//Trail Status mouse over Java // My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP

Author Topic: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP  (Read 2315 times)

Dave Tozer

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My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« on: October 19, 2014, 07:31:05 PM »
The "older" gentleman wasn't on the trail by the time I left so I didn't see it in action but I chatted with him in the parking lot. An interesting home -brewed "E Bike".

He said it has made the difference between riding and not riding since his health has declined significantly.

Yes, he was aware that they are not "allowed".

jasonhilt

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2014, 09:10:35 PM »
Was it a white bike with a dual-crown fork and battery packs on the downtube?  If so I have seen him at Fort Ben but only in the parking lot.
Shin guards! We don't need no stinkin' shin guards!
DOH!

Dave Tozer

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2014, 07:57:23 AM »
Bingo!

He said he rode a bit at the Epic this year, also.

Was it a white bike with a dual-crown fork and battery packs on the downtube?  If so I have seen him at Fort Ben but only in the parking lot.

tony

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2014, 09:03:19 AM »
I've seen that bike.  It's quite the machine! 

Redfish Rob

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2017, 02:52:38 PM »
Not sure if this is the same guy, but there was an e-bike at TRTP on Sunday. This think looked more like a stripped down motorcycle than a mountain bike. The guy was, well he didn't look like he had not pedaled much.


He was flying, I rode a 35 minute lap and he closed the gap on me like I was walking. He caught me on the south loop and then peeled off where the trail comes back to 465 before heading out again.


So what is the policy regarding these things on HMBA-maintained trails?


If they're not allowed I will talk to him if I see him there again.


Thanks.

Dave Tozer

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2017, 06:07:22 PM »
So what is the policy regarding these things on HMBA-maintained trails?



No motorized vehicles. Period.

tmac

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2017, 08:24:39 AM »
I'm torn on this issue. On the one hand, I understand our instinct to protect our trails from motorized vehicles. On the other hand, I'm not sure if the described bicycle meets that definition. Does it supply enough power to dig into the dirt like a motorcycle or is it just enabling someone to ride who might otherwise not be able to by supplying an assist at the pedals?

LazyBeerNutz

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2017, 09:02:52 AM »
I'm torn on this issue. On the one hand, I understand our instinct to protect our trails from motorized vehicles. On the other hand, I'm not sure if the described bicycle meets that definition. Does it supply enough power to dig into the dirt like a motorcycle or is it just enabling someone to ride who might otherwise not be able to by supplying an assist at the pedals?

And that's the problem.  A very good friend of mine is suffering from a condition that is causing loss of strength in his legs.  It is never going to get better for him and so, he purchased an electric fatbike to allow him to ride longer with friends while he still can.  He is one of the biggest trails advocates I know and would never ride in less than optimal conditions.  He knows that his e-bike isn't welcome in the majority of places so he took his backyard and built his own singletrack on it.  He is definitely one side of this problem.  The other is the stereotypical stravasshole (I like that term) that buys an electric assist bike, turns it all the way up (or mods it) and attempts to KOM every trail in the area, damning the consequences.  You want to do that stuff, go find an ORV park.

I would like to think that people would use common sense but in today's age I think that is a lost cause.  So to keep the trails open, accessible and not requiring repair all the time from misuse, I think (my personal opinion) is saying no to electric bikes of any kind on the trails.

Dave Tozer

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2017, 11:29:23 AM »
FYI, the gentleman I met at Town Run was the “white bike with a dual-crown fork and battery packs on the downtube” dude.

Weeks later I saw him flying through dense traffic on the Monon. “Reckless” was the only way I could describe it. He was not pedaling.

In light of that, if I meet him again at Town Run I will make a note of his license plate and handicap tag.

My discussion with him will be respectful but different than my first discussion with him.

Redfish Rob

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2017, 02:05:13 PM »
The guy on Sunday wasn't pedaling.


