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Hill walkers V well everyone....

  • #2
    Registered Users Posts: 5,925 ✭✭✭ iwillhtfu


    So it seems things are starting to become more and more ugly on the mtb v hill walkers scene. This seems to be the latest news that's being pushed and whilst I'd like to think it wasn't as described it seems hard to see otherwise with the second pic.

    I do wonder though is some of this friendly fire, are hill walkers creating a nuisance of themselves by attempting to make it appear as though MTB trail builders are being reckless and feckless. It does seem the biggest issues are in Dublin/Wicklow I'm guessing due to the much larger footfall on the hills.

    Have ye seen any impact on your local trails?

    I know on a small forest near me with just a couple of good practice runs became a bit of a highlight during covid with young lads catching wind and blabbing to their mates and so on. Before long lads were building new features and obvious timber framed jumps. As soon as someone was inevitably injured coillte came in and tore it asunder.

    Has covid just brought all of the assholes out onto the hills and will they ever just feck off?

    Is there a call now for an outdoors and recreation government dept similar to most countries to enhance the outdoors and allocate areas for everything be it from fishing to moto x, mtb, camping, kayaking. Am I just dreaming that this will ever be a thing, most likely due to the we want a free house brigade feigning concern over people dying on our streets and money being allocated to something other than housing.

    I do hope that this doesn't become a new flash point though as an avid hill walker and MTB rider. Also I do appreciate most things Mountain Meitheal do but I do think they are overbearing at times and assume they have some devine right to the hills and to hell with those that oppose them.

    Original FB post
    https://www.facebook.com/wladek.gaj/posts/2653469911616724

    51198345143_323493ec66_o.jpg

    Previously found tools right next to a gap jump :( It has been implied by a commenter though that perhaps these were assumed trail tools which I know we have on our local trails.

    51199235875_9d3c2b5515_c.jpg


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Comments

  • #2


    Saw that post on fb earlier, a lot of jumping to conclusions and hear say all in the name of inflaming the us vs them arguments.
    Features like in the photo will always draw negative attention though, keep the risk low and built from natural long lasting materials, ie stone and soil, don't cross fire roads or walking paths at 90 degrees and you'll be left alone.


  • #2


    prunudo wrote: »
    Saw that post on fb earlier, a lot of jumping to conclusions and hear say all in the name of inflaming the us vs them arguments.
    Features like in the photo will always draw negative attention though, keep the risk low and built from natural long lasting materials, ie stone and soil, don't cross fire roads or walking paths at 90 degrees and you'll be left alone.

    It's such a simple idea but young lads just see redbull rampage and sure everything has to be a gap :rolleyes:

    I would be careful of walls though. Another forest near me had lads use a few stones from a wall that had collapsed in parts to build a ramp through said gap. Well the lynch mob was out within the week and it even hit the local rag as apparently it was some really really really old wall that had no relation to anything anymore but did I mention it was really old.


  • #2


    iwillhtfu wrote: »
    It's such a simple idea but young lads just see redbull rampage and sure everything has to be a gap :rolleyes:

    I would be careful of walls though. Another forest near me had lads use a few stones from a wall that had collapsed in parts to build a ramp through said gap. Well the lynch mob was out within the week and it even hit the local rag as apparently it was some really really really old wall that had no relation to anything anymore but did I mention it was really old.

    Yeah, unfortunately back to your original post, lockdown does seem to have brought out the angry local walkers who suddenly think the forests which we've been using for years are suddenly only there for them. Not condoning wrecking walls, people just need be to conscious of their surroundings when building in areas that have other users around.
    Another related issue, a local woods to me which used to have space for a few cars parked along a wide verge drew crowds during the 5km restrictions resulting in the council painting double yellow lines. Now that restrictions are lifted, the crowds are gone and the original regulars have nowhere legally to park anymore.


