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Trail Safety Tips

It is your responsibility to exercise caution and to ensure your own safety while using trails. This includes knowing the limits of your own abilities, wearing a helmet when bicycling, and following the rules specific to the trail you are on.


By design, regional trails accommodate a variety of trail users. While this is generally one of the many benefits of multi-use regional trails, it also can lead to occasional conflicts among trail users. Everyone should take responsibility to ensure trail safety by following a few simple trail etiquette guidelines.

  • Travel in groups of two or more

  • Keep your speed down. Pass with care, and yield when appropriate

  • Be prepared for weather. Conditions and temperatures can change rapidly. Dress accordingly, carry adequate water and sun protection.

  • Stay on approved trails. Going off trail can damage park resources, accelerate erosion, and threaten other park users and wildlife. Respect the property of the land owners adjacent to trail boundaries and the vegetation that grows there.

  • Always carry water. Two quarts per person per two hour hike is recommended.

  • Dogs must be under control at all times.

  • Obey all trail-use rules posted at trailheads. You are responsible for knowing and following park rules and regulations.

  • Do not litter.

  • Do not drink or contaminate water sources

  • Use provided toilet facilities – If you are unable to find a facility, dig a hole six inches deep at least 200 feet from any open water.

  • Do not make fires. Use picnic areas and grills if provided.

  • No motorized vehicles are allowed on trails


Hiking Safety

Wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Long sleeves, pants, study hiking shoes, and hats are highly recommended.

Listen for other trail users and pass equestrians with caution. Hikers and should step to the side of the trail when meeting or being overtaken by cyclists or equestrians.

Stay on trail. Wandering off trail leads to increased erosion and threatens the natural environment.

Do not create new trails

Do not drink the water in streams and springs


Bicycling Safety Tips 

  • Wear a helmet. Nearly 75% of all bicycle related deaths are the result of head injuries.

  • Cyclists yield to all other trail users

  • Be sure your bicycle is in good operating condition.

  • Carry a spare tube and tools for minor repairs.

  • Wear high visibility clothing. It sets you apart from the scenery and makes you more visible to motorists.

  • Always yield, pass with care and keep your speed to a slow, safe pace.

  • Do not exceed the 15-mph speed limit. Approach each bend as if someone were around the corner.

  • Hikers and particularly horses are easily startled.

  • Calling out or ringing a bicycle bell to get the attention of other trail users can prevent accidents.

  • Being sensitive to how others perceive you will assure a positive image for your sport and minimize the restrictions that follow confrontations and negative encounters.


Equestrian Safety Tips

  • Travel at a safe speed. Be especially careful when visibility is limited.

  • Let other trail users know if your horse is safe to pass.

  • Don’t take short cuts. Stay on trail.

  • Don’t ride in the rain. If the trail is muddy, use an alternate trail. Deep hoof ruts are difficult to repair and make the trail hazardous for other trail users.

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