Riding the Truckee River Trail

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By Tim Hauserman

In my last episode of the stirring drama which is the EnjoyTahoe blog, I talked about how bikers and cars could coexist in the bikers paradise that are the roads around Lake Tahoe during the busy summer months. In this post, I will talk about another spectacular place where coexisting is needed, this time between bikers and walkers: The Truckee River Bike Trail.

The bike trail follows the Truckee River from Fanny Bridge to Squaw Valley. It’s mostly level and stays close to the river. It is one of the most beautiful places to bike, walk or run at Lake Tahoe. It also can be busy place, and will be even more so this year since the Truckee River is again running. Here are a few things to keep in mind to make the experience for you, and those around you, more enjoyable:

Bike Riders

Bikes ride on the right, walkers walk on the left. Based on hundreds of hours on the trail, this is perhaps the most disobeyed rule in the world after the speed limit. But if people actually did it, it would make things safer.

If you want to spin along at a decent clip, ride before 9 am, and after 4 pm to avoid the crowds. It’s also an option to ride on the road where a bike lane has been provided.

Be sure to let walkers know you are there before you pass them.

Ride at a speed appropriate for the amount of traffic. And be super cautious because walkers, kids and dogs do not always pay attention.

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Walkers

Walk on the left. Walk on the left…I know, you really, really want to walk on the right, since you think walking is like being in a car, but if you walk on the left, you will see the riders coming towards you and you will be safer.

Please stay in groups that are small enough that you only take up one of the two lanes. This way the riders can get around you.

If you have children, either walking or on bikes, make sure they are alert and aware of bikers and understand the rules. The most dangerous moments I have had on the bike trail have been when a child has suddenly decided to make a quick turn in one direction or the other just as I was passing. Scary stuff.

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