Hello from Boise –
We are seeing an increase in virtual events here on the Ridge to Rivers trail system, and are wondering how similar systems might be handling these. We are attempting to assemble some guidelines for these events, however so far we have seen little to no impact related to the few that have been held here, as they are more of the participation variety rather than actual competition (ie. cover a specified number of trails in a 2-week period at your own pace, and via whatever means you choose).
We have strict guidelines for competitive events (foot and mountain bike), however these were developed around the traditional one-day, everyone-at-once race model. These include participant limits, specified trails where racing is allowed, specified time-frames, and public notification requirements to name a few. Many of these don’t translate well for a virtual event.
We are now seeing interest in virtual mountain bike races. Our concern centers on the potential for conflict, as racers striving for their best strava or garmin-based time encounter recreational trail users on the same trail (most of our trails are non-motorized shared use). The fear is that trail etiquette is forgotten in these instances, leading to user altercations or vegetation damage (as racers travel off-trail to keep their speed) at best and safety issues at worst.
I would appreciate hearing if any of you are dealing with similar events, and how you are handling them from a permitting and condition of approval standpoint – as well as any challenges you may have encountered.
Thank you in advance! -David
Ridge to Rivers Division Mgr
Parks and Recreation Department
Making Boise the most livable city in the country.