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Thread: Trail Etiquette

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    Trail Etiquette

    Hey guys,

    I finally got a mtb that is worth something, which of course means I want to use it like 50 times more than the bike I have now. So when I hit the trails on much more frequent trips, I don't want to look like the guy who has never been riding before. I have ridden quite a bit, but I don't have anyone to go with or teach me the basics...like trail etiquette. My question is obviously, can you guys give me some do's and don'ts on the trail. All input would be very much appreciated!!

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    Beauty Everywhere snowy's Avatar
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    Are you asking questions like what to do when there are other riders involved, people?? I guess I'm not sure what your looking for.

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    Pack it in, pack it out. Leave no trace (that includes skidding). Always follow the yield rules of the trail (normally bikes yield to horses and hikers). When you come to a fellow mtn biker coming the other way, it's usually downhill riders yield to uphill riders. It's generally easier to start back up again if you're going down than up.

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    Beauty Everywhere snowy's Avatar
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    Yeah, Ditto what Phattyre said. Remember to warn riders or hikers that your coming. Just be aware too.

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    Senior Member Billy Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhattTyre
    Pack it in, pack it out. Leave no trace (that includes skidding)... It's usually downhill riders yield to uphill riders. It's generally easier to start back up again if you're going down than up.
    It's ALWAYS downhill rider yields to climber.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhattTyre
    Pack it in, pack it out.
    Don't make fun of me but what does that mean?

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    Senior Member LordOpie's Avatar
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    it means don't leave anything in the woods that you brought it. It applies to everyone, but specifically overnight backpackers. Got to be a bit of a problem when people would literally leave trashbags of garbage at a campsite.

    Some idiot did that here recently. Friends came across his garbage spewed around a campsite, not even in a bag. They cleaned up to haul it out and what do ya know... they found his address on some mail... so they mailed him his garbage.

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    that's freaking hilarious! I would love to see the look on that guys face. You would think it goes without saying to clean up your junk before you leave.

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    Adios, Mofo J-McKech's Avatar
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    When you say "leave no trace" I agree with that and use that when camping/backpacking/riding but how in the WORLD do you except to leave no trace when skidding? Get off the bike and go back and dust over them?
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    Camaro driver
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    The best way to cover your marks when skidding is to, ah, not skid. It tears the trail up and hasn't been cool since you were 8 years old.

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    Adios, Mofo J-McKech's Avatar
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    True and agreed but I think we have different ideas of skidding. Are you talking about coming into a corner and making a rooster tail by slidding the backend out or are you talking about going down a very steep technical section and grabbing too much rear brake and skidding down a bit. I was talking about the latter, of course when I grab too much rear I let up and touch the front but thats just me.
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    I like your question. good to see some want to do the right thing. there are areas where Mt. bikers are not seen in the best light and to have your attitude will make a positive impact to our sport. IMBA(as stated above) rules are a good rule of thumb to start.when coming upon hikers/joggers keep in mind, especially if you are approaching from behind them, they will not always hear you so let them know more than once if needed that you are approaching and on which side. to yield the trail,clean up your evidence of being there,and always greet others you see will make a HUGE impact for the good where you go. I read somewhere that if you can leave the trail cleaner than when you came(if you see trash pack it out if you can) also volunteer for trail maintenence when you can.you will love it and the trails benefit from your effort
    for the creation was subjected to futility,not willingly , but because of Him who subjected it in hope...that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Romans 8:20-29
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    With the skidding comment I mean just don't do it on purpose. If you use a little too much brake and the wheel slides I don't expect someone to dust over their skid, myself included. If it happens, it happens, just don't make a habit out of it.

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    Senior Member iamthetas's Avatar
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    nothing other than water can tear up a trail quicker than skidding. if your not sure slow down before you get there. and dont use your front brake heavily in a curve( I cracked a rib like that, not to mention the damage I did to the trail from ignorance)
    for the creation was subjected to futility,not willingly , but because of Him who subjected it in hope...that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Romans 8:20-29
    the truth may not always be popular but its always true
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    i think my biggest frustrating is when people are skidding, because it tears up the trails like crazy... when i am at home in charleston, wv; the places i ride are technical downhills... well you can tell over time that people just ride down it like there is no tomorrow, and they lock up their back tire the whole way... well all that does is make huge ruts and it makes most places impossible to ride... and then i go to school in lynchburg, VA, and the trails around here are wet alot, and people just go around turns and lock up their rear wheel and tear the heck out of the corners which just makes suck riding... i hate it when people skid... my two cents.