  • #2


    Yeah I've never personally had an issue with a hillwalker down here in Kerry. I reckon 99.9% of them are grand same as MTBers. If you meet them just be friendly and pull over to let them pass and say hello, it's never failed yet. There will always be a few empty tin cans who will make noise on Facebook. My local wood is a hillwalker hotspot and I have done a lot of natural trailbuilding there which has never been a problem. The guy who builds and maintains the walking trails has always turned a blind eye to the trails and we are happy to co-exist so long as there is no bollox-acting. However, a young lad who is a phenomenal mtber has started modifying my trails with built up jumps right by the walking trails and I know it's going to cause problems. There's no reasoning with the lad and it's not even his local spot. I realise he's great on the bike but it's hard to get across to some kids that you can't build a fecking slopestyle course on unsancstioned land. Sometimes you have to cut your cloth.


  • #2


    xxyyzz wrote: »
    Yeah I've never personally had an issue with a hillwalker down here in Kerry. I reckon 99.9% of them are grand same as MTBers. If you meet them just be friendly and pull over to let them pass and say hello, it's never failed yet. There will always be a few empty tin cans who will make noise on Facebook. My local wood is a hillwalker hotspot and I have done a lot of natural trailbuilding there which has never been a problem. The guy who builds and maintains the walking trails has always turned a blind eye to the trails and we are happy to co-exist so long as there is no bollox-acting. However, a young lad who is a phenomenal mtber has started modifying my trails with built up jumps right by the walking trails and I know it's going to cause problems. There's no reasoning with the lad and it's not even his local spot. I realise he's great on the bike but it's hard to get across to some kids that you can't build a fecking slopestyle course on unsancstioned land. Sometimes you have to cut your cloth.

    The above phenomenal young lad wont be so phenomenal if he has nowhere to ride because the council have clamped down hard on local mtb activity, or because some 70 year old fruit-loop has decided to string wire across the trail or placed a felled tree branch on the landing point of a drop "because I want them to slow down; they ride too fast" and he discovers all of this the hard way with a trip to A&E.

    This is what has happened relatively recently (well, it's been a bit of a long running saga with ebbs & flows) here at a very popular riding spot in Sheffield; people started building bigger and bigger jumps, some within view of main bridleways, enticing little johnny to hit the largest jump within eyesight on his "Argos special" whilst on a family day-out along with the inevitable fallout and clampdown where trail features are torn down wholesale. By the same token, the same authorities have turned a blind eye to any natural MTB trails in the vicinity, so it's clear where the biggest issue lies; building what-looks-to-be-risky sh1t in full view of the public.


  • #2


    iwillhtfu wrote: »
    It's such a simple idea but young lads just see redbull rampage and sure everything has to be a gap :rolleyes:

    I would be careful of walls though. Another forest near me had lads use a few stones from a wall that had collapsed in parts to build a ramp through said gap. Well the lynch mob was out within the week and it even hit the local rag as apparently it was some really really really old wall that had no relation to anything anymore but did I mention it was really old.

    I'm neither a mountain biker nor a hill walker. But, am I understanding it correctly - mountain bikers are building ad-hoc jumps/ramps on trails in the hills?


  • #2


    KaneToad wrote: »
    I'm neither a mountain biker nor a hill walker. But, am I understanding it correctly - mountain bikers are building ad-hoc jumps/ramps on trails in the hills?

    It has been a practice by both parties for years but one is commonly accepted despite normally causing considerably more damage while the other is often vilified.

    It really became and issue when moto x came on the scene and they started mistaking the damage caused by their bikes as damage caused by mtb.

    In recent years with the growth of youtube, rebull, social media kids have started to realise what it is we've been missing out on around the world with regards to mtb and have set about replicating trails in the woods and forests around the country.


