Castlegar Parks and Trails Society is asking dirt bike and ATV operators to stay off hiking trails. Photo: Submitted

Castlegar Parks and Trails Society is asking dirt bike and ATV operators to stay off hiking trails. Photo: Submitted

Dirt bikes and ATVs damaging West Kootenay hiking trails

Trails society asks operators to obey the signs and keep off the trails

Spring is the season to get out and enjoy nature, to take a walk or a nice hike on one of the many beautiful trails across the West Kootenay.

But too frequently trail users are coming across unwanted guests — dirt bike and ATV operators.

The bulk of West Kootenay hiking trails are designated for non-motorized use, but Castlegar Parks and Trails Society representative Doug Clark says motorized use is happening far too frequently.

“A lot of people enjoy those trails because it is a peaceful, beautiful environment they are in — to have a noisy machine come along not only scares people, but it destroys the experience,” said Clark.

Clark is quick to acknowledge that it is only a handful of dirt bike operators that “spoil it for the rest.”

Dirt bikes and ATVs are frequently causing damage to the area’s hiking trails, according to Clark.

He says that when dirt bikers drop a wheel off the edge of a trail, the shoulder is pushed off, causing erosion.

Clark also says the practice of tearing up soft areas off of the trails can lead to irreparable erosion. Other problems include disturbing the natural environment, making ruts and disturbing wildlife.

Besides the damage caused to trails, Clark is also concerned about maintaining private landowner permission for existing trails, considering that most tenures were granted with the understanding the trails would not be used by motorized equipment.

Dirt bike and ATV users are encouraged to use sanctioned trails and areas such as those maintained by the West Kootenay Recreational Dirt Bike and ATV Society and logging roads rather than hiking trails.

If you see someone improperly using a local trail, Clark recommends informing them in a non-confrontational way that the trail is for non-motorized use only.

READ MORE: WildSafeBC: How to avoid bear encounters



betsy.kline@castlegarnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

KootenaysTrails

Just Posted

Some algae is visible at the swimming ponds at Millennium Park. Photo: Betsy Kline
City of Castlegar says Millennium Ponds safe, in spite of algae

Water samples are regularly sent to Interior Health

Black Press file photo
City of Castlegar plans to offer dumpster for small amounts of summer garbage

Bear Smart initiative looking to reduce wildlife conflict

The pilot of this single-engine propeller plane was unhurt after crash-landing in a Como Road orchard Friday, June 18. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Plane crash lands into Grand Forks orchard, pilot injured

RCMP have secured the crash site, pending investigation by Transport Canada

A volunteer delivers food to families as part of a West Kootenay EcoSociety program. Photo: Submitted
Farms to Friends delivers 2,500th bag of food to families in need

The program services communities in the Nelson, Trail and Castlegar areas

Selkirk College has begun its search in earnest for a leader to replace president Angus Graeme who is set to retire from his position in May 2022. Photo: Submitted
Selkirk College seeks community input for president search

Current president Angus Graeme retires next year

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Most Read