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    OK...Skidding...what should you do to recover from this? I'm a big guy and it's either rolling or skidding basically even with myself over my back wheel. There are alot of leaves everywhere that don't help anything...So what should I do?
    Linkage...My 2004 Kona Hoss Dee-Lux My Mindless Banter
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    Quote Originally Posted by PWRDbyTRD
    OK...Skidding...what should you do to recover from this? I'm a big guy and it's either rolling or skidding basically even with myself over my back wheel. There are alot of leaves everywhere that don't help anything...So what should I do?
    You should not worry about it.

    There's a huge difference between tearing up the trail that exists and widening it or creating a new one.


    I'm not advocating being reckless or destructive, but trails are meant to be ridden or walked. If you have to walk, walk it, don't cut switch backs. My concern is more with walkers than riders... most riders don't like going off trail for fear of punctures, whereas I've seen too many hikers walk on fragile plant life that's off-trail. If you have to walk off-trail, try to walk on big rocks.
    Last edited by LordOpie; 01-27-05 at 11:46 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LordOpie
    Some idiot did that here recently. Friends came across his garbage spewed around a campsite, not even in a bag. They cleaned up to haul it out and what do ya know... they found his address on some mail... so they mailed him his garbage.
    Same thing happened here except it was at a local trail where we always ride. Turns out a girl had a party while her parents were out of town and ditched all the garbage from the party at the bottom of the trail. Stunk SO BAD!!!! My friends found some old letters and dumped the garbage in their front yard, rang the front door and bailed. Revenge is sweet!
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    Senior Member Billy Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jermsoccer
    i think my biggest frustrating is when people are skidding, because it tears up the trails like crazy... when i am at home in charleston, wv; the places i ride are technical downhills... well you can tell over time that people just ride down it like there is no tomorrow, and they lock up their back tire the whole way... well all that does is make huge ruts and it makes most places impossible to ride... and then i go to school in lynchburg, VA, and the trails around here are wet alot, and people just go around turns and lock up their rear wheel and tear the heck out of the corners which just makes suck riding... i hate it when people skid... my two cents.
    Jerm--where do you ride in Lynchburg? I'm from Charlottesville.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by PWRDbyTRD
    OK...Skidding...what should you do to recover from this? I'm a big guy and it's either rolling or skidding basically even with myself over my back wheel. There are alot of leaves everywhere that don't help anything...So what should I do?
    Use the front brake more, and spin faster, try to keep the rear wheel engaged. A tire skidding is not in controll of the surface, a rolling engaged one is.

    I lightly clamp my brakes and push against the resistance. Slow riding, put more power front.
    As I do that i'm slowing, engaging the rear and if I find traction rear ( stick you butt out) lower the front brake force.

    I'm a light guy, work on ballance a lot.
    Not sure if my descripton of what I do will help.

    Keep it up big guy. You inspire others.

  22. #22
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Oh, fixing your bike?...get OFF the run.

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    OKay I have a question for you guys. It seems that anytime I come upon a walker or runner coming the other direction they always yield to me because they can get to the side faster. Should I also stop and allow them to proceed or just say thanks and keep going? I usually slow down and go by. If I see them again( down and back trail) I try to yield to them since they did the same for me.

  24. #24
    Withdrawal Symptoms! Cornish_Rdr_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaseyLS
    OKay I have a question for you guys. It seems that anytime I come upon a walker or runner coming the other direction they always yield to me because they can get to the side faster. Should I also stop and allow them to proceed or just say thanks and keep going? I usually slow down and go by. If I see them again( down and back trail) I try to yield to them since they did the same for me.

    I usually yeild to them, makes them think that mountain bikers are good guys, as most of us are.... If they've already yeild to you, just say thanks and ride past them slowly, or get off and push past them slowly, and ALWAYS get off for a horse...

  25. #25
    Senior Member LordOpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cornish_Rdr_UK
    ...and ALWAYS get off for a horse...
    is being stopped and sitting on your bike not enough?

    The only time I get off is when there's not enough room on the trail for the horse to pass, then I pick up my bike and walk off trail.

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