To: "Sean O'Neil" <>,,

From: Woody Keen <>

Subject: Re: IMBA: Not Wilderness, but the next big paradox

Date: Tue, 11 Mar 2003 20:41:28 -0500

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Likewise, I have respected many of your posts on this listserve and feel we are very close in our viewpoints.

Maybe this is not a problem in your area(yet?) but I can assure you there are many facts to support my allegations. I sited 2 in my post that you responded to. I just found a freeride trail developing in my local riding area. I know it was freeriders developing this new trail by riding it in. If it did not exist before, they clearly were riding off trail to develop this new route. And yes, 4 freeriders were arrested in a USFS area 2 hours from here last weekend.

Also look at the magazines, what do you see? I realize the Redbull Challenge was an authorized event by the BLM, but there is no doubt that it glorified off trail riding. I would guess you read articles on this, right? Look at the current BIKE Magazine page 60 with 2 riders traversing a slope with what sure looks like Castleton Tower in the background(I am a rock climber and have climbed this formation). I can not see a trail anywhere close to where they are riding.

It may not be happening where you are, but it is happening at an alarming rate. Freeriding also includes going really fast(due to bike technology) on open to bikes trails. Most of these trails are also open to other users. This is a whole nother can of worms that is causing some serious problems. It may not be a problem up there in MT(where you have more sheep than people), but in the more populated areas of the country with limited trailsystems it is a problem. Just ask the boys from Santa Barbara CA about the shuttle runs folks are doing on the trails there.

Sean, I highly respect your opinion. But, if you do not think that certain aspects of the freeriding movement are causing some problems to the resources and our advocacy movement I would tend to think you are living in a sheltered world.

I am not asserting that freeriding is a bad thing, but it must be done in an appreciate place and way.

Woody Keen


----- Original Message -----

From: "Sean O'Neil" <>

To: <>; <>; <>

Sent: Tuesday, March 11, 2003 7:26 PM

Subject: RE: IMBA: Not Wilderness, but the next big paradox


"The fact remains, there are a lot of mtn bikers(freeriders) who are not

riding on established trails(though many are) and/or making their trails

cause they can not find the challenge they are looking for."

Woody, I have admired many of your posts on this listserv. However, I

must ask you to please support the quoted allegation with facts.

The reason I'm asking is that I have yet to run into any freeriders who

habitually ride off-trail, and Missoula has a fairly strong segment of


I wonder where are these cretins who continually ride off-trail AND

claim to be freeriders AND say that "only riding off-trail gives us the

technical challenge we seek." Personally, I've never met or ridden with

anyone like that.

Sean O'Neil

Missoula, MT