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Trail Use Etiquette When Biking

Dear Dr. Dave and Dr. Dee,

Our family has gotten into mountain biking and many trails on which we ride are shared with horseback riders. What is the etiquette for right-of-way when the trail is narrow? Do we let the horse pass, or should the rider let us pass?


Having fun

Dear Having fun,

Many trails are now shared by a variety of activities such as biking, skating, horseback riding, jogging, walking, and strolling with the kids or dog. It is important to be considerate of each other.

When a bike rider encounters a horseback rider, it is safest for the bike rider to stop their bike, dismount, take off your helmet, and let the horse go by so as not to startle the horse. You can also speak to the horse rider, which may help put the horse at ease.

There are other protocols of the trail that should be followed, such as when passing someone on the trail from behind, let them know by loudly stating, "Passing on your left" or by ringing a bell to alert them.