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We meet every third Wednesday of the month @  7 pm  at Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor Center.

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SDMBA Events Calendar

September 2014
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News Alert: Mission Trails Regional Park Area Closure PDF Print E-mail
A Special Edition TrailNews Alert was sent out on 9/17 to inform you of a planned closure to areas of Mission Trails Regional Park, SDMBA's actions, stance, and next steps.

I. What SDMBA knows of the planned closure
a. It recently came to our attention that Mission Trails Regional Park (MTRP) is planning to close areas north of the 52. This includes Spring and Oak Canyons and the area referred to as East Elliot. We were told closure would include signage, enforcement and fines upward of $1500.

b. This closure comes as a result of a letter received by the City of San Diego from the US Fish and Wildlife Services (USFW) and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), after a site visit revealed a considerable amount of unauthorized building and use of trails that impact highly sensitive and endangered species. The entire letter can be viewed here.

c. Over the last several years, MTRP acquired this property to expand the park, but it came with strict land use terms dictated by the Wildlife Agencies. While trails for recreation are compatible with the terms, the area must comply with the Multiple Species Conservation Program (MSCP) and must be integrated into the MTRP Master Plan Update (MPU). More information on the MPU can be viewed here.

II. What SDMBA has already done
a. On Sept. 13, 2013, SDMBA representatives met with Chris Zirkle, Deputy Director of Open Space City Park and Rec., Steve Haupt, District Manager of Open Space City Park and Rec. and Jeffrey Harkness, Park Planner, City of San Diego Development Services, to get first hand information on the planned closure. They discussed what the City thinks it must do to remain compliant with the Federal decisions and policies.

b. SDMBA representatives agreed to have Mr. Zirkle as a guest speaker at the next SDMBA Advocacy meeting to further explain the complex issues of this situation. The important result of this meeting is that it continues a dialogue between the City and us, the stakeholders.

III. SDMBA’s stance on the planned closure
a. SDMBA adamantly opposes the current plan to close off all recreational access to trails. We will work diligently with the City and the Wildlife Agencies to support a better alternative plan. Trail closures rarely work as intended, often resulting in negative consequences such as unauthorized trail building and use in previously unaffected areas.

b. SDMBA has successfully partnered with federal, state and city agencies that have strictly controlled land use restrictions, with the results being protected and rehabilitated habitat along with compatible recreational trails.

c. SDMBA believes an open discussion with all user groups and agencies involved will gain the more support and compliance compared to this unilateral approach that is being pushed on the City.

IV. What’s Next
a. September 18th – 7:00pm – SDMBA Monthly Advocacy Meeting at MTRP Visitor Center
i. SDMBA has invited Chris Zirkle to be our guest speaker and to provide more information about the issue.

ii. We will be asking Chris Zirkle to work with us to find a better alternative management plan that will best mitigate the consequences of the planned closure.

iii. The public is welcome at this meeting. We expect everyone to conduct themselves in a professional and respectful manner.

b. September 19th – 1:00pm – MTRP Task Force Meeting at MTRP Visitor Center
i. This meeting is also open to the public. More information on the Task Force can be viewed here.

ii. KTU+A: Planning and Landscape Architect Firm, will be providing an update on the MPU to the Task Force.

iii. SDMBA will have representatives present to request a forum between all user groups, stakeholders and agencies to determine a better course of action that will be mutually beneficial to the habitat, the park and the community of park users.

If you would like additional information, please attend this Wednesday's SDMBA Advocacy Meeting. Please also check our Facebook Page and look for another Special Edition TrailNews Alert for any updates.


The following is from SDMBA Liaison to La Costa Preserve, Rich Julien
Check out some pictures of the bridge construction here


Dear Mountain Bikers

Here is my story of Copper Canyon. Copper Canyon gets it name from the German immigrants who discovered some copper deposits between Denk Mtn (La Costa) and Double Water Tanks to the south. The copper was mined extensively during WWI and in the following decades the ore played out was of poor quality and the mines abandoned.

There are still plenty of reminders of the mines right under foot but the shafts had to be filled in after some knotheads fell in and died. “Survival of the Fittest” at work.

So there were some old old legacy trails faintly there that some knowledgeable locals knew about. Trouble was the land was now in the hands of a family that had been up to that time living on the perimeter of the suburbs. But now they were being surrounded by an explosion of growth and all the people that brings.

The stories of their efforts to keep people away and stop trespassing will go down in lore. The property then went through another owner who bought it for purposes of mitigation and today it is managed by the Center for Natural Lands Management. CNLM manages both La Costa (Denk Mtn) and the land going up to Double Water Tanks. Copper Canyon ties it all together.

Hence the new Archipelago route this year will be through Copper Canyon and not down the heinous, dangerous & lame Denning Rd. The Copper Canyon trail will be reached by descending “Whip Tail”, also a new adoption by CNLM.

Copper Canyon Trail crosses Copper Creek three times. Bridges were required to negate the effects of bank erosion and general damage to the stream habitat. With the trail now open to the public certain standards had to be met so I constructed the bridges to standards used by the USFS and similar to the bridge I built for the USFS on the San Juan Trail.

CNLM was going to pay for the bridges but I was so stoked to get Copper Creek open I wanted CNLM to use their money for bigger things like acquiring more open space and protecting what little habitat remains here. Even though it hasn't always been an easy path to coexist within the mission of conservationists I think we can help each other. It is my opinion that people need to be part of the equation of protection of open space, not not be eliminated from the equation. CNLM has made us part of that equation.

Once people relate to the land and form a bond and sense of ownership, the level of interest, compliance and participation to protect grows exponentially. So to support the mission of CNLM and bring people together I decided to sell routered names on the planks of the bridges and donate the money to CNLM.

