The documents show that [Ron] Cron was fined $300 for three days he spent developing a trail on Crane Mountain after he said he found Swan Lake Ranger District employees unreceptive to his proposals to expand trails there. An agent found his hand tools on the trail, took them as evidence and left a business card. Cron later called and admitted building the trail.
“We purposely left the beginning and end of the trail obscured and not brushed out so it was not obvious because we knew we were doing something illegal,” Cron wrote in the affidavit. “We wanted to build the trail first before telling the Forest Service because we knew once the trail was established it would never be removed.” . . .
[Keith] Hammer believes any future public process considering mountain biking on Crane Mountain is illegitimate while the trail there already exists.
“The trails continue to be used and have been used for over two years,” Hammer said. “So the entire process is biased until the Forest Service goes out and shuts down these illegal trails.” . . .
Other emails by Forest Service officials express concern over how freeride mountain biking fits with other uses. That compatibility is what has Hammer concerned about the Beardance Trail, where riding features like elevated logs and other natural obstacles have been incorporated.
Read the full Flathead Beacon Article. While there, be sure to add your comments to help insure laws to protect wildlife and other forest users are followed on our public lands!
Email Swan Lake District Ranger Rich Kehr and Flathead Forest Supervisor Chip Weber today and ask that all unauthorized bike trails, jumps and ramps on Crane Mountain be removed to protect wildlife and other forest users!
Logging road landslide into Sullivan Creek bull trout habitat!
Keith Hammer photo.