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Following strong response to an IMBA action alert, language in a document circulating Congress will likely be reworded in relation to mountain bikes and potential wilderness areas.
Last week, Arizona Congressman Raúl Grijalva sent a “Dear Colleague” letter in the House of Representatives that calls for the U.S. Forest Service to manage “Recommended Wilderness” like “Wilderness,” including a blanket ban on mountain biking. Due to the efforts of IMBA and mountain bikers, Grijalva, chair of the Natural Resources Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands, will likely reconsider that language, according to Marc Eller, IMBA’s communications director.
“We put up the alert on Friday and by Friday afternoon we got a pledge to amend the language in the Dear Colleague letter to be more favorable to mountain bikes,” Eller said. “Pending further word, it looks like things are moving forward.”
The language in the petition raised concerns because it would encourage the Forest Service to eliminate mountain biking on millions of acres public land whether or not Congress ever designates those areas as wilderness.