Mon, 17 Dec 2001:

Subject: RE: The Effects of Mountain Biking on Wildlife and People

The children can sure get upset, can't they. Poor babies, they want their

public land to destroy and you are a thorn in their side.

Keep up the good work!

Fri, 14 Dec 2001:

Subject: Re: SHUT UP!!

Keep sticking it to the bastards. This stuff you get from mountain bikers

includes almost every kind of logical fallacy known.

Thu, 06 Dec 2001:

Subject: Re: "Human-Free Habitat", by Edward M. Smith

Yes!!! Thanks, this is great and yes, I want to help.

Thu, 22 Nov 2001:

Greetings Mike, thank you for keeping me on your "Green" list !, and

apologies for the electronic silence.

Mike I DO read and pass on your info over here, ... you are of course

not alone, but you certainly take the trophies for perseverance and

dedication, ..congratulations ..!!

Mon, 29 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: "Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain"

I agree with your views. It's good stuff.

Mon, 29 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Ohlone Regional "Wilderness" Mismanagement

Well done, keep up the good work and get rid of those useless bureaucrats.

Sat, 27 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: "Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain"

Your essay below is one of the most exceptional I have ever read, and it

masterfully captures my sentiments on the contentious issue of "native

rights" versus conservation and related conflicts, including some I have had

with the Sierra Club on "social justice" issues. I believe that

conservation organizations must place their priorities on their primary

mission and not on being "politically correct," which is a recent and

lamentable trend.

Thu, 25 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: "Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain"

I agree. I felt compelled to reply.

I am "Native American" by my mother, but still that doesn't give me or

anyone, any right over other living things. I thought that was inherent in

our Native Cultures to feel reverence for other living things and not to

take too much or disturb what should be left untouched. Those who are hunting

something that is endangered are using the excuse of their heritage, and

are not doing it to preserve their Culture, but to seek the profits and


Unfortunately we may all have to learn the hard way if we are to become

endangered ourselves.

Thank you for taking on what can't speak for itself.

Thu, 25 Oct 2001:

Subject: Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain

I thought your response is excellent. Can I forward it to some of the deep ecology discussion groups here in the Madison area?

Wed, 24 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: "Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain"

Mike....Passionate concern sometimes leads one to speak of things which are

difficult to express....truth sometimes arrives in words that don't hesitate

because of the desperate nature of what they are a good

spokesperson for those whose voices many can't hear....thanks....well spoken,

and, as far as I'm concerned, a truthful look at our state of affairs....

Wed, 24 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: "Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain"

I agree with you.

Wed, 24 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: "Where man himself is a visitor who does not remain"

I'm with you 100% mike.

Mon, 22 Oct 2001:

Michael, a colleague sent me one of your recent pieces. Thanks much for

being a strong advocate for wildlife. Thanks for providing the rest of us with an excellent bibliography for action and for responsible living.

Fri, 19 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

Well, I thought the idea was brilliant! :-)

Here, it's considered wildly radical to suggest that cows be kicked out

of wilderness areas!

After reading your posts, I want everything but the wildlife kicked out

of Wilderness!

Tue, 16 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

konnichi wa Mike, keep up the good work.

Thu, 18 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans


>Thanks for the valuable feedback. It's always nice to know that we are

>being understood. Since life is short, we want to know that we are leaving

>something behind as a result of our passing through.

Mike, you are definitely "leaving behind" some important ideas that all

humans need to consider... and you're doing it in a reasoned, calm way

which contrasts with the "oppositional" and strident manner in which people

often try to express unpopular ideas.

Keep it up... even though it's a lonely road at times, I imagine!

Wed, 17 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

Mike, thanks for sharing this "conversation." Your analysis is a good one

(and your good humor and friendliness is refreshing, too... most people get

defensive and angry when a friend "critiques" them!)

I like your idea that the opposing peoples should withdraw and leave the

land for the critters... the world needs more such "crazy ideas"... we

desperately need to try doing things differently... so thank you for being

honest and presenting a new, even if unpopular, idea.

Your recognition that not everyone shares your freedom of speech is another

important point...many people who try to communicate new and unpopular

ideas usually complain that others lack courage and won't follow them...

but you have rightly noted that many people suffer consequences and live in

circumstances where courage means they pay a price. Thank you for

acknowledging this situation and treating with compassion those of us who

may not be so outspoken.

