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E-bikes allowed on NPS trails

Old 09-09-19, 08:16 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
Really... ??? I find it quite easy to tell.. If the person is not pedaling, he/she is not riding a bicycle, IMO, it really IS that simple...

There, is the real "problem" IMO I am actually, 100% behind allowing E-Assist bicycles to be legally a bicycle... BUT,I am find it really hard to swallow that using a throttle, and just because it Looks like a bicycle is going to be considered the same as a bicycle, IT IS A FAIL, in the end I fear all, E-Assist bicycle will become relegated to "moped" status... and.. that is going to end up as a dis-service to all bicyclist'sÖ IMO

At least to the one's who want to get into cycling and need a bit of assistance or even the ones who want to keep on cycling but need a bit of assistance....
First off, bikes don't have motors. E bikes are something else and need to be treated as such. Get into cycling? Just pedal, no crutch needed. Everyone is a beginner at some point.
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Old 09-09-19, 09:02 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
First off, bikes don't have motors. E bikes are something else and need to be treated as such. Get into cycling? Just pedal, no crutch needed. Everyone is a beginner at some point.
I don't agree at least not without some conditions and reservations. I can think of folks who would have loved to have been able to have extended their live long cycling careers a bit longer than their health allowed. I remember my mom not quite being up to riding when in her late 80's and wishing she could ride (she was doing centuries well into her 70s). She was still sharp enough mentally and almost able. Lots of older and/or slightly handicapped folks may fit the category of folks that might be able to ride an ebike but not a regular bike. Some folks that are just in a very poor state of physical fitness may actually try one and wind up becoming cyclists. Heck even folks that are just too lazy may wind up being inspired, stranger things have happened. I think places like the C&O towpath near DC are precisely where all these folks benefit the most and serious cyclists are impacted the least.

I have another family member now who has a hilly commute that they just are not up to with a small child on the way to daycare in tow. They want to use a bike for their commute. They want to pedal, but need a little assist. The ebike is the answer for them. I guess you may be including this case in the "something else" category though. For that matter maybe all of the cases I mentioned could be in the something else category, but I think that some (most?) of the national park trails that allow ebikes are exactly the kind of places that suit them.
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Old 09-09-19, 11:45 AM
  #28  
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^^^^ The issue is e bikes on natural surface trails. Not commuting or other paved stuff. I'm all about one less car, really. Got a HP? the ADA , with some exceptions allows a broad interpretation of OPMD. You still have to pedal a pedal assist bike. What am I missing?
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Old 09-09-19, 11:50 AM
  #29  
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We share our bike paths with motorcycles here. Praise the lord.
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Old 09-09-19, 01:45 PM
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My concerns are:
  • passing at unsafe speeds
  • trail erosion

Speeding is not an e-bike issue as I've seen many a roadie going top speed down a busy MUP. Enforcement is tricky because, while it happens, it's not a big enough issue (at least where I live) to dedicate police to the task of bike trail speed enforcement. To my mind, the power/speed differentiation between an e-bike and a moped is sufficient make ebikes compatible with most bike infrastructure. There should still be enforcement, but the enforcement should be because you operated your vehicle unsafely, not because of what technology you used to accomplish it.

Trail erosion seems like it'd be largely an issue horsepower and weight. Really weight probably isn't that helpful of a factor given that the weight of an ebike is generally less than the weight of the rider. So it comes down to horsepower and responsible trail riding in general, which is not ebike-specific. Identifying what constitutes damaging trail behavior would probably be more helpful than just targeting a specific kind of vehicle.

If you are operating your vehicle safely and not to the detriment of the infrastructure or other users, I could care less whether you power it by your legs, your arm, electricity, hamsters, or Mr. Fusion. I don't see why it's any of my business.
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Old 09-09-19, 02:04 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Clyde1820 View Post
I'm all for more bicycles being out there. Even the ones that have some power beyond mere crankset power.

Just so long as passing speeds are reasonable, and so long as folks don't put others in danger. At which point, I fully expect such folks to be just as accountable as anyone else putting others at risk with close and/or overly-fast operation for the conditions.

