Very bad news. The U.S. Forest Service adopted a new anti-skibike policy in the fall of 2012.
I had a very brief conversation with Beth Fox the Operations Manager of the National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD) on Sunday. During the discussion, she mentioned that the U.S. Forest Service instituted a new policy.
Those who are adaptive skibikers could have issues in the future.
It seems that the new USFS policy is that ski areas no longer have to recognize skibikes as an adaptive device. This is a giant leap backwards for all skibikers.
This means that ski areas no longer have to permit bikers under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Adaptive uses of bikes has long been the foot in the door for everyone.
NSCD has used skibobs in their programs for many years. They've allowed those with disabilities to safely enjoy the ski slopes.
I don't think Winter Park will change their policies anytime soon due to the current COO's three decades of volunteering with NSCD.
What's driving this change? I can only speculate. I think it is being driven by the insurance companies that underwrite policies for the ski resorts.
I really think it's terrible that the Forest Service wants to discriminate against a portion of the American disabled community.
Those with diseases and injuries do not always need to use a sit-ski. Many battle-injured American service members and veterans can enjoy the slopes due to skibikes.
It's really just a terrible new policy. Read the USDA - USFS Accessibility Guidebook for Ski Areas Operating on Public Lands revised October 2012 at http://www.fs.fed.us/recreation/programs/accessibility/accessibility_guidebook_ski_areas_2012.pdf.
If you agree, contact your Senators and Members of Congress. Don't let the U.S. Forest Service discriminate against the disabled.
© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google