May 22, 2008
(Editor's note: the following four letters are in response to our May 15, 2008 cover story "Uneasy Rider: When will people get to bike down the volcano?")
I am wondering who has bent [reporter] Kate Bradshaw's ear enough to lead her story astray. Check your statistics Kate, before you make the downhill bike experience sound like a ride to hell. Every vacation my family takes to Maui, we do the guided downhill bike tour and every year it is a major highlight. Want to take a picture of my pretty knees?
-Jennifer Scott, via Mauitime.com
Just did the ride down in April 2008 and it was a highlight of the trip along with the helicopter tour of Maui. I did the ride with the group that lets one ride at their own pace.
I stopped at the guy's house that drives the underwater sub and he let us sample his fruit. He did say we were doing the most dangerous activity on Maui. We plan on biking up the next trip. I am 55 years old and my significant other is 42. Hope this all continues as with any sport, diving, swimming or walking, one does this at his own risk.
Some people don't have balance and don't belong on any bike but this is not for the state to decide. Those who climb Mt. Everest pay big bucks too and may not belong there but the mountain doesn't care. Let's try to educate people so we may all get along without making another stupid law.
-Dan Klasna, via Mauitime.com
Good stuff. I felt like I understood the issue better. I thought it [the story] was well researched and just as balanced. It [biking down the volcano] is fun. And it is dangerous. People have died.
A community is truly divided between providing a valuable tourist activity and the public safety concerns and just plain hassles of locals and visitors alike. To argue all is well on either side is just BS.
But compromise is in the air. People are working on this. Nice job, Kate. My only problem was trying to figure out why you can't keep your coffee hot on a trip to the crater. They got these travel mug thingys that work really well.
-CH, via Mauitime.com
With somewhere near 20 deaths and by the bike industry's own statements, "an accident every other day," it is past time they were regulated, and their customers were truly told of the risks they are taking. I urge you to log on to bikemauisafety, as well as You Tube (Downhill bike tour hell and Haleakala Hazards) See for your self. Good job, Kate.
-Jimmy Muschietti, via Mauitime.com
MMM… CLUMPING BAMBOO
Mahalo Sumner Erdman for being who you are and doing what you do ("Ulupalakua: Ranching in the 21st century," May 15, 2008). Love your creative eco-friendly stewardship of land. Ever thought of growing clumping bamboo timber for profit as well?
-Tamara Paltin, via Mauitime.com
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