Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Video: Taking an Electric Mountain Bike for a Spin in the Backcountry

There was a point where I thought an electric mountain bike felt a bit like cheating. The extra pedal assist that they provide takes some of the challenge out of the ride. But, I've come to appreciate what an e-bike brings to the table, allowing more riders to enjoy the backcountry who might not normally get a chance to do so. In this video, we join pro rider Matt Hunter as he takes the new Specialized Turbo Levo Carbon for a spin through remote areas of British Columbia. As you'll see the bike performs well in this conditions. I was fortunate enough to get the chance to take this bike for a brief test ride a few weeks back, and came away very impressed. It is fun, fast, and efficient. I know what I'll be asking Santa for Christmas this year.


Mike Vandeman said...

Bicycles should not be allowed in any natural area. They are inanimate objects and have no rights. There is also no right to mountain bike. That was settled in federal court in 1996: http://mjvande.info/mtb10.htm . It's dishonest of mountain bikers to say that they don't have access to trails closed to bikes. They have EXACTLY the same access as everyone else -- ON FOOT! Why isn't that good enough for mountain bikers? They are all capable of walking....

A favorite myth of mountain bikers is that mountain biking is no more harmful to wildlife, people, and the environment than hiking, and that science supports that view. Of course, it's not true. To settle the matter once and for all, I read all of the research they cited, and wrote a review of the research on mountain biking impacts (see http://mjvande.info/scb7.htm ). I found that of the seven studies they cited, (1) all were written by mountain bikers, and (2) in every case, the authors misinterpreted their own data, in order to come to the conclusion that they favored. They also studiously avoided mentioning another scientific study (Wisdom et al) which did not favor mountain biking, and came to the opposite conclusions.

Those were all experimental studies. Two other studies (by White et al and by Jeff Marion) used a survey design, which is inherently incapable of answering that question (comparing hiking with mountain biking). I only mention them because mountain bikers often cite them, but scientifically, they are worthless.

Mountain biking accelerates erosion, creates V-shaped ruts, kills small animals and plants on and next to the trail, drives wildlife and other trail users out of the area, and, worst of all, teaches kids that the rough treatment of nature is okay (it's NOT!). What's good about THAT?

To see exactly what harm mountain biking does to the land, watch this 5-minute video: http://vimeo.com/48784297.

In addition to all of this, it is extremely dangerous: http://mjvande.info/mtb_dangerous.htm .

For more information: http://mjvande.info/mtbfaq.htm .

The common thread among those who want more recreation in our parks is total ignorance about and disinterest in the wildlife whose homes these parks are. Yes, if humans are the only beings that matter, it is simply a conflict among humans (but even then, allowing bikes on trails harms the MAJORITY of park users -- hikers and equestrians -- who can no longer safely and peacefully enjoy their parks).

The parks aren't gymnasiums or racetracks or even human playgrounds. They are WILDLIFE HABITAT, which is precisely why they are attractive to humans. Activities such as mountain biking, that destroy habitat, violate the charter of the parks.

Even kayaking and rafting, which give humans access to the entirety of a water body, prevent the wildlife that live there from making full use of their habitat, and should not be allowed. Of course those who think that only humans matter won't understand what I am talking about -- an indication of the sad state of our culture and educational system.

Now watch the mountain bikers lie and attack me for telling the truth about their selfish, destructive sport!

Kraig Becker said...

Interesting place to share your opinions considering this video and blog post have nothing to do with mountain bikers trying to get more access to national parks. By now, most riders have accepted that mountain biking is off limits in the park and are okay with that. There are plenty of other places to ride.

Thanks for sharing your opinions though.