Cross Country ski trails trashed again

Just when there was finally good snow, just when Larry White had just spent many hours voluntarily grooming and tracksetting the Wolverine Ski Trails, vandals trashed them by riding ATVs and snowmobiles over them, wrecking them beyond repair and making cross country skiing on them impossible.

Cross country skiing is one of the healthiest sports and Tumbler Ridge has many keen skiers. The only two kids from Tumbler Ridge in the BC Winter Games were cross country skiers. Many seniors enjoy the trails, which are also marketed as a tourist attraction. What message is being sent out if this destruction continues?

Last year the trails were groomed for the dogsled races the evening before the event. When the organizers checked the route the next morning they found the groomed trail had been destroyed by ATVs. One wonders if this year will be any different (dogsled races are on 18 March).

There is now an adequte by-law which specifies where ATVs and snowmobiles can and cannot operate, and identifies corridors along which these vehicles can be ridden so as to leave or enter the community. The golf course and ski trails are off limits. Clearly this is not being enforced. It would take just a few fines and confiscations for word to spread and this kind of behaviour to stop.

Living in the north brings with it certain privileges. One of these is the luxury of being able to leave one?s home on an ATV or snowmobile and ride it out of town, rather than having to load it and drive it out. Unfortunately, if this kind of privilege is abused in this manner by members of the community and the laws cannot be enforced, perhaps it is time that our Town Council be asked to reconsider whether this privilege is worth the cost.