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Prairie Smoke
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yesterday I went mountain biking with my husband on a mult-use trail: peds, bikes, and horses. There were signs saying that bikes had to yield to peds and horses -- no problem the whole day except for once -- there was a family with mom, dad, young boy and dog (not on a leash) taking up the whole singletrack and plodding along. We stayed respectfully behind them. My husband said that the boy told the parents that there were bikes behind them but the ignored him. What should we have done? Does "yield" mean that you can't say excuse me and ask politely if you can get past? The hubby and I got into a disagreement about that...so that's why we didn't ask them to move.

Rest of the day was great, we stopped and let folks past and other times folks would stop and tell us to go past, we were always polite and cheerful, had a great time!

Sorry this was on a mtn bike, but I imagine the same thing could happen with a MUT on a road bike. Also I did a forum search, most of the searches were about peds with ipods getting run over. :) Like the squirrel analogy too.

Oh and being on a mtn bike again for the first time in 9 months is weird! I missed the road bike! Gonna have to look into cyclocross!

Thanks,
Lisa
 

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Back from the dead
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Not hitting them is a good start. Unless they ask for it, like these people clearly were.

The practice of yielding is born from the concept of sharing the trail. Sharing the trail means you don't run people down and you also let people pass who are going faster than you are, even if they aren't on foot.

I've never encountered hikers who don't let me pass. Did you ask if it was okay to pass? I have to do that sometimes, but usually people hear me coming and step out of the way. Most hikers want to hike in their own little world and would rather that you get out of it as soon as possible.

If I had been in your situation, I would have asked to pass, several times if necessary and louder each time. If that had no effect, I would try to bother them as much as possible, and wait for an opportunity to sprint past.
 

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You would probably have been better off getting the attention of the parents so they knew that you were there...maybe they always ignore their kid...

I ride on a trail like you're describing pretty often. I have no bell but usually when coming up behind peds I say hello from a little distance back so I don't startle the daylights out of them. I'm generally much more cautious when coming up behind equestrians because I don't want to spook a horse so it throws the rider.

The term "yeild" to me means that if you are meeting peds/equestrians in an oncoming manner you move to the side and let them by. Coming up behind peds usually presents no issues for me, I say hello and out of common courtesy they (usually) let me by. Passing equestrians is a little sketchy sometimes and usually it's better to dismount and walk the bike past them, but only when the rider moves to the side and allows you to do. so.
 

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Steaming piles of opinion
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Of course you can ask. You have every right to the trail that they do; it's only that because they are slower and can't give way as fast, we must allow them a chance to get clear in a reasonable, safe manner.

Any version of 'Excuse me, mind if I pass' and a few moments is all good. '(Passing)On yer left!' is accepted nearly everywhere. Being polite and smiling is good for all of us.

The only exceptions are those morons on one side, with their dogs on one of those damnable extending leashes on the other. Full permission to throw an elbow at speed, as long as the dog will not be injured. If you own one of those leashes, put it in the next garage sale, or better yet the trash. They are only good for creating misbehaved dogs with injured necks, and for causing accidents on the MUT.
 

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eminence grease
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In your case I would've have asked if I could go by. If they'd ignored me, I would more than likely have dismounted and walked around them. I used to have a bell and sometimes that worked. Once, I came up behind two people who were so engaged in their conversation that they paid no attention to be despite multiple ringings. I finally said "excuse me" and the woman started and then told me she thought the bell was "the ice cream truck." That despite the fact that we were 2 miles from any road.

I've had lots of one-off encounters with people that are just jacking my chain merely to make a point about "their rights" to the trail. Sounds like that's what you had. In those cases, I just swallow my disappointment in humanity and figure out some way to get around them without turning it into the confrontation they seek. Treat them like any other obstacle that you can't ride over. Like a downed tree or a big rock, because people like that are about as smart as those inanimate objects.
 

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Mess O'Potamist
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If you're coming up behind like that,you should
slow down and alert the hikers to your presence (get a bell).
If they don't start to move outta the way call out an "on your left".
if it's not safe or they not comfortable give them a "take your time".
if they're not communicative, wearing headphones or just being rude then all bets are off and run them over and toss an elbow in the mix
 

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ring your bell and they need to stay to the right...

if no bell, just firmly say "on your left"


lspangle said:
Yesterday I went mountain biking with my husband on a mult-use trail: peds, bikes, and horses. There were signs saying that bikes had to yield to peds and horses -- no problem the whole day except for once -- there was a family with mom, dad, young boy and dog (not on a leash) taking up the whole singletrack and plodding along. We stayed respectfully behind them. My husband said that the boy told the parents that there were bikes behind them but the ignored him. What should we have done? Does "yield" mean that you can't say excuse me and ask politely if you can get past? The hubby and I got into a disagreement about that...so that's why we didn't ask them to move.

Rest of the day was great, we stopped and let folks past and other times folks would stop and tell us to go past, we were always polite and cheerful, had a great time!

Sorry this was on a mtn bike, but I imagine the same thing could happen with a MUT on a road bike. Also I did a forum search, most of the searches were about peds with ipods getting run over. :) Like the squirrel analogy too.

Oh and being on a mtn bike again for the first time in 9 months is weird! I missed the road bike! Gonna have to look into cyclocross!

Thanks,
Lisa
 

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Prairie Smoke
Joined
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356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks all!

I'll have to show the husband your posts, he was pretty sure that "yield" meant that you weren't supposed to ask -- like if you're driving a car and see a yield sign, you don't get to go unless it's clear.

I have a bell, but he he told me not to use it. I had the bell on the bike from when I used to ride it around the neighborhood w/slicks -- you won't believe how many people just step off a curb and go on their merry way without looking. Well yeah, I guess you would know!

Trail was mtn bike singletrack, so when there was a fork in the trail I took the one they didn't. :)

So I'll know for next time. I don't like the "on your left", too many times I've said that and people get all confused and actually go left -- that doesn't help matters. I'll never forget the time I said "on your left" and someone went left, so I went right to go around him and then he starts going right, and finally I yelled "JUST STOP!" and went around him. Happened really fast but seemed like I was going in slo mo -- all I could think of was "I am not going down, I am not going down!" This was on the road bike, was going 15-20 mph on fairly busy street, too.

Thanks again,
Lisa
 

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People in Texas end up with their heads baked too long in the sun and get confused.

Or else the magnetic field change is stronger there than in Washington, DC and confuses them.

Definitely standard here to shout out "on your left".

I think in Spanish it would be "En tu izquierda" ?? (on you left?)... what do I know?!






lspangle said:
So I'll know for next time. I don't like the "on your left", too many times I've said that and people get all confused and actually go left -- that doesn't help matters. I'll never forget the time I said "on your left" and someone went left, so I went right to go around him and then he starts going right, and finally I yelled "JUST STOP!" and went around him. Happened really fast but seemed like I was going in slo mo -- all I could think of was "I am not going down, I am not going down!" This was on the road bike, was going 15-20 mph on fairly busy street, too.

Thanks again,
Lisa
 

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Prairie Smoke
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356 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Texas and the "left"

Hey maybe you've got it -- most Texans are Republicans so don't know what "left" means! Tho, you would think it would work in Austin... (Better watch out, this is gonna get moved to PO.)

:)
L
 

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What I love when on MUT's is when you call out "Passing on your left",,, and they step to their left!!!
 
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