I petitioned SDMBA for the costs of the three bridges and the Board granted me the money. It was a huge job and I needed a good right-hand man. In fact I found a couple of good men to help me. One was Bryan Furbee, my riding partner, and the other was Dee Folse, of Team Shoebacca. Between us we have routered 80 names of committed people and 20 corporate names from businesses that have always had our backs.

The addition of Copper Canyon now provides a critical corridor that starts at Cadencia Park and leads you to Elfin Forest and onward on the Archipelago Trail. While we have been raising families, riding, surfing and holding down jobs, someone else has been doing the work that we didn't know how to do or didn't want to do. So the plan is to present CNLM with the proceeds from the planks.

-Richard Julien



2012 Trail Worker of the Year PDF Print E-mail

Turner Suspension Bikes and the San Diego Mountain Biking Association (SDMBA) will be awarding the 2012 "Trail Worker of the Year" a new Turner bike frame. The winner will have choice of size and color and model, either a Flux, 5.Spot, or Sultan.

More Anderson Truck Trail Land Being Purchased PDF Print E-mail

In our continuing relationship with the San Diego River Park Foundation we're happy to report that more land near the Anderson Truck Trail is being purchased for preservation. Like the last time we helped buy land out there, we need to raise some funds to make the purchase possible. Please visit this page to find more details.


Please join the Wildlife Club or give a one time donation. When you give, please let the River Park know that "SDMBA sent me."

San Diego Mountain Biking Association in the news PDF Print E-mail

San Diego Mountain Biking Association's trailwork day at the Black Mountain Open Space Park was the subject of a short video available on the San Diego Union Tribune website:


The Black Mountain trails day was but one of the many trail repair/maintenance days that SDMBA holds during the winter months when soils are moist and most favorable to work with. 33 volunteers donated 4 hours of their Super Bowl weekend to provide much needed (and appreciated) TLC for the much loved Miner's Loop trail.

SDMBA sponsors Black Mountain Bicycles and Stone Brewery generously donated merchandise and libations to thank the efforts of the day’s volunteers.

Thanks to the skilled leadership of the SDMBA resident trail bosses, volunteers employed sustainable trail techniques to repair a vast amount of water erosion damage and minimize the potential of water erosion from future storms. The quality of SDMBA's work has been praised by both land managers and cyclists.

Park Tools Story PDF Print E-mail

Those of you that participated in the SDMBA Archipelago ride in April may have met Kevin Mortensen. Kevin is an SDMBA member and volunteered his time, tools and bike stand while tending the first rest stop at Elfin Forest, as well as the beer line at the finish line. Unfortunately while Kevin was serving up beers and burgers, a thief stole Kevin’s Park Tool bike stand out of his truck. No one likes to get their things stolen, but getting stolen from while volunteering and supporting a mountain bike event was just unacceptable.

SDMBA Board Member and Archipelago ride organizer Rich Julian contacted Park Tools and related this unfortunate event. Park Tools response? “No problem – we’ll help him out”. 1 Week later a box arrived at Kevin’s door with a new Park Tools PRS-25 Team Issue Repair Stand.

We’d like to throw a huge thanks to Park Tools - specifically Bill Armas- for their willingness to take care of Kevin. It’s remarkable to find a company that truly supports the mountain bike culture and brotherhood while at the same time making great products. We already associate Park Tools name with quality and innovative products. It’s time to also associate that name with a company that is out to help us make mountain biking the great sport and way of life we think it is. Next time you’re looking for bike tools, make it a Park Tool.

Thanks guys!

Bike Bell Program Expands to Elfin Forest PDF Print E-mail
The SDMBA Elfin Forest "Strike Crew" volunteer team has added a bear bell box at the base of The Way Up Trail at Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve. Mountain bikers who currently do not ride with a bike bell are encouraged to loan one from the bike bell box when they ride at Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve. The Way Up trail has a large volume of multi-use traffic and a bike bell let's other trail users hear you before they can see you. Not only will they appreciate the warning, you will find they often yield the trail to you in response. If you would like to help expand the bike bell program to a riding area near you, please click here. If you would like more information on volunteering with SDMBA at Elfin Forest, please contact Matt
Cuyamaca Rancho State Park Mountain Bike Benefit Ride 2010 PDF Print E-mail
Active.com is sponsoring a ride at Cuyamaca Rancho State Park Mountain Bike. If you'd like to take part, please check the event calendar
Ellsworth Raffle Tickets Available at North of the Border and Cal Coast Bicycles PDF Print E-mail

Tickets are also available at select SDMBA events. Watch for announcements in TrailNews.

Get your tickets at North of the Border Bike Shop and Cal Coast Bicycles.  Don't forget to tell these sponsors what a terrific job they are doing supporting local mountain biking advocacy! 

What can you win? Ellsworth Handcrafted Bicycles has generously donated a frame of your choice to be raffled off this summer.  Tickets are $5 each. Bring cash. Write only your Name, Email and Phone Number on the back of the ticket you leave behind. Winner will be drawn when we meet our fundraising goal of $2500. We're halfway there! Questions or more info email Minette. Good Luck!



Announcing the Bike Bell Program PDF Print E-mail

Here at SDMBA, we're committed to fostering good relations between mountain bikers and other trail users out on San Diego's trails. Another step in this direction is our new Bike Bell Program. To find out how to make a difference, please click here

San Diego Area Organizational Meeting: High School Mountain Bike League PDF Print E-mail

Saturday, January 30th: 4PM

Location: Mangia Bene Restaurant
221 East Main Street, El Cajon, CA 92020-3911, (619) 444-0303
Matt Gunnell, Executive Director of the Southern California Interscholastic Cycling League will be speaking about the high school mountain bike league, what it takes to form a school team, forming a San Diego area composite team and much more.

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