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District of North Vancouver Natural Areas Trails Strategy Survey

May 5, 2022, 12:06 p.m.
Posts: 2298
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Having CGL for my biz and having had to work with INS co's on some homeowner claims I am somewhat aware of the process. The DNV demanding indemnity is a big hurdle, but the most troubling part is actually #24 as the DNV is demanding indemnity in perpetuity. So unless the builder is willing to go and remove all of their work after they leave trail building, the builder and their estate are potentially liable for any claims forever. I think there is NFW any underwriter is going to offer something to cover that, or if they do the cost will be f'n ridiculous. So it seems this is a way to squeeze out the independent builders. I guess the question is who to blame? Is this the DNV simply being asshole or are they reacting to the proliferation of rogue building that is happening everywhere and this is their solution for dealing with it. My guess would be the latter, not the former, so as usual we are our own worst enemy. It's amazing that after all this time the mtb "community" can't seem to get it's shit together and recognize that we need to work with the land managers instead of giving them the finger and acting like this is a free for all. MTB'ing has reached a critical mass where indiscretions can't continue to be ignored.

May 5, 2022, 12:24 p.m.
Posts: 1702
Joined: Aug. 6, 2009

Posted by: Silk
As of April 29th the builders of Pipeline can no longer do any maintenance until further notice. Due to recent unsanctioned / unapproved building on Seymour

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Posted by: skooks
That really sucks. Is this the result of some bad behaviour by some new builders on Seymour?

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Posted by: syncro
I guess the question is who to blame? Is this the DNV simply being asshole or are they reacting to the proliferation of rogue building that is happening everywhere and this is their solution for dealing with it. My guess would be the latter, not the former, so as usual we are our own worst enemy. It's amazing that after all this time the mtb "community" can't seem to get it's shit together and recognize that we need to work with the land managers instead of giving them the finger and acting like this is a free for all. MTB'ing has reached a critical mass where indiscretions can't continue to be ignored.

You don't have to look very hard on Seymour to find new build activity where there shouldn't be.

It doesn't help that there is no shortage of people willing to ride anywhere they want. While trail running, I've called out people who had to pass at least two "No Biking" signs to get where they were, in full view of plenty of hikers. They couldn't have cared less.... "It's all good bro, everyone does it!".

May 5, 2022, 12:26 p.m.
Posts: 1017
Joined: June 26, 2012

Posted by: syncro

Is this the DNV simply being asshole or are they reacting to the proliferation of rogue building that is happening everywhere and this is their solution for dealing with it. My guess would be the latter, not the former, so as usual we are our own worst enemy. It's amazing that after all this time the mtb "community" can't seem to get it's shit together and recognize that we need to work with the land managers instead of giving them the finger and acting like this is a free for all. MTB'ing has reached a critical mass where indiscretions can't continue to be ignored.

Fair point, but I think a lot of the unsanctioned building is happening because the sanctioned network isn’t meeting the needs of the ridership. Putting up more hurdles for sanctioned building is only going to result in more rogue trails, or at minimum does little to resolve the issue.


 Last edited by: D_C_ on May 5, 2022, 12:28 p.m., edited 2 times in total.
May 5, 2022, 12:36 p.m.
Posts: 2298
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: D_C_

Fair point, but I think a lot of the unsanctioned building is happening because the sanctioned network isn’t meeting the needs of the ridership. Putting up more hurdles for sanctioned building is only going to result in more rogue trails, or at minimum does little to resolve the issue.

Every time I hear that my first thought is how many of those in the ridership who think the sanctioned network isn't meeting their needs are spending serious time or effort getting involved in the process in order to try and get their needs met?

May 5, 2022, 3:25 p.m.
Posts: 1259
Joined: May 4, 2006

Yeah...but...

I don't understand the DNV's tactics. Surely making "sanctioned/authorized" trail builders buy insurance is just going to drive MORE trail building/maintenance underground, because it's not gonna go away, irrespective of whether it's the right thing to do...

