IMBA, the International Mountain Bicycle Association, developed the "Rules of the Trail" to promote responsible and courteous conduct on shared-use trails.

1. Ride on open trails only: Respect trail and road closures — ask a land manager for clarification if you are uncertain about the status of a trail. Do not trespass on private land. Obtain permits or other authorization as required. Be aware that bicycles are not permitted in areas protected as state or federal Wilderness.

2. Leave no trace: Be sensitive to the dirt beneath you. Even on open trails, you will leave evidence of your passing, such as on certain soils shortly after rain. Observe the different types of soils and trail construction: Practice low-impact cycling. This also means staying on the trail and not creating any new ones. Be sure to pack out what you pack in.

3. Control your bicycle: Inattention for even a second can cause disaster. Excessive speed maims and threatens people; there is no excuse for it!

Also visit:
Leave No Trace Center
for Outdoor Ethics:

4. Yield Appropriately: Do your utmost to let your fellow trail users know you're coming — a friendly greeting or bell ring are good methods. Try to anticipate other trail users as you ride around corners. Bicyclists should yield to other non-motorized trail users unless the trail is clearly signed for bike-only travel. Bicyclists traveling downhill should yield to ones headed uphill. Strive to make each pass a safe and courteous one.

5. Never Scare Animals: Animals are easily startled by an unannounced approach, a sudden movement or a loud noise. Give animals enough 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 are serious offenses.

6. Plan ahead: Know your equipment, your ability, and the area in which you are riding and prepare accordingly. Be self sufficient at all times. Wear a helmet, keep your machine in good condition, and carry necessary supplies for changes in weather or other conditions. A well executed trip is satisfying to you and not a burden or offense to others.

Trailside Bike Repair Guildlines: Make sure you know the basics. Here is a list of things to know.

© Copyright 1990 International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA)

In addition to the IMBA rules of the trail, here are a few more guidelines that are helpful to remember:

Treat other riders in the same manner as you would want to be treated.

Do not wear earbuds: The tunes will make you oblivious to your surroundings. This is true for hikers and walkers as well.

Know your abilities—do not get in over your head. Patrollers have walked novice bikers back to trailheads after their friends talked them into attempting a ride that was well beyond their ability (e.g. the Moab Slickrock Bike Trail with no trail or slickrock experience).

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