Trail Mix

Plenty of talk about the Albany County Rail Trail on social media recently.

On Facebook, a group called Bethlehem Resident News claims that thieves are using the trail as an express lane into Delmar from Albany. There have been a rash of car break-ins, so according to them, the perpetrators must be from Albany. They call the path the “Ho Chi Min Trail,” but I don’t think they’re suggesting it’s the Vietcong breaking into cars, do you? No, they’re saying it’s blacks from the South End.

Over on Twitter, there was a lively argument over whether these rail trails should remain unpaved green space, instead of developed into slick super highways for speeding bicyclists.

There may be something to that.

If you’ve been on the paved section between Albany and Slingerlands, you know how fast people ride. I made the mistake of running on the trail a few times, very early in the morning, and had to dodge careless cyclists who were ignorant of the common courtesies of sharing a trail with pedestrians.

The extreme end of the trail is in Voorheesville where I live. I’ve been running on the rough, unpaved surface recently, early in the morning when my only company have been deer. There are puddles and ruts, but I hope it’s never paved over.

Let’s not forget that bicycles are vehicles and they’re going to be on these trails they should travel at a reasonable speed — and if that means we don’t pave the paths, so be it.

8 responses to “Trail Mix

  1. The Rail Trail is encouraging thieves from the South End to come to Delmar and steal stuff? What, thieves have never heard of Delaware Avenue?

    • Also, yes.

      Let’s unpack this crazy idea: a thief is going to walk or ride his bike — in the dark — down that trail so they can break into cars in Delmar. How stupid are the people who thinks that’s actually something that happens? “The police will never think of waiting for us at the end of the trail!”

  2. Just another angry white dude with a computer ranting about how shitty his white life is in one of the whitest neighborhoods in the capital region.

    • Sorry, but I’m not clear on this.

      If you’re referring to “Bethlehem Resident News,” yes, I totally agree.

  3. Family is looking forward to asphalt out to V’ville, but we’re more of the meandering cyclists, as opposed to the Lance wanna-bes. I got yelled at by a couple of cyclists for not surrendering my third of the trail last year, but that happens on every trail, especially Millerton-Wassaic.

    “My third of the trail width is mine, how you pass up to you….And go fuck yourself”. Making friends wherever I go.

    As far as crime goes, not picking up after the pooch seems to be the prime problem, but that’s all over Delmar and Slingerlands. And Millerton and Wassaic.

    • True. If you look online, you’ll find there’s a lot of friction over this — most of it by cyclists directed at pedestrians.

      As for the dog poop, I’m against free range pooping, but if it serves to slow people down, maybe not.

  4. David Nardolillo

    Wannabe Lance Armstrongs showing poor trail/path etiquette is a national phenomenon. Road bicyclists often rightly complain that they are endangered by inattentive, inconsiderate motorists. The irony is that no small number of cyclists who have access to these car-free environments attempt to turn the running paths and community trails into personal velodromes, endangering pedestrians and joggers.

  5. Blame the Tour de France for the rash of middle-aging boys in tights with a need for speed. I just rode the Slingerlands mud and it was fine (not much traffic either). It takes two to have a right-of-way dispute.

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