Brownell is off Crocker Pond Committee - Sentinel & Enterprise

When he was growing up in West Fitchburg, Gordon Brownell would ride his bike up to Crocker Pond in Westminster to go for a swim or row a boat. Full Story
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Since: Apr 09

Leominster, MA

#1 Dec 28, 2010
About time...
townie

Nashua, NH

#2 Dec 28, 2010
This guy just has a bug up his butt about mountain bikes. If he thinks they are dangerous to people walking the trails, then fine. Attack the bikers from that angle. But this crap about nubby tires causing erosion and ecological harm is a real stretch. Mountain bikes cause no more harm than hiking boots.
Fizbo

Leominster, MA

#3 Dec 28, 2010
Tree Hugger Supreme
Fizbo

Leominster, MA

#4 Dec 28, 2010
Horses and lugged sole hiking boots cause as much "damage".
Crybaby

Leominster, MA

#5 Dec 28, 2010
What a touching story. As I sit here enjoying my Brook trout and salamander soup I ponder what damage those pesky bike riders are doing on their way to the brewery to get beer! Let's face it, there is only one trail that leads to the brewery and it's MINE! MINE! MINE!
jtn

Boston, MA

#6 Dec 28, 2010
who cares put mikey or booby on
Tortured Townie

Fitchburg, MA

#7 Dec 28, 2010
Crocker Pond is to Westminster what the airport is the Fitchburg: a playground for a few cheap and stuck-up people who think their s*** does not stink and who only care about themselves. The town really does nothing to promote it or encourage every taxpayer to experience and enjoy this beautiful place.
Biker

Lee, MA

#8 Dec 28, 2010
More lies and hypocrisy. Good riddance.

I guess it was okay for Mr Brownell to ride his bike to Crocker pond from another town, but now, he wants kids (and adults) to ride along a busy and dangerous road, only to be turned away at the gate because they aren't in a vehicle with a permit sticker on it (yes, it happened). For the record, we use none of Mr Brownell's 'hiking' trails - the trails we ride, we built 100% of ourselves. We had them checked out and approved by multiple members of the ConsCom, Crocker Pond commitee members, town selectmen and a wetland biologist. The only problems with the mt bike trails exist solely in Mr Brownells imagination.

And as a parent myself, I can vouch for the fact that kids love riding bikes. Give a 6 year old (or any kid, for that matter) a choice between riding bikes or standing around listening to a lecture about vernal pools and see how it turns out. My young son and I enjoy riding, as well as building and maintaining, the trails at Crocker, and hope to see more families join us in the near future as we work to expand the biking opportunities on the property, with a focus specifically on more accessability for the younger kids. A recreation area isn't any good if people don't use it. Hopefully we can turn that property from a deserted patch of woods into a spot teeming with people enjoying the outdoors, in a variety of ways. It's called 'sharing'. Some people just can't seem to do it.
Treeman

AOL

#9 Dec 28, 2010
He is one out of two "A" holes that live in town... the other being his wife! I think they should both resign!
Confused Kid

Gardner, MA

#10 Dec 28, 2010
“WESTMINSTER -- When he was growing up in West Fitchburg, Gordon Brownell would ride his bike up to Crocker Pond in Westminster. "I'd like to see these kids have the same experience I had when I was their age," he said.”

So wait. He wants me to be able to ride my bike over there from West Fitchburg? Or doesn’t he? I’m confused.
Another Resident

Gardner, MA

#11 Dec 29, 2010
“"Crocker Pond is for family, period," he said, adding that mountain bikers make the trails unsafe for families with young children.”
SO MOUNTAIN BIKERS DON’T HAVE FAMILIES OF THEIR OWN. I GUESS MY FAMILY AND ALL MY BIKING FRIENDS FAMILIES DON’T COUNT.

Re: Educational programs:
SURE THESE EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS SOUND GOOD. IT’S ANOTHER WAY TO GET KIDS OUT TO EXPERIENCE THE OUTDOORS, BUT WHAT’S STOPPING MR BROWNELL BESIDES THE OBVIOUS REASON THAT MONTY TECH IS MOSTLY NON-RESIDENTS? THE BIKERS AREN’T STOPPING HIM.

"It's the only way to get to the brewery," Brownell said, frustrated that the bikers are using the path that he cut specifically as a hiking trail.
HOW CAN HE CUT A HIKING TRAIL THAT DOESN’T EXIST? BIKERS ARE NOT USING THIS IMAGINARY HIKING TRAIL. WE ONLY USE THE TRAIL WE BUILT. I.E THERE WAS NEVER A HIKING LEADING TO THE BREWERY.

“When nubby-tired mountain bikes pass over the bridges,"...”could affect species in the water, Brownell said.“
IS IT EVEN POSSIBLE TO TAKE SOMEONE SERIOUS WITH A COMMENT LIKE THIS?

