Class 1 E-Bikes
Permit in all off-road areas, except:
- Areas where biking is not currently permitted (e.g. “hiking only” trails)
- Alpine areas, including the Sproatt/Rainbow Alpine network above the Flank Trail.
Note: E-bikes would be permitted on the Flank Trail.
- Emerald Forest Conservation Area.
Note: E-bikes would be permitted on the access road connection between Lorimer Road and Alta Lake Road.
Class 2 and Class 3 E-Bikes
These are classified as motorized vehicles according to forthcoming B.C. e-bike policy and as such they will be:
- Permitted on roads, forest service roads and off-road trails with a specific motorized designation.
Note: Currently, no trails in the Whistler area have this designation.
- Prohibited on all off-road trails designated for non-motorized use.
Note: The municipal Parks Bylaw No. 1562, 2002 also prohibits motor vehicles on municipal trails.
Electric Adaptive Mountain Bikes
Electric *aMTBs are exempt from e-bike restrictions according to the forthcoming provincial e-bike policy and as such they will be:
- Permitted on all off-road trails where bikes are permitted.
Note: Adaptive e-mountain bikes are typically wider devices and therefore are limited to trails that are wide enough to accommodate their use.
*aMTBs that have electric motors are exempt from e-bike restrictions as long at they meet the following criteria:
- They must have three or four wheels
- They must have the ability to propel the aMTB with hand cranks when without electric power
- The normal maximum wattage is set at 800W or less; and
- The aMTB may have pedal assist and/or direct throttle power.
Alpine areas require careful management and monitoring, and recent wildlife issues are not well understood, but are being examines. For these reasons, a precautionary approach is recommended at this time.
The Emerald Forest is a Council-approved conservation area where conservation is valued over recreational interests. The proposed policy direction supports conservation and reflects Whistler’s priority of protecting natural areas.
Class 2 and 3 e-bikes
Class 2 and 3 e-bikes are classified according to forthcoming B.C. e-bike policy as motor vehicles and are not appropriate for use on recreation trails. The proposed policy directions are aligned with the provincial classification and regulations.
In addition to the policy directions above, a number of other considerations have emerged through the project and may be explored:
- Implementing a test period and monitoring program
- Clarifying preferred direction of travel by installing more directional signage on trails and other communications, including TrailForks
- Implementing trail use fees for commercial operators
- Providing and promoting epic off-road trail e-bike rides
- Clarifying preferred use areas for adaptive electric mountain bikes