The motorcycle trail network on Eagle Mountain is an environmentally sensitive area, near the Coquitlam watershed, Indian Arm Provincial Park, and surrounded below by the Westwood Plateau housing development. This unique geography presents unique challenges in creating a sustainable network.
Salmon hatcheries on Noons Creek and Mossom Creek incubate hundreds of thousands of eggs each year during the Fish Window (November through March). Natural spawning in the creeks adds almost a million more hatchlings. Thanks to over two decades of tireless volunteer effort, the salmon runs have returned to these streams again!
Eagle Mountain is also home to a myriad of species including some which are at-risk such as bats, cutthroat trout, and the northern red legged frog. As with the salmon, these species’ habitats were negatively impacted by human activity on Eagle Mountain. Fortunately, in the 21st century sensibilities have changed, and volunteers from many different organizations are working together to rehabilitate the mountain’s diverse ecosystem. We are committed to our part in this important movement. Our volunteers work to minimize the impact of recreation on this sensitive ecosystem. Our strategy for this is twofold.
Firstly, we will develop a sustainable trail network that minimizes environmental impact. and avoids trail-use conflicts with other user groups. This trail network (starting with the proposed 12km Exterminator Loop) will be constructed or rehabilitated to a higher environmental standard than currently exists on the mountain. Areas of highest environmental concern will be identified and addressed first. All work will be done according to an approved annual plan and with appropriate concern for sensitive riparian areas and other environmental impacts.
Secondly, we will permanently close many of the legacy trails that cannot be brought up to the required standard. In some cases these legacy trails date back to the same industrial uses of the mountain which were responsible for ending the salmon runs on Noons and Mossom Creeks. This will inevitably be unpopular with some trail users who have been riding them forever, however the alternative is a full closure of the mountain to dirt bikes. By providing a sanctioned and environmentally responsible loop we ensure the future of our sport on Eagle Mountain.
Finally, no write-up on the environment and dirt bike trails would be complete without mentioning the looming Electric revolution! Electric dirt bikes and trials bikes are finally here. Although still rarely seen in person in the lower mainland, they are now being made by reputable manufacturers. Coming and with them will likely be a huge increase in the popularity of the sport. An Electric bike is quiet, zero-emission, and can be kept indoors by anyone, taking up little more room than a mountain bike.