Concerned about Electric Bikes and Other Inappropriate Uses of Trails?

By Vicky Hoover, member, Recreation Issues Subteam Photo by Karl Forsgaard

Do one, two, three, or even more, of the issues below bother you?  Interest you?  Concern you?  Upset you? Make you feel some action is needed toward better management?

  • Off-road vehicles (motorcycles, electric bicycles, ATVs, snowmobiles, jet-skis, etc—whether creating noise, conflict with hikers, or impacts to ecosystems);
  • park overflight noise impacts;
  • bicycles;
  • trail conflicts and inappropriate uses;
  • accessible recreation;
  • recreation fees charged on public lands;
  • commercialization and privatization of recreation on public lands.

Let the Sierra Club’s Recreation Issues Subteam hear from you!

Sierra Club’s national Wildlands and Wilderness Team recently created a Recreation Issues Subteam, and now seeks interested individuals to join the Subteam, which currently has 12 members.  Previously, starting back in 1999, Recreation Issues was a standalone team, but now we work within the Wildlands Team.

The Recreation Issues Subteam’s mission is to assist volunteers, build networks and help coordinate the Club’s conservation efforts on recreation issues, primarily on public lands. 

While all recreation activities certainly have some impact on the land and ecoystems, a major concern of the Subteam is the way that land managers, under the relentless advocacy of mechanized recreation, are steadily converting non-motorized trails into mechanized-motorized trails.  This mechanized use conflicts with potential future wilderness designations, among other problems.

If you would like to help our campaign to get better public lands management, better control of some of these issues – please contact Subteam chair Karl Forsgaard  at

We are mindful that wild public lands exist not ONLY for human recreation but are essential for wildlife habitat, so that we must balance needs of Nature, including wildlife, against our own recreational impacts.

Added note from Al Sattler, Chair of the PVSB Group: Last year, the Rancho Palos Verdes City Council briefly proposed to allow E-Bikes in the Palos Verdes Nature Preserve, but there was an outpouring of opposition from people concerned about personal safety, increased impact on native plants and animals (even more than from the present mountain bikes), and increased damage to trails.  Our Palos Verdes-South Bay Regional Group, speaking as part of the Sierra Club, submitted a letter of opposition.   The Federal and state wildlife agencies also pointed out that E-Bike usage would be contrary to the Public Use Master Plan (PUMP) of the Natural Communities Conservation Plan/Habitat Conservation Plan (need to check name) (NCCP/HCP) for the Portuguese Bend Nature Preserve (need to check name).
The City Council changed its mind, forbidding use of E-Bikes in the Preserve, but there are still some people in the community who want them, so we need to be aware that the issue might come back.

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