Good step. At some point, it was bound to happen, simply given the trends in bike sales.
Yeah, but Ďaccountableí usually means subject to judgement by those injured by the accountable rider. Then you get into the issue of mandatory insurance which brings in a cascade of regulations, registration, licensing etc. I donít like where this is all headed: a secondary mechanized highway system.
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Old 09-09-19, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Rob_E View Post
My concerns are:
  • passing at unsafe speeds
  • trail erosion

Speeding is not an e-bike issue as I've seen many a roadie going top speed down a busy MUP. Enforcement is tricky because, while it happens, it's not a big enough issue (at least where I live) to dedicate police to the task of bike trail speed enforcement. To my mind, the power/speed differentiation between an e-bike and a moped is sufficient make ebikes compatible with most bike infrastructure. There should still be enforcement, but the enforcement should be because you operated your vehicle unsafely, not because of what technology you used to accomplish it.

Trail erosion seems like it'd be largely an issue horsepower and weight. Really weight probably isn't that helpful of a factor given that the weight of an ebike is generally less than the weight of the rider. So it comes down to horsepower and responsible trail riding in general, which is not ebike-specific. Identifying what constitutes damaging trail behavior would probably be more helpful than just targeting a specific kind of vehicle.

If you are operating your vehicle safely and not to the detriment of the infrastructure or other users, I could care less whether you power it by your legs, your arm, electricity, hamsters, or Mr. Fusion. I don't see why it's any of my business.
Specialized turbo bike does 28 mph. No roadie legs required.
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Old 09-09-19, 02:56 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
Specialized turbo bike does 28 mph. No roadie legs required.
Right. You can achieve that speed with a motor. You can achieve that speed with some really strong legs. You can achieve that speed with a nice, long, downhill. If that speed is too fast for the current conditions, set a speed limit. Enforce the speed limit. My car's speedometer went up to 120mph, but the highest speed limit I ever saw was 75. They didn't say, "That car goes too fast for this road. You can't have it here." They said, "Go faster than the number on this sign, and there will be consequences."
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Old 09-10-19, 08:53 AM
  #34  
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When I am older and can't pedal as well, I will buy an e bike. For certain types of touring like moderate CC or B&B they would be great. Not everyone wants to knock themselves out physically and they provide an entry into this sort of travel away from cars. I'm all for it. Thank goodness they aren't loud 2 stroke engines or belching oily smoke.

As it is, if I had the disposable cash, I would buy an e full suspension mtb. For downhill parks those things are the cats pajamas!
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Old 09-10-19, 10:29 AM
  #35  
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I want to be clear on one point. I am not opposed to e-bikes.

For older riders that would like something for errands, etc., I think they are great. And for a commuter, I think they would be great too. During summer, usually when I go to the grocery store it is a two mile one way trip on my old Bridgestone mountain bike that I use for errands. I use that instead of my truck for all kinds of errands when the weather is nice. But if I was physically unable to do errands on my errand bike I would prefer to have the option to ride an e-bike for that sort of thing.

But, I consider an e-bike to be comparable to an electrically powered moped or small motorcycle. And that is why I think they should be limited to operating only on roads. Not on bike paths or multi-use paths that were designed for muscle powered activities, often these paths are significantly narrower than a single traffic lane because they were designed without motorized vehicles in mind.
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Old 09-10-19, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
I want to be clear on one point. I am not opposed to e-bikes.

For older riders that would like something for errands, etc., I think they are great. And for a commuter, I think they would be great too. During summer, usually when I go to the grocery store it is a two mile one way trip on my old Bridgestone mountain bike that I use for errands. I use that instead of my truck for all kinds of errands when the weather is nice. But if I was physically unable to do errands on my errand bike I would prefer to have the option to ride an e-bike for that sort of thing.

But, I consider an e-bike to be comparable to an electrically powered moped or small motorcycle. And that is why I think they should be limited to operating only on roads. Not on bike paths or multi-use paths that were designed for muscle powered activities, often these paths are significantly narrower than a single traffic lane because they were designed without motorized vehicles in mind.
We can't stop progress though. As more municipalities struggle to make bike accessible infrastructure they aren't going to create yet a third tier route for e bikes that basically occupy the same operating needs.

Same with parks. If they provide bicycle accessible trails they aren't going to replicate all those trails for e bikes. If e bike use outpaces bicycles, and if parks provide access for the majority, would we be ok with banning traditional bikes because they slow down e bike use?

