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Jane Miner, a member of ASTM Committee F14 on Fences, is on a Smoky Mountain bike trail in Nantahala County, N.C.
Don’t Fence Her In

by Clare Coppa

Jane Miner’s specialty is fences but her heart belongs to the wide open spaces.

This fence hardware regional sales manager for D&D Technologies, Tyrone, Ga., likes to go mountain biking in the north Georgia regions of the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains. In summer, she might be found in the Chattahoochie River, beating the droll heat of a Southern afternoon with her husband, Ed, a kitchen designer, and sons, Derek and Sean.

She describes an area of the Blue Ridge. “There is a little Alpine Village called Helen that’s just gorgeous in the mountains,” she says from her office on the south side of Atlanta. “We’ll mountain bike and then also do what natives call ‘Tubing the Hooch’ and tube down the Chattahoochie River. The Chattahoochie is relatively shallow but flows nicely and on a really hot day it’s fun to be in. You travel through this little Alpine village meandering through the center of part of the city and have a great view of both sides of the village. “That’s a summer time activity,” she says. “The mountain biking is pretty much all year round in the South. It’s excellent exercise.”

On dirt trails of varying degrees of difficulty, Miner has ridden in the mountains of Georgia and North Carolina, and the Land between the Lakes in Kentucky. She describes the experience. “You’re going over rocks and boulders and roots, sometimes through waterways and in ruts and sometimes following horse-track trails. It’s literally off-road bicycling which is very physically challenging and also kind of a mental game, too. You have to anticipate where you want to direct your bike. And you have to know how to position your weight load so that you don’t go over the handle bars or go backwards off the bike. So there’s a lot of technical skill required as well.”

A typical day can involve riding three or four hours on trails. “It’s pretty exhilarating. You feel kind of pumped up when you’re done. You’re tired but it’s very refreshing at the same time. And the scenery is so beautiful. Because you’re in the mountains you’ve got this little communal thing with nature going on which is just a wonderful feeling.”

Miner participates on several subcommittees of ASTM Committee F14 on Fences, contributing her expertise on specialty gate hardware for development of standards for fencing applications. These include gate latches for swimming pools, and self-closing hinges suitable for all fencing materials.

How did a Southern belle become a fence hardware specialist? About 20 years ago, she began working in the hardware home-improvement industry after receiving a degree in business administration from Marywood College, Scranton, Pa. Today, she is chairman of the Marketing Committee for the American Fence Association (AFA), and develops swimming pool safety codes with the National Spa and Pool Institute.

To wrap up the day’s activities, Miner often heads outdoors with Ed. “There are about 70 miles of golf-cart paths that are not far from where I live and we’ll hop on the bikes and ride. Usually I try to ride anywhere from eight to 10 miles once or twice a week.”

Copyright 2000, ASTM