Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

General Discussion about electric bicycles.
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waynebergman   10 kW

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Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by waynebergman » Feb 05 2017 11:34pm

I am wondering if anyone has ridden lately the awesome mountain bike trails in Sedona Arizona? Its been a couple of years since I rode there and at that time there was signage here and there on the trails saying "No Motorized Vehicles". I normally just ignore those types of signs and try and be on extra good behaviour with my bike and also not stop to talk to people too much to attract any attention to myself and awesome bike.

But I was looking over at the trailforks site today to see if there were any new trails being built in the Sedona area https://www.trailforks.com/trails/hiline/ and I noticed they specificaly say on there web site "NO EBIKES" on any of the many trails in Sedona which makes me wonder if there is new campain for keeping ebikes off the trails in the Sedona area.

Has anyone ridden any of the Sedona trails over the last year, and if so did you see any "NO E-bike" signage on the trails or is it just the normal reminder of "No Motor Vehicles". I guess what I am concerned about is if there is signage specifically saying "NO E-bikes" I would most likely honour the signage BUT if it said "No Motor Vehicles" I may just try and play dumb and ride trails anyways.

Also maybe its just the way the trail forks site get the message out saying specifically "NO EBIKES" when actual trail signage simply says "No motor vehicles". I realize fully that no motor vehicle means no ebikes but for me it makes the difference as to weather I cross the line or not if I see one sign or the other.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by amberwolf » Feb 06 2017 12:04am

I don't go up that way or that far, but "no motor vehicles" does not apply to any bicycle, regardless of what kind of motor the bicycle has on it, because they are specifically called out in title 28 as being *not* motor vehicles. ;)

"No *motorized* vehicles" also doesn't apply, because other definitions also say that bicycles are *not* vehicles. This might be a little difficult to get past because vehicle excludes anything human powered, but this means that it isn't a vehicle in the first place, to call it motorized. But it still doesn't apply to bicycles because they are not vehicles.

If they say "no motorized *bicycles*", then that does exclude ebikes and gassers both, unfortunately.

This is a decent annotated version of the applicable sections:
http://www.cazbike.org/docs/AZ_Bike_Law.pdf
AFAICt they are still current.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by dogman dan » Feb 06 2017 7:41am

Not been there either, but I do recall a story about the ban going into place in Sedona, a year or two ago. Or was it Moab? Or both?

I think you can count on a ban, if it's blm.

However,, I ride all the time in a place with similar ban. But not a place as popular as Sedona, nor with any budget whatsoever for enforcement.

I am told that the MTB trails in the Show Low area are similarly without enforcement. I bet Sedona has a trail Nazi around though, needed to find and start the rescue of the idiots who bite off more than they can chew. In any case, choose the less popular trail, and don't bring 3000w, since most will consider that a motor vehicle.

It's no where near scenic as Moab, but shitloads of warm climate trail here with no enforcement, if you feel like driving 500 miles more. If your bike is a motor vehicle, still shitloads of roads to ride.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by WoodlandHills » Feb 06 2017 12:04pm

HB622 will remove the federal govt from all law enforcement of public lands and give it to local police. Since most local cops are understaffed and have miniscule budgets, this means there will be effectively NO rules anymore!!! Another year or so and we will be able to drive bulldozers through the forests, much less ebikes. :shock:

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by ScooterMan101 » Feb 06 2017 12:28pm

With the exception of Bulldozers ( they do not make single track trails ), your optimism would be encouraging,
Except for those Local Nazis ( activitists ) in any given area that hate anyone who enjoys the Outdoors on anything other than a pair of shoes.
Just look at places like Marin County , the Birthplace of Mountain Biking . You car hardly even ride a bike up in those Mountains.





WoodlandHills wrote:HB622 will remove the federal govt from all law enforcement of public lands and give it to local police. Since most local cops are understaffed and have miniscule budgets, this means there will be effectively NO rules anymore!!! Another year or so and we will be able to drive bulldozers through the forests, much less ebikes. :shock:
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It's 2018 already, ( now 2019 ) lets get some real , improved e-bike / e-velomobile / e-motorcycle designs .

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by WoodlandHills » Feb 06 2017 1:18pm

Who cares about single track? I can have just as much fun on double track and fire roads. I was thinking about access for my diesel pickup and fifth wheel into the woods and desert areas that I have to park outside of these days. If we don't have to worry about LEOs anymore, I'm thinking why bother with ebikes anyway? A second hand two-stroke dirt bike is way cheaper and a lot faster! The whole point of the ebikes were to be stealthy in places where we were not allowed but with no enforcement why bother?