  • #2


    xxyyzz wrote: »
    Yeah I've never personally had an issue with a hillwalker down here in Kerry. I reckon 99.9% of them are grand same as MTBers. If you meet them just be friendly and pull over to let them pass and say hello, it's never failed yet. There will always be a few empty tin cans who will make noise on Facebook. My local wood is a hillwalker hotspot and I have done a lot of natural trailbuilding there which has never been a problem. The guy who builds and maintains the walking trails has always turned a blind eye to the trails and we are happy to co-exist so long as there is no bollox-acting. However, a young lad who is a phenomenal mtber has started modifying my trails with built up jumps right by the walking trails and I know it's going to cause problems. There's no reasoning with the lad and it's not even his local spot. I realise he's great on the bike but it's hard to get across to some kids that you can't build a fecking slopestyle course on unsancstioned land. Sometimes you have to cut your cloth.

    Ah feck it, sure there's a place 10minutes away from that woods for the showy/mad gap jumps. That's going to end with all your good work scrapped.


  • #2


    On a related topic a friend and I have been thinking of trying to cycle the Western Way (or at least part of it - Aasleagh Falls to Bellacorrick) http://thewesternway.ie/trail-sections/

    Its a mix between public/private land. The Assleagh Falls to Westport is mostly private land. Does anyone have any idea if there is issues with using the bikes on the private land. I dont think we would have any run ins with Hill Walkers as it is a quite enough route but I dont want to have a run in with a farmer and potentially he might look at blocking access to everyone - I'm kinda looking out for the hill walkers!


  • #2


    iwillhtfu wrote: »
    So it seems things are starting to become more and more ugly on the mtb v hill walkers scene. This seems to be the latest news that's being pushed and whilst I'd like to think it wasn't as described it seems hard to see otherwise with the second pic.
    The vast majority of hikers (myself included) would be quite surprised to hear there was a MTB v hillwalkers "thing", although I understand there have been issues in the past - the actions of a few crackpots I hope. Does this still happen?

    The hikers I know are happy to see MTBs enjoying themselves on the hills, but worry about damage to trails & particularly in places like the Dublin mountains we are probably all too close together - it can be quite a shock when a MTB arrives on top of you at speed. Segregated trails are ideal and it's great to see the new trails for bikers, I just wish I was 20 years younger.

    There is no justification for what was done however. This is a voluntary group who are doing their best, and they have done some amazing work opening up the hills and making it safer for everyone - particularly families. I'm not a member, but my understanding is they are asked by the national park to work on particular sections - they don't just march into an area and start building a new path.


  • #2


    I can't imagine any mountain biker wanting to vandalise Mountain Meitheal tools. Has to be the work of a crackpot imo.


  • #2


    iwillhtfu wrote: »
    So it seems things are starting to become more and more ugly on the mtb v hill walkers scene. This seems to be the latest news that's being pushed and whilst I'd like to think it wasn't as described it seems hard to see otherwise with the second pic.

    I do wonder though is some of this friendly fire, are hill walkers creating a nuisance of themselves by attempting to make it appear as though MTB trail builders are being reckless and feckless. It does seem the biggest issues are in Dublin/Wicklow I'm guessing due to the much larger footfall on the hills.

    Have ye seen any impact on your local trails?

    I know on a small forest near me with just a couple of good practice runs became a bit of a highlight during covid with young lads catching wind and blabbing to their mates and so on. Before long lads were building new features and obvious timber framed jumps. As soon as someone was inevitably injured coillte came in and tore it asunder.

    Has covid just brought all of the assholes out onto the hills and will they ever just feck off?

    Is there a call now for an outdoors and recreation government dept similar to most countries to enhance the outdoors and allocate areas for everything be it from fishing to moto x, mtb, camping, kayaking. Am I just dreaming that this will ever be a thing, most likely due to the we want a free house brigade feigning concern over people dying on our streets and money being allocated to something other than housing.

    I do hope that this doesn't become a new flash point though as an avid hill walker and MTB rider. Also I do appreciate most things Mountain Meitheal do but I do think they are overbearing at times and assume they have some devine right to the hills and to hell with those that oppose them.

