Archive for the ‘Advocacy’ Category

Take the National State of Mountain Biking Survey

Monday, August 20th, 2018

This is an opportunity to provide concrete data on the State of Mountain biking in 2018 across the U.S.  IMBA and the Ohio University are working with the SRAM Cycling Fund to survey a large cross-section of mountain bikers. 

It also provides us an opportunity to show our feelings about bicycles in Wilderness. Several questions in the 10 minute or so survey ask about wilderness access. Our research shows that the vast majority of our members and supporters agree with CORBA’s position that mountain biking should be allowed on some wilderness trails, and those access decisions (and restrictions) should be made locally. We agree with the STC on this. Other topics covered include spending habits, mountain bike related travel, bike ownership, and electric mountain bikes. 

The survey can be taken here at Ohio University or read more about it from IMBA. All answers are anonymous, and you’ll be in the running to win a SRAM Eagle GX groupset (when you provide email on a different site after completing the survery). It’s an especially valuable opportunity

Take the survey!

Sapwi Trails Bike Park Fundraiser on Thursday June 14!

Tuesday, June 5th, 2018

The Conejo Valley’s first bike park is nearly a reality. Help us with our fund raising efforts. Get your tickets (link below) to join us for a progress update on the Sapwi Bike Park, our fundraising campaign kick-off, and viewing of movie “The Moment“. The event will be held at Giant Bicycles North American Headquarters in Newbury Park.

Ticket price of $15 includes admission to movie, light snacks, and a raffle ticket! Additional raffle tickets will be available for purchase at the venue; must be present to win.

Ticket Link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/sapwi-bike-park-movie-night-the-moment-tickets-45814979838

CHECK-IN & MINGLE: 6:00pm
PROGRAM START: 6:45pm
Q&A plus RAFFLE: Immediately following movie

Stay up to date on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SapwiBikePark/ or our website sapwibikepark.com

Caution: SoCalGas Working in Sullivan Canyon through May

Friday, May 18th, 2018

Sullivan Canyon, Photo by Bryan Gordon

Please use caution riding or hiking Sullivan Canyon through the end of May. 

Since 1960, Southern California Gas Company (“SoCaIGas”) has owned much of the land that comprises Sullivan Canyon (more than 4 miles in length).  It’s a popular area for mountain bikers, runners and hikers, and we all appreciate being able to use the area for recreation.

SoCalGas is planning to conduct yearly maintenance activities trimming overgrown vegetation in Sullivan Canyon, starting next Wednesday, May 23rd.  The work should not take longer than 8 days. Work hours are 7 AM to 2 PM.

There will be Bio-monitors on site with the workers. A “Bird Survey” assessment will be performed prior to starting the work.  SoCalGas has a current programmatic permit in place to cover this environmental work.

All trails will remain open to pedestrians and bikers, but please use caution. Watch for changed conditions, workers and equipment. They will have 2 people dedicated to trail user safety. They are there to help keep the area open for the week the work is conducted, so please follow their direction.

 

2018 Angeles National Forest Trail Stewardship Summit Report

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

This past weekend we had an amazing four days at the 2018 Angeles National Forest Trail Stewardship Summit. In the days prior to the summit, we showed some of our trails, our previous trailwork, and our current Gabrielino trail restoration project to Regional forest service staff, and trail construction experts.

The Angeles National Forest was selected as one of fifteen priority sites for trail maintenance under the National Forest Trail Stewardship Act of 2016. As a priority site, the goal is to double the number of trail miles maintained on the Angeles.

We held a series of discussions with Forest Service Region 5 about our trail system and Station Fire recovery efforts. CORBA has received $35,000 in grants from REI and Southern California Edison, for the Gabrielino Trail restoration. CORBA and MWBA’s awesome volunteers have contributed over 2500 hours of volunteer labor at a value of over $56,000.

Some great news has come out of the summit. Using the above contributions as a match, the regional office of the Forest Service has allocated $100,000 to restore and improve the Gabrielino National Recreation Trail. We’re in the process of writing up a formal cost-share partnership agreement with the Forest Service to manage that investment into our local trails.