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by E-geezer » Feb 06 2017 2:09pm

The riding in Sedona is fantastic, it's like a condensed version of Moab with much of the riding straight out of town, none of the long distances and driving you need to do like Moab. There is a lot of technical riding if you are game for it. I'm not sure of the agency if it's BLM or US Forest Service, but the reason most of the trails are there and "legal" is that they were built illegally and then adopted. On federal land, ebikes are considered motorized and wouldn't be allowed on non motorized trails, although I never saw anyone who would stop you.
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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by fechter » Feb 06 2017 3:21pm

I lived in Moab back in the early '80s. I rode motorcycles everywhere, even on the Slickrock bike trail. It was legal back then.

Now I live in Marin and until last year couldn't ride my ebike many places off road. Since the law was changed, it opened up many miles of fire roads and trails to ebikes. A lot of the hard core Lycra guys don't like it.
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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by Triketech » Feb 06 2017 5:53pm

Put a handicapped sign on it and you'll be protected by the American Disabilities Act anywhere in the USA.

If you get "pulled" walk with a limp.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by waynebergman » Feb 06 2017 8:22pm

Triketech I am curious on this Disabilities Act. Can you shed some light on how this act would apply in someones favour on an bike trail? ......thanks wayne

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by E-geezer » Feb 07 2017 12:10am

Triketech wrote:Put a handicapped sign on it and you'll be protected by the American Disabilities Act anywhere in the USA.

If you get "pulled" walk with a limp.
That's what I used to think too. I'm not so sure it's true though. In actual use I doubt anyone would question it, it'd be a decent idea and it isn't like you have anything to lose by trying.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by amberwolf » Feb 07 2017 2:25am

dogman dan wrote: In any case, choose the less popular trail, and don't bring 3000w, since most will consider that a motor vehicle.
Not in AZ; there is no power limit, only a speed limit (under 20MPH). ;)

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by dogman dan » Feb 07 2017 7:23am

Yeah I get that AW.. No watt limit in my state either. However, the local activists in Moab will be on your case when they see your tire cutting up the trail, throwing rocks, or you are riding 40mph up the hill. You CAN ride your powerful bike less like it's a motorcycle too.

My point is, a low profile sneaks posted trails easy. Bike and motor does not have to be stealth, but you ride like a motorcycle, they will act like you are riding motorcycle on their beloved trails.

Everybody local here knows the trail does not allow motors. Its actually a national monument now, but with no smokey bear hats yet. By riding a lower power bike, and being polite, I have not yet run into one single person who objected to my riding those trails. I make no attempt to hide my motor, I stop and talk to people, try to make a sale,, No problem with a 1000w powered geared motor on my bike. It's just that obvious it's not damaging the trails.

I HAVE ridden those trails plenty with 3000w,, but not the popular routes or the time of day people ride. Some of the trails around here are lucky to get one rider a day. Or in summer, after 12:00 you have them all to yourself. That's why I was saying,, come on down and ride here. Lots of trail and road you can ride like the devil is after you here. If you get hassled in Sedona,, one day drive to my house. Free bed if you don't mind a mattress on the floor. The trails I built start about 500 yards from my driveway, and literally hundreds of miles more an easy drive away. The best of the trails in the National Park aren't moab or sedona, but they are still very extremely challenging to ride.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by craneplaneguy » Feb 07 2017 10:18am

I just ride like a regular non e bike, anywhere I'm at, no reason to speed and draw attention, plus it sucks up the amps! The only time I've gone faster then "normal" is on city streets and in a hurry, even then I try and not let others see my secret super power. I rode Moab over Thanksgiving, zero issues with anyone I saw (few), doubtful they noticed it was an ebike.

Woodland: I'd find it hard to go back to the noise of a ICE dirt bike, (or were you kidding) but you raise an interesting point. I know many ebikers, like myself, who have long history's of motorcycle riding, but all of them now seem to ride ebikes exclusively while their ICE bikes gather dust. I'd be interested to hear from those that dumped their ebikes and went over to a ICE bike. Seems like a step down, but for sure they go faster, further, and are pretty cheap. I STILL can't figure out why riding my e mtb is so much fun, it shouldn't be, after riding dirt bikes, but it is for me anyway. Super easy transport on or in even a small car is one huge advantage.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by WoodlandHills » Feb 07 2017 12:15pm

Much of what I post has both humor and seriousness in it. In this case a bit more humor content, but I was trying to make a point about HB622 and its backdoor attempt to open public land to private exploitation by removing National park rangers and Forestry Service officers from the picture.

