Riders say obstacles placed on trails

Tayler NealeAlbany Advertiser

Mountain bikers have been left frustrated after obstacles have been placed deliberately on trails around Mt Clarence in an attempt to obstruct riders.

With only 1.3km of designated mountain bike tracks in Albany and a surge in interest for the growing sport, tension has arisen with people using shared tracks for walking and running conflicting with mountain bikers.

An Albany Mountain Bike Club spokesman said there had been a variety of objects placed along the tracks.

“From the perspective of the club it is very disappointing when we come across, sticks, rocks, tree trunks ... even a car tyre at one stage, which have been laid across the trails to hinder or possibly injure mountain bikers,” he said

“It can be extremely dangerous and there have already been some accounts of some near misses or close calls caused by this trail JUdisruption.

“The club is well aware there are people who do not want us up there and we push very hard to all our members to be courteous, polite and accepting of other trail JUusers.”

City of Albany team leader of recreation services Carl Beck confirmed the risks associated with disrupting trails.

“Obstacles placed across the tracks by the public to prevent access can be a serious hazard for all trail users, particularly those who are familiar with the trail,” he said. and in a worst case scenario could result in serious injury to a rider or runner if it causes them to trip or fall,” he said.

The Albany Heritage Park Trails Concept Plan, which includes 13.2km of mountain bike trails, was approved by the council last year to cater for increasing demand. These trails are expected to ease tensions as they cater to the increasing demand of mountain biking in the region, according to City of Albany team leader of recreation services Carl Beck.

Fines of up to $5000 can be issued for anyone caught placing obstacles on a trail.

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