I appreciate the opportunity to read your work.

Mon, 15 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

That's a good article. We found a good quote and will list your website.

Mon, 15 Oct 2001:

Subject: RE: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

Thank you. I wish more people would come around to this way of thinking.

Sun, 14 Oct 2001:

Subject: Re: Why We Should Provide Wildlife Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

Mike....I like your solution in the Israel/Palestinian conflict, simple and

affective....will they bite?....will human beans sacrifice

voluntarily?....hmmmmmmmmm....still waiting, drumming, watching the


Mon, 17 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Human-Free Habitat Resolution

I agree there should be places off limit to humans. I don't see why man

thinks every thing was put here for them to do with as they please.

Fri, 14 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Mountain Biking in Your State Parks

Thanks for your comments. We agree.


Can you please pass the following to your Director of State Parks? I hope

that you are not allowing off-road bicycling in your parks! It is extremely

destructive, and completely unnecessary. We have precious little wildlife

habitat left, and cannot afford to sacrifice any more of it, particularly

for a frivolous pastime like this. Anyone who wants to see the parks can WALK!

Sat, 08 Sep 2001:

Subject: RE: Are Mountain Bikers "Allies" of the Sierra Club?

Right On!! I am totally supportive of this stance. Lee

Wed, 05 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Human-Free Habitat at Mount Umunhum (San Jose, California)

I agree with you, Mike....when indeed?


> If this is such good habitat, isn't it high time we gave it back to its

> rightful owners -- the wildlife? Why does every square inch of the Earth

> have to be overrun by PEOPLE?! This is a good example of human hubris. Have

> ANY of the parties given even ONE SECOND's thought to not turning it into

> yet another human playground? I know, you spent MONEY on it, so you have to

> get your MONEY's worth out of it. You have an OBLIGATION to the PEOPLE. I

> think that we have an even greater obligation to the wildlife from whom we

> stole all of this land, who lived there for 3.5 billion years before we

> showed up. Designating the area off-limits to all humans would really get

> people's attention, and teach them a lot about what wildlife need to survive.

Mon, 03 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Are Mountain Bikers "Allies" of the Sierra Club?

Mike: If you want to share this with your "suppressed list" feel free to do so. I find mountain bikes an abomination on the trail, even though I have some good friends who enjoy them a great deal. I appreciate your strong words and good thinking on this subject.

Mon, 03 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Are Mountain Bikers "Allies" of the Sierra Club?

I think you're absolutely right. I've always had an almost resentful feeling about mountain bikes and have refused to allow our kids to have them. I have mentioned that I feel very strongly that there must be human-free areas. Enormous areas! I am tired of the idea that we own this planet and we deserve to explore and enjoy every inch of it that we can get to, no matter how we get there! I find myself at times feeling guilty just hiking in a remote spot, feeling like I really don't belong there.....

I am surprised, as a relative newcomer to Sierra Club, that there isn't a stronger stand on this idea within the Club.

I enjoy your writings very much. Our last ExCom meeting was canceled, but I look forward to sharing you ideas and resolutions with them as soon as we gather again. If you ever find yourself in Michigan, I'd be very much interested in having you speak to our Group if the timing would work out.


Sun, 02 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Are Mountain Bikers "Allies" of the Sierra Club?

I agree with you, Mike. I am a bicyclist, but only on roads (where vehicles belong).

Sun, 02 Sep 2001:

Subject: Re: Are Mountain Bikers "Allies" of the Sierra Club?

Keep up the good work, Mike

Mon, 27 Aug 2001:

Subject: RE: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans -- Background Information

Mike this reminds me that some of the best wildlife habitats left on earth are Military Reservations, especially the bombing runs in the American West and the DMS between North and South Korea. Animals have found that losing a few members to bombs is well worth the benefit of having humans out of the area. It is a sad but true commentary that some of the safest places on earth for animals are war zones that are too dangerous for humans to live in.

Wed, 22 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Background Info. for Human-Free Habitat Resolution: Rethinking the Impacts of Recreation

I am the wildlife issue coordinator of the sierra club and I support

you 100% re. the below concept. , the ESA coordinator of

this chapter, and I have requested the resolution be put on the conservation

committee agenda for next month's meeting. Thank you very much!

