Hill: What am I entitled to?
Ryan Summerlin October 1, 2012
Re: “Reconsider your recpath manners,” by Marj Werstak, letters, Sept. 20
Summit County Bike Guide breaks it down: featuring 30 mountain bike trails, road/recpath rides, topo maps, plus USA Pro Cycling Challenge Stage 5. Biking is big business and will continue to trump quite rides on the recpaths.
Every year it’s the same clash whether on recpaths or the slopes: Easy versus extreme. Truth is: life in the mountains isn’t about manners and etiquette, safety versus speed. It’s about entitlement. Ask yourself this question. What am I entitled to?
Are you here to extend your participation in the comfort and convenience you think you are entitled to? If so, then the product will be safety first and foremost and your promotion of feeling secure. But security has its price. There will always be confrontation with the xtreme which is the by-product of demanding the easy while promoting the secure at the expense of the xtreme.
The mountains are not safe. They are by their very nature xtreme. It’s not for leisure but living large they exist. I came to the mountains a decade ago to learn to snowboard. It cost me the comfort and convenience of living safely. This year will be my 10th season on the slopes and 70th year of life. This will also be my first year wearing a helmet. (I recently had a bout with blood clots in my legs and I’m not up to a clotted brain.) Most would say I’m crazy to keep riding. Guess I am but I’d rather go out extreme than safe and secure. Why because that’s my entitlement.