Monday, October 30, 2017

Canada: Horseback riders lose bid for access to DCF Main Tract - Full Article

October 27, 2017
By Mike Pickford

What appears to be a longstanding, bitter feud between two different user groups of the Dufferin County Forest reared its head last Thursday as County Council heard from horseback riders who feel hard done by recent changes to the recreational policy for the site.

It was a busy night inside council chambers as people on both sides of the issue filled the gallery, with the horse riders especially vocal as they sought to change a new policy, implemented in May, that the County spent the best part of four years putting together.

In that policy, Council agreed to dedicate a 26-kilometre loop of the Main Tract in the Dufferin County Forest to mountain bikers only, much to the chagrin of the local horseback riding community. Eight delegates spoke at the meeting on Thursday, each presenting different thoughts, opinions and points on the new policy.

The main issue most of the horse riders seemed to have is the feeling they’re being punished for not involving themselves throughout the four-year period it took to construct the policy. That feeling of injustice is only intensified by the fact that a member of the Forest Operation Review Committee, who helped form recommendations for the policy, is Johnny Yeaman, a leader of one of the local mountain bike clubs set to benefit from the new policy...

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