At the summit, partners, volunteers and Forest Service staff brainstormed on how to remove bottlenecks to getting things done. We discussed how to make it easier for volunteers to do the necessary paperwork by moving to an online system, minimizing shuffling paper and lengthy email chains. We talked about how to get better information on trails and their conditions for the public, as well as how to better coordinate efforts between volunteer groups. Good things are in the works and potential solutions to both of these shortfalls are being explored right now.

CORBA President Steve Messer spoke about the San Gabriel Mountains Community Collaborative (video here), and on how volunteers and NGO’s like  CORBA and MWBA, and the partnerships we have with the Forest Service are a vital component of sustainability of our trails (video here).  Other presentations from LA County, Equestrian trail patroller, Jim Lesh, IMBA Trail Solutions, MWBA, and regional Forest Service Trails Coordinator Garrett Villanueva helped guide the breakout sessions exploring how to achieve some of these goals.

We then spent two days learning about and refining our trail maintenance skills on Sunset Ridge Trail, where volunteers and trail crew leaders learned updated techniques to managing water on trails, minimizing erosion, and decreasing future maintenance needs. We learned from some of the most knowledgeable trailbuilders from IMBA Trail Solutions and the Forest Service. Sunset Ridge trail received some treatments to help improve water control.

It was an extremely positive summit with lots of productive exchange and a path to move forward. We thank the Forest Service and their Regional staff, IMBA Trail Solutions, MWBA, the National Forest Foundation, and all the other volunteers and partners from around the region who participated.

 

IMBA Uprising Women’s Summit

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

I was thrilled and honored that CORBA sent me to the very first IMBA Uprising women’s summit in Bentonville, AR. It was held at The Record from March 22nd-March 25th and was the brain child of Aimee Ross.

What is Uprising?
“IMBA’s UPRISING is a two-and-a-half day, hands-on, collaborative summit among female mountain bike leaders from all across the U.S.

This event is for women who want to make change in their communities by getting more women involved in mountain biking. This event is also for women who want to be on the forefront of shaping IMBA’s community outreach and organizing efforts in this space. We want to be an aggregator of the best information, resources and inspiration to engage more women in mountain biking, and we want to hear from those already doing it and those who want to. Help us shape our efforts in the best possible way to affect positive change.

The event will highlight the best women’s riding efforts happening across the country. UPRISING is centered around four guiding principles: Build, Ride, Learn and Engage. Come to learn best practices, get inspired, gather resources and network with the women who are influencing the mountain bike evolution.” (from the IMBA Uprising website: IMBA Uprising)

And true to it’s definition it was. WHAT an inspiring 3 days of amazing community leaders and aspiring leaders across the US.

I arrived Thursday night, never being to Bentonville, AR. Such a tiny airport, my favorite. I knew the town was bike friendly when one of the enormous signs inside the airport was of a mountain biker riding the trails. I ran into Jill Hamilton of Petal Power and Kamala Slight our GGR SD Chapter Director also just arriving heading to baggage claim. Outside the airport, Liz Kurtz and Tamara Napier, 2 of my leadership team members were waiting to pick me up. Tam and Liz were in the middle of a huge road trip covering many states and getting in some pretty rad biking.

After settling in our house and doing a little shopping, we headed over to the Record, a beautiful venue in downtown Bentonville where the summit was being held. We signed in, went to the open bar for some vino and started mingling. The rest of the leadership team that was able to attend was already there. Doris Dunn and Susie Murphy. There were 7 of us from the GGR leadership team attending. I was so very excited to talk to women from all over the US about everything from trail building, advocacy, leading rides, how to get more women biking and much more.

Saturday!
This was the 1st full day of the summit. Aimee Ross started the day off welcoming everyone and sharing her story of her brain child….IMBA Uprising.
Then we were lucky enough to have The Queen of Pain herself speak Rebecca Rusch. Rebecca was an enormous part of the Uprising summit. She spoke, showed her movie Blood Road, road with us and answered any questions you may have had about anything!
There were many great talks throughout the day. GGR even got to speak to a room full of curious women on how to engage their community and their club. With the help of Jill Hamilton, we spoke about engagement and starting your own club in their respective communities. We were super stoked to be approached by women in Missouri, Wisconsin, Tennessee and Northern California that wanted to learn more about starting their own GGR chapter or their own club.
For all the speakers, check out the list here: IMBA Uprising Speakers

Friday late afternoon it was time to ride and check out the amazing local trails in Bentonville. Bentonville is FULL of cyclists and all about mountain biking! They LOVE cyclists there and are constantly building new trails. The trails were super flowey and well groomed. We had a blast!

