It is time to get back out on our Hudson Valley Trails. The local rail trails and others will soon be busy with locals and eco-tourists alike so this is the perfect time to discuss trail etiquette.

How many times have you been out walking or even riding a bike and you come across what seems to be a group using the entire trail? Sometimes it's not even a group it is just a lone person who insists on walking in the middle of the path.

Etiquette for When You Are on a Hudson Valley Trail

Chances are if you have entered a trail at a parking area there are trail rules posted as you head out. It is always good to read the dos and don'ts of a place you are walking or riding that way you are being courteous to others who are using the trail.


There are general rules that most people follow but some trails will have their own rules. Once you have familiarized yourself with the etiquette for the trail you are heading out on it is also a good idea to remember what the New York State Department of Transportation (NYS DOT) said on the subject.

The NYS DOT wants us to remember to always stay on the right of the path. Just like when you drive a car on the road you should keep to one side.. Bikes, pedestrians, and even horse riders should all stay to the right when traveling.

Who Has the Right of Way a Bike or a Pedestrian?

If you are passing someone then be sure to look before you cross over to the left side of the trail. You should pass on the left and once you have cleared a safe distance move back over to the right. If you are coming up in a busy area be sure to keep in mind the saying Wheels yield to Heels.

Wheels Yield to Heels means bicyclists have to give walkers the right of way on a trail. That goes for the roadway as well. Bicycles are considered moving vehicles so pedestrians have a right of way. If you don't know them it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with New York State Laws concerning bike riders and pedestrians.

However, if you are walking it is also important that you share the trail. Walking side by side sometimes means you haven't left enough room for a bike to pass and as a pedestrian that is not good etiquette on the trail.

Does a Horse Have the Right Away on a Trail with Bike and Pedestrians?

According to the National Parks Service, a horse and rider have the right away before Bikes and Pedestrians. It is suggested that if you encounter a horse on a trail you actually stop and give it room to pass by you. Also if you walk with a dog it should be on a short line not one that allows them to get too far away and possibly cause an accident will a long line or Retractable lease.

WZAD-WCZX The Wolf logo
Get our free mobile app

6 Hiking Trails Not Far Off the New York State Thruway

If you're driving along I-90, you don't have to trudge dozens of miles out of your way to pick up a great hike in New York State.

Gallery Credit: Will Phillips

Upstate NY State Park Named Among Best Hiking Spots in America - See Photos

An Upstate New York state park has been named among the best hiking spots in America for 2023. Have you ever explored this incredible terrain?

Gallery Credit: Dan Bahl

More From WZAD-WCZX The Wolf