UTAH (ABC4) — After seeing an increase in issued warnings over the years, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources made changes to their “Use of Division Lands” rule last August to introduce a new clause restricting the use of certain electronic bikes on wildlife habitats.
This new rule, which went into effect on Nov. 7, prohibits class 2 and class 3 electronic bikes from riding off-road in all wildlife and waterfowl management areas in Utah. These self-propel bikes can only run on established roads and trails where motorized vehicles are allowed, as they are now classified as such.
“E-bike use, as a recreational activity, has increased dramatically in the past five to 10 years,” said DWR Capt. Chad Bettridge. “These new rules will help to preserve these properties for their intended use, which is for wildlife and their long-term benefit and health.”
A class 1 e-bike is limited to 20 miles per hour, and the electric motor only runs when the rider pedals. A class 2 e-bike, with the same 20 miles per hour limit, is equipped with a throttle that gives the rider a boost without having to pedal. A class 3 e-bike, which can go up to 28 miles per hour, comes with a speedometer.
Class 1 bikes are allowed to roam on established roads and in other authorized areas.
Utah has a total of 193 wildlife/waterfowl management areas, stretching over 500,000 acres. These management areas’ main purpose is to provide a range for wildlife during winter months to find food and shelter. Hunting and fishing are allowed in these areas, according to DWR.
A citation for using a class 2 or class 3 e-bike off-road in any wildlife and waterfowl management area is an infraction.