Mountain Biking and the Environment, Part I [Podcast #279]

Mountain bikers have an opportunity to be known as stewards of the environment and to protect and enhance the places we ride.
Photo: Luis Ascenso Photography from Lisbon, Portugal, via Wikimedia Commons

Doug Blease is a mountain biker and environmental researcher based in Scotland. He’s a member of IMBA-EU and has served in active trail planning roles with the Aberdeenshire Trail Association.

In this interview, we ask:

  • What does an environmental impact assessment look like when it comes to trail planning?
  • How big of a concern is erosion when it comes to bikes, especially compared to other trail users?
  • How resilient is nature in terms of the ecosystem? Could there be long-term effects due to trail building if it’s not done properly?
  • As individuals, how can we minimize the impact of our rides?
  • How can we balance the tension between creating opportunities to enjoy the environment, with protecting it from damage or overuse?
  • How would you grade the mountain bike industry’s overall eco footprint?

If you’d like to contact Doug for advice or to ask a question, email [email protected] and we’ll pass your message along. Or, click to learn more about the Aberdeenshire Trail Association and Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland.

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