- BC Games
Mountain of support in Chilliwack over vandalized bike jumps
The community is rallying to support Vedder Mountain Trails Association after someone took a saw to some of their mountain bike jumps.
Donations, tips, and offers to help rebuild the jumps have been pouring in this week, said VMTA president Mark Steinebach.
As first reported in the Chilliwack Progress Friday, at least two wooden features on designated mountain bike trails were recently destroyed. But most disturbing, said Steinebach, was the appearance the jumps were vandalized in a way that would injure riders.
Since that story, comments and concerns have come in from around the world.
“We’ve been flabbergasted at the support we have been getting,” he said. “There seems to be a broad level of disgust for this kind of behaviour. That gives you some confidence in mankind in a way.”
They posted photos of the damage online at vmta.ca, and asked for witnesses who might have seen something.
Wood sections on the jumps were cut on a sharp angle, some time in the past month. Someone targeted several bike jumps built by the VMTA. They were left to look normal, which could have injured any unsuspecting mountain bikers who took the jumps before they were discovered.
The various groups came together to repair the damage the first time in December, and then it happened again. So not once, but twice in the past month there have been incidents.
Chillingly, the evidence is of deliberate mischief, the way they were cut through was identical on two separate trails.
Police are investigating.
Steinebach said malicious intent to harm riders is the only conclusion, since the structures couldn’t even be patched up.
Regardless if people mountain bike or not, they’re shocked when they see the photos of the damaged jumps.
“There’s a lot of goodwill coming from the community.”
The VMTA president spoke at the Chilliwack Outdoor Club recently and its members have pledged assistance in rebuilding the features, as a show of their distaste in what was done apparently with malice.
Some people have reported seeing vehicles at odd times while hiking on the trails of Vedder Mountain.
“That’s about all we’ve seen so far.”
Numerous individuals have pledged funds for a reward, including business owners who are outraged.