LETTER: Bike enthusiasts have a place in Haro Woods

Saanich Parks and Recreation recently distributed a flyer to households qualifying as Friends and Neighbours of Haro Woods.

READ ALSO: Open house tackles future of Haro Woods Park

These woods have been benignly neglected for many years, during which time those who walk through them to Cadboro Bay use the trail system along the south-western side, which emerges opposite the Hobbs Elementary field, and via this to the village.

A shorter section of trails along the north-eastern side was generally territory for kids who built an ingenious bike-trail along it, complete with jumps. This division of the woods seemed to work fine, and nobody got in anybody else’s way.

No doubt the kids who used the woods ignored invitations to open houses, but it was apparent to all woods-users that they existed, and also where their priorities might lie.

However, the flyer tells readers, “Deciding how best to deal with off-trail biking was the most difficult aspect of the plan. Options to accommodate it were explored during public consultations, but support was insufficient and these activities are not permitted in the park.”

READ ALSO: Council approves plan banning cycling in Haro Woods

One wonders whether an attempt was made to find out who the bikers were and what their views were on the subject. It wouldn’t have been hard to do. And to allow a section of the woods to be used for this purpose – with Parks and Rec’s blessing and assistance – is the right thing to do (why else would they have explored options to accommodate it?).

Instead, we get a pronouncement about the undesirable spin-offs of user-made bike trails, including they help invasive plants become established, ignoring the fact that for decades ivy has been allowed to displace the natural salal throughout the woods.

READ ALSO: Standalone Beach Drive plum tree gets love

Parks and Rec should be ashamed of themselves – it’s time to go back to the drawing board. And this time, please talk to the young bike enthusiasts.

Colin Castle

Saanich

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Families, spectators wave goodbye to Navy Task Force from Victoria shorelines

HCMS Winnipeg and HCMS Regina sailing to Hawaiian training exercise, further deployments

COVID-inspired RV sales soaring on West Shore and beyond

Health restrictions, recommendations keep Vancouver Island vacationers closer to home

‘Just being stupid’: Premier slams abusive customers at Langford restaurant

Restaurant said rude customers reduced its hosts to tears

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Aug. 4

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Should it be mandatory to wear masks when out in public?

B.C. is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of cases of… Continue reading

Cowichan RCMP use spike belts to end car chase — man in custody

The driver was arrested at the scene a short distance from his vehicle

COVID-19 tests come back negative for remote First Nation

“There are no suspected cases in the community at this time.”

Visitors and non-residents entering closed remote B.C. First Nation’s territories

With limited resources, they say they don’t have any authority or power to enforce the closures

UBC loses appeal on Fisheries Act convictions

BC Supreme Court upholds order to pay $1.55-million fine

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Acclaimed B.C. actor Brent Carver passes away

Carver, one of Canada’s greatest actors with a career spanning 40 years, passed away at home in Cranbrook

Most Read