LETTER: Respect Silver Cup Ridge

Mountain biker disturbed by amount of off-trail riding on Silver Cup Ridge near Trout Lake, B.C.

Editor,

I have been a part time resident in Trout Lake for the past 10 years. My family has enjoyed many days hiking and mountain biking on Silver Cup Ridge. We have climbed all three peaks, observed grizzlies, caribou, deer and all the alpine creatures. Spectacular, to say the least.

This past weekend, July 11–15, I fulfilled a dream of mountain biking the entire ridge on the old Silver Cup Trail. I had hiked and rode sections trying to figure out the exact location of the disappearing trail. I had a very good idea until this weekend.

Over the past few years there has been a steady increase of off road motor bikes riding the ridge. They are not using the Silver Cup Trail anymore and are creating torn up tracks everywhere. It was nearly impossible for me to locate the old trail as there is so much damage from off-trail use.

On Saturday there was a group of three motor bikes — an older man and a young boy and girl. I watched them hill climb and chew through the wet lands around a small pond. Very powerful bikes with aggressive tires, tearing up anything they rode on. This man must be aware of the damage and should be ashamed of teaching the youth this unacceptable practice.

I was so disappointed to see the amount of damage from this time last year to now. In five years the ridge will look like a gravel pit. In this day of public awareness, it is unbelievable to see people abusing our incredible alpine like this.

The quads seemed to keep to the old mine roads with minimal off road activity. I have seen families with little kids. On one particular day a few years ago, there was obviously a grampa sitting beside his quad pointing out the many mountains and glaciers to his granddaughter. I wonder what he will say when she now asks, “Grampa, what are those scars on the hills?”

I challenge the government to do a fly over and observe the damage. Then I challenge them to put a stop to it before it’s too late. Our government talks big about tourism. Will there be anything pristine left for them to sell in the Beautiful BC brochures?

Dave Robertson,

Enderby

 

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