All types of electric bicycles are now allowed on the National Park trails in the United States, like regular bikes.
Up until now, it was a contentious debate, and it still is to some extent. But now, however, with the new decree signed by the Trump Administration's Interior Secretary, David Bernhardt, there's little left to contest.
Will having e-bikes on trails change the outdoor scene?
Some people are opposed to e-bikes on trails
Up until now, Class 1 e-bikes were allowed on trails, as they require the cyclist to peddle in order for the electric part of the bike to kick into gear.
Classes 2 and 3 do not require any peddling for the bike to kick-start, as they have a throttle, much like a motorcycle. All e-bikes' speeds could increase up to 20mph, with the main difference being Class 1 e-bikes do not have a throttle.
The main concern for hikers and walkers on foot as well as regular cyclists is the danger associated with the speed of e-bikes, as they could come flying around a bend, seriously injuring others.
Moreover, those against e-bikes on trails also point out that having faster electric bicycles on these trails will change the nature of the area.
Some are thrilled by the news
There are some who have welcomed the news with open arms. If you're older, less fit or an avid e-biker, the news of all e-bikes allowed on federal trails is something that is welcome news, no doubt.
For those who enjoy the outdoors but aren't as fit or as young, or for those who have had to be restricted to main roads and paths with their e-bikes, they are now able to go further, faster, and deeper into National Parks, thanks to the new decree.
In essence, an entire family's day out on the National Park trails would be easier on e-bikes. Enthusiasts claim that this new decree could lead to more people enjoying the outdoors. Your grandparents could join in the fun!
They are no longer bound to these main, usually busy and car-filled paths and roads. They can now wander along trails with the rest of the outdoor enthusiasts.
E-bikes in the U.S. National Parks System
Part of the new decree states that Classes 2 and 3 e-bikes are not allowed to use their throttle while on these federal-state paths.
It's a system of trust more than anything here, as the only people to monitor the situation are park rangers, and they aren't around at every corner of the parks.
We'll have to wait and see how it works out in the end.