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The first e-bikes of the season riding up Mountain Highway

Aug. 5, 2017, 11:36 a.m.
Posts: 861
Joined: March 18, 2017

Posted by: syncro
 Would having a pedal assist bike to get you through some of the tougher days make the trip more enjoyable?

No.

Aug. 5, 2017, 10:23 p.m.
Posts: 63
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: Endur-Bro No.

I hear you, I'd rather do it on my own as well. Besides, it's not like it could be used all the time - there aren't exactly any electrical outlets trail side. At best it could help a rider out on a few of the most challenging days/climbs and that would have to be weighed against the burden of packing the extra weight of the bike on days one wasn't using the pedal assist.

Aug. 5, 2017, 10:48 p.m.
Posts: 63
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: mudrunner

At the moment, e-bikes are low-presence. Based on personal observation, (I ride Fromme 3 -5 days a week) I would guess that impact is currently minimal. But that will change....and that is the concern.

The point of the discussion is not what is happening NOW, but what the future holds. If anything, mountain bikers should be sensitive to the history of our sport and the change in access over the years. It may not have been a problem, but a perception....and perception seems to rule the land (remember when the Sierra Club banned ALL mechanical transportation from US Park trails? That included wheelchairs).
Remember when we used to be able to ride Singing Pass? Garibaldi Lake?

From a personal perspective, I would have no issue if the current crop of e-bikes were shuttling up Cypress/Seymour. The road certainly sees a number of bike-laden vehicles running multiple laps. But Fromme is a place to get away from the focus on downhill fun and has a bit of an Earn-Your-Turns groove. Sort of like a back country ski tour vs lift-serviced ski resort. I wouldn't quite say that e-bikes are like snow mobiles to a back country skier (granted, far quieter), but I think you get my point. Further to Syncro's comment about the Chilcotins, I could imagine the day when a back country outfitter would offer 5 day tours to guests on rented e-bikes....and there goes the sense of remoteness.

I agree here, the big question is what will the future hold. I do question though if the significant growth in numbers over the past 5-7 years will be duplicated again with e-bikes or are we already at or close to saturation point with the number of people that rider. I also wonder if the new people coming in due to e-bikes aiding access will be riding typical mtb trails or if those people will be sticking more to gravel path riding vs climbing the mtb skill ladder. I guess you can also add to that the question of what percentage of the current crop of riders is going to opt for e-bikes?

Re the Chilcotins thing, there are already companies offering supported trips - all the rider has to bring is the legs to rider the trails. For multi day trips e-bikes are going to be of limited benefit due to charging issues - unless of course the guide company is going to pack a generator so clients can recharge their bikes at the end of the day. I can see people using them for 1-3 day trips though to increase the range of their riding.

Besides the personal responsibility issue, I think there are two other important factors that will determine the use of e-bikes on the trail system. One will be how quickly the various levels of government are going to react to the situation and what type of rules or regulations they will put in place. More importantly though is how they are going to enforce any rules they come up with. Will we see bike patrolers in the forest they have the ability to issue fines or possibly sieze bikes from repeat offenders?

Aug. 6, 2017, 7:12 a.m.
Posts: 2058
Joined: April 2, 2005

how will you detect ebikes when someday motors/batteries will be so small you cant detect them from the outside? like in this urban ebike:

http://amplerbikes.com/

Aug. 7, 2017, 5:20 a.m.
Posts: 2906
Joined: June 15, 2006

Posted by: Sethimus

how will you detect ebikes when someday motors/batteries will be so small you cant detect them from the outside? like in this urban ebike:

http://amplerbikes.com/

Wow, those look great! I could see my next commuter..

Aug. 8, 2017, 7:49 p.m.
Posts: 663
Joined: March 9, 2005

No motor bikes on mountain bike trails. I don't care if the motors are gas or electric they belong on moto trail like the rest of the MOTORcycles.

