There are enough risks involved in mountain biking without someone sabotaging your route. But according to RCMP, someone has been tampering with bike trails near Nanaimo, British Columbia.
Just last week a local woman discovered wire strung across a trail along Nanaimo Lakes Road, which is commonly used to access Barsby Lake. What’s even more disturbing, is the fact that the wire was strung at neck level.
The woman also found jagged wooden stakes buried along the trail.
“These items could have caused serious injury to an unsuspecting mountain biker or someone on a dirt bike,” Constable Gary O’Brien said in a media release.
But some mountain bikers have witnessed malicious behaviour like this before, and know that there are some people who believe they shouldn’t be allowed on trails.
“We try not to aggravate people, whether it be the forestry company, we try to respect their ownership, as well as anybody [else] who may be using it,” local mountain biker Lee Venables told CTV News. “When things like that happen, it kind of freaks us [out]. How could somebody be that vicious and want to hurt somebody?”
The wire and stakes were found on February 27 and have since been removed by RCMP, who are trying to track down one or more suspects.
In the meantime, RCMP are monitoring the area where the wire and stakes were found, though they’re hoping this was an isolated incident.
“There have been no other similar reports in that area so we are hoping it was a one-time incident,” O’Brien said. “Having said that, we are looking to the public to assist in identifying who may be responsible.”
And as surprising as it might sound, this story isn’t unique—sabotaged bike trails have been a problem in southern British Columbia before.
In January 2015, surveillance cameras caught Tineke Kraal, a 65-year-old North Vancouver resident, placing rocks, logs, and other obstacles on a steep downhill path in her area. A year later, she pleaded guilty in court, and was sentenced to three years on probation and 150 hours of community service.
Anyone with information regarding the recent Nanaimo incident is asked to contact the Nanaimo RCMP at 1-250-754-2345 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.