Bush admin aims to increase mountain-bike access to national parks
Mountain bikers will have easier access to national parks and other public lands under plans the Biker-in-Chief is trying to push through before leaving office. (Ninety-seven days!) The National Park Service said Tuesday that it will propose a rule by Nov. 15 that would speed up decision-making about mountain-bike trails by putting park managers in charge instead of federal regulators. “We are trying to give superintendents a little bit of latitude especially for non-controversial proposals for bicycling in parks,” says an NPS spokesperson. (Get it? Spokes-person?) But green group Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility would like to quibble with that “non-controversial” part. PEER blames bikes for increasing erosion, trampling native plants, and disturbing other trail users; it says President Bush has caved to the mountain-bike lobby, which has been advocating for a change to the rules since the early 1990s.