I represented the Virginia Happy Trails Running Club at the annual meeting that the Forest Service holds for the groups that use and maintain the trails in the Lee Ranger District. The meeting was highlighted by a sobering discussion of significant damage caused by users of the Peters Mill Road. (This road is east and below the Massanutten Mountain West Trail between Edinburg Gap and the Woodstock Tower.)
The damage was caused by four-wheel drive vehicles but it will effect all users. Forest Service money that could have been spent for other purposes will have to be applied to repair the significant damage, and there is a risk that the road will be closed to vehicle traffic (admittedly no threat to us!).
It is frightening that a few have imperiled the ability of the responsible off road vehicle people to use the National Forest. While trail running is one of the most benign uses of the trails, the same could happen to us. If you use the trails out there, or anywhere, please obey the rules especially:
If you see one of the Forest Service people out there, say hello and thank him. They do a great job and we could not have our events without them.