The National Park Service has cleared the way for pedal-assisted e-bikes to be used in all parks nationwide, including Cuyahoga Valley National Park. In Peninsula, officials, bike vendors and riders gathered for test rides.
CVNP Acting Deputy Superintendent Lisa Petit said there’s a growing number of e-bike riders who can now enjoy riding through the park.
"And those folks are the ones who may need a little bit of additional assistance to actually get out and enjoy biking for mobility challenges of all kinds. It could be age related; it could be physical fitness related; it could be disability related," she said as cyclists donned helmets and saddled up.
CVNP Arborist Rick Denbeau zips past on a black e-bike. He pops his back tire in the air, throws his weight over the bars and tries a spin but doesn’t quite stick the landing.
"Oh yeah it’s definitely more weight to move around. Pulling wheelies or manuals or 180s and stuff, it would take some getting used to. The e-bikes are not limiting as to what you can do on them. It’s all on the rider," he said.
While the National Park Service said e-bikes can go anywhere regular bicycles can go, it’s still up to the individual parks to set specific regulations.
CVNP officials said e-bikes are now allowed on roadways in the park and on the Towpath Trail, but specific guidance will still need to be worked out in the coming weeks.