Trail Difficulty Ratings and Signs

There is no better way to truly immerse yourself in the magnificent scenery of the Heart of the Alps than from the saddle of a bike. If you love to pedal there are 920 kilometers of cycle paths, 5,600 kilometers of designated mountain bike tracks, 230 kilometers of singletrack trails and three bike parks to explore around Tirol.

The uniform Mountain Bike Model Tirol Trail Difficulty Rating and Waymarking System helps mountain bikers to easily follow these routes. Whether your idea of a bike ride is an easy pedal on a flat, paved trail, a challenging singletrack through the tall trees, the adrenaline rush of downhill mountain biking, anything goes freestyle or multi-day treks, Tirol offers countless opportunities and endless vistas for creating your own two-wheeled fantasies. As attractive as Tirol is for mountain biking, we all need to practice safe cycling techniques and appropriate roadway courtesy to ensure a safe and pleasant experience, free of accident and injury.

Definitions

Mountain Bike Route, Singletrack and Bike Park Trail Difficulty Rating System

The Trail Difficulty Rating System is used to categorize the relative technical difficulty of designated mountain bike trails. This system was adapted from the International Trail Marking System used at ski areas throughout the world. Trails are rated on width, tread surface, average grade, maximum grade, natural obstacles and technical trail features.

  • Blue Trails – Easy:
    Easy Trails are most suitable for families and novice cyclists with touring bikes. These trails have a gentle grade (ranging from 0 to 5 percent) and a relatively obstacle free, hardened surface. Blue trails carry a very low risk. Any unavoidable hazards are identified through notices and signs.
  • Red Trails - More Difficult:
    Requires good bike handling skills. Undulating, varied and rolling terrain with grades ranging from 5 to 12 percent. Characterized by frequent short climbs and descents and shared use with pedestrian or motor vehicle traffic.
  • Black Trails - Most Difficult:
    Requires advanced mountain bike handling skills, suitable for quality mountain bikes. A wide range of climbs and descents of a challenging nature where avoidable and unavoidable obstacles may be present. Strenuous cycling should be expected.
  • Yellow Trails - Extreme Singletrack:
    Exclusively for expert mountain bikers who will expect and relish technical challenges. Any ridable or usable gradient on off-road track that is approximately the width of the bike. May include “drop offs” and challenging surfaces. May encounter extremely rocky, steep terrain, step-ups, tree roots and large jump features.
    In addition, the relative technical difficulty of singletrack trails is categorized further, with blue for easy (S0, S1) red for advanced (S2) and black for difficult (S3-S5). Tread surface, trail grade, natural obstacles, technical trail features and skills are criteria considered in this rating.
  • Bike Parks are categorized into blue (easy), red (advanced) and black (difficult).

Code of Conduct


Code of Conduct, © TVB Silberregion Karwendel

Great parts of Tirol are forests and summer grazing pastures for cattle, sheep and goats. Many designated mountain bike trails crisscross these areas. Farmers and foresters work hard to conserve natural resources and to provide world-class trails for you to enjoy. Please follow these trail etiquette and wilderness protection guidelines for safe, responsible trail use.

  • Ride in control and within your ability level. You must be able to avoid other people or objects.
  • Always yield to all other trail users. Communicate your presence when approaching and slow down when passing.
  • Know your equipment, your ability, the area in which you are riding, and prepare accordingly. Obey all bicycle regulations and recommendations, and ride within your limits.
  • Always wear a helmet and other appropriate safety gear. Inspect your bike or have it checked by a qualified bike mechanic before you ride.
  • Keep off closed areas and obey all signs and warnings. Venturing off trails damages vegetation and creates volunteer trails. Leave gates as you have found them!
  • Respect the environment and wildlife. Do not feed, provoke or approach wildlife or livestock.
  • Plan to return before dusk to protect yourself and wildlife.
  • Take only pictures, leave only footprints. Pack out your trash and keep the environment clean and safe for other users.

Additional Code of Conduct for Singletrack Riders:

  • Always stay on marked bike trails. Do not ride on ski trails or access roads unless marked as part of a bike trail.
  • Stay alert for Alpine dangers and hazards and expect foreseeable risks.
  • Leave no trace! Stay on existing trails and do not create new ones. Do not cut switchbacks. Creating shortcut trails causes soil erosion and damages fragile vegetation.

Know the code! It is your responsibility to know the Mountain Biker’s Responsibility Code to ensure a safe and fun experience for all riders. You can help maintain trails and healthy mountain biking culture by following these guidelines.

© Bergwelt Tirol - Miteinander Erleben
Together on a good Path
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