Ride Rating Categories
Riding On Pavement
The following categories describe characteristics of different types of routes and itineraries for bicycle rides on paved roads or paths.
A fun, casual ride that's appropriate for nearly everyone, including family groups. Little traffic and mostly flat.
A moderate level route is a pleasant ride for people who bicycle regularly. Routes have varying levels of traffic and could include some hills.
This level is for regular cyclists looking for a good, hard ride. These rides involve a combination of distance and climbing beyond casual cycling enjoyment.
This level epitomizes an epic journey. Cyclists should be in top shape, able to climb like a mountain goat, and able to go all day. Terrain is steep with considerable elevation changes or the route travels to remote areas with few services.
Without motorized traffic, mountain bike rides rate differently than rides on roads and paved paths. Surface types range from gravel to natural surface and include unpaved roads to single track trails. Difficulty is based on the technical features of individual trail sections and include trail surface, tread width, average and maximum trail grade, and technical features. Click here for more detailed information on mountain bike trail rating categories.
Green circle (mild)
A 36" or more wide trail with avoidable obstacles, a firm and stable surface, an average trail grade of less than 5%, and a maximum trail grade of 15%
Blue square (moderate)
A 24" wide trail or more with a few unavoidable obstacles 8" or high or shorter, a mostly firm and stable surface, and average trail grade of 10% or less, and a maximum trail grade of 15% or greater
Black diamond (challenging)
A 12" wide trail or more with unavoidable obstacles 15" or shorter, a widely variable trail surface that could include loose rocks, and average trail grade of 15% or less, a maximum trail grade of 15% or greater, and potentially unavoidable bridge crossings of 24" wide or greater
Double black diamond (extreme)
A 6" wide trail or more with unavoidable obstacles 15" or taller, an unpredictable trail surface that could include loose rocks, an average trail grade of 15% or more, a maximum trail grade of 15% or greater, and potentially unavoidable bridge crossings of 24" wide or narrower