Mountain manners on a bike

Cycling etiquette and safety tips

Mountain biking is a great activity for getting you fit and healthy but only if you are considerate to other path users — whether they are cyclists or not. Here’s the essential guide to manners of the mountainside that will keep you in the good books of fellow riders, and maintain our rural environments for future generations of cyclists to come.

Sadly, open spaces near to cities are limited. As a result what little open space there is, is often overcrowded with many different types of user, mountain bikers and otherwise. All trail users should abide by a few simple rules and ethics to ensure that we can all enjoy our recreational time equally.

By acting considerately and courteously to other trail users on your bike you will not only ensure that everyone has a more enjoyable day out, but you will also avoid the trails becoming overused — it only takes a few inconsiderate individuals to spoil enjoyment for many people.

Remember, the way you ride today will shape mountain bike trail access tomorrow. Do your part to preserve and enhance mountain bike access and image by observing the following rules of the trail:

  • When mountain biking, always be considerate and courteous to other trail users.
  • Horses and walkers move far more slowly than a mountain bike so when approaching them from behind always let them know of your approach to prevent startling a horse or walker and causing an accident. Mountain bikes make very little noise and someone may be totally unaware of your approach … shout ‘on your left’ or ‘on your right’ to let people know you are about to pass and always thank people as you go by.
  • Children, horses and dogs can be unpredictable so take particular care when passing.
  • Never ride at speed along a busy trail as you may encounter dogs or children unexpectedly appearing from the trail edges.
  • Never enter blind corners on a trail at speed.
  • Never ride in areas closed to mountain biking, such as bridleways specifically for horses.
  • Take your litter home. Never leave any litter when you go out mountain biking, leave the environment as you found it for others to enjoy.
  • You can always volunteer to help maintain a trail and help repair the damage caused by constant use — be proactive and contribute to everyone’s enjoyment of the great outdoors!

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