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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As I was in the zone going up the Brown mountian fire road above JPL, this JERK on a blue Santa Cruz and his wife stop a few feet in front of me and proceed to lecture me on how I was to yield to the right if I was going up hill.

Ive searched the forums and it seems to me that the general rule was to yeild to the uphiller.

I knew this and I told him he was wrong that I was the one with the right of way.
The As#$%LE told me that that rule was not for fireroads where there is plenty of room.
So I ask, as a somewhat of a new rider was I wrong ?
Thanks guys.
 

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clarification-

so you're saying that he was descending the fireroad (a sure sign of a novice - as anyone with skills would be coming out the El Prieto singletrack..IMO) and you are climbing, and this choad stops to tell you that you're supposed to get out of his way? The uphill rider always has the right of way, it is courteous to move to the right side when someone is bombing down, but unless you majorly screwed his line he really shouldn't be stopping to lecture you....some knucklehead that just plopped down a bunch of cash thinks he has the right to tell people how to ride - I hope I don't run into this person as I'm huffing up the hill on my vp free...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I was going up the the left side of the fireroad and he was going down the left side.

I dont usually sweat the little stuff like this but this guy was such a pompous ass that I might have gotten the yield thing wrong.
 

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Bladerunner said:
I was going up the the left side of the fireroad and he was going down the left side.

I dont usually sweat the little stuff like this but this guy was such a pompous ass that I might have gotten the yield thing wrong.
I suppose it kinda makes sense to stick to the right side of the road, but you still have the right of way, anyway.

Just today my friend and I were ascending a double track/fire road type climb. We were going up on the left side, simply because it didn't have as much loose stuff. A guy came at us downhill on the left side (his right), and my friend and I had plenty of time to move off to the right side and let him go by, seeing as it didn't take much effort. It was more just a little courtesy thing, though. I certainly wouldn't expect someone to move out of the way if I was descending, though.

OTOH, last weekend, I was going up a single track and some kid going downhill barely even slowed down. I managed to move over to the right as much as possible as he passed, but he still managed to bash into my hand with his handlebars. Then he informs me that about 15 more guys are behind him. Sure enough, none of the first few guys yields to me....I almost got run off the embankment at one point. Even though I have the right of way, I do normally try and move over to the right so the downhill guy can pass, assuming there's room, but now I'm pissed. . When the next bunch of their group came into sight, I yell "RIDER UP" as angrily as possible, and stay right in the middle of the trail. This, as it turns out, works, and they have to come to a complete stop for me, but I'd rather it not come to that.
 

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nightops said:
so you're saying that he was descending the fireroad (a sure sign of a novice - as anyone with skills would be coming out the El Prieto singletrack..IMO) and you are climbing, and this choad stops to tell you that you're supposed to get out of his way? The uphill rider always has the right of way, it is courteous to move to the right side when someone is bombing down, but unless you majorly screwed his line he really shouldn't be stopping to lecture you....some knucklehead that just plopped down a bunch of cash thinks he has the right to tell people how to ride - I hope I don't run into this person as I'm huffing up the hill on my vp free...
I totally agree.
Usually uphill has right of way. Especially on a fireroad. The guy loses all cred though for being a big enough dork to lecture you, and wrongly at that. It's not like you messed up his line trying to climb ElPrieto or something. (you'd still have right of way there too, though most people go down it)
 

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where you right at the apex -

Bladerunner said:
I was going up the the left side of the fireroad and he was going down the left side.

I dont usually sweat the little stuff like this but this guy was such a pompous ass that I might have gotten the yield thing wrong.
of a blind turn when he came down? If he couldn't see you until the last second and had to maybe lock it up in order to avoid crashing you, he may have a small point. In this case, I'd say you're slightly in the wrong, although I don't give this guy much cred for coming down the fireroad instead of the singletrack....For your sake, it's always good to anticipate what a person coming down may be expecting to see and base your line accordingly -
 

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nightops said:
of a blind turn when he came down? If he couldn't see you until the last second and had to maybe lock it up in order to avoid crashing you, he may have a small point. In this case, I'd say you're slightly in the wrong, although I don't give this guy much cred for coming down the fireroad instead of the singletrack....For your sake, it's always good to anticipate what a person coming down may be expecting to see and base your line accordingly -
Unless the Brown MT fireroad was fenced off for a DH race it doesn't matter where he was. Uphill riders have the right of way, period. If the downhill rider had to lock up to avoid a crash, the downhill rider was in the wrong. If the downhill rider couldn't see his line around a blind turn, he should have slowed down so he could control his bike. If someone is riding down a fireroad so fast that they can't steer around another biker, they are in the wrong. It's not like Brown MT is some rarely traveled abandoned road in the middle of nowhere! If an uphill biker can be there, so can a hiker or horseback rider and we have to yield to them ALWAYS.

