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Title 36: Parks, Forests, and Public Property
(a) Park roads. The use of a bicycle is permitted on park roads and in parking areas that are otherwise open for motor vehicle use by the general public.
(b) Administrative roads. Administrative roads are roads that are closed to motor vehicle use by the public, but open to motor vehicle use for administrative purposes. The superintendent may authorize bicycle use on an administrative road. Before authorizing bicycle use on an administrative road the superintendent must:
(1) Make a written determination that such bicycle use is consistent with protection of the park area's natural, scenic and aesthetic values, safety considerations and management objectives, and will not disturb wildlife or park resources; and
(2) Notify the public through one or more methods listed in §1.7(a) of this chapter.
(d) Existing trails. The superintendent may authorize by designation bicycle use on a hiking or horse trail that currently exists on the ground and does not require any construction or significant modification to accommodate bicycles. Before doing so, the superintendent must ensure that all of the following requirements have been satisfied:
(1) The superintendent must complete a park planning document that addresses bicycle use on the specific trail and that includes an evaluation of:
(i) The suitability of the trail surface and soil conditions for accommodating bicycle use. The evaluation must include any maintenance, minor rehabilitation or armoring that is necessary to upgrade the trail to sustainable condition; and
(ii) Life cycle maintenance costs, safety considerations, methods to prevent or minimize user conflict, methods to protect natural and cultural resources and mitigate impacts, and integration with commercial services and alternative transportation systems (if applicable).
(2) The superintendent must complete either an environmental assessment (EA) or an environmental impact statement (EIS) evaluating the effects of bicycle use in the park and on the specific trail. The superintendent must provide the public with notice of the availability of the EA and at least 30 days to review and comment on an EA completed under this section.
(3) The superintendent must complete a written determination stating that the addition of bicycle use on the existing hiking or horse trail is consistent with the protection of the park area's natural, scenic and aesthetic values, safety considerations and management objectives, and will not disturb wildlife or park resources.
(4)(i) If under paragraph (d)(2) of this section, the resulting Finding of No Significant Impact, Record of Decision (ROD), or an amended ROD concludes that bicycle use on the specific trail will have no significant impacts, the superintendent must publish a notice in the Federal Register providing the public at least 30 days to review and comment on the written determination required by paragraph (d)(3) of this section. After consideration of the comments submitted, the superintendent must obtain the Regional Director's written approval of the determination required by paragraph (d)(3) of this section; or
(ii) If under paragraph (d)(2) of this section, the conclusion is that bicycle use on the specific trail may have a significant impact, the superintendent with the concurrence of the Regional Director must complete a concise written statement for inclusion in the project files that bicycle use cannot be authorized on the specific trail.
(e) New trails. This paragraph applies to new trails that do not exist on the ground and therefore would require trail construction activities (such as clearing brush, cutting trees, excavation, or surface treatment). New trails shall be developed and constructed in accordance with appropriate NPS sustainable trail design principles and guidelines. The superintendent may develop, construct, and authorize new trails for bicycle use after:
(1) In a developed area, the superintendent completes the requirements in paragraphs (d)(1) through (d)(3) of this section, publishes a notice in the Federal Register providing the public at least 30 days to review and comment on the written determination required by paragraph (d)(3) of this section, and after consideration of the comments submitted, obtains the Regional Director's written approval of the determination required by paragraph (d)(3) of this section; or
(2) Outside of a developed area, the superintendent completes the requirements in paragraphs (d)(1), (2), and (3) of this section; obtains the Regional Director's written approval of the determination required by paragraph (d)(3) of this section; and promulgates a special regulation authorizing the bicycle use.
(f) Closures and other use restrictions. A superintendent may limit or restrict or impose conditions on bicycle use or may close any park road, parking area, administrative road, trail, or portion thereof to bicycle use, or terminate such condition, closure, limit or restriction after:
(1) Taking into consideration public health and safety, natural and cultural resource protection, and other management activities and objectives; and
(2) Notifying the public through one or more methods listed in §1.7(a) of this chapter.
(g) Other requirements. (1) A person operating a bicycle on any park road, parking area, administrative road or designated trail is subject to all sections of this part that apply to an operator of a motor vehicle, except §§4.4, 4.10, 4.11, 4.14, and 4.15.
(2) Unless specifically addressed by regulations in this chapter, the use of a bicycle within a park area is governed by State law. State law concerning bicycle use that is now or may later be in effect is adopted and made a part of this section.
(h) Prohibited acts. The following are prohibited: (1) Bicycle riding off of park roads and parking areas, except on administrative roads and trails that have been authorized for bicycle use.
(2) Possessing a bicycle in a wilderness area established by Federal statute.
(3) Operating a bicycle during periods of low visibility, or while traveling through a tunnel, or between sunset and sunrise, without exhibiting on the operator or bicycle a white light or reflector that is visible from a distance of at least 500 feet to the front and with a red light or reflector that is visible from at least 200 feet to the rear.
(4) Operating a bicycle abreast of another bicycle except where authorized by the superintendent.
(5) Operating a bicycle while consuming an alcoholic beverage or carrying in hand an open container of an alcoholic beverage.
(6) Any violation of State law adopted by this section.
[77 FR 39937, July 6, 2012]