Finally, Friday evening, all of us were lucky to view Blood Road. This is Rebecca Rusch’s moving about her expedition to locate where her fathers plane went down in the war. She then stayed for Q&A after. She and her riding partner rode 1200 miles on this adventure!

Saturday was my favorite day.
We had panels, interactive talks and of course got to shred some RAD flow lines in Bentonville! People for Bikes put on a Draft event after the rides. One of the events was each woman on a panel had 3 minutes to speak, then was able to take questions. These were all industry leaders that spoke about different topics.
IMBA then provided dinner! A buffet with open bar. We then said our good bye’s and walked over to the Church for drinks and chit chat. Yes Church! There is a super cool Church in town with stained glass windows that have bikes in the designs. They turned the bottom floor into a bar! So many of us checked it out and enjoyed martini’s and vino.

Sunday I decided to sleep in and do some job hunting. Tam and Liz went riding with some of the group and Susie, Jill and Kamala went to the museum. I reflected on all the empowerment I felt over the last few days and was disappointed to get on a plane and come home.

This women’s summit gave me empowerment, friendship, riding and hope for our future. I’ve been mountain biking for 13 years now. After every single ride, even after 13 years, riding still makes me feel like I can conquer anything. This is why I ride and this is why I want more women to ride.

Until the next IMBA Uprising women’s summit, let’s build more trails, attend more trail work, engage our communities and educate those on trail etiquette and what is going on with our cycling communities.

I thank IMBA, Aimee Ross and CORBA for this wonderful adventure and opportunity.

Wendy Engelberg, GGR & CORBA
GGR: Girlz Gone RidingGGR: Girlz Gone Riding

 

Trailbuilding Workshop – Save the Date: April 6-8, 2018

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

 

Learn how to build and maintain trails

The Forest Service, in partnership with CORBA, the Mount Wilson Bicycling Association, IMBA, and the National Forest Foundation will hold a three-day trail workshop.

The agenda is still being finalized, and official invitations and announcements will go out in the coming week, but you can save the dates of April 6, 7 and 8, April 2018. Details will be included with the Forest Service official announcement.

 

Friday, April 6, will be an all-day classroom session at the Altadena Community Center. This day will cover the assessment, management and planning of trails, and will be of most use to those advocating for trails, planning to build trails or land and trail managers.

Saturday April 7 will see a morning classroom session, followed by Saturday afternoon in the field, then a full day of hands-on on Sunday April 8.

There is no charge for the workshop and lunch will be provided. If you’d like to attend contact us and we’ll let you know when registration opens.

Bright Night Riding Lights Blind Other Trail Users

Saturday, January 20th, 2018

By Tony Hoffman, Resident of Thousand Oaks and frequent trail user

Fellow Trail Users, mountain bicyclists who are out for exercise and to enjoy nature are riding at night in greater numbers than ever before, likely due to improved lighting technology. The newer LED lighting systems are brighter and run longer than the previous generations of  bicycle lights.  But do you ever think of their impact on other trail users or wildlife?

I frequently hike at night and become momentarily blinded by the LED lights from oncoming mountain bicyclists. Often times it is group of night riders who also leave me seeing spots for 15-30 minutes after they passed me. I’ve noticed that most of the time it is two lights per bicycle, one on the helmet and one on the handlebars, so 5 bikes equals 10 extremely bright lights blinding me.

I’ve politely requested the approaching bicyclists “dim” their lights but have been ignored or told the lights will not dim. We all know that cars should dim their brights when approaching other cars to keep the driver from being blinded. Shouldn’t bicycle lights also be dimmed when approaching other trail users for the same reason? If the lights cannot be dimmed, what is wrong with turning off the lights and riding or walking past other trail users and turning your lights back on after you are past us?

