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Backcountry Trail Patrol is an Alliance Member of
Lightly's Guide to Responsible Mountain Biking
a map of the area you wish to explore and determine which
areas are open for use.
the land manager for area restrictions and if crossing
private property, be sure to ask permission from the land
the weather forecast.
for the unexpected by packing a small backpack full of
on the trail
helmet, eye protection and other safety gear.
up with two or three riders as riding solo can leave you
vulnerable if you have an accident or breakdown.
and riding don't mix.
and common courtesy
considerate of others on the road or trail.
only where permitted.
gates as you find them.
the right of way to those passing or traveling uphill.
out what you pack in.
designated wilderness areas are reserved for the most
primitive outdoor adventure.
lightweight equipment, possibly in earth-tone colors that
will blend with the surroundings.
existing campsites whenever possible.
climbing, shift to a gear that provides comfortable
forward momentum and maintains traction.
descending, apply enough brake to maintain control, but
avoid locking your bike's wheels.
trails that are obviously wet and muddy to avoid trail
streams slowly, at a 90-degree angle to the stream.
Walking may be preferable as stream bottoms are often
Rules of the Trail
The way we
ride today shapes mountain bike trail access tomorrow. Do your
part to preserve and enhance our sport's access and image by
observing the following rules of the trail, formulated by IMBA,
the International Mountain Bicycling Association. These rules
are recognized around the world as the standard code of conduct
for mountain bikers. IMBA's mission is to promote mountain
bicycling that is environmentally sound and socially
On Open Trails Only.
trail and road closures (ask if uncertain); avoid trespassing
on private land; obtain permits or other authorization as may
be required. Federal and state Wilderness areas are closed to
cycling. The way you ride will influence trail management
decisions and policies.
sensitive to the dirt beneath you. Recognize different types
of soils and trail construction; practice low-impact cycling.
Wet and muddy trails are more vulnerable to damage. When the
trailbed is soft, consider other riding options. This also
means staying on existing trails and not creating new ones.
Don't cut switchbacks. Be sure to pack out at least as much as
you pack in.
Control Your Bicycle!
for even a second can cause problems. Obey all bicycle speed
regulations and recommendations.
fellow trail users know you're coming. A friendly greeting or
bell is considerate and works well; don't startle others. Show
your respect when passing by slowing to a walking pace or even
stopping. Anticipate other trail users around corners or in
blind spots. Yielding means slow down, establish
communication, be prepared to stop if necessary and pass
animals are startled by an unannounced approach, a sudden
movement, or a loud noise. This can be dangerous for you,
others, and the animals. Give animals extra room and time to
adjust to you. When passing horses use special care and follow
directions from the horseback riders (ask if uncertain).
Running cattle and disturbing wildlife is a serious offense.
Leave gates as you found them, or as marked.
your equipment, your ability, and the area in which you are
riding -- and prepare accordingly. Be self-sufficient at all
times, keep your equipment in good repair, and carry necessary
supplies for changes in weather or other conditions. A
well-executed trip is a satisfaction to you and not a burden
to others. Always wear a helmet and appropriate safety gear.
trails open by setting a good example of environmentally sound
and socially responsible off-road cycling.