A special workshop on trail use and user cooperation yielded a number of potential solutions for resolving conflicts on public lands, a Boise trail-bike advocate said.
Ernie Lombard, an architect and a promoter of the safe and environmentally conscious use of trail bikes, said the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, and a number of citizens participated in the discussion.The workshop was held as part of the Blue Ribbon Coalition's annual meeting at the Holiday Inn in Boise. The coalition is an umbrella organization that supports use of trail bikes and snowmobiles on public lands.
Among other things, the group decided:
- The Forest Service and BLM should retain and maintain their trail systems to help disperse use and avoid conflicts.
Conflicts between horsepackers and hikers with dogs are a consistent problem, Lombard said, and mountain bicyclists tend to scare mules and horses.
Two parallel trails could be maintained to popular destinations to avoid conflicts, the group decided.
- Agencies need to solve access problems where private land abuts public land, and no provision has been made to allow recreationists to pass through private land.
Easements or some kind of public corridor needs to be developed in these areas, he said.
- The Forest Service should indicate what uses are allowed on trails so users will be prepared to see mountain bikes or motorcyclists coming down the trail.
- Trails must be maintained to avoid trail damage and safety problems.
- All users should remain on the trail, including motorcyclists, he said.
- To promote the Adopt-A-Trail program, an opportunity for volunteers to maintain certain trails in the national forest.