Aug. 8, 2017, 8:30 p.m.
Posts: 12
Joined: March 22, 2016

I hope you understand that electric bicycles aren't "MOTORcycles" if you don't believe me, here is a definition of what an electric bike is from ICBC 

http://www.icbc.com/vehicle-registration/specialty-vehicles/Low-powered-vehicles/Pages/Electric-bikes.aspx

The argument here isn't about MOTORcycles

Aug. 8, 2017, 8:39 p.m.
Posts: 1146
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Posted by: RaisinCrunch

I hope you understand that electric bicycles aren't "MOTORcycles" if you don't believe me, here is a definition of what an electric bike is from ICBC 

http://www.icbc.com/vehicle-registration/specialty-vehicles/Low-powered-vehicles/Pages/Electric-bikes.aspx

The argument here isn't about MOTORcycles

Funny that they refer to e-bikes as 'motor-assisted cycles' (MAC) within the first sentence. So by their definition, the do have motors.  Also, why do we care how ICBC classifies them in this context?  Im not trying to insure it to ride on the road, we are talking about trail usage and access here.

Aug. 8, 2017, 8:59 p.m.
Posts: 12
Joined: March 22, 2016

Motor-assisted and motorcycles are two different things. The point I was trying to make is that just because there is a motor, doesn't make it a motorcycle. As ICBC is a crown corporation I believe their definition of vehicles would be the most accurate, it doesn't matter if it's being used on the road or trail, the definition doesn't change.

Aug. 9, 2017, 9:03 a.m.
Posts: 217
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

It does matter on the trail because the MVA and regulations only apply to highways and roads. It could be possible to make an ebike with a low power high power switch to keep it road legal and increase power once off road.

Aug. 9, 2017, 5:50 p.m.
Posts: 745
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

It all comes down to who wants to police it. If NSMBA does not care, eMTBs will invade the trails that NSMBA oversee whether the eMTBs are allowed or not.


 Last edited by: Ddean on Aug. 9, 2017, 5:52 p.m., edited 1 time in total.
Aug. 9, 2017, 6:43 p.m.
Posts: 63
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: Ddean

It all comes down to who wants to police it. If NSMBA does not care, eMTBs will invade the trails that NSMBA oversee whether the eMTBs are allowed or not.

The NSMBA wouldn't be in a legal position to police or enforce any rule banning ebikes - that responsibility would fall on the land managers.

Aug. 10, 2017, 11:13 a.m.
Posts: 196
Joined: April 15, 2017

I'm very sure that the NSMBA does care, but like syncro says, the enforcement is down to land managers.

Aug. 10, 2017, 3:21 p.m.
Posts: 1510
Joined: July 11, 2014

And land managers don't have the resources to "police" emtb's. Are they going to pay staff to stand at trail heads and turn motorized bicycles around? No. So if ebikes start causing problems, guess what, all bicycle access is in jeopardy. 

Will pedal assist cause issues? Maybe, maybe not. Will assholes that mod their bikes to have higher power and/or throttle? 100% this will cause problems.

See the issue now?

Motor = should not be allowed on non-motorized trails. Period. Simple solution.

Aug. 10, 2017, 4:22 p.m.
Posts: 63
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: grambo

And land managers don't have the resources to "police" emtb's. Are they going to pay staff to stand at trail heads and turn motorized bicycles around? No. So if ebikes start causing problems, guess what, all bicycle access is in jeopardy. 

Will pedal assist cause issues? Maybe, maybe not. Will assholes that mod their bikes to have higher power and/or throttle? 100% this will cause problems.

See the issue now?

Motor = should not be allowed on non-motorized trails. Period. Simple solution.

The issue with that line of reasoning is that you're preventing an entire segment of people from enjoying an activity based on the potential that some of them might cause a problem.  If you break open the debate you also get into issues of risk/reward. Where is the tipping point where you can safely say that because of XX number of people causing issues with their e-bikes that we have to ban all e-bikes? And once you have chosen that magical number, then you need some sort of verifiable data to back that up. You need to be able to say that XX% or number of e-bike riders are causing enough problems to disturb the recreational activities of all trail users and that goes beyond the tolerance level you've set so you're going to ban all e-bikes from the trail network. 

The last time I checked one of the principles our society worked on was innocent until proven guilty. We also don't punish the many for the acts of a few.

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