Posted by: FLATCH
Posted by: trumpstinyhands
Mountain biking Vs hikers was largely solved by mountain bikers building our own trails. These days for the most part hikers use 'our' trails rather than the other way around. Maybe in the future there will be 'E-specific' climbs that provide an interesting challenge for E-bikers, which is currently what is happening with them riding up downhill only trails....
Is this really an issue or just a white rhino? I personally have never seen any ebikers climbing downhill tracks.
Our local Ebike promoter internet sensation has repeatedly posted videos of himself going up trails that are labelled as downhill primary. Totally douche way to promote your product. The downhill/uphill designation is made on the Section 57 application. Now that does not mean that it is illegal to go up them. However, the intended purpose for any reasonable person is downhill. I've also seen some fairly well known riders blasting up Leave of Absence (downhill primary) on their ebikes against the flow on a trail that is super popular with beginner riders. Nice. Taking your motor-assisted ride up the trail as kids and groups have to bail out of the way. So yeah, it happens enough and with continued bad role-modelling, it will only get worse.
Now, many ebike promoters have spouted off that they are "mountain bikes". If so, they should absolutely be expected to not only follow the rules of mountain biking, but also the etiquette and established traffic patterns. Ebikers going up downhill primary trails not only goes against the idea of them being "mountain bikes" it also goes against etiquette, and the established standards of care for reasonable trail users.
It is not reasonable to expect a person coming down say Credit Line or Rupert (or other trails buddy films himself on) to suddenly make way for a motor-assisted rider flying up the downhill trail. There is zero reasonable argument to give the uphill motor-assisted rider priority over the person descending the trail in the direction it was built to be travelled.
It my actually be unlikely that this argument is tested on liability due to an unfortunate collision. I hope it doesn't happen. One would think people will do what they can to avoid it. However, the downhill riders are certainly being put more at risk in having to lock it up with a person coming up at them, and being deprived of enjoying the trails if making way for uphill riders who are only able to ride the trail in that direction by virtue of having a motor. To be clear, Credit Line can ONLY be climbed with motor assist. Rupert the same. Leave of Absence - possible with pedals, but only for super elites. There are other trails that people climb here, those are just a few examples.
There are also plenty of technical climbs that are difficult enough for an ebike around here. SOT, Hoods, Credit Line, Take back the Donut, Debecks, most of Valleycliffe....all have tech climbs that average riders on ebikes will fail to clean. That's just Squamish - the shore may not have as many choices.
I'm all for electric-assist MTBs and have many friends that ride them (responsibly). But I'm full-on against Ebike riders claiming special privileges over other riders by going up the downhills against the flow, and then beaking off about wanting to be treated as mountain bikes.