    Original FB post
    https://www.facebook.com/wladek.gaj/posts/2653469911616724

    51198345143_323493ec66_o.jpg

    Previously found tools right next to a gap jump :( It has been implied by a commenter though that perhaps these were assumed trail tools which I know we have on our local trails.

    51199235875_9d3c2b5515_c.jpg

    How do they know it was mountain bikers and not just a couple of scumbags with nothing better to do?


  • #2


    Stark wrote: »
    I can't imagine any mountain biker wanting to vandalise Mountain Meitheal tools. Has to be the work of a crackpot imo.

    Yeah, this is bizarre.

    Hillwalkers don't bother mountain bikers.

    Or am I missing something here?


  • #2


    hmmm wrote: »

    The hikers I know are happy to see MTBs enjoying themselves on the hills, but worry about damage to trails & particularly in places like the Dublin mountains we are probably all too close together - it can be quite a shock when a MTB arrives on top of you at speed. Segregated trails are ideal and it's great to see the new trails for bikers, I just wish I was 20 years younger.

    That's a valid point but speed is relative and I think predominantly the kind of walkers that would complain would be in the retiree category and slightly unaware and see someone passing them on a bike as going hell for leather when they could be just cruising along. I can assure you however in my experience it's a hell of a lot scarier for the mtb rider when you come across someone walking up a trail which is continually happening on the segregated trails particularly in Dublin.

    Obviously you'll have those riders that will react to a comment from a walker and it'll quickly become heated followed by the Chinese whispers that leads to stories of MTB riders nearly killing kids etc.


  • #2


    Hoboo wrote: »
    How do they know it was mountain bikers and not just a couple of scumbags with nothing better to do?

    They don't but in the second picture you can see their tools beside a jump being built by mtb riders, apparently this was reported and coillte took it down. The damaged tools were found in the days following this. Obviously they're assuming a lot also their price of the damaged tools is ridiculously inflated for the best shock value. I'd say some would have had sentimental value which is a shame.


  • #2


    Bot1 wrote: »
    Yeah, this is bizarre.

    Hillwalkers don't bother mountain bikers.

    Or am I missing something here?

    They don't bother them but some are bothered by them unfortunately.

    There's also the few MTB riders that will ruin it for the many and so far coillte have been turning a blind eye to trails being constructed on their lands. Alas with more trails and jumps leads to more risk of injury and claims so they're required to act.


  • #2


    Well, I think it was a massive mistake by whoever is running the MM Facebook page to implicate Mountain bikers in the vandalism of their tools.

    All it does is create tension and bad blood between users of the Hills/Countryside, there's enough of that already in the area around Glencullen where it seems Cyclists are Public enemy number 1, blamed for everything from Speeding to Littering and anti-social levels of noise...

    MM all seem to be retiree's given licence to build/do what they want on the hills, and have a strong anti-cyclist bias, and if you see what they do to the trails then still call a few ramps away from walking trails that kids build as vandalism, a bit rich coming from them really.


  • #2


    Hoboo wrote: »
    How do they know it was mountain bikers and not just a couple of scumbags with nothing better to do?

    That's exactly it, they don't, but it's easy to blame Mountainbikers for it, and Coillte will be actively out putting anything remotely cyclist created out of action even if it's no where near a walking trail.


  • #2


    Stark wrote: »
    I can't imagine any mountain biker wanting to vandalise Mountain Meitheal tools. Has to be the work of a crackpot imo.

    I started mountain biking over 30 years ago and obviously can’t speak for all but I can honestly say that I have never know any mountain biker to do anything like this.
    The odd time walkers will have an issue but I am always courteous and will slow down or stop whenever needed to make sure of safety.


  • #2


    Mad really to think mtbers would do this to trail tools considering a lot of lads would also have much in the same tools lying around in bushes (hill walking hotspots) for building unsanctioned MTB trails and understand the value of them.