As far as ICE vs electric, if I could find a dirt bike as quiet as an ebike I would buy that instead since, for me, the whole point is silent access to our public lands: I LIKE sneaking up on wildlife! On my rides in the hills and mountains near Los Angeles, I have come upon numerous deer, lot of coyotes and even a bobcat that I startled in the middle of a poop on the trail...... :lol: Boy, was he surprised when I quietly rolled around the corner!

Anyway, the energy density of gasoline is still far, far greater than batteries which would give much more range, but the quiet is just not there. That's why my new project is a 72v 45a BBSHD on a FS fat bike and I agree: ebikes are addictive.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by dogman dan » Feb 08 2017 8:05am

I definitely like the game I see on an e bike, that I never saw riding noisy gas stuff. Not that deer are very common here, the desert is just too food scarce.

When I went to Croydon PA this December, to demo ride all the electric trikes, I was totally amazed to see so many deer in the suburban Philly neighborhood. Jason just laughed, and said,, "Dude, you are in Bucks County PA". Always very weird to me, to be in a place where water falls from the sky.

Of course, gas does not have to be so noisy. Riding my 400cc scooter in the mountains, I see lots of wildlife. It's quite quiet, so on paved I see stuff a guy on a louder motorcycle does not see.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by Wolfeman » Feb 08 2017 11:02am

I love my e bike more than I ever thought I would. It takes me to places I wouldn't otherwise go, and I always arrive with a smile on my face and in my chest. I grew up in the Mecca of MTBs, a little place called Pt. Reyes. I rode every trail there was on my trusty chromed Ross Mt. Hood, then my pride and joy, a blue and white Rockhopper Comp. Since those days, many trails have been closed to bikes by the natural resources protection people. Ironically many of those same trails are still open to horses which do a lot of damage to the trails.
I ride my bike where I want to, not where people tell me I can. I leave only tire tracks and take only photos (and the occasional piece of litter I find). If I get a ticket, I'll consider it the price of admission and keep on riding. I'm polite to all other trail traffic and give pedestrians a wide and respectful berth. When someone tells me bicycles aren't allowed, I smile and keep on riding.
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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by craneplaneguy » Feb 09 2017 9:29am

I have bear/moose/cougar bells on both my trail bikes, they provide just enough of a pleasant "tinkle" as I ride, to alert any but the dumbest beast that I am coming. I don't want to surprise any on a narrow trail, there have been a few such surprises the last few years here in my parts. Though they ended well, things could have got ugly quick. The ones I have, velcro onto the handle bars, and have also another velcro loop with a metal disc so that when you want you can easily silence the bell for max stealth. The very minor tinkling when in use is also handy for letting hikers or whatever know you are coming, if you ride fairly slow anyway. Damn these silent e bikes anyway!

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by waynebergman » Feb 10 2017 11:00pm

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A few shots of some of the trail signage from both West Sedona and the Oak Creek area in Sedona for those that may be interested.

The last photo above shows the icon representing an e-bike with the red X through it, this sign shown with the red X over the icon and many many like it are at almost all the trail heads in the Oak Creek area in Sedona. It was not like this 2 years ago.

For those that are not familiar with the layout of Sedona, the Oak Creek area sees most of the foot and bike traffic in the area. It can get crazy busy with babies in strollers on the easy trails etc. There has been a concerted effort in my opinion to ban and unwelcome any and all e-bikers to the area. Super bummer, I used to consider the Oak Creek area the Holy Land but not no more. There is however some good news. The area in West Sedona is way less traveled than Oak Creek and just a few miles outside of Uptown Sedona. Its just as nice as the Oak Creek area and some places like the Chuck Wagon trail off of the Dry Creek Service road show no signs of unwelcome. A few other trails in this area as well at this point, have none of the signage that clearly states no e-bikes. I road the heck out of them today and they were as good as it gets in my opinion.

So long story short - if your in Sedona with your e-bike head up Dry Creek Road off of 89A just outside of Sedona proper and forget about Oak Creek. Who knows this could change but for now West Sedona is pretty awesome and seems to welcome our community. Maybe the powers that be have just not got around to getting all the updated signage in place but lets cross our fingers.

I got a laugh out of the first photo shown on the Fay Canyon trail we hiked yesterday. They have even banned the use of hang gliders in this area. It looks like they may just ban smiling and laughter altogether come there next signage campaign.
Last edited by waynebergman on Feb 11 2017 10:15am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by craneplaneguy » Feb 11 2017 10:04am

That e bike symbol just didn't happen, someone had to really get their panties in a bunch to dream up that signage. it would be interesting to know if the parties responsible for it had a specific reason, something that happened, an injury to someone maybe that resulted in it, a trail torn up, or whether it was just generalized anti e bike hysteria. They apparently had the ear of the officials involved in order to get it included as they did, so they were somewhat politically tied in with the powers that be. I'd bet anything it was e paranoia and not done to "solve" some "problem" e bikes were causing, but I could be wrong?

