Author Topic: ACA Pacific Coast Route Section 4 Camp Pendleton access changing 9/30/18  (Read 5354 times)

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Offline TooManyBikes

The Marine Corps is changing the requirements to access the bike route thru Camp Pendleton effective 10/1/18.  Given that the new rules require significantly more effort to obtain a pass and will require an in-person visit to the base's visitor center, this will likely remove the road thru MCB Pendleton as the quiet alternative to riding the I-5 shoulder between Las Pulgas and Harbor Drive.

Email I rec'd from the base below:

To cyclists who transit Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton,
Beginning October 1, 2018, all cyclists who wish to access the cycling routeat Camp Pendleton will be required to register with the new Department ofDefense Biometric Identification System before they enter the base. Camp Pendleton is currently transitioning from one base access system toanother. The old system will be used through September to give base visitors time to register to DBIDS.  Cyclists who are currently accessing the base via the old system will be able to continue to do so until September 30th. New cyclists, or cyclists whose old registration expires will be required to register for DBIDS.

To register for a DBIDS bicycle pass, individuals will need to go to the Main/Vandegrift Boulevard visitors center and are required to show an
acceptable identity source document such as a valid government issued photo ID (I.E. Real ID ACT compliant driver's license, state identification card, or passport) to establish their identity and submit to a criminal background check as well as having their photograph and fingerprint taken.

The visitor's center hours are Monday to Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Bicycle passes will be valid for one year and will be restricted to bicycle access; any attempt to enter the base in a motor vehicle with a bike pass will be turned around.  Recreational cyclists may not sponsor another adult cyclist.  Adult cyclists may be accompanied by minors for whom they are
directly responsible. 

The cycling route through Camp Pendleton has not changed [North/South from the Las Pulgas gate to the Main gate (Stuart Mesa Rd to Vandergrift Blvd) and South/North from the Main gate to the Las Pulgas gate (Vandergrift Blvd to Stuart Mesa Rd)] and access via the DBIDS bicycle pass is limited to theMain and Las Pulgas gates. 

MCB Camp Pendleton will continue to foster positive relationships with our neighbors by allowing access to cyclists and we appreciate that most cyclists have been good visitors during their time on the base.  We encourage cyclists who wish to enjoy uninterrupted access to the base to come in as soon as possible to obtain their DBIDS ID.  We anticipate that the volume of passes issued in late September and early October will require long waits, so don't procrastinate.  The new system will increase installation security and communications by receiving frequent database updates on changes to personnel/credential status, law enforcement warrants, lost/stolen cards, and force protection conditions. The system provides a continuous vetting anytime the DBIDS card is scanned at an installation entry point.

On-line registration of recreational cyclists will end 22 July, 2018.  No matter when you registered under the old system, that form of access to the base will end on September 30.  After that date only a DBIDS bicycle pass holder will be allowed aboard the base.

For questions regarding base access, please call 760-763-8435. 
« Last Edit: July 16, 2018, 09:22:46 am by JHamelman »

Offline jamawani

Re: ACA Pacific Coast RT Camp Pendleton access changing 9/30/18
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2018, 07:17:49 pm »
Massive. Civil. Disobedience.

You do not respond to a disregard for reasonable public access by squeaking out a "Mother may I?"
Public travel through what is now Camp Pendleton LONG predates the base itself. (1942)
The U.S. is not in any wartime status, nor has there been any threats to base security.
If the base cannot provide such access in a highly populated region - -
Then, perhaps, it is the base that should be closed - not public access.
I am sure there is lots of space available in Nebraska.

Offline sam21fire

Re: ACA Pacific Coast RT Camp Pendleton access changing 9/30/18
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2018, 11:29:52 pm »
Um, sorry but most military bases won't let you on at all unless you have a valid military ID... feel lucky they let you onto a federal installation at all. Just my perspective as a retired military member who used to have access (and still has limited access in my current job) to the actual threats to federal installations.