When we look at e bike access we should consider the shoe being on the other foot as they may become more popular and demand control of available resources. From their perspective traditional bikes may pose problems as well.
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Old 09-10-19, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Happy Feet View Post
We can't stop progress though. As more municipalities struggle to make bike accessible infrastructure they aren't going to create yet a third tier route for e bikes that basically occupy the same operating needs.

Same with parks. If they provide bicycle accessible trails they aren't going to replicate all those trails for e bikes. If e bike use outpaces bicycles, and if parks provide access for the majority, would we be ok with banning traditional bikes because they slow down e bike use?

When we look at e bike access we should consider the shoe being on the other foot as they may become more popular and demand control of available resources. From their perspective traditional bikes may pose problems as well.
For us here in New England, of concern are the current rules regarding motorized off road use. A mish mash of town, state, fed and local rules exist, sometime all within the same riding area.
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Old 09-11-19, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Rob_E View Post
Right. You can achieve that speed with a motor. You can achieve that speed with some really strong legs. You can achieve that speed with a nice, long, downhill. If that speed is too fast for the current conditions, set a speed limit. Enforce the speed limit. My car's speedometer went up to 120mph, but the highest speed limit I ever saw was 75. They didn't say, "That car goes too fast for this road. You can't have it here." They said, "Go faster than the number on this sign, and there will be consequences."
Right, so weíll have cops with radar (which wonít work well on a target like a carbon fibre bike) manning the trails. Of course, thatíll have to be paid for so some extra fees or taxes or licensing in addition to the regulations I foresee. This will be as much fun as commuting to work on a freeway!
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Old 09-11-19, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Rob_E View Post
Right. You can achieve that speed with a motor. You can achieve that speed with some really strong legs. You can achieve that speed with a nice, long, downhill. If that speed is too fast for the current conditions, set a speed limit. Enforce the speed limit. My car's speedometer went up to 120mph, but the highest speed limit I ever saw was 75. They didn't say, "That car goes too fast for this road. You can't have it here." They said, "Go faster than the number on this sign, and there will be consequences."
My point is that just about anybody that can turn pedals, can do that speed. No downhill or roadie legs needed. You think anyone will have radar gun on a bike path, singletrack or MUP?
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Old 09-12-19, 05:34 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Mountain Mitch View Post
cops with radar (which wonít work well on a target like a carbon fibre bike)
Not necessarily relevant, but I have always found that the radar that warns cars what their speed is on signs on the roadside always seemed to work fine both when I was running and when I was on a bike. I'd guess it wasn't as good of a radar device or as well pointed as the gun the cops use. Just saying technical aspects of the radar won't be the reason for lack of enforcement.
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Old 09-12-19, 07:25 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
My point is that just about anybody that can turn pedals, can do that speed. No downhill or roadie legs needed. You think anyone will have radar gun on a bike path, singletrack or MUP?
My point is that some people can go that fast even if we outlaw ebikes. Therefore, outlawing ebikes is not a solution to that particular problem.

And, no, I find it hard to see how we'd enforce the speed limits on single track, but then "traffic" on a single track tends to move at the pace of the slowest rider. On a MUP, speed enforcement would make sense if it became a problem. In reality, many cyclists ignore the speed limit on the MUPs around me, and it doesn't really bother me as long as they pass safely and don't go at super speeds around the slower moving folks, and most are careful, pass safely, and slow down when it's congested. But when I see someone shoot by or squeeze between people walking in opposite directions, they generally don't appear to have a motor. The reason we don't have enforcement is because we don't really many (or any, that I'm aware of) incidents of people being injured by speeding cyclists.
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Old 09-12-19, 07:58 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Time for a new train video.
Heh. Iím taking a break in Rockwood right now as a train is going by. Didnít make a sequel.

In any event...Iíve noticed 8 e-bikes since I started on Saturday.
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Old 09-16-19, 08:53 AM
  #43  
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Seems to be a source of ongoing confusion.
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/briti...tion-1.5278601
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Old 09-16-19, 09:11 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by Mountain Mitch View Post
Seems to be a source of ongoing confusion.
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/briti...tion-1.5278601
The bike in that article shouldn't be considered an ebike IMO. They need to define the rules better if they are calling a scooter that no one would actually pedal anywhere an ebike.