  • #2


    Would it be other walkers or nearby residents that did the sabotage, rather than MTBers, thinking that the tools belonged to the MTB trail-builders?


  • #2


    Only one thing for it booby trap a mattock with a claymore mine. Then a neutral representative (horse rider or mx rider) can poke through the remains with a stick and conclude the guilty party. Its the only solution.


  • #2


    fatbhoy wrote: »
    Would it be other walkers or nearby residents that did the sabotage, rather than MTBers, thinking that the tools belonged to the MTB trail-builders?

    That would be my thinking. If I were out and came upon some tools particularly in an area with dozens of unofficial trails I'd assume they were trail building tools. The damage seems too malicious for MTBers who would rather be riding their bikes. Walkers on the other hand have a history of trying to disrupt trails with obstacles so I believe this could well be friendly fire from a walker on those that provide the paths for them.


  • #2


    Yeah I was thinking the same. Probably dumped the tools near a MTB jump to make a point.


  • #2


    It really is very bad for them to throw around accusations like that. On the post there is some further info that may indicate it was a mountainbiker, but nothing definite.
    Even if it was, by accusing MTBers in general you just create animosity.
    Similarly if an individual hill walker vandalizes a MTB track that is not representative of all hill walkers.

    The groups should be trying to work together so both can enjoy the mountains responsibly, neither has more right to it than the other.


  • #2


    Well MM have issued an "apology" on there Mountain Methheads Dublin Wicklow" Facebook page, looks like the message got through to them about blaming other countryside users in particular MTB'ers...

    Still though, putting a group of self important/entitled stuck in there ways hostile group out on the hills with license to build comfortable walking roads through forests shouldn't be permitted without auditing of there activities, environmental impact studies on what they do, and how it affects other hill users...


  • #2


    Tenzor07 wrote: »
    Still though, putting a group of self important/entitled stuck in there ways hostile group out on the hills with license to build comfortable walking roads through forests shouldn't be permitted without auditing of there activities, environmental impact studies on what they do, and how it affects other hill users...

    Yeah I've mixed feelings about them. I understand the goal of trying to combat trail erosion but my heart usually sinks when I hear they've set their sights on a trail I've previously enjoyed walking/running/biking on. As the end result is usually very unpleasant for anyone other than hiking groups and you often see a second trail appearing next to the "upgraded" trail created by people avoiding the upgraded trail so not really solving the erosion issue.


  • #2


    Stark wrote: »
    Yeah I've mixed feelings about them. I understand the goal of trying to combat trail erosion but my heart usually sinks when I hear they've set their sights on a trail I've previously enjoyed walking/running/biking on. As the end result is usually very unpleasant for anyone other than hiking groups and you often see a second trail appearing next to the "upgraded" trail created by people avoiding the upgraded trail so not really solving the erosion issue.

    You've seen what they do, it's usually a big rocky mess with a few fences that make it nigh on impossible to wheel a bike through, their aim is to make trails unrideable on a bike, and to make walking through hills and forests easy for OAP's...


  • #2


    Yeah the MM trails are also ****e for running on, no-one likes running downhill on hard rock slabs (which are also scarily slippy in the rain).


  • #2


    Tenzor07 wrote: »
    their aim is to make trails unrideable on a bike, and to make walking through hills and forests easy for OAP's...
    That's not true of course. I hear a lot of complaints (from hikers included) of the big stone drainage ditches, but these are the same ditches that the professional trail builders employed by the National Park build. If you don't build something as sturdy as that it's going to be washed away very quickly. The MM trails have held up very well despite the huge numbers in the mountains during Covid, the other trails have turned to unpleasant muck - perhaps not too bad on a bike, but no good for anyone else.

    The yellow sandy stuff they (MM & the National Park) are using is great and I hope it is increasingly used - a bit of rain and it seems to cement itself together which is ideal for Ireland. Takes a long time to erode also.


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