Offline John Nettles

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Re: ACA Pacific Coast RT Camp Pendleton access changing 9/30/18
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2018, 11:50:52 pm »
I disagree with your thinking/suggestion.  Just because the base was previously open, doesn't mean they have to keep it open.  The fact that traffic long ago used to be able to traverse the area is irrelevant.  For better or worse, the property is the base's so they can reasonably do what they want.  Yes, I wish they would allow easy access thru the base as they have (I have ridden through it on 4 different tours with ease) but I can understand how/why they are doing what they are doing.  With 99+% of civilian traffic passing thru on the interstate, I don't see how it is reasonable to expect the base to keep doing allowing cyclists only access just because they always have.  If our country never changed, we would be stuck like we were 50 years ago, something you would probably dislike.  Yes, I wish it was easier for cyclists to get permission and especially in a less privacy-invasive way, but I can understand it but it doesn't justify disobedience.
Perhaps California will install a bike path along the interstate.

Offline JHamelman

Re: ACA Pacific Coast RT Camp Pendleton access changing 9/30/18
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2018, 09:22:17 am »
We were made aware of this situation last week. We are talking with Caltrans to ensure continued, legal access to I-5 for cyclists along this stretch.

In the past there was discussion of a separated bike path along the corridor between the base and I-5. We don't know where those plans are now but perhaps this new requirement for base access will help reinvigorate the conversation.

We will be sending out an email alert to people who have purchased the affected Pacific Coast map (section 4) later this week.



Jennifer Hamelman

Adventure Cycling Association
Inspiring and empowering people to travel by bicycle.
800/755-2453, 406/721-1776 x205

Follow Routes & Mapping on Twitter: @acaroutes

Offline Pat Lamb

How do you want to spend your vacation; going for a bike tour/bike ride, or arguing with the Marine guard at the gate (and losing)?

Personally, I'd rather ride past the windmills and watch them turn (or not) that jousting with them.

Offline jamawani

It is troubling how easily so many people are willing to surrender basic rights.
Homeland Security can do strip searches and body cavity searches to anyone flying.
INS has border security stops 100 miles from any border, stopping people who have never been out of the country.
The ability to travel freely and without interference by the government is an ancient English common law principle.

But hey, I guess it is too old-fashioned for the modern set.

Offline John Nettles

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John, I am with you on basic rights and agree this sucks. However, since the US Government owns the land, they can do with it mostly what they want.  Actually, I am really surprised it has not happened earlier.

This is sort of like when I was a kid.  There was a bridge that crossed a large creek.  The land on the western side had a 50' public easement border along the creek.  Houses were to the west of the easement.  For decades this one house allowed people to walk through their yard from the creek to the street in front of the houses.  One sad day, the house was sold and the new owner put up a fence on his property and prevented access to everyone who had been doing it for years.  All legal since it was his property not much could be done.  Luckily, his adjoining neighbor (the Ford's ) to the north of the new owner's property added another fence on his (Ford's) land that was about 5' to the north of the new fence creating a 5' alley with fences on both sides.  He then deeded the land back to the city so this would be there for future generations.  The city then came along and put in a sidewalk from the bridge to the street.
You don't like the laws in place, instead of griping, work to change them.  Now go ride your bike in that gorgeous area you live in  :) .  That will calm the nerves.

Offline jamawani

Historic legal access on public thoroughfares is different than permission to walk thru someone's back yard.
As long as people still claim the right and utilize it, it is difficult to extinguish. And - - - it requires a full legal process.
However, it that right is not exercised - say for a 10-year period - then it can be extinguished relatively easily

Furthermore, I doubt seriously that the USMC worked collaboratively with county and state entities on this.
They simply changed the rules and expected all to follow - even though Pendleton is part of a major metro area.
This is a time when local officials need to express their displeasure - and to underscore
how much local and state do to accommodate the broader transportation needs of Camp Pendleton.
If San Diego County commissioners were to state that unilateral actions on the part of Camp Pendleton
jeopardize future cooperation on regional transportation issues - I suspect they might pause for a moment.

I would also be curious to see what concerns existed when Pendleton was established in 1942.
And what provisions were part of the initial establishment of the base.
Furthermore, it would be illuminating to see if certain limitations were only to apply during wartime.

If you surrender at the first shot - everything else is simply begging.
That is the key distinction. Framing is everything.

The Camp Pendleton command is saying, "We set the rules and you will comply."
Civilian leaders should respond, "Pendleton must meet the legal requirements for reasonable public access."
Whether they choose to do so is a different story.

Offline Pat Lamb

It is troubling how easily so many people are willing to surrender basic rights.

Like most people here I think you're making a mountain out of a molehill (and yes, I've been over the I-5 stretch in question).

Since you're the person who's outraged by this, what are you doing about it?  Are you going to take your bike and get arrested at the gate, the civil disobedience you advocated?  Are you going to invest in title searches to see if there were conditions for public access when the Marines bought the base?  Or is this just a case of, "Hey, let's you go fight The Man?"

Offline jamawani

Mountain out of a molehill?

It means that non-local cyclists who want to ride the Pacific Coast route will no longer be able to do so.
(The last time I rode it was back in 1997 when you were greeted with a wave and treated as a citizen.)
If CalTrans is reluctant to have cyclists on I-40 out in the Mojave, they sure won't cotton to cyclists on the San Diego Frwy.

So then, what? Amtrak?
Only 2 trains a day stop at San Clemente - so you have to catch the train up in San Juan Capistrano.
Plus you have to make reservations for your bike - with limited slots available.


And, yes, actually I do act on bike restrictions nationwide. Multiple locations coast to coast -
I ask for written confirmation of the reasons and how such conforms with multimodal requirements.
Plus, I follow up on many touring cyclist fatalities - esp, solo riders - asking for status and updates.
If nothing else, it lets local police know that I expect more than the "He veered right in front of me" story.

Too bad there are so many possums out there.

Offline aggie

There is no "basic right" to enter a military base.  When the US government purchased the private property ranch in 1942 the only public access was Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) that crossed the property along the coast.  PCH was incorporated into Interstate 5 and it still crosses the base along the coast and bicyclists can still ride on the shoulder of I-5 to cross the base to ride the entire Pacific Coast route.    Cyclists have always been allowed to ride on the shoulder of I-5 through Camp Pendleton because access to the base was restricted during exercises. 

Prior to 9/11 many bases allowed the public to access them but that changed.  Based on current terrorism threats military base access has been curtailed.  Formerly if you drove a car onto a military base you were issued a decal to place on the windshield and you would be waved through the gate.  This marked any vehicle with a decal as military (even had different colors for officer and enlisted).  These decals are no longer issued.  You have to show a military id at the gate and your vehicle is subject to search at any time.  Based on the current threat profile bases want to be as certain as possible that everyone who enters a base posses no threat to anyone on the base.  At least Camp Pendleton is still allowing some access albeit limited.  Whether you like it or not this is the reality of the world we live in. 

Offline jamawani

It is amazing how profoundly we have accepted the militarization of society.
Benjamin Franklin must be spinning in his grave.
The statements that many have made here show such thorough and complete assumptions.

If the command structure at Camp Pendleton cannot work in a cooperative manner with the larger S. Calif. community,
then the best option would be for a political solution which closes the base and relocates operations elsewhere.
(On so many levels, it makes no sense to retain a base in such a highly populated area.)
If the lands in question can be purchased in 1942, they can be sold or transferred to local authorities by 2022.

Offline John Nettles

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Or California could just install a bike path along their interstate right of way. I get your point but it is realistically not an option.
 Should we give back ALL the land we bought or stole from the Native Americans?  After all, they did have possession of if prior to the USA government/nation taking it or "buying" it.  Nice thought but again, not realistic.  The OP was nice enough to give a heads up so plans/alternatives could be made.  Yes, it would be nice to keep the status quo but in this current environment, it is just not a realistic option.  A lot of companies have even tougher security (can't get a pass to enter the building) so all things being considered I am glad they haven't just said, "Sorry, no non-military cyclists get onto the base."
You have said your peace, I have said mine.  Have a wonderful day riding the Big Horns!