Technology always outpaces the law but courtesy never goes out of style. Please consider the impact of your lighting systems on us hikers who enjoy a walk in the park in the dark.

Public Meetings Dec 5: Rosemead Blvd and East Fork San Gabriel Canyon

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

On Tuesday, December 5th there are two conflicting public meetings of interest to those who ride bicycles in the San Gabriel Mountains or the San Gabriel Valley.

San Gabriel River Confluence with Cattle Canyon Improvements Project

The other public meeting is to seek public input on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the San Gabriel River Confluence with Cattle Canyon Improvements Project. CORBA, through our involvement with the San Gabriel Mountains Community Collaborative, have expressed our full support for the project as proposed.

Click to Enlarge

This project will add much-needed trailhead improvements, interpretive and scenic trails, parking, bike racks, shuttle stops, multilingual signage, river access points and habitat restoration to this heavily-impacted area of the Forest. While not heavily used by mountain bikers, all of us who care about our Forest are supportive of these improvements.

The project is within the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument, and is being developed in partnership with the Watershed Conservation Authority. The meeting will be held at the Angeles National Forest headquarters:

Tuesday, December 5, 2017
5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Angeles National Forest Headquarters
701 N Santa Anita Ave,
Arcadia, California 91006

Comments must be submitted by December 26, 2017, to:

EFSGR/Cattle Canyon Improvements Project
110 N. Wabash Ave.
Glendora, California 91741

or via email to: EFSGR@wca.ca.gov

 

LA County Rosemead Blvd Complete Streets Project

LA County’s Rosemead Blvd Complete Streets project proposes to add bike lanes, pedestrian walkways and other improvements to Rosemead Blvd through the Whittier Narrows area. This is the initial scoping meeting, where the County will be seeking public input on how to best improve this six-lane stretch of road to better accommodate cyclists and pedestrians. The meeting will be held at the More information can be found at:

Tuesday, December 5, 2017, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Pico Rivera Municipal Golf Course,
3260 Fairway Dr.,
Pico Rivera, CA 90660.

http://dpw.lacounty.gov/pdd/proj/rosemeadcs/

This project will have great value to our community, as it will improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists accessing the Whittier BMX track, Whittier Narrows recreation area, and existing bike paths along the San Gabriel River and Rio Hondo. It is also close to the proposed Puente Hills Landfill, with its two planned and approved Bike Skills Parks.

We can’t be at both meetings, but want to encourage those with an interest in either to attend these meetings and be engaged in the process.

Santa Susana Mountains Trails Master Plan Draft Released

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

The Draft Santa Susana Mountains Trails Master Plan and Initial Study/Proposed Mitigated Negative Declaration are available for public review beginning today (November 2, 2017) at http://www. santasusanatrailsplan.org/

Project Location: The SSMTMP-PII area encompasses approximately 24 square miles in the unincorporated territory of the northwestern portion of the County of Los Angeles, immediately east of the boundary with Ventura County, located entirely within the 5th Supervisorial District. The SSMTMP-PII area is comprised of an approximately 22-square-mile area located in the north-facing slopes of the Santa Susana Mountains and the Santa Clarita Valley (Phase II.a) and an approximately 2-square-mile area located in the foothills of the Santa Monica Mountains, including Bell Canyon, Dayton Canyon, and Woolsey Canyon, west of the San Fernando Valley (Phase II.b). The Phase II.a area is composed of generally mountainous and valley terrain that abuts Henry Mayo Drive (State Route [SR] 126) to the north, the Interstate-5 freeway to the east, the southern edge of the Santa Clarita Valley Area Plan area to the south, and the Newhall Ranch Specific Plan Area to the west. Similarly, Phase II.b area, is composed of generally mountainous and valley terrain that abuts Ventura County to the north and west and the City of Los Angeles to the east and south.

