2009 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Thu, 12 Mar 2009 14:39:21 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] REUSE, MUNITIONS: Mountain Biking at Ft. Ord (CA)
Mountain biking on Ft. Ord Public Lands: Beware the old explosives
There are grenades in those hills. And mines and mortars. Word to the wise: Stay on the marked trails.

By Hugo Martín
Los Angeles Times
March 11, 2009

As a relatively new convert to mountain biking, I'm already familiar with the hazards of this pastime.

In my short two or three years as an enthusiast, I've been a victim of protruding roots, tire-swallowing sand pits, teeth-jarring washboard trails and slick, half-buried rocks that have sabotaged my good times like rain on a picnic.

But I never thought I would have to worry about Claymore mines, hand grenades, 3-inch antitank rifle grenades and 81-millimeter mortars.

These and other military explosives are potential -- although rare -- hazards on the hiking and biking trails of the Ft. Ord Public Lands, a 7,200-acre recreational area about 10 miles east of Monterey.

Before it closed in 1994, Ft. Ord was one of the nation's largest military training facilities, preparing soldiers for the two world wars, as well as Korea and Vietnam. The Bureau of Land Management took over more than 7,200 acres of the old military base in 1996 and threw open the gates to more than 80 miles of hiking and mountain-biking trails.

But there was one hitch: The Army had yet to find and remove every last ordnance from the scenic, oak-studded rolling hills. We are talking about rockets, mortars, mines, grenades and other weapons of demolition.


For the entire article, see


Lenny Siegel
Executive Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
a project of the Pacific Studies Center
278-A Hope St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/961-8918

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