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by waynebergman » Feb 11 2017 10:53am

Yes Craneplaneguy it would be interesting for sure to know the history of how this has happened. In a busy multi use trail area like Sedona it would not take more than a few either noisy or fast e-bikes on the trail to start the anti e-bike ball rolling in my opinion. I know for me, my bike is quieter than any non e-bike that has a noisy free hub like some do. I regulate my power so as to very very rarely brake traction on the trail both riding up or down and my footprint with my soft inflation fat tires would most likely be less than most non e-bike riders by a long shot but.

Also these shuttlers with there big DH rigs driving to the top of the trails and speeding down somehow get thought of OK. I realize there is no easy way for trail use rules to be applied that are fair for all as it could get complicated and hard to inforce for a fair set of rules. If I were King for a day (wayne's world) I would have signage saying NO SPEEDING - NO TEARING UP THE TRAILS OR YOUR BIKE WILL BE TAKEN FROM YOU but then theres still the noise issue, so how do you deal with that or separate the noisy from the quiet - you don't, so you just say all e-bikes go somewhere else and I get that."No E-bikes Allowed" are going to happen pretty much everywhere there is a lot of users on the trail unless the e-bike community gets some kind of a plan together and quick. In the mean time I would say we need to be more quiet and ride maybe slower around other riders and hikers. Never never be seen breaking traction on the trail would also be a step in the right direction.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by WoodlandHills » Feb 11 2017 11:38am

Maybe the other bikers at Sedona were upset seeing motorized bicycles on their trails and didn't care that the motors were electric? It seems like this sort of reaction is inevitable if you invade someone's space with a new sort of bike without taking time to educate others. This is the basic flaw in the whole "better to ask for forgiveness than permission" premise: everyone else gets to make up their mind about you without any input from you in response to your trespassing on their space. No wonder it often ends like this......

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by Triketech » Feb 11 2017 12:10pm

Doing some research:

US Forest Service has indeed "clamped down" on the use of E-Bikes. This was driven by a number of complaints about "cheaters" on trails.

See the link and in particular the paragraph on ADA:
https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/btnf/new ... EPRD507239

So what is an ADA compliant device:
https://www.ada.gov/opdmd.htm

It comes down to two things really:
1) The rider needs evidence in the form of a State Issued Handicapped Parking privilege
2) The "vehicle" must be capable of fitting on the path

Therefore, if you have a Handicap Parking pass, you can ride an E-bike, Segway, even a Golf Cart so long as it fits on the path.

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by waynebergman » Feb 11 2017 12:45pm

Triketech, according to USDA in the first link you provided it says......
"Under the ADA definition, any device that is both designed solely for mobility for a person with disability and which is suitable for use in an indoor pedestrian area may be used where foot and other forms of non-motorized travel are allowed. E-bikes are not designed solely for people with disabilities and their use in an indoor pedestrian area would be unfit at the time. Therefore, e-bikes do not qualify for exception and may only be used where allowed by the Motor Vehicle Use Map."

This conflicts with your summary from the ADA second link you gave. According to what is stated above from the folks at USDA because our bikes are not "designed SOLELY for mobility for a person with disability" I think the handicap pass will not really fly. Unless the ADA overrides the USDA statements..........wayne

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Re: Sedona e-bike trail closure ?

Post by amberwolf » Feb 11 2017 3:01pm

FWIW, just because that symbol is on the signage doesnt' mean the forest service or whoever installed the signage put it there. ;)

Someone who dislikes ebikes could have had those stickers printed and put them on there themselves.

It is ebike-specific, and does not by the symbol exclude other forms of motorized bicycles, like the tiny gas engines, compressed-air drives, etc. That there is not a symbol that excludes *all* powered bicycles suggests that it is a specifically-targeted "campaign", by a person or group with their own specific reason for excluding ebikes.



The signs that have specific wordage that exclude motorized stuff I understand; it's probably more a noise thing than anything else, I'd guess.


On the ones that exclude that, but also exclude regular bicycles it might be a speed thing where pedestrians or equestrians were surprised too often by faster riders, and whatever problems resulted from that ended up just excluding the possibility of it happening.



I expect that like most places where stuff gets banned, there were hooligans abusing them, and whatever the hooligans used was just banned in general as the easy way out, rather than doing it the harder way of removing just the hooligans themselves.

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