Thank you for writing in regard to snow and ice on trails. When it first snows most of the County resources are directed to clearing streets and sidewalks of snow, ice and downed trees. We focus first near high priority areas such as safe routs to schools, Public facilities and Metro rail access paths.
There are sections of the trail system that are cleared during snow events that correspond to the areas mentioned above. The BicycleAdvisory Committee is also helping to identify new areas that may be problematic. Due to limited resources, we rely primarily on melting to clear the majority of trails. Limited clearing occurs in problematic areas. Freeze - Thaw