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New MTB tracks in the Blue Mountains

J the B's picture

By J the B - Posted on 11 July 2010

Anyone have any info or status update on this statement by the SCA last year:

Specifically: "A 62 kilometre track from Blackheath to Yerranderie and an 11 kilometre track from Wentworth Falls to South Katoomba are currently under consideration for mountain bike riding access and will be on display for public feedback".

red's picture

Yeah they're hopeless hey. I've been chasing them on this for 4 years + now. I've emailed them in 6/09, 10/09 , 11/09 & 2/10. On 10/2/10 I received the following response: (with the same old press release attached)

"Dear Mr XXXX

Thank you for your email regarding the public consultation process on the proposed mountain bike access routes in the Blue Mountains. I apologise for the delay in responding.
The Minister for Water announced on 5 September 2009 the opening of the access tracks within the Woodford Special Area for recreational access and that two additional routes in the Warragamba Special Area have been identified as potential tracks that can be opened up for mountain bikes.
The two routes are a 62 kilometre track from Blackheath to Yerranderie and an 11 kilometre track from Wentworth Falls to South Katoomba. I have attached the Minister’s media release for your information.
The SCA and NPWS are currently finalising the consultation documents that will be placed on exhibition as well as the process to receive feedback from the community about the proposed routes. The public exhibition is planned to occur in the near future and will be broadly advertised. The SCA will contact you when the public exhibition dates have been determined.
Greg Sheehy
Senior Manager Regulatory Operations
Sydney Catchment Authority
Ph 47242391"

needless to say I've not heard back since....pathetic. Mr Sheehy has been very negative all along, including at a meeting circa 2007.

J the B's picture

I wonder if it would speed things up if they started receiving inquiries from a lot of riders?

red's picture

Indeed, what's needed is a little organisation. There's a state election next March. A little organising on a website like this to assist individuals to contact minister, shadow and local members could see some promises made....... (again)

Template letter and contact details, dot points for individuals to elaborate on in correspondence.

A heap of INDIVIDUAL emails with the same subject line, stating clearly who's contacting them and clearly being constituents, that sort of thing gets noticed.

Kingy's picture

Lets go for it, lets get some addresses up and lobby for access.

Flynny's picture

Hew Kingston from Wild horizons and others have been lobbying this for a couple of years. So it would be worth contacting him.

red's picture

yep, & MTBA made a submission. Seems we're being ignored so time is right. But a coordinated effort will work better. You here chips?

Flynny's picture

I wouldn't say we're being ignored. SCA did open up trails around woodford dam last year. so Small steps are happening.

letter writing wouldn't hurt but remember to congratulate them on the positive steps so far not just pound them with claims of inaction.

Martin Geliot's picture

The big jet from Germany hit Sydney last week.

Agree with Flynny's advice, need to keep communications going and good to thank them not just for opening up Woodford but also for extending our access to all the management trails in that special area.

I think it is working well- interesting to note that the new access seems to be popular with birdwatchers.

Dialogue continues behind the scenes, however the pushback/delay is impressive. Incredible frustration with them.

Possibly part of the problem is that SCA perceives a need to add a load of spendy infrastructure to allow cycling - they put up armco barriers and dozens of signs in Woodford at vast expense. Being corporatized the SCA supposed to return maximum profit to NSW. However unlike NPWS it does have a pretty good checkbook.

I'm guessing another part of the problem is numbers- NSW may perceive the number of people interested in the new rides as not that many. They have little idea how many access catchment illegally, walkers especially are so expert at hiding Eye-wink

So with numbers BMORC may well prove to be instrumental in getting those classic rides legalized.

On the good side I expect the SCA and NPWS will see that opening up Woodford has worked well. Obviously we don't want any naughty behaviour there, that will really screw the pooch. Illegal trail building would be the hot hot button of course, so we need to dump on anyone even thinking of that. Littering would also be a bad look.

Nerf Herder's picture

I'm not really across any of this stuff and would appreciate if one day ... (hopefully at either a trail day or pub meeting) somebody give me the low down. brief history, what we got, what we had to pay, where it all currently is ... next steps etc etc.

soz ... I don't seem to absorb what I read on it for some reason.


red's picture

Ah, saw this after pm'n u both. A catch up & discussion about ramping up a campaign is a good idea.

The Brown Hornet's picture

Had a fairly lengthy chat yesterday with the local member about this, but since he's jumping off the ship...

Nerf Herder's picture

maybe he can intro us to somebody staying on board or likely to be around ... with a similar approach ??

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