Are Ebikes Allowed In National Parks?

Last Updated on November 21 2021 by Sam

Can I Ride An Electric Bike In a National Park - Our Ultimate Guide!


National parks make an exciting e-bike adventure allowing you to explore these protected areas with ease, but figuring out where your e-bike is and is not allowed is not always an easy task. 

Luckily, in December 2020, the NPS (national park system) declared a new regulation that you can ride electric bikes on all trails in national parks without any restrictions, not only traditional bicycles, allowing people with all differing physical fitness levels to explore. 

In our e-biking guide to national park rides below we will cover why e-bike was not allowed in a national park, to begin with, the benefits of being able to have e-bike access in a national park, which electric bike types are allowed and some tips for e-bike use in national park territory. 

Let's get into it!

Why Were E-Bikes Not Allowed On Park Roads? 

There was a time where electric bicycles were classed motorised vehicles due to the e-bike motor inside which allows it not to rely on human power. These fun e-bikes have been frowned upon by the national park service before as their top speeds mean they could lead to e-bike crashes with wildlife or people and trample plants just like road motor vehicle use. 

Since 2020 however e-bike access has been approved of in many parks such as redwood national park and others but still there of some conditions of bicycle use which we will get on to next.

Which Type Of Electric Bicycles Are Okay For Park Regulations? 

Although fun ebikes have now been approved for a collection of park trails, there still are some restrictions. Most national parks are only allowed to be used with class 1 e-bikes that do not have a motor power of over 750W, class 3 e-bike are often not allowed without e-bike approval as they have stronger motor power, the same goes for electric bikes with a throttle. 

When you are using your e-bike on park roads it is mostly only recommended you stick to paved surfaces too. 

Benefits Of Using Electric Biking In National Parks 

Now e-bike owners can use their class one e-bikes happily in national parks it opens up a huge range of benefits for park visitors. 

We have listed a few below. 

  • Portable - Just like conventional bikes the benefits of ebikes are that they are portable and easy to store/travel due to their compact size, this also means there are no issues with being able to find a parking space etc.
  • You can use them no matter your fitness level - Ebike riding is easy for anyone even if you are unfit, it opens up a whole new world for riding long distances no matter your age or if you have a disability, unlike traditional bikes.
  • Fun - Riding e-bikes on park roads is fun as you zoom along and is very adventurous as you wind long bike lanes exploring, especially when you are not getting too tired. 
  • You can go further - Unlike regular bicycles where you get tired you are not limited to distance with these kinds of bikes due to the electric motors inside which assist when needed, since nation parks are huge this allows you to explore and go further. 

Tips For E-bike Riders In National Parks 

Even though riding your electric bikes in national parks is relatively easy nowadays there are still some ebike rules to follow so as you can be safe and not break any e-bike rules set by the national park service system.

We have listed our top tips for taking e-bikes out in national parks below. 

  • Charge well beforehand - Unlike traditional bicycles, if you are travelling by an electric bike you need to make sure it's charged fully beforehand so as you can avoid running out of charge halfway during bicycle travel. If you are unsure about your battery life then try carrying a spare on with you to avoid running out. 
  • Map out ahead - National parks can be confusing if you don't where you are going, try and map your route ahead beforehand and study it to avoid getting lost as well as to see where your bike is and is not allowed.
  • Check the weather - You want to avoid getting caught in a storm or rain when bike riding, whether you are riding traditional bicycles or e-bikes, make sure you check the weather forecast a few days before riding to see if you should change the date.
  • Observe signs - When riding your e-bike the national park service requires you to follow the signs and speed limits just as any other cyclist, it is important you adhere to these otherwise you can be classed as breaking the law.
  • Pack essentials - Make sure you pack essentials such as water, food and a first aid kit when riding, although it is tempting to bring as little as you can you need to make sure that you have the important stuff.
  • Think backup - Ensure you have tools for tyre repair and other problems that might occur with your bike when riding, don't rely on having a call signal for help.
  • Check your local park - Depending on each national park they can have differing rules for electric bikes, some parts might be accessible while others are not or they might have different times where e-biking is allowed, make sure to check your specific local parks regulations.
  • Wear safety equipment - Always have a helmet, lighting and reflective clothing when riding your bike to keep you safe in the park.

Frequently Asked Questions About E-Bike Use In National Parks 

What are the different classes of electric bikes? 

There are three different types of electric bikes, class one where the motor operates when pedalled and can go up to 20mph (these have 750W motors), class two which has a throttle-assisted motor and class three where the motor works when engaged but can go faster. 

Are these bikes allowed in the wild animal areas? 

No, you are not permitted to ride your e-bike or normal bike in wild animal areas.

How fast can I ride my e-bike in national parks? 

As a class one e-bike you should only be riding at 20mph or to the stated speed limit on signage.

Can I use the throttle on my electric bike in national parks?

No, you are not allowed to use an e-bike with the throttle in national parks.

Final Words 

To conclude, class one e-bikes are allowed to be used in national parks with no issues as long as you stick to designated areas and speed limits. We suggest always riding with our tips above and make sure you have a big enough charged e-bike battery for the kind of distance you want to ride. 

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