A plan to build 17 miles of mountain bike trails on the slopes surrounding Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood has hit a snag. Environmental groups filed a lawsuit last week saying the plan would harm alpine meadows.
Timberline hopes to break ground the project this year.
It would create summer mountain bike trails on winter ski slopes. Cyclists could roll downhill and then pop their bikes on a chairlift and ride back to the top.
Lori Ann Burd is with Bark, one of four environmental groups that filed suit in federal court.
She says when the snow melts those slopes are delicate alpine meadows. “Fragile, volcanic soils -- it’s a great place for birdwatching, it’s home to elk herds. There are excellent places to put mountain biking trails on Mt. Hood, this is just not the right place. “
Timberline spokesman Jon Tullis disagrees.
He says a review by the Mt. Hood National Forest found the project would have no significant environmental impact.
He says building the bike new trails will help keep the lodge relevant and vibrant.
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