QWR believes that all outdoor recreational activities should have a responsible land-use ethic.
Land managers today face a growing number of new trail-related technologies. QWR believes many of these new vehicle types are encouraging the public to get off the couch and hit trail… which is a very positive development.
However, with new vehicle types comes the responsibility of that sport to adopt and embrace a sound trail ethic that imparts respect for the land and other user groups.
Over the last several years at various recreation events, QWR has visited with local, state, and federal recreation officials about the explosive growth of E-bikes on both motorized and non-motorized trails.
According to Wikipedia, “An electric bicycle, also known as an e-bike or booster bike, is a bicycle with an integrated electric motor which can be used for propulsion… E-bikes use rechargeable batteries and the lighter varieties can travel up to 25 to 32 km/h (16 to 20 mph), depending on the laws of the country in which they are sold, while the more high-powered varieties can often do in excess of 45 km/h (28 mph).”
In numerous areas, the trail-use laws and regulations are unclear as they relate to E-bike cross-county travel or use on public land trail systems. This is not the fault of the E-bike community or the agency. Rather it is a sign that E-bike stakeholders should be proactive and work with trail managers to create a strong land-use ethic and regulatory platform that both protect the resource and the long-term viability of the sport.
QWR is encouraging the E-bike community to consider developing a common sense national trail ethos through the collaborative process with agency staff and other user groups. This will be good for the sport and the land.
Comments and feedback are encouraged.