Contributed by Dave Blum
I just attended the latest quarterly Reservoir Coalition Meeting hosted by the GVC. While the meeting proceeded as it typically does, there was direct reference to mountain bikers building trails at Merrymans, including two eye witnesses to the work off the fire road coming from Pot Spring Road. Needless to say, this presents a rather significant concern for mountain bike access at Loch Raven.
The ranger at this meeting said they will look into the new trails and that they are looking to catch those responsible for trail proliferation. They are looking to make an example of those responsible, and there was reference to violations of both state and federal law for those who willfully damage the forest buffer. They have been using hunting cameras to track various violations throughout the reservoir, and made a vague reference to using them to identify trail builders on site and at local access points (such as Pot Spring Rd.).
Access to Loch Raven in general are threatened by the construction of these new trails and log obstacles/bridges. This activity will be used to completely remove mountain biking from Loch Raven.
- We need to put an end to the trail proliferation. It will be the end of mountain biking at Loch Raven, especially given the addition of greater than 5 miles of new trails on the south side of Merrymens alone.
- We also need to have the new bridge and other obstacles removed, and the new trails closed.
There are many of us that do not want to lose our access to Loch Raven trails. Please don’t ruin it for the rest of us. There isn’t a square inch of land that they don’t monitor annually, it is not the place to build new trails. Likewise, we have numerous parks, like Patapsco, etc., that are always looking for help building new trail, and welcome our assistance.
Please help us keep access at Loch Raven. Thanks again, for your support!