I rode a family member's ebike Saturday and it was actually a bike that you might ride somewhere if it didn't have a motor. It might be a bit of a clunky cargo bike without the motor, but still serviceable. Those scooters with pedals are just not something anyone would ride without the motor. I think that makes them not a a bicycle.
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Old 09-16-19, 09:28 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
The bike in that article shouldn't be considered an ebike IMO. They need to define the rules better if they are calling a scooter that no one would actually pedal anywhere an ebike.
Maybe things are distorted, but look at location of the pedals in the second photo. How could you possibly pedal that thing?
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Old 09-16-19, 10:20 AM
  #46  
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Mopeds, they are mopeds IMO... and should be treated like mopeds, NOT, E-Bikes, let alone E-Assist bicycles...
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Old 09-16-19, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
Mopeds, they are mopeds IMO... and should be treated like mopeds, NOT, E-Bikes, let alone E-Assist bicycles...
Yeah. Seems like they are mopeds that are being passed off as e-bikes to skirt regs./laws. Here is the photo I mentioned above:



Look at the location of the pedals vis-ŗ-vis the rider, and look how wide the seat it. Id' like to see someone try to pedal that thing and maintain control.
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Old 09-16-19, 12:20 PM
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Personally, I care more about power limits and speed caps then whether or not you need to pedal it. But the law seems pretty clear on the pedaling issue in this case. The confusion seems to be on the part of the owner.

That is similar to a problem we're having in my state, though. If something falls into the "moped" category, it has to be registered, but the DMV won't register these low-powered, scooter things, so they become impossible to use legally, since they don't meet the state definition of e-bike, but they don't meet the Motor Vehicle department definition of moped. From an ecological standpoint and a safety standpoint, I'd much rather see something like this out there instead of higher powered options, and even better if it's replacing a car, but the law is slow to catch up.
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Old 09-16-19, 07:33 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Rob_E View Post
Personally, I care more about power limits and speed caps then whether or not you need to pedal it. But the law seems pretty clear on the pedaling issue in this case. The confusion seems to be on the part of the owner.

That is similar to a problem we're having in my state, though. If something falls into the "moped" category, it has to be registered, but the DMV won't register these low-powered, scooter things, so they become impossible to use legally, since they don't meet the state definition of e-bike, but they don't meet the Motor Vehicle department definition of moped. From an ecological standpoint and a safety standpoint, I'd much rather see something like this out there instead of higher powered options, and even better if it's replacing a car, but the law is slow to catch up.
Ding, ding, ding... and... There is the "fail in the "whole legal system" of what should be "considered a bicycle|"... Seems to me, that actually, pedaling the bike is/should be, part of riding a bicycle... and that is totally missing in some of these " so called E-Bikes"... IN fact you probably couldn't even pedal them to get anywhere if your life depended on it, and thus they become mopeds, IMO why...?? Because you do not need/or cannot actually even pedal them to go anywhere... Thus, they are just a way to get around the "LAWS"... It is that simple, to get a motorized bicycle to sell as a bicycle., Like that RCMP officer testified in court..

By the way, I am 100% on the side of allowing an E-Assist bicycle to go anywhere that a regular bicycle can/is allowed to go...

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Old 09-16-19, 09:59 PM
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E bikes arent going anywhere, so this whole big mess is going to be around for a while and we better figure out how to deal with it.

Following the links from some of these stories, it seems that the Canadian National Parks have given individual parks the leeway to designate certain trails open to ebikes, the end result being a confusing mish mash of rules that nobody totally understands. It seems a bit ridiculous, since the mountain national parks have severely limited trail maintenance to the point that is difficult to walk on them, who would want to ride on them? The conservation groups, with the public always in mind, are lobbying to have ebikes proscribed everywhere. They also seem to be concerned about the dangers of people going 32 km/h on an ebike ( the legal limit for an e assist bike) - have they ever been on a down trail in an area used by mountain bikes? You don't need an electric motor to go faster then 32 km/h.

The point about being able to pedal a bike is well taken and seems obvious. All of the regs I have seen here in Canada (there may be some I haven't seen). require pedal assist to be legal, as well as 32km/h max speed under power and 500 (or 250) watt maximum.

I converted my old 1982 Stumpjumper to a rear hub drive , its great fun for zipping around town. It also has a 600-1200 watt motor and a throttle, so its totally illegal.

https://www.rmotoday.com/banff/conse...policy-1582629

Last edited by skookum; 09-16-19 at 10:08 PM. Reason: add photo
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