An important part of BVSC’s mission is education around trail sustainability, and how to navigate them safely and courteously. Through our website and trail signage we provide information that will help trail users have a fun, safe experience, while preserving our pristine mountain trails and environs.
Our trails are designed and built to minimize impact to the environment. Proper trail building techniques enable BVSC to create trails that are fun to ride and move water off the trail, minimizing erosion. This keeps the trails in good shape and leads to more enjoyable trail experiences.
We work with our Community Partners like the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest service to plan and build trails. Trail planning and design is a lengthy process with many steps before construction even starts. These steps minimize impact to the environment.
The Bureau of Land Management and the US Forest Service give BVSC permission to build and maintain trails on Federal land. Because of this, it is very important to keep the following in mind when using our trails;
Always stay on the trail. Going off trails for any reason puts users in areas not intended for use.
Do not alter the trails. Moving rocks, cutting down branches or trees will not improve the trails. If you think an area needs improvement, please go to our Trails page, look for Report a Trail Issue, and notify BVSC about the issue.
Pick up and remove dog waste. Please do not bag your dog’s poop and leave it on the side of the trail. Pack out your animal’s souvenirs and leave no trace. On our more popular trails, close to town, there are garbage cans available to deposit dog waste in.
Do not ride when the trails are wet. Unlike many other regions, our climate is very dry. We are able to enjoy our trails often without concern for the weather, with two exceptions. In the summer months, particularly July, this area experiences heavy rain storms. These storms can flood washes and leave standing water on the trails. Using the trails during storms or immediately after accelerates trail erosion. While the trails dry quickly, areas of standing water can persist. If you encounter a section of the trail with standing water, please ride right through. This helps keep trails intact and minimizes widening the trail and creating alternative routes.
In the winter, foot and bike traffic on the trails after a snow event or freeze/thaw cycle can damage them. Please stay off the trails during times when there is rapid snow melt. Also take precaution using the trails when temperatures are below freezing. Icy conditions on the trails make them very difficult to navigate. Also watch for shaded areas of the trail where snow and ice can persist.
When to yield. The trail etiquette sign is visible in several areas of our trail system to help our hikers, bikers and horseback riders know when to yield. The sign is self explanatory, but it is important to note trail hikers and runners often yield to bikers. This might have to do with the difference in speed of the two users. But as a bike rider, do not assume a hiker or runner will yield the trail for you. Follow the sign, slow down, and yield to the hiker or runner.
Bikers yield to uphill riders. Our trails can get crowded during weekends and holidays. It is important to always yield to the uphill rider. This means stop on the edge of the trail and let the uphill rider pass by. Yielding to the uphill rider creates a safe experience for everyone.
Communicate when passing. When passing, let the other party know how many people are in your group. When approaching another trail user who is moving slower, announce yourself to allow the slower moving party to yield the trail. This can be challenging when the slower moving party is using headphones. When listening to music, always have one ear free to tune into your surroundings.
Good Trail Etiquette
BVSC helps educate the community through local events like Bells for Bikes, Conservation Camps and Ride your Bike to School Day. These events teach and promote the simple enjoyment of riding a bike.
Bells for Bikes
BVSC provides bike riders with free bells. Bells are an easy way to announce yourself to anyone you are approaching.
Our area youth participate in trail building camps where they learn how to build sustainable trails. They use inclinometers to determine trail slope and identify terrain too steep to build sustainable trails. They learn to use the right tools for the job and help build a section of trail.
Ride Your Bike to School Day
During the annual day, BVSC volunteers lead children through their neighborhoods to school. Along the way they use existing bike trails, follow traffic signs and promote riding bikes as a fun way to get to school.