Friday, January 15, 2010

Winter Trail Etiquette

It’s been a beautiful winter and many of you have been out enjoying the trails on your new snow bikes. Since there is a learning curve to most things, we wanted to post this announcement about trail etiquette.

Thank you for being courteous to other trail users and for refraining from riding on ski-only and mushing trails. The new sign posts are marked with appropriate uses now, so knowing which trail is multiuse has never been easier. Mushing trails are particularly risky for poaching. The dogs run fast and silently, and they can seem to come out of nowhere. These trails are maintained by the Alaska Sled Dog Racing Association and they have been in heavy use this season. ASDRA says that mushers do train on their trails at night for long distance racing, particularly when daytime temperatures rise. In that situation, training is best done at night, when it’s colder.

There is a growing concern in Chugach State Park. There were a limited number of permits distributed to study the impact of winter riding. Granted, there are other users that punch through the snow, but we can do our part to make relationships better. The lobby to keep us out of Chugach State Park is large and vocal.

STA is producing a reminder card with trail etiquette points. These will soon be distributed in bike shops and made available at special events.

Thanks. Be kind and enjoy your ride!

WINTER RIDING ETIQUETTE

Avoid Freshly Groomed Trails—Refrain from riding until they harden.

Ride Multi-Use Trails—Winter biking is prohibited on ski-only and mushing trails.

Wider Wheels = Easier Riding—Fat tires improve flotation.

If In Doubt, Let Air Out—Over-inflated tires dig ruts into soft snow.

Be Courteous—Yield to other users. Signal to pass.

Uphill Traffic Has the Right-of-Way.

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