to get bike trails in countless other locations around the country. If Boston rejects bikes, just the opposite will happen. This is why it is so critical that the DCR make a decision based on facts about bikes, not flaky studies fed to them by NEMBA, IMBA, BikesBelong, and the mob of bikers who have attended every Resource Management Plan meeting.
- DCR says no complaints about bikes, dozens of letters show to DCR show this is not the case at all. Excerpts from just a few of the many letter written to the DCR complaining about bikes impacting the Fells experience, trail erosion, safety and other issues.
- Sierra club against bikes in the Fells - DCR plans go against Sierra Club policy
- Important Court Decision declares Mountain Biking is not a legal “right” - bikers complain about exclusion and elitism on the part of those trying to protect the Fells but the court says this is not a valid argument to justify biking.