Sun, 19 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Background Info. for Human-Free Habitat Resolution: Rethinking

the Impacts of Recreation

Mike, I like the way you think. I asked that this issue be put on our next ExCom agenda. I also forwarded the first post to the Exec Director of Friends of Nevada Wilderness. And we think it will take decades just to get the *cows* out of designated wilderness areas! Yours is a radical idea, but needs to be said!

Sun, 19 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans -- Background Information

I like this article ["Wildlife Need Habitat Off-Limits to Humans"].

Sun, 19 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

What you said!

Way to go Mike!

Sat, 18 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans -- Background Information

[My wife] and I agree with your thesis that establishing "pure habitat" that is off limits to humans is desirable and necessary, long -term. ... I will forward your essay to the Chair of the Sierra Club Chapter who holds a Ph.D. in ecology and to an activist in Western Maryland.

Fri, 17 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

I agree with you 100%. I have been saying for years do humans think they have to invade every place. I think there should be lots of places off limits even to us. Just for the sake of nature.

I will ask at our next meeting and send it to my list of members if you think

that is prudent.

Fri, 17 Aug 2001:

Subject: Re: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

Thanks so much for sharing this--it's wonderful! My feelings exactly. In fact, I just battled an issue here in northern Michigan on this very concept. I am presenting this to our ExCom at our meeting this Sunday.

Sun, 22 Jul 2001:

Subject: Re: Your email list?

I'm interested in all these items, so please add me to each [email list]. In the past your clear thinking has been very useful to me. Thanks.

Thu, 21 Jun 2001:

Subject: Sierra Club controversy over mountain bikes

Thanks for sending me copies of the e-mails concerning the Sierra Club's

policy on mountain bikes. Vandeman is right when he says the Sierra

Club's policy on mountain bikes is an embarrassment. If a comparable

environmental impact was being created by corporations working on public

land, Sierra Club members would be up in arms. However, they seem unable

to deal with adverse environmental impacts caused by the behavior of their

own members.

How can anyone look at water being channeled down trails in Annadel in

deep, narrow bike-tire ruts and say bikes don't have significant

environmental impacts?

Wed, 20 Jun 2001:

Subject: Re: Goings-On in the SF Bay Chapter regarding Mountain Biking

While I don't necessarily agree with all of Vandeman's reasoning or

emphasis, I am very clear that mountain bikes used off pavement are indeed

very injurious to the environment and, on trails which people on foot use,

are completely destructive of the conditions of naturalness--serenity,

quiet, and stillness--which those of us who walk count upon and which I

believe have been the fundamental reason for which natural places have been

preserved and non-city parks created.

In summary, I believe and feel strongly that mountain bikes have no place in

parks unless they are restricted to separate, hardened, well-engineered and

maintained trails.

Accordingly, I was shocked to learn, through your earlier forwarding, of the

existing Sierra Club policy on mountain bikes and now am dismayed to read

the scornful, contemptuous letter which you just forwarded from Bob Solotar.

I've had to give up all my memberships in other environmental groups, but

have recently re-joined Sierra Club because I assumed it still to be the

first rank and longest time defender of public lands and their qualities.

I know that my opinion is no big deal to those in leadership positions in

local chapters, regional governing committees, and at the national level of

the Club, but I don't see how I can continue to belong if the Club continues

its present policy on mountain bikes and fails to take a clear and

uncompromising position relative to bikes in public lands on dirt and on so

called multi-use trails (an abominable rationalization, that term).

Tue, 12 Jun 2001:

Subject: Lawndale Trail & Sierra Club policy

Regarding the Sierra Club's policy on mountain bikes, I'm shocked! I was

totally unaware that their policy would allow bikes on unpaved trails - I

guess I missed that, or just assumed they, of all groups, would not want to

allow that.

Sat, 09 Jun 2001:

Subject: Re: San Francisco Bay Chapter Resolutions on Mountain Biking

Right on, Mike. When I attend meetings where mountain bikers are demanding

more access, I point out that every reason that they give (we pay taxes, we

are nice people, we demand the same rights to public land as everyone else)

would apply as well to proponents of motorcycles and off-road vehicles.

Occasionally, I introduce myself (in jest) as a representative of a

motorcycle club, applaud the mountain biker's presentation, and announce

that we want the same rights, for the same reasons. Interestingly, the

mountain bikers have no response to this approach. But they don't want

motorcycles, because it would make their sport more dangerous. and spoil

their enjoyment of the area. They lust, but they do not hear.