May 5, 2022, 3:29 p.m.
Posts: 1716
Joined: Dec. 31, 2006

The NSMBA has come out and said that the DNV was working on this set of regs long before Boogie Nights was rebuilt and the work that was done on that trail over winter has nothing to do with these new stipulations.

I also fail to see how these stipulations will decrease rogue building and unsanctioned trails as builders of those trails generally prefer to remain anonymous, so it would be difficult to pin anything on a rogue builder.  It looks like DNV is trying to indemnify themselves as much as possible.  The new regs are focused on sanctioned trails anyways as the legalese refers to "permit holder", so unless the unsanctioned builder advertises themself then it seems the DNV is just making life harder for the small group of permitted, independent builders.

As Syncro said it's looking like the DNV is making it damn near impossible for builders to remain independent permit holders.  However as SixZeroSixOne said, the NSMBA would need to have their bases covered for trails they manage and this would include insurance.  Seems to me the easiest way to get around these new regs and keep building is to have the NSMBA hold the permit and have the lead builders listed on the permit.  This way the insurance is in place to cover the builders and the association.  I have recently joined the NSMBA's roster of permitted builders and so far it has been very positive.  They respect my process and vision for the trails and seem eager to help when they are able to.  Independent, NSMBA curious builders, feel free to DM me if you want to chat further about this.

May 5, 2022, 3:29 p.m.
Posts: 1259
Joined: May 4, 2006

Posted by: syncro

Every time I hear that my first thought is how many of those in the ridership who think the sanctioned network isn't meeting their needs are spending serious time or effort getting involved in the process in order to try and get their needs met?

It seems plenty ARE putting in serious time and effort in....but probably not in the manner you're hoping for. i.e. they're just going out and building their own unsanctioned trail! 😉

May 5, 2022, 4 p.m.
Posts: 522
Joined: Jan. 2, 2018

Posted by: syncro

Posted by: D_C_

Fair point, but I think a lot of the unsanctioned building is happening because the sanctioned network isn’t meeting the needs of the ridership. Putting up more hurdles for sanctioned building is only going to result in more rogue trails, or at minimum does little to resolve the issue.

Every time I hear that my first thought is how many of those in the ridership who think the sanctioned network isn't meeting their needs are spending serious time or effort getting involved in the process in order to try and get their needs met?

The district's MO, or the MO of their lawyers it would seem, is to create blanket insurance requirements for anything they don't want to explicitly approve or deny or have any responsibility for, whether or not obtaining such insurance is practical or possible for the other party is not their problem. 

Another very similar example - we have a 10 foot wide easement along one side of our lot the district refuses to take care of. Just becomes an overgrown shitshow of blackberry bushes and other brambles that grow into our yard and attract bears and hobos. It also hade construction debris from various prior decades of who knows what. 

When we got our yard landscaped we cleared it, seeded it, and fenced it at our own cost because we were sick of it. 

We looked into leasing it and the insurance requirements read almost identical to that, including us being liable for accidents happening on the easement in perpetuity (ie even if we move away). Just stupid bureaucracy that doesn't even make any sense.

May 5, 2022, 4:22 p.m.
Posts: 2298
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: SixZeroSixOne

Yeah...but...

I don't understand the DNV's tactics. Surely making "sanctioned/authorized" trail builders buy insurance is just going to drive MORE trail building/maintenance underground, because it's not gonna go away, irrespective of whether it's the right thing to do...

I partly agree here, and my guess would be that the threat of potential liability being broadcast may cause some people to think twice about rogue building and that may be what the DNV is aiming for. If they really want to find out who's built what, someone with good detective skills can figure it out. There has been a situation in the past couple of years where a rogue builder got caught out by the land manager and given crap, threat of heavy fines, etc. So while I don't necessarily feel this line they are drawing in the sand will be effective, knowing how municipal manager types think they may see this as their "solution".

