The mountain bike organizations need to do more than seek to “change (their) image from outlaws to guardians of the hills” (“Mountain Bikes” by Bob Howells, March 25). Members must learn the rules of courtesy, what roads are for bikes, and leave the hiker trails open.
On the basis of complaints to me as the chairman of the Pacific Palisades Homeowners’ Assn. from residents in the Palisades Highlands who hike in the surrounding Topanga State Park hills, I’ve learned that bikers fail to heed the rules of the road, travel as groups, in most instances, as members of a biking club, and endanger the safety of the hikers by riding the narrow trails instead of the wider fire roads.
The chief ranger for the state park in question has verified the facts, but admits they lack the manpower to enforce the rules, and banning the bikes is being considered.
We seem to have millions to purchase more recreational areas--that we do need--but no dollars for staff to monitor the parks and serve its users. That’s a calamitous error.
HYMAN H. HAVES