National Parks Conservation Association Press Statement About the National Park Service Proposed Rule for Mountain Bikes in Our National Parks

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   December 18, 2008
Contact:   Andrea Keller Helsel, National Parks Conservation Association, P: 202-454-3332


National Parks Conservation Association Press Statement About the National Park Service Proposed Rule for Mountain Bikes in Our National Parks

The current National Park Service mountain biking rules, which have been in effect since 1987, have been working well in offering all visitors to our majestic national parks a safe and enjoyable experience, and should not be changed by the Bush Administration.

The National Parks Conservation Association supports the use of mountain bikes in national parks under appropriate circumstances. However, the proposed new rule would, in certain cases, circumvent the normal public process and limit the opportunity for full public discussion of the use of mountain bikes on existing trails now used by hikers and equestrians. NPCA strongly believes national parks should offer full transparency on important park management decisions, including this one.

NPCA also feels that the proposed rules should explicitly state that Park Service-recommended Wilderness areas or areas that are now under study for potential designation as Wilderness, are off-limits to mountain bike use. 

Of the approximately 25 national parks where mountain biking is currently taking place on dirt trails, only Golden Gate National Recreation Area in California and Saguaro National Park in Arizona have completed the necessary public process and designated specific trails for mountain bikes. NPCA believes that all parks should come into compliance. 

NPCA will be analyzing the proposal and will be providing comments to the Park Service. We encourage our members and other national park advocates to do the same.

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