SHARING OUR TRAILS
- A GUIDE TO TRAIL SAFETY AND
Responsible trail enthusiasts, have much in
common, they have an appreciation for our public lands and want to
enjoy what our public lands have to offer.
Smart trail use includes adherence to some basis safety practices.
Trails are shared recreation amenities and are accessed by a
variety of users at the same time. Please be
courteous to all users, and remember that pedestrians have the
right-of-way. All trail users should stay to the right on the
Trails are open to and shared by
equestrians, OHV riders, bicycle riders, runners and hikers. Trail
sharing can and does work when people respect each other and work
cooperatively to keep each other safe.
While it is important for people to respect
each other on the trail, it is important to remember that
equestrians are dealing not only with other trail enthusiasts'
personalities, they also are working with horses whose temperaments
are as individual as our own. Horses' natural instincts can
influence their behaviors and affect the way they react to
circumstances encountered on the trail.
Conversely, OHV riders, bicycle riders,
runners and hikers must understand that "equestrian only"
trails must be respected for the safety of both the horse and
rider. These trails offer the opportunity for horsemen to
acclimate their horses to basic trail conditions without
encountering "unknown threats" that can trigger the horse's natural
instinct of flight.
When young or inexperienced horses
encounter new conditions on the trail like OHVs,
bicycles, runners and hikers, and even certain scents, the flight
response can end
with disastrous results for the horse or rider.
When equestrians on well-trained horses and
other responsible trail enthusiasts meet
each other on the trail the encounters can be enjoyable social
exchanges if the
groups understand how to work together to keep the encounters
Guidelines for all trail
Respect all trail restrictions and use
only trails open to your mode of transportation.
Be considerate of others on the road or
When traveling on shared use trails,
continually watch for other types of recreationists.
Keep speeds low around
Keep noise and dust down.
Keep your ears open - Listening to
headphones or ear buds can make it difficult to hear
and communicate with other recreationists. In some areas
it is illegal to operate vehicles or bikes with both ears
Motorized vehicles yield to mountain
bikes, runners, hikers, and horses.
Mountain bikes yield to runners,
hikers and horses.
Runners and hikers yield
equestrians on shared trails
Be sure you can control your horse and it
has been exposed to other trail recreational uses before riding on
shared use trails.
Cooperate with local OHV and bicycle
riders to expose your horse to vehicles in a gradual manner in a
Be alert and aware of the presence of
other trail enthusiasts. If possible, pull to the side of the trail
when you hear oncoming OHVs or bicycles.
At trailheads or staging areas, park
vehicles and secure stock in a manner that provides a safe distance
between the horses and passing traffic.
Be prepared to let other trail
enthusiasts know what needs to be done to keep you, the horse, and
other trail enthusiasts safe when you meet on the trail.
Less experienced horses and riders should
ride behind more "trail-wise" horses and riders.
Guidelines for bicyclists
when encountering horses on the trail
Pull to the side of the trail far enough
for horses to pass safely as soon as you see horses.
Pull to the downhill side of the trail if
possible since horses tend to perceive unknown threats on the
uphill side as predators.
Speak to the oncoming rider and horse in
a friendly, relaxed tone. Remove your helmet if it conceals part of
your face. The horse will be more likely to recognize you as a
Horsemen may pull to the side of the
trail a safe distance if they hear a bicycle approaching but this
does not necessarily mean it is safe for you to ride by. Stop and
wait for instructions from the horseman.
Be alert - be aware and on guard for
Guidelines for other
non-motorized recreationists when encountering horses on the
Hikers and trail runners should always
stop and step to the side of the trail when they meet horses
on the trail.
Step to the down-hill side of the
Speak to the rider and horse in a
friendly, relaxed tone.
Interested in safe biking?
Whether biking alone, or with your fellow biking friends, it is
always important to remember the basics that will keep your cycling
both fun and safe. The follow points might come across as really
obvious, however, it is normally by ignoring or forgetting one of
these simple facts that a great day's cycling turns into a bit of a
nightmare. Here are our suggestions for you.
Finally On the
- Never hit the trail without a buddy, and never leave the buddy
- Wear a certified helmet that fits snugly and always buckle the
- Always carry a fully charged cell phone, flashlight and water.
Take advantage of the technology available to you!
- Carry an ID and put identification information inside your
helmet. Be sure to include your name, address, phone number and