If you are an active mountain biker you should be used to sharing trails with other trail users (horses, hikers, motorcycles, hippies, homeless people, etc) . Something that has been on my mind lately is how we as cyclists ended up at the bottom of the totom poll as far as trail users are concerned. Over the 20 years I have been riding bikes off road I have had a lot more run ins with equestrians than any other trail user I can think of. I have been kicked chased and verbally assaulted by horses and there riders (sometimes at the same time). What I don't understand is why cyclists are demonized by trail stewards as being dangerous and destructive while a very large, strong, fast animal with a tendency to be easily spooked is seen as acceptable. Don't get me wrong, I grew up around horses and think they are very beautiful animals. But I think there impact on trails and potential danger to others far outweigh that of any mountain biker. Fact is horses cause a lot of trail erosion, leave there feces all over the place and have a tendency to get freaked around other trail users (my bike has never started bucking wildly when a hiker passes). Perhaps more trails should adopt a system like Tsali National Recreation Area
on the North Carolina side of the Great Smoky Mountains
and create a schedule so horses and bikes are never on the trails at the same time. Ridden there several times and it is great to not have to worry about getting stomped by some large animal.
Well, I will stop complaining now. Just had to get that off my chest. See you all on the trails.