I will agree though, it is always good to anticipate where a DH rider may be coming from, for your own sake. That doesn't decrease the responsibility placed upon the DH rider though.
 

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Same thing happened to us

Early Saturday AM Chuky and I were climbing Will Rogers. We were up in the loose shale and were really working to clear the trail on the SS. Midway, a guy almost bombs right into Chuky while she is obviously working her a** off to ride up.

Anyway, Chuky wasn't shy about informing him that it is polite to yield to the climber. I suspect he was a noob and didn't know any better. Thankfully it occurred at an "easier" point in the climb, so she didn't have to dab during a challenging section.

Always yield to the climbers! As a climber, you may often *choose* to get out of the way, but the line is yours if you wish to take it.

JMH

Impy said:
I totally agree.
Usually uphill has right of way. Especially on a fireroad. The guy loses all cred though for being a big enough dork to lecture you, and wrongly at that. It's not like you messed up his line trying to climb ElPrieto or something. (you'd still have right of way there too, though most people go down it)
 

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For etiquette's sake I would say try staying to your right whether you're ascending or descending. That way there's a clear flow of traffic. If you find yourself being lectured by some dork break out the descending rider should yield to the ascending trail user rule.
 

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You were not technically wrong, but it is wiser to stay to the right on a fire road since most people are accustomed to this flow. Ride on the right, pass on the left. There are certainly jerks out on the trails (sounds like you found one of them); but we all sometimes roll down faster than we should at times. I know when I'm coming down some local fire roads; I always try to roll on the right side and usually don't expect to see someone climbing up the extreme left side.

Unfortunately what seems to happen in many places is that the far left climbing line is the smoother line since it's also the logical downhill line and gets smoothed out by the dh traffic.

I personally always climb on the right side on these trails since to me they are more fun to climb being more loose and technical, and I don't have to worry about dh traffic.

IMO, the uphill right of way does not mean the uphill rider has the ultimate right to ride anywhere on the trail just because they are going up. If we take the trail etiquette rules to literal extremes, then a hiker should never have to step aside for a biker on a single track since they have the right of way. The biker should ride slowly behind the hiker until the trail widens to a double-track so the biker can ride bye. If a hiker took this literal interpretation of the trail right-of-way, we would see tons of conflicts.

I worked in the parks long enough to see a pattern of the conflicts between the user groups and a simple pattern of how some of these conflicts could have been reduced. If more users (hikers, bikers and equestrians) would simply adopt the travel on the right/pass on the left habits; there would be fewer conflicts.

Some hikers are just as much in error as some bikers when in comes to etiquette. Many times I see large groups of hikers spread across the entire fire road and refusing to yield the trail because they believe they have the right of way. Too many times I have had to stop and ask these groups to keep to the right of the imaginary centerline to let bikers pass from behind on the left, and let oncoming traffic have a place to travel. Many times these groups argued the right-of-way with me.

Single track is a different story. The uphill rider has the right-of-way and dh traffic needs to be cognizant of the fact that they need to control their speed, call out at the blinds and be ready to stop for uphill traffic if needed. Uphill riders should also call out when approaching a blind to let any dh traffic know you are there.

Call out, make eye contact, slide to the right and have a fun ride. Claiming the ultimate right-of-way is not going to do me any good after I get slammed head-on by a dh rider not paying attention.

I find that once the dh rider hears my call-out and knows there’s someone around the corner, they slow down with no problem and there’s no trail conflict.

Just some thoughts
 

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You were right, but...

I thought this was a good point. I nearly had a head on collision with another rider on one of my first rides many years ago. I was climbing, he was descending (and going very fast) and we didn't see each other because of tall grass and an embankment on a descending corner. Fortunately, we each swerved to our respective right. It could have been bad, but it was just scary

nightops said:
Were you in the apex of a blind turn when he came down? If he couldn't see you until the last second ....For your sake, it's always good to anticipate what a person coming down may be expecting to see and base your line accordingly -
Just like driving, it is prudent not to carry so much speed around a corner that you can't stop if something is in your way.

And in riding offroad, I find it a good rule to tend to the right if I think there will be oncoming traffic, as staying right is what most folks who drive do reflexively. Be especially wary of folks too young to drive, as they aren't as predictable.
 
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