“Another problem is there is no system in place to make sure the people who are using the trails are Westminster residents, Brownell said”
ALTHOUGH WE’VE BECOME ACCUSTOMED TO SELECTIVE ENFORCEMENT ON THE CROCKER LAND, IT ISN’T FAIR. IF ENFORCED (WHICH I DON'T AGREE WITH), THIS SHOULD APPLY TO ALL TRAIL USERS.

“If the trails become worn to the point that they need fixing, the taxpayers will be responsible for the costs, Brownell said. "That means it's our money, our manpower," he said.”
THE EXISTING BIKING TRAIL IS IN EXCELLENT CONDITION. IT'S THE MOST BEAUTIFUL TRAIL ON THE PROPERTY. IT'S SUSTAINABLE AND IS WELL MAINTAINED WITHOUT REQUIRING WESTMINSTER TO REACH INTO THEIR POCKETS.

SEE YOU OUT THERE. TIME TO DUST OFF THE SNOWSHOES.

Since: Apr 09

Leominster, MA

#12 Dec 29, 2010
Like somebody else said, put up manned gates and ask for ID's when using the trails. Sheesh...
Brewery Fan

Marlborough, MA

#13 Dec 29, 2010
The only way to get to the Brewery??????????

Did I miss something. Isn't the Brewery on Rt 2A? Isn't Rt 2A a paved road that cars can use? Wonder if people are driving their cars up Rt 2A, going down South Ashburnham Road to Graffiti Bridge, then jumping on their bikes to ride to the Brewery. I know that's how I roll. hahahahaha

Brownell is a clown. The good news is that those poor high school students won't have to go out into the woods with him.
friend of few wsty famz

Winchendon, MA

#14 Dec 29, 2010
The Crocker Pond Recreation Area is open to residents of Westminster and their friends and family.
Read more: http://www.sentinelandenterprise.com/ci_16957...
Hiccupppp

Winchendon, MA

#15 Dec 29, 2010
I think Gordo iz tryin to say our "Nubby Tire Drinking Club" haz got a bike problem,****blurb****
i dont flink so......sukka.

MOFO.
Rancho

West Newton, MA

#16 Dec 30, 2010
damn old codger!!! I'm so happy for those of you that do not have to deal with this eco-tyrant any more.. sabotaging the trail by defecating on them dropping glass at bottoms of downhills and yelling at little kids riding their bikes is this how he's going to make families feel safe and enjoy the place?
Townie paying attention

Gardner, MA

#17 Dec 30, 2010
A more peaceful place for families?

Yelling at kids for throwing clams/mussels. Who hasn't thrown a clam as a kid?

Raking in little kids sand castles while they're still building it. Don't want to endanger the sand critters.

Yelling at kids/parents for using boogie boards. Ok one day, but not the next.

Making it difficult for volunteers to maintain the beach. Don't want to endanger shoreline species either.

and of course, the peaceful act of harassing kids on bicycles in the woods. Taking pictures and yelling "Your ruining the forest!"

Peaceful? Maybe now it will be.
Mojo

Ashburnham, MA

#18 Dec 30, 2010
I think I might have squashed a few of them salamanders when I was walking on those amazingly well groomed bike trails. What a perfect way to get to the best brewery in Central Mass. Oh ya... forgot to mention... if it wasnt for the mountain bikers those trails would still be a mess from the ice-storm over two years ago!
Its better than forks

Wellesley Hills, MA

#19 Dec 30, 2010
If they wanted to develop biking trails on Crocker Pond they should have done it the same way they developed the beach area, etc, have it be a charge of the Crocker Pond committee. Instead people started hacking down trails and then the selectmen had to haphazardly back their way into trying to control trail creation. Now instead of having it under the control of a clear committee the responsibility is sort of subbed out to a vague group known as "the Bikers".

After watching selectmen's meetings about this it looks like another example of the selectmen messing up and then trying to make the screwed up decision fit, rather than admitting their mistake and starting fresh. Brownell ended up looking like the bad guy for calling them out on having a lousy process. The guy volunteered countless hours helping to develop Crocker pond into the wonderful spot we are lucky to have today, you cant fault him for that. Its more than most do
Its better than forks

Wellesley Hills, MA

#20 Dec 30, 2010
Another Resident wrote:
“Another problem is there is no system in place to make sure the people who are using the trails are Westminster residents, Brownell said”
ALTHOUGH WE’VE BECOME ACCUSTOMED TO SELECTIVE ENFORCEMENT ON THE CROCKER LAND, IT ISN’T FAIR. IF ENFORCED (WHICH I DON'T AGREE WITH), THIS SHOULD APPLY TO ALL TRAIL USERS.
It does apply to all trail users. All the other trails are looped inside the park so the only way to get to them is by going through the gate and showing your pass. The selectmen were the ones who originally said crocker pond was for residents only, and the crocker pond committee agreed. You can't hang Brownell for abiding by the rules set forth by the selectmen.

Everyone has good intentions but access is an issue. By creating trails that have trail heads in non-controlled areas you make it easier for ATVs to come in and start ripping ALL the trails up. You have to have someone officially in charge and responsible, otherwise you just end up with another example of Tragedy of the Commons

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