I do agree that rogue building and secret trails will never go away as they are part of the mystique of the Shore and reflect  the punk/alternative ethos that is embodied into freeride.

May 5, 2022, 4:24 p.m.
Posts: 2298
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

At the end of the day what sucks is that this is making life difficult for some people who just want to do their thing that does not involve high consequence stuff.

May 5, 2022, 6:18 p.m.
Posts: 53
Joined: Aug. 6, 2004

Posted by: Kever

The NSMBA has come out and said that the DNV was working on this set of regs long before Boogie Nights was rebuilt and the work that was done on that trail over winter has nothing to do with these new stipulations.

I also fail to see how these stipulations will decrease rogue building and unsanctioned trails as builders of those trails generally prefer to remain anonymous, so it would be difficult to pin anything on a rogue builder.  It looks like DNV is trying to indemnify themselves as much as possible.  The new regs are focused on sanctioned trails anyways as the legalese refers to "permit holder", so unless the unsanctioned builder advertises themself then it seems the DNV is just making life harder for the small group of permitted, independent builders.

As Syncro said it's looking like the DNV is making it damn near impossible for builders to remain independent permit holders.  However as SixZeroSixOne said, the NSMBA would need to have their bases covered for trails they manage and this would include insurance.  Seems to me the easiest way to get around these new regs and keep building is to have the NSMBA hold the permit and have the lead builders listed on the permit.  This way the insurance is in place to cover the builders and the association.  I have recently joined the NSMBA's roster of permitted builders and so far it has been very positive.  They respect my process and vision for the trails and seem eager to help when they are able to.  Independent, NSMBA curious builders, feel free to DM me if you want to chat further about this.

WTF!?!?!

Are you telling me that the NSMBA has known about this set of new regulations for some time? How long?

Last Friday when we met with the new Trail / Habitat co-coordinator for the first time this year.

We had handed in our application for 2022 work at the beginning of year and were told to sit tight and we would have our permits shortly. Then radio silence and only after repeated emails to the DNV were finally able to meet in person only to be handed a new agreement and told to stop work.

We were left standing on our trail with tears in our eyes.

We spent the entire weekend in a email / phone frenzy to all the other independent builders so they would be in the loop as they also had no idea this was on the way.

And this was known about by everyone except us!?!?!

I am speechless....

May 5, 2022, 6:58 p.m.
Posts: 522
Joined: Jan. 2, 2018

Posted by: Kever

However as SixZeroSixOne said, the NSMBA would need to have their bases covered for trails they manage and this would include insurance.  Seems to me the easiest way to get around these new regs and keep building is to have the NSMBA hold the permit and have the lead builders listed on the permit.  This way the insurance is in place to cover the builders and the association.  

Yeah, that scenario would probably make sense really, and might not be terrible? Basically DNV are able to pass accountability/oversight of independent builders to the NSMBA, whose business it is to be capable of managing such things.

In turn NSMBA hopefully shields builders from some red tape and helps on the liability side. Builders answer to NSMBA instead of DNV, I assume that's roughly net neutral but big assumption on my part.

May 5, 2022, 9:05 p.m.
Posts: 1716
Joined: Dec. 31, 2006

I have no idea if the NSMBA knew that the DNV was about to change the way it dealt with trail builders and permitting or not. Based on the history of the DNV I would imagine they found out about the same time you did.

May 5, 2022, 11:13 p.m.
Posts: 2
Joined: May 5, 2022

I don't really blame the DNV here for blaming it on Seymour issues. Go on TrailForks and turn on Activity Recordings and it speaks for itself. It's nuts.

Still hoping they'll sanction more trails though.

May 6, 2022, 8:59 a.m.
Posts: 4971
Joined: Nov. 25, 2002

Posted by: nolookdoug

I don't really blame the DNV here for blaming it on Seymour issues. Go on TrailForks and turn on Activity Recordings and it speaks for itself. It's nuts.

holy shit

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