The following mountain bikers code was developed by the Mountain Bike Association of New Zealand with key stakeholders and DOC.
- Stay in control. So you can safely avoid others and keep yourself intact.
- Give way to walkers.
- Use a bell or greeting when approaching others. Most negative feedback from walkers on shared-use tracks concerns being surprised by bikers approaching without warning.
- Ride shared-use tracks in small groups. A ‘bike-train’ with a dozen riders displaces other users. 6-8, or less, is a better number.
Respect the rules
- Only ride mountain bike and shared-use tracks; stay off closed tracks – including those that are seasonally closed to protect the surface or minimise conflict with other users. Land managers are generally pretty reasonable so talk with them about issues or ideas you may have.
- Be prepared - take food, water, tools, first aid and warm clothes. Plan for the unexpected - a change in the weather, an accident or getting lost and late.
- Obtain permission from private landowners before you set out.
- Leave gates as you find them either open or closed to keep stock where they are intended to be.
Respect the track
- Don't skid, cut corners or make new lines. Skidding creates water channels and causes erosion. Use both brakes to slow down without skidding as you approach a corner. Cutting corners is cheating and damages fragile ecosystems.
- Avoid riding in the mud and rain. Both bikes and walkers damage soft, wet tracks.
- Clean your bike to prevent spreading weeds like gorse and didymo.
- Take rubbish home – like banana skins, old tubes and snack wrappers. Rubbish in the outdoors detracts from everyone’s experience.
Respect public access easements
Some mountain bike rides travel along public access easements through private land. All easements and tracks are well marked.
- Stay on the public easement track.
- Leave gates as you find them.
- Do not disturb stock – cycle slowly through livestock areas.