Forest service plan would improve electric bike access at Lake Tahoe

Staff Report


SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is developing a plan to improve electric bicycle access and trail system sustainability on land in the basin.

A virtual open house, co-hosted with the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, will be held from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 10.

The webinar will introduce the Basin Wide Trails Analysis Project that would amend the LTBMU trail system map to allow Class 1 e-bikes on specific trails and clarify where motorized access is permitted.

Participants are encouraged to register in advance for the webinar at After registering, participants will receive a confirmation email with directions for joining the webinar.

“The Forest Service recognizes that e-bikes are growing in popularity across the country and at Lake Tahoe,” said Forest Supervisor Bill Jackson in a press release. “We are excited to be moving forward with our planning effort and want to hear from the public, partners and stakeholders how we can best improve e-bike access in the basin, while continuing to protect and maintain our highly valued scenic and natural resources.”

E-bike use is currently permitted on Lake Tahoe NFS roads and trails that are designated for motor vehicle use in accordance with the service’s Travel Management Rule. The proposed action will continue to allow e-bikes to be used on motorized trails, while expanding access to specific NFS trails where e-bike access is currently unauthorized.

Outside of Lake Tahoe NFS roads and trails, e-bike access is allowed on certain roads and trails in the basin that are managed by state, county and local jurisdictions. The proposed action takes into consideration current e-bike policy on these lands in an effort to create connecting e-bike routes throughout the region.

The process includes preparing an environmental assessment to analyze the road and trail system map, providing direction on how to better meet the need for e-bike access on NFS lands and studying potential environmental impacts.

Project work would include upgrading road and trail crossings over streams and wet areas, installing interpretive and directional signs and upgrading trailhead parking areas.

The proposed action and scoping letter with instructions on how to comment are available at Officials said comments are most useful if submitted by 11:59 p.m. Sunday, March 28.

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