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Colorado Trail Etiquette

a sunset over a beach

So you’ve just rented a UTV or dirt bike from Adrenaline Driven Adventures (ADAC) and you’re ready to officially hit the trail. Whether you’re a first-time rider or seasoned pro, it’s important to know the basics of Colorado trail etiquette and rules. All of Colorado’s OHV and ATV trails are in danger of being closed due to the irresponsible acts of a few. You can help protect our available trails by setting a good example while out in the backcountry. Trail riding is all about letting loose to enjoy and share our natural spaces. A little common sense and common courtesy will go a long way in helping to protect our available lands for future use while ensuring that everyone has a safe and fun experience on the trail.

Don’t Block Access Points
When staging, be sure not to block the trail or the trail’s access point. Safely pull your vehicle off to the side of the road near the trailhead to unload and prepare for the ride ahead. Avoid driving over parking lot barriers including rocks and other objects and be mindful of both your trailers and ramps as well as those of others.

Only Ride on Designated Trails
One of the most critical things you can do to protect Colorado lands is to always stay on designated trails. This rule is especially important when riding on public land. In addition to staying on designated trails, a good rule of thumb is to only ride on trails that are wider than your vehicle.
Only dirt bikes should be on single-track trails. By adhering to this rule, you’ll be helping to preserve the integrity of the trail system for long-term sustainable use.

Know Your Speed
Vehicles traveling at a slower pace should always yield to faster-moving vehicles. Pullover safely in a designated space free of vegetation to allow faster moving vehicles to pass. Always be careful to not widen the trail – find a location with added width.

King of the Hill
When two vehicles meet on an incline, the vehicle that is ascending (climbing) has the right of way. This is one of those common-sense situations, the vehicle traveling uphill will likely need to maintain momentum to make the climb. Additionally, it’s often more difficult and dangerous to back down a steep narrow trail. However, if it is easier and there is room for the uphill vehicle to pull over, it doesn’t make sense to expect the downhill vehicle to back up the hill. In some situations, it may make sense to send a spotter up on foot to make sure the trail is clear and to warn oncoming vehicles.

Additional Rules of Right of Way
On multi-use trails, remember to yield the trail and be prepared to stop when passing a non-motorized trail user. Mountain bikers, hikers and trail runners have the right of way and be especially careful when approaching horses and other livestock. Also remember to mind your dust, slow down when you pass other vehicles, hikers, bikers and campsites.

Make A Pass
Always pass on the left side and signal to the vehicle you are passing to inform their party of how many vehicles remain in your group. For instance, two fingers indicate that you have two riders behind you and one finger means that there is one more behind you. If you are the last rider in your group, a closed fist indicates that there are no more vehicles in your group.

Leave No Man Behind
When out on Colorado’s trail system everyone relies on each other, especially in remote areas. If you see someone stopped on the side of the road, ask if help is needed and be prepared to give it. As a motorized user, you may have the ability to call for help or to seek help much faster than hikers or bikers. When a breakdown or problem occurs within your own group keep your crew together until the problem is resolved. Leave no man (or woman) behind to fend for themselves.

Never Drink and Drive
This one should go without saying, but just to be clear, save happy hour for the campfire. Drinking alcohol while operating a UTV or dirt bike is extremely dangerous, endangering not only you but everyone else on the trail.

Leave No Trace
No one wants to ride on a trash-covered trail. Follow the principles of the Leave no Trace campaign, if you pack it in, pack it out. Or, better yet, carry a trash bag with you and leave the area better than you found it. This includes picking up your brass if you plan to do any shooting and the area allows it.

Respect Others and Have Fun
While many of these tips are common sense, be sure to keep them in mind whenever you venture onto our Colorado trails. If everyone does their part, follows the rules and has a good time we can preserve our trails for years to come. If you’re ready to put these etiquette tips to use stop by to see us today! We rent dirt bikes as well as 2 person or 4 person UTV’s and on-road slingshots too! Whatever type of thrill you’re after Adrenaline Driven Adventures has a toy for you!

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