The bike had a Fox fork, but the rear suspension looked like it came off a motorcycle.


If I see him again I will speak with him.

booxe

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2017, 08:40:56 PM »
Maybe a chance for some motor-pacing through the woods  :)

Dave G.

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2017, 10:21:48 AM »
This situation with this rider is not good. If he continues to ride recklessly he will hurt someone regardless of what trail he is on. We can't really control what happens on the Monon but if he causes adverse interactions with other trail users at TRTP or other HMBA maintained trails, it could cause big issues.

While it seems reasonable to allow someone on a pedal assist e-bike to use the trails, there are too many of those bikes that have equipment that lets them select between pedal-assist and full throttle control. This complicates how land managers deal with those types of vehicles, and may cause some to just prohibit any two wheeled vehicles just to make enforcement easier for themselves. e-Bikes with full throttle control are no different than true mopeds, only differentiated by the gas engine and electric motor powering them.

The only enforcement we have right now is to report them when we see them. My opinion is they won't stop riding them on trails because it's too easy to get away with it, and it's way too much fun. They know they won't get in trouble unless they are caught in the act by law enforcement, and they know if they do get the law called on them, they have time to get off the trails and away before anyone catch them. We need to hope and pray they don't hurt anyone by their reckless behavior. And keep reporting them when we see them.
David Gardner
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Hocky

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2017, 10:29:13 AM »
This is a tough spot for sure.  On one hand, riding fast laps doesn't mean that he is being reckless.  I normally ride sub 30 minute laps which often means a lot of passes, but I am certainly not reckless.  Why should he be considered reckless by default?  On the other hand, if he is actually riding recklessly, it is a problem.  If he isn't pedaling, he isn't riding a bicycle.  That is also a problem. 

Dave G.

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2017, 10:48:52 AM »
This is a tough spot for sure.  On one hand, riding fast laps doesn't mean that he is being reckless.  I normally ride sub 30 minute laps which often means a lot of passes, but I am certainly not reckless.  Why should he be considered reckless by default?  On the other hand, if he is actually riding recklessly, it is a problem.  If he isn't pedaling, he isn't riding a bicycle.  That is also a problem.

You are right that riding fast is not necessarily reckless, and it would be unfair to label all e-bike riders as reckless. However this rider has been observed riding recklessly, and if he is riding an e-bike on trails he knows he is not supposed to be on, what proof do we have he will follow even the basic rules of etiquette?
David Gardner
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Paul_Arlinghaus

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Re: My first sighting of a guy with an electric assist bike at TRTP
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2017, 02:12:11 PM »
A couple points,  good etiquette on the trail is expected of everyone. 

If aggressive riders are reported to me, I typically can track down who they are and have a conversation with them.  Most riders get the message and improve there interactions with other riders.  As most team riders figure out, your team's public perception can often be dictated by one or two individuals who aren't playing nicely.

How we interact with each other on the trail isn't dictated by official park rules.  Its a matter of courtesy and really for us to work out amount ourselves.   If you are riding too aggressively, you will likely get tired of riders having a discussion with you about it, or your riding Buddies will put peer pressure on you, or your team's sponsors will have a discussion with you.

But if you are on an e bike, then you are already breaking the rules.  If you aren't on your absolute best behavior, then anyone can and likely will call the police/rangers.  There is no "he said / she said" about who was at fault for a bad pass, the e biker is illegally on the trail.

If e bikes would only be used by a couple truly deserving folks, I suspect most of the mtb community would look the other way.  But we all know that eventually someone is going to turn a 25 minute lap at Town Run on an E-Bike and leave behind a trail full of riders pissed off at getting blown off the trail. 

My expectation is that for a short period of time respectful e mountain bikers will be able to ride if they are careful about keeping a low profile, but eventually someone will provide the reason for enforcement of the rules.   
« Last Edit: February 22, 2017, 02:18:47 PM by Paul_Arlinghaus »
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