The National Park Service is proposing 20.6 miles of mountain bike trails in Georgia’s Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. This mileage includes the building of new bike trails. All mountain bike trails would also include the use of e-bikes. The Chattahoochee river is known for fishing, kayaking, hiking and gives access to nature from the metropolitan area of Atlanta. There is currently an insufficient amount of biking trails within the recreation area according to their visitor reports. The 2022 Comprehensive Trails Management Plan Environmental Assessment approved 21.9 miles of trails open to bikes/e-bikes. BRC would like NPS allow for the maximum number of trails authorized by the 2022 EA.

The National Park Service gives discretion to the superintendents to determine whether electric bicycles will be allowed where traditional bikes are permitted. Currently, the Chattahoochee allows e-bikes on all current human-powered biking trails.

The proposal sites many studies that show that e-bikes aren’t more dangerous than human powered mountain bikes.

“The amount and severity of anticipated soil erosion due to class 1 e-bikes is similar to that of traditional bikes” (International Mountain Bicycling Association 2015; Nielsen et al. 2019)

“What’s more, several studies have shown that a majority of non-e-bike users do not notice when they are sharing the trail with e-bikes” (Nielson 2019a).

“Additionally, while there is a widely held perception that e-bikes can be unsafe due to the speed they travel; a study of speed data showed that people using e-bikes generally travel at similar speeds as traditional bicycles on roadways, off-street paths, and natural surface trails” (Nielsen 2019b)

The following are the proposed routes or extensions that would also be open to e-bikes:

The multi-use trail in the Abbotts Bridge unit (approximately 2 miles).

(ii) The Fitness Loop in the Cochran Shoals unit (approximately 2.7 miles).

(iii) The multi-use trails in the Sope Creek Area of the Cochran Shoals unit (approximately 9.1 miles).

(iv) The Lower Roswell Trail in the Gold Branch unit (approximately 0.5 miles).

(v) The multi-use trail in the Jones Bridge unit (approximately 1.4 miles).

(vi) The multi-use trail in the McGinnis Ferry unit (approximately 1.4 miles).

(vii) The Rottenwood Creek Trail in the Palisades unit (approximately 1.6 miles).

(viii) The multi-use trail in the Settles Bridge unit (approximately 1.6 miles).

(ix) The multi-use trail in the Suwanee Creek unit (approximately 0.2 miles).

(x) The Roswell Riverwalk Trail in the Vickery Creek unit (approximately 0.1 miles).


International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) 2015
“A Comparison of Environmental Impacts from Mountain Bicycles, Class 1 Electric Mountain Bicycles, and Motorcycles: Soil Displacement and Erosion on Bike-Optimized Trails in a Western Oregon Forest.” Accessed July 1, 2024.

Nielsen, T., S. M. Palmatier, and A. Proffitt
2019a Literature Review, Recreation Conflicts Focused on Emerging E-bike Technology. Boulder County Parks & Open Space.

Nielson, T., S. M. Palmatier, A. Proffitt, M. Marotti
2019b. Boulder County E-bike Pilot Study Results. Boulder County Parks and Open Space.