Mon, 04 Jun 2001:

Subject: Re: Background Info. for Human-Free Habitat Resolution: Rethinking the Impacts of Recreation

Mike: I am so very happy to receive your message below. I have always

believed strongly in preservation of human-free habitat. So many of our

fellow environmentalists and nature-lovers feel they just have to get out

there and tramp through it all. They have to have "access". I believe in

leaving our wildlife habitat alone for the animals and plants. We have so

much; why can't we leave theirs to them.

Mon, 04 Jun 2001:

Subject: Re: Scientific Report on the Effects of Recreation and Dogs on Wildlife

Hi Mike, would be interested in helping. Bear in mind that due stroke am

wheelchair bound. Right arm and leg affected. Can walk short distances with

four pronged cane - 50 paces at a time-. Cheers,

Mon, 04 Jun 2001:

Subject: Re: Background Info. for Human-Free Habitat Resolution: Rethinking the Impacts of Recreation

Mike -- Thanks for this article... you've made a compelling case, with lots of reasonable examples, of why we need to keep some areas as true "wilderness." Your points make sense intuitively to me... and they should to anyone who thinks about the impact of his/her presence in the wilds...

You're not going to make a lot of points with the sellers of recreational equipment or "eco" tourism, however! And these folks think they are "good guys" because they don't make munitions or are not land developers! ...

Well, there are just so many of us people, that whatever we do now, we're having an impact!

Thanks for your good work!

Sun, 03 Jun 2001:

Subject: Re: Have you seen my web page?

At once point I even professed that one whole continent should be set front yard is a sanctuary, not totally wild, but it is

preserved for critters, plants, nature spirits, elements, etc.....I don't

pick the flowers, eat the plants, kill the bugs, (though I do remove the

snails when a plant is totally inundated, moving them off to a wilderness

area to their liking, I hope)....this sanctuary is in the middle of a small

town and lots of folks seem to be attracted to it, (I know because I see

them trying to peer around the thick hedges or to see in through the narrow

entrance/walkway, and sometimes I have seen them sneak in)....whoever does

come in (invited) most always responds what a great amount of energy is

here and that it is like being out in the is lush, cool,

moist, robust, vital, full, teeming with is my environmental

"battleground".....a busy place midst many barren feels

fine....Pan advocates (via Peralandra) these kinds of garden/sanctuaries as

part of a connecting power grid that nature can use to restore

balance....thanks for your pages....I haven't read but a few, but found

myself in total agreement with what I read, the only other person I have

heard from, besides me mate and one friend, that is in agreement with these

"radical" ideas....doesn't seem radical at all to me; just common sense,

respectful, and based on the Universal Law of Value Fulfillment that

pertains to all realities....glad to see your page....I've bookmarked it

and will check in for a fix every once in awhile....Love,

Sat, 02 Jun 2001:

Subject: Homo Sapiens, the problem

As Pogo once said, "I have seen the enemy, and it is us." Truer words were never spoken. In a relatively short time we emerged from the caves or trees, take your pick, invented machines that could transport us through the air or under the water; made enormous advances in all fields; including how to kill each other faster and in greater numbers. But, we have failed miserably in our ability to get along with each other or with this planet. The best thing that could happen is for homo sapiens to die off and let the birds, fish and animals take over. Religion has been a complete farce and failure.

I applaud what you are doing and wish you luck. I am on the downside of the bell curve of life and have more faith in some animals than I do in most people.

Sat, 28 Apr 2001:

Subject: sock it to 'em

Mike, you are terrific!

Wed, 26 Apr 2000:

Subject: Re: Rethinking the Impacts of Recreation

What a thoughtful article. I read the whole thing and it says so much. I

would like to include it on my website. Thanks for the research and your

obvious skill as a wordsmith. Your writing is informative and a pleasure to

read. You've put across your thoughts on this important subject in a

beautiful way. I want to read it again and again, and will.

Sun, 01 Apr 2001:


Like your website .... I am sending you the URL of my own.

Look beneath the surface ... and in particular read through some of the discussion documents. Some of the ideas expressed there are very much in tune with your own.

Wed, 21 Mar 2001:

Subject: Re: Do you know of studies about the effect of noise on wildlife?

Thanks for your reply. I'll take a look at those studies and at the link

about your "pure habitat" cause. I'm for that!

