BHA Supports Motorized Designation of Ebikes

The following guidance on the use of e-bike on public lands was provided to BHA's chapter leadership in February of 2018.

BHA acknowledges that e-bikes, like other forms of motorized transportation, can serve as a useful tool for hunters, anglers and other recreationists when used responsibly and legally.

As the e-bike industry has developed and interest in use of this technology has increased, questions have arisen about how e-bikes should be classified for travel management planning purposes at both the state and federal levels. In response, the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management have issued guidance on the use of e-bikes, making it clear that because e-bikes have a built-in motor, they are considered a motorized vehicle and thus may be used only on trails and roads designated for motorized use. 

BHA supports the current USFS/BLM policy, which limits the use of e-bikes to designated motorized routes, as this policy currently provides the greatest assurance that any impacts to wildlife habitat from increased motorized use will be minimized and that traditional non-motorized hunting and fishing opportunities will be maintained. While the classification and permitted uses of e-bikes on federal public lands is quite clear, state-level policies regarding e-bikes’ use on state lands and trails varies substantially. If chapters are interested in engaging on state-level policy regarding the use of e-bikes on state lands, please contact Tim Brass at tim@backcountryhunters.org.

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