Attention: Banff Area Mountain Bikers

May 27, 2004
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Mountain bikers of Banff please note trail openings, closures and preferred etiquette for trail use as discussed between Parks Canada officials, the Bow Valley Mountain Bike Alliance and Banff Freeriders. An open dialogue has been established between wardens (Parks Canada) and our biking organizations to facilitate increased cooperation and improved goodwill for mountain bikers.Representatives of the biking community have been working proactively on the Lands Adjacent to Banff (LATB) Committee to control and enhance biking opportunities in Banff. The LATB committee will be presenting its reports for public scrutiny late fall 2004. Adoption, by all bikers, of the following guidelines and trail closures will help improve public perception of our sport and hopefully lead to improved riding opportunities.

Closed Trail Systems, Banff Area 2004

The Superintendent’s Order dated June 14, 2001 restricting Mountain Biking to designated trail systems will remain in effect throughout the 2004 riding season. These trails are set out in the Parks Canada Map. Park wardens do have the power to charge riders for noncompliance. We ask that all riders comply with the order as a gesture of goodwill and understanding. Riders are not permitted to ‘freeride’ in the National Park (i.e. Riding off trail); in particular, damage on the lower hoodoo area has resulted in the destruction of vegetation and landforms.

Norquay trail closures will remain in place with the exception of Stoney Squaw (upper and lower).

The Sulphur Mountain frontside Trail and the Tunnel Mountain summit trail will be closed to biking.

Carrot Creek area and Johnston Lake loop are off limits to bikers

*This is not an exhaustive list of closures, just some of the most heavily ridden areas. Please consult the Parks Canada Map and local bike shops if you are unsure of the status of a trail.

Open Trail Systems Summer 2004

Biking on the Tunnel Mountain Trail system, except the main hiking trail to the summit, will be permitted in 2004. This is not clearly stated in the Superintendent’s Order or on the Parks Canada Map. The Parks Canada has advised that riders will not be charged in 2004 if they are riding responsibly on the existing Tunnel Mountain Trail system. This includes trails starting off the water tower by the campground and above the Banff Center, Jelly Doughnut, Mountain God, Serges’s Run, and the others around there. This does not include Outer Limits. The LATB is working on a more permanent solution.

Upper and Lower Stoney Squaw trails are open to mountain biking.

The Rimrock trail to Banff Springs Hotel is open but please avoid downhilling on it during peak hours (11-6) and be very aware of hikers and horses. Riders must yield to hikers and horses. Most trails in Banff National Park are multi user trails and we must all share the trail and be respectful of one another.

Minnewanka Trails, Lower Bank Head and the Water tower trails are open to bikers.

Spray Loop, Golf Course Loop, Banff Trail, Sundance Canyon (minus the loop), Healy Creek and Sulphur Mountain Fire road are also open to bikers

*This is not an exhaustive list of open trails, just some of the most heavily ridden areas. Please consult the Parks Canada Map or the local bike shops if you are unsure of the status of a trail.

Local Mountain Biking Initiatives

It is imperative that all bikers support a few initiatives to help secure the future of our sport as well as improve our image in the eyes of other trail users, Parks Canada, the general public and visitors.

No vehicle shuttling in Banff National Park

We lost riding on the front of the Norquay road primarily as a result of overuse due to car shuttling. Shuttling is something Parks Canada and local riders do not want to see. Simply put, car shuttling causes too much erosion and results in trail and area closures. If you see shuttlers please tell them the reasons why shuttling is inappropriate in the National Park (i.e.: Pollution and excessive trail erosion) and that we've lost most of our quality downhill riding as a result of shuttling. This includes people shuttling open trails such as Stoney Squaw and the Rimrock trail. Parks Canada wardens would consider self- policing on this aspect a major act of goodwill on our behalf. Shuttling is something we must give up as a tradeoff for biking in the national park.
If you mount up, you can ride up!

Trail Upkeep

Take stewardship over your favorite trail and conduct low level trail maintenance – clear deadfall, pick up trash and prevent trail braiding. Do not cut trees, harm vegetation, cut new trails, dig or build stunts.

Got a major project in mind, seen an area that needs attention, then get in touch with your local biking representative (below) and we will see if arrangements can be made with Parks Canada to conduct more intensive trail maintenance.

Follow the IMBA “Rules of the Trail”

Ride on Open Trail
Plan ahead
Leave no trace
Control your bike (ride it, don’t slide it)
Yield trail to hikers and horses
Don't scare animals
In Banff National Park, educate yourself about wildlife corridors.

Banff Bike Park

A proposal for a ‘Banff Bike Park” has been submitted to the town of Banff administration. Verbal support for such a project has been given from wardens, Town of Banff councilors, local businesses and riders. Please stay tuned as volunteers will be needed to lobby the Town of Banff and to help construct such a project that will include dirt jumps and stunts.

Lower Stoney Trail Work

A trail maintenance day has been scheduled for the end of May 29, 2004. We need as many people as possible to come out to help revamp the trail surface. Parks Canada will join us for a day of work. If you love to ride in Banff there is no reason not to attend. If we want trails we must help to take responsibility for them. This is our chance to do just that. Stay tuned!!!

Contact/Questions

http://www.bvmba.org


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