news Common Ground on Public Trails

Published in the Marin IJ on December 17, 2016

“Finding common ground on public trails access

680-opening-la-by-craigsolin-9_smAs someone who has been using Marin County trails by foot for the last 40 years, the Footpeople, and especially Connie Berto (Readers’ Forum, Dec. 12) do not speak for me.

While I don’t begrudge them their freedom to express themselves, the Footpeople’s doctrine of selfishness and exclusion deserves only a small part in the dialogue about the appropriate use of our public lands.

The fact that people are outside on trails, whether on foot, bicycles, or horses, is something that should be celebrated and encouraged.

We need to continue to build and strengthen our community. If we are outside on the trails, regardless of how we got there, we have a lot more in common with each other than we have differences.

In a world where people are increasingly staring into their phones to find meaning in their lives, we need to do what we can to bring them outside.

Advocating for exclusionary policies and increased enforcement to keep people out of the woods is not helping.

What if all of the trail-user advocacy groups worked together to promote policies that made it easier for more people to get outside and enjoy the open space? It would be more crowded out there for sure, but a crowd of healthy happy people breathing clean air in a forest sure beats the alternative.”

— Gregory Allen, Mill Valley

Thank you Gregory Allen!

Photo by Craig Solin

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