Trail Etiquette/Respect the Land

Trail Etiquette/Respect the Land

Respect the Land

Recreational users cherish the privilege of enjoying hobbies, sports, and recreational and leisure activities in Alberta’s parks and on public lands. Responsible use and the practice of good stewardship and respect for the land protects our access to these areas, preserves the integrity of the landscape, minimizes conflicts between users and ensures future generations can enjoy the same opportunities. We share the responsibility of minimizing disturbances to the landscape, vegetation, wildlife, waterways and to other users of the land.

Trail Etiquette and Safety

Be a leader and ambassador for your favourite outdoor activity. Join the many hikers, cyclists, horseback riders, cross-country skiers, off-highway vehicle users, snowmobile enthusiasts and other recreationists who proudly take a stewardship role by:

  • knowing and abiding by applicable regulations and trail signs
  • staying on designated trails and restricting use to approved activities
  • sharing trails with courtesy and respect – wheels yield to heels; heels yield to horses. Motorized users should pull over to the right side of the trail, turn off the engine and remove helmets when horses are approaching.
  • respecting landowners by leaving gates and fences as found and avoiding livestock
  • leaving artifacts and natural features undisturbed
  • controlling pets and keeping them on-leash
  • properly disposing of all waste in provided facilities and following the pack-in, pack-out philosophy
  • avoiding the spread of invasive species by cleaning recreation equipment (vehicles, tents, packs, boots, etc.) after every trip and using certified weed-free feed for pack animals
  • minimizing the threat of wildfire by ensuring flammable debris is kept away from OHV exhaust systems, and by keeping campfires small, contained and in designated areas and ensuring they are fully extinguished
  • respecting wildlife by observing from a distance and properly managing food and garbage
  • avoiding recreation use during sensitive times (e.g., wet conditions, wildlife mating and rearing seasons) and in sensitive areas (e.g., watercourses, stream banks, wetlands and alpine areas)
  • ensuring motorized vehicles are licensed and insured, and that all vehicles and equipment are operated with care
  • wearing an approved helmet for your particular activity
  • actively participating in local club and trail stewardship programs

For caving etiquette and safety, visit

For avalanche safety, visit
For more information on responsible recreation and stewardship opportunities, contact Alberta TrailNet or visit

To promote a trail network, including the Trans Canada Trail, connecting all Albertans.