Mountain Biking and the Environment Part 2: Wildlife [Podcast #280]

Do mountain bikers tend to bother animals more than other trail users? We ask Douglas Carchrie, a trail consultant at Big Mountain Scotland, who has studied how communicating conservation info can change behavior.

Douglas Carchrie is a bicycle mechanic, mountain bike guide, and mountain bike trail consultant at Big Mountain Scotland. He has also served as a national park conservation intern and conducted research into mountain biker behavior as a student at the University of Highlands and Islands in Scotland.

In this episode, we ask:

  • Do mountain bikers tend to bother animals more than other trail users?
  • What are some of the things mountain bikers have been asked to do to avoid disturbing animals like the threatened Capercaillie bird?
  • Based on your study, do you think most mountain bikers are willing to change their behavior if they understand the impact of their actions?
  • Which methods are most effective when it comes to communicating conservation information to riders?
  • There are a number of tools available to land managers, including enforcement, trail design, and education. Which ones provide the biggest impact in your opinion?
  • Based on your experience as a mountain bike guide and director for Big Mountain Scotland, where are some of the best places to ride in the country?

Read more about Carchrie’s study here:

And if you missed part one of our discussion of mountain biking and the environment, be sure to go back and listen to our previous show, episode #279.

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