Project Description:

The proposed project includes approximately 70 miles of proposed multi-use (hiking, mountain biking, equestrian) trails and related staging areas, bike skills parks, parking areas, and other supporting trail facilities in the Santa Clarita Valley Planning Area and San Fernando Valley Planning Area. The proposed trails would provide connections to parks and open spaces, a large commercial district, seven schools, numerous natural features, Six Flags Magic Mountain theme park, the proposed Rim of the Valley trail corridor alignment (RIVA), and existing trails in the Cities of Los Angeles and Santa Clarita, and in the Newhall Ranch Specific Plan area, as well as trails within other jurisdictions as identified in the Trails Master Plan. The trails would be multi-use and range from 3 to 12 feet wide based on site conditions, with adequate space for combined pedestrian, equestrian, and mountain biking use, in accordance with the County of Los Angeles Trails Manual guidelines (County Trails Manual). The proposed project would develop a complete multi-use trail system connecting user groups and local populations to desired recreation destinations and experiences, with unified transition to the trails of adjacent jurisdictions, compatibility with adjacent land uses and environmental resources, and incorporate a sustainable design consistent with the County Trails Manual. The plan would recommend conditions for improvement of unmet local recreation demands in the County’s Fifth Supervisorial District.

Comments

Written comments will be accepted via email or at the following street address:

County of Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation
Planning Division
Attn: Julie Yom, Park Planner
510 South Vermont Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90020
Email: jyom@parks.lacounty.gov

The public comment period will end on Saturday, December 16, 2017.

All comments must be postmarked or emailed no later than December 16, 2017.

COMMUNITY MEETINGS:

On Thursday, November 9, 2017, the County will host a community meeting to review the project and solicit information in relation to the CEQA analysis for this project.

The meeting will be held from 6:00–8:00 pm at Stevenson Ranch Library, 25950 The Old Road, Stevenson Ranch, CA 91381.

On Thursday, November 16, 2017, the County will host a community meeting to review the project and solicit information in relation to the CEQA analysis for this project.

The meeting will be held from 6:00–8:00 pm at Chatsworth Branch Library, 21052 Devonshire Street, Chatsworth, CA 91311.

Please direct any questions regarding these meetings to Zachary Likins at (213) 351-5149 or zlikins@parks.lacounty.gov.

 

 

Public Lands Update

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

This year we have seen legislation introduced to further protect and enhance our local open spaces and public lands.

HR3039, the San Gabriel Mountains Forever Act. Judy Chu introduced this bill in June. The bill would establish two new units of Wilderness within the Angeles National Forest. CORBA worked for two years with wilderness advocates to ensure these newly-proposed designations would not impact trails used by mountain bikers. The bill establishes the Condor Peak Wilderness and Yerba Buena Wilderness units, separated by the Condor Peak Trail. Condor Peak trail and Trail Canyon trail to the waterfall and campground would remain open to bicycles under this new designation.

Rim of the Valley

Rim of the Valley Corridor Preservation Act, S1993/HR4086.

This bill by Adam Schiff/Diane Feinstein would expand the boundary of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area to include open spaces around the Conejo, Simi, San Fernando, La Crescenta and Verdugo valleys. It does not change any land ownership or management but allows the National Park Service to partner with current land managers to improve habitat, wildlife corridors, and recreational opportunities. It puts into action the findings of the Rim of the Valley Corridor Study. It does not impact bicycle access to trails and could improve recreational opportunities.

H.R. 2323: San Gabriel Mountains Foothills and Rivers Protection Act. This act introduced by Judy Chu would establish the San Gabriel National Recreation Area as a unit of the National Park System. The NRA would cover river corridors and open spaces from the Angeles National Forest border through the San Gabriel Valley. It does not create any new federally-managed public land. It would allow the National Park Service to partner with existing land managers to improve habitat, biodiversity, and recreational access. It would also expand the boundary of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument to include areas of the Angeles Front Country that are currently outside the Monument.

While these bills have been introduced, it remains to be seen whether they will make it out of their respective committees.

CORBA’s mission includes the protection of the places we play. Nationally, as the current administration proposes major changes to environmental regulations, national monument boundaries (our San Gabriel Mountains National Monument is not expected to be a target of boundary reductions), forest management practices, permitted uses, we stand ready to speak up for our local public lands and the recreational opportunities they provide and we all cherish.