Thu, 08 Mar 2001:

You might remember the two German physics students that you met on the bus

from San Francisco.

It was nice of you to give us your card: we just had a look at your web page - and I can say, that we do agree with all of your articles that we have read so far. If people would only listen .

Greetings from Germany

Thu, 15 Feb 2001:

Bless your heart, Mike, I'm reading comments from 1995 regarding trail

conflict and there is your name fighting all the way. I hate awards

ceremonies but if anyone ever deserved an award, it's you for your tireless,

unselfish, altruistic persistence.


Fri, 02 Feb 2001:

Newsgroups: alt.mountain-bike

Subject: Re: Mike Vandeman

As much as Mike annoys me, I have to agree with his stance on

mountain bikers. You guys are a bunch of annoying spoiled little

yuppies with way too much time and disposable income on your hands, you

see a couple of Jeep Cherokee ads and you're off to buy your little

$5,000 mountain bike and rip up the trails just like those cool people

on TV! The next time I see one of you fuckers coming up from behind me

on the trail I'm going to [defend myself]!

Fri, 02 Feb 2001

Subject: Re: Wildlife Need Habitat Off-Limits to Humans!

Thanks -- I agree. Good luck.

Thu, 25 Jan 2001:

Subject: Re: The (Hopefully Non-)Development of Mulholland Ridge (Moraga, CA)

I love receiving your missives, by the way. Very

informative. Sometimes, I even get inspired and try to do something about some of them.

Thu, 25 Jan 2001:

I saw your website link over at the ca.environment Usenet group. I briefly checked and filed it away for future investigation, but it really struck me that you posted a Ph.D. against your name. This completely disqualifies you in the minds of many who are completely reactionary about ecological issues as having any kind of respectable opinion. I know better myself, but for purposes of generating interest, you might consider omitting the Ph.D. from your name at the site.

Thanks for your rare and intelligent website,

Wed, 24 Jan 2001:

Subject: Re: Appeasing the Mountain Bikers

Really good letter. Who is Helen? The mountain bikers here in Los Angeles

tried to promote the Sierra Club agreement with IMBA as a

permissive/supportive document. Fortunately, Sierra Club members were

present who were familiar with the document and corrected the false premise.

We give no ground on this. Maybe the Sierra Club will re-think the words of

the agreement; or write an appendix to clarify the Club's position and

emphasize that the agreement DOES NOT endorse mountain biking.

Tue, 23 Jan 2001:

Subject: Re: "Leave Wildlife Alone Day"

Hi Mike,

That was one of the components of the world holiday idea I came up with with a

couple friends back in 1969, but is strong enough that it should have its own

focus on a day all its own. Then there was the silence and paying attention

aspect of the world holiday, in the natural cycles, that I'd proposed to call

Life Day. Then a few days later I learned about the early work on the

environmental teach in on the environment that became known as Earth Day....

Good ideas all....

Mike Vandeman wrote:

> At 08:56 AM 1/22/2001 -0700, wrote:

> >Mike:

> >

> >Thanks for passing along our gift idea for saving habitat.


> You guys sure have a LOT of good ideas! But that one, in particular, is

> priceless. But why stop at Christmas????? There are a lot of OTHER holidays

> where gift-giving is or could be appropriate, such as Valentine's Day, or

> Earth Day! :)


> By the way, how'd you like to support my proposal for a "Leave Wildlife

> Alone Day", where all parks & open space would be closed, & land managers &

> field biologists would have a mandatory holiday?

Tue, 23 Jan 2001:

Subject: Re: Habitat Off-Limits to Humans

Content-type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit

This resolution is clearly thought out, balanced, and long, long overdue.

Tue, 23 Jan 2001:

Subject: Re: "Leave Wildlife Alone Day"

Nice idea, "Leave Wildlife Alone Day." You need my support, you've got it.

Sat, 20 Jan 2001:

I took your advice and gave the gift of the rainforest this year. It was

the best thing I have ever done for Christmas. Thank you. Now to start working for more wildlife areas.

Wed, 17 Jan 2001:

Greetings Michael

I very much enjoyed your sentiments. Lots to read.

Tue, 16 Jan 2001:

Subject: Re: Mulholland Ridge

You're wonderful. Thanks so much for your letter and your ideas. I will continue to forge forward!!

Tue, 09 Jan 2001: