/ Illegal Offroading on Caw

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Full moon addict - on 10 Sep 2017
I saw three offroad motorbikes right on the summit of Caw yesterday. The ground was saturated and they made a right mess. I ran after one of them and caught him further down the fell after he'd fallen off his bike. He said he was 'lost'. I took photos but there's no real way of identifying them and meanwhile they've trashed the hill. Anyone else seen this? Photos at https://johnfleetwood.smugmug.com/Landscape/2017/Duddon/i-kWhpCFC and https://johnfleetwood.smugmug.com/Landscape/2017/Duddon/i-xXzwMHj
Jim C - on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

I wonder what the number mounted on the front says, pity it's not visible.
Dave the Rave on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

Very brave of you, if a little pointless.
Trail bikers are NEDS and you were lucky not to get a shoeing. I would inform the local plod and leave it a that, annoying as it is.
kevin stephens - on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:
last time we remonstrated with illegal off roaders we had our windscreen kicked in for our trouble
bedspring on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:
I would post on local trail and off road forums. I suspect they will be sensitive to this kind of thing and discipline their own. Much as the climbing community would put pressure on any idiotic parking at Malham. Always the same, some git, spoiling it for the majority.
Post edited at 17:09
wintertree - on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

Did you see any anonymous white vans parked up nearby? They often travel thusly.
Welsh Kate - on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

Assuming it's in the National Park, there may be a NP email address to report illegal off-roaders to. We have one in the Brecon Beacons, and even if they can't make identifications, it's still information for statistics and longer-term strategic policy.
JeffCarroll - on 10 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

email it in to 101 emails for Cumbria Police - 101Emails@cumbria.police.uk

They have officers creating dossiers on this and will take action if the people involved can be identified.
garycrocker - on 11 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

This is still a problem in the Brecon Beacons. Powys police do the odd clamp down but there are still plenty of people who don't care about the damage they cause, especially on the eastern edge of the Black Mountains in Herefordshire. I don't think West Mercia Police have ever responded to complaints. I was talking to a hill farmer about this at a meeting the other day and she was all for trail centre style narrow gateways but this would be a problem for horses even if farmers gated everything else. I met someone who did this, they were walking at the time, however who genuinely thought open access included motorcycles.
Full moon addict - on 11 Sep 2017
In reply to JeffCarroll:

yes I've done this having tried the NP web site and been directed to the police. Probably pretty pointless, but at least confronting the person made him aware that it wasn't well regarded and he did appear a bit shame faced and was keen to get away.
switch - on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

It's also worth informing your local councillor, MP and Police and Crime Commissioner and asking them all what they're doing to make this a priority for the police. They're more accountable to the public than the police directly. As an example, Frank Field is making some noise about urban illegal biking at the moment in Birkenhead:

http://www.wirralglobe.co.uk/news/15462344.Frank_Field_tells_readers_he_is_far_from_happy_with_polic...

llechwedd on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to switch:

> It's also worth informing your local councillor, MP and Police and Crime Commissioner and asking them all what they're doing to make this a priority for the police. They're more accountable to the public than the police directly. As an example, Frank Field is making some noise about urban illegal biking at the moment in Birkenhead:


Reading that article, I didn't see anything about 'illegal biking'- unless you count stealing someone's motorbike as 'illegal biking'.
He seems to be asking why the police haven't responded to a spate of thefts.
Luke90 on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

On a similar note, did anyone else see the youths riding their moped up and down the path along the bottom of Burbage a few weeks ago? Busy day, too. Dicks.
Ian Hinkins on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

I have seen the damage on Caw, which seems to be getting worse year on year. Never seen the dicks causing it.
switch - on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to llechwedd:

ah right, yes, you missed it, 2nd para down:
> POLICE squads across Merseyside have stepped up their efforts in recent months to prevent the theft of motorbikes by > thugs who then use them to wreak havoc on our streets.

and near the bottom:
>The law does allow the police to pursue bikes and quads, for example, as long as correct procedure is followed.
>And what about using stingers, or forensic tagging sprays, to catch and then identify the thieves?

Here's a typical example fm over the river in Bootle:
http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/watch-yob-speeds-through-shopping-10973382
Jim C - on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to garycrocker:

Even the standardmountain bikes are cutting up the paths on our local hills, I understand some of ( or at least one of) them is/are electric which apparently can be more destructive than a push MTB ( maybe as bad as a motorbike?)

Should they perhaps ban Mountainbikes too if there is not a dedicated trail?
flowerpot - on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to Jim C:

No!
So you are defending a metre wide strip from damage that invariably runs through a completely trashed landscaped whether from centuries of thoughtless and now totally unessesary ruin by livestock or for maintaining a shooting playground for the few. Please get some perspective on this. MTB damage is never that bad certainly when compared with what a herd of cattle can do and the complete sheep wrecking of our hills. Maybe some people have to really address their prejudices and see the bigger picture... for what its worth as a vegan, eating animals or shooting them is a life choice as much as mountain biking off piste is and there is no doubt about which causes the most damage by far to our landscape! Remember we all got there on a strip of tarmac that invariably runs across or through somewhere which wont dry up and disappear in the next dry spell.
Jim C - on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to flowerpot:

You seem to know more about the paths on my local hills than I do, I bow to your superior knowledge.
garycrocker - on 12 Sep 2017
In reply to Jim C:

I can say without a shadow of doubt that there is no noticeable damage to the hills in my part of the Black Mountains that is caused by mountain bikes. The huge motorway that is the Offas Dyke path on the other hand is a mess in places and the NP have spent a fortune helicoptering stone onto the ridge to fix it - all caused by feet. Likewise I see no evidence of damage in other areas of the B Beacons and I ride in different parts of the park most weeks. I don't think e-mtbs have significantly more impact than other bikes. They are heavier but most are pedal assist so work differently to a motorbike.
Jim C - on 13 Sep 2017
In reply to garycrocker:

> I can say without a shadow of doubt that there is no noticeable damage to the hills in my part of the Black Mountains that is caused by mountain bikes.

I would not dream of commenting on the condition of your hills, as I know nothing about them.
(I am of course relieved by your assurance that the damage that I perceived to have been caused by MTBs in my local hills does not exist. )



Hugh Mongous - on 13 Sep 2017
In reply to garycrocker:
> .... all caused by feet.

Absolutely. If only everyone who had visited over the years had been using a mountain bike instead of walking then there would be no erosion issues whatsoever.
Post edited at 03:38
snoopdawg - on 13 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

I was up on Caw in early April this year. There was a team of scramblers going up the final shoulder of Caw absolutely ripping it to bits. One bike in particular took 3 go's to get up it. None of the bikes had identifying features on them and I didn't take any pictures. Even if I wanted to contact police at the time there was no mobile signal. I returned to my car via Lank Rigg and there were further scramblers on the tops. I think the problem on this particular area is the open roadside access to the fells plus of course the almost complete lack of policing in such areas.

In July this year I was camped at Styhead tarn. About 9pm 3 scrambler bikes came up from Wasdale and went towards Borrowdale. I assume they used the roads to return to their starting point.
Webster - on 14 Sep 2017
In reply to flowerpot:

amen to that! theres nothing like the hypocrisy of climbers when it comes to 'environmental issues'! heaven forbid some other countryside user should be using 'their' hills as well as them... its almost as if all climbers levitate from one place to the next...
mattsccm - on 14 Sep 2017
In reply to Webster:

Whilst I would decry any illegal riding I must pint out that possibly they were their with the land owners permission or might even have been the land owner. Bit different that.
garycrocker - on 14 Sep 2017
In reply to Hugh Mongous:

That's not really the point is it? It's so easy for people to see one MTB tyre track and start whining about damage to the trails and ignore the erosion caused by pedestrians because that's somehow okay. I take a lot of care to avoid unnecessary damage to trails as do a lot of other bikers I'm sure (though certainly not all). I wonder how many day hikers who visit honey pot hills ever give it a second thought.
yorkshire_lad2 on 15 Sep 2017
In reply to garycrocker:

I'm a hillwalker, and I'd like to agree with garycrocker's point. Take a look at some of the machined walkers paths up some of the Lake District hills which have had to be put in due to high usage (& addressing associated erosion) and you can see the tracks from miles away: they're an eye sore (e.g. path up Skiddaw/Little Man) and it's even happening in the Yorkshire Dales, witness the heavy duty paths that have had to be put in on Penyghent, Ingleborough and Whernside due to Three Peaks *Walkers*...
Lankyman - on 15 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

Report incidents to the police and the LDNPA - at least they'll be aware of what's happening. Any pictures may be useful as the bikes/clothing may be helpful for identifying the riders. I've seen damage in some areas close by - Stickle Pike and the low fells around the Woodland Valley such as Great Burney. Recently I saw off-road motorbikes on the fells above Barbon and called Cumbria Police - good signal on the tops - they said they'd send someone if they could. Who knows if they did but at least I tried. The fact that they remove licence plates or other identifying details means that the rider knows he is in the wrong place and doesn't want to be reported. Even on a recognised route where there is a legal right to ride/drive then licence plates have to be displayed and bikes have to be road-worthy.
woppo - on 15 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

shame really as cumbria county council has a really good website for green lane/ trail riding with lots of info on legal routes
Simon Caldwell - on 18 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

Scrambling bikes were out on the summit of Coniston Old Man yesterday morning
JeffCarroll - on 18 Sep 2017
In reply to Simon Caldwell:

as previous...

email it in to 101 emails for Cumbria Police - 101Emails@cumbria.police.uk

They're collating info...only justifiable thing is perhaps a farmer going round stock, but never know farmers up that high, except on quad maybe.
timripper on 19 Sep 2017
In reply to Full moon addict:

They were out again on Sunday up near Caw Fell and over towards Haycock/Scoat Fell - tracks had torn up the path quite a bit in places. Local farmer had chased them down into Scoat Tarn area (on foot) and was trying to catch them.
Also fresh tracks later in the day around Dow Crag and out to Caw (Dunnerdale).
They're often out around Kiln Bank cross/Walna Scar area, but this now seems to be spreading to the high fells.
Scallop on 12:43 Wed
In reply to Full moon addict:

Enduro bikes are permitted in Dent and Ulldale and lowther forest but are recking parts of and riding fast past folk on foot they are allowed 5 days a week look on forestry commission web site.

I have seen them access open Fell side via the small car park area near cold fell down and over the beck and up over Townbank path and towards back of caw fell that way usually on a Sunday that crew are out.

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