Letter: Rude runner riles dog walker on Salmon Arm trail

Writer offers what it means to share the trail

On Wednesday, Aug. 7, my friend and I with our three dogs were enjoying a leisurely morning walk through Coyote Park.

Without warning, a runner suddenly barged between us and kept going. He had not alerted us to his approach. He did not slow down. His behavior suggested that he owned the trail and no one was going to get in his way. About 10 minutes later, he once again came up behind us, this time saying something unintelligible and with so little warning that by the time I turned around he was inches from my dogs. I did not have time to pull them aside. He very nearly stepped on them and almost knocked me over.

Once again he did not slow down.

When my friend and I told him to share the trail, he yelled as he ran away: “You share the trail. You’re selfish.” Really?

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I have been walking in Coyote Park for 15 years and have never before encountered such dangerous and rude behavior. I have always appreciated the many courteous runners in the park who alert me to their approach and then slow down as they pass to give me the opportunity and time to rein in my dogs, getting them out of harm’s way while also securing safe passage for the runner. Not so with this fellow. His need to clock a good time took precedence over everyone’s safety. His complete lack of common courtesy was inexcusable.

I refer him to the online article Mean Runners Suck: How Not to be a Jerk on the Trail.

Others and I who walk our dogs in Coyote Park are happy to move to the side of the trail to let runners and cyclists pass, but in return we expect them to alert us to their approach well in advance, and then to proceed by us politely and with care. That is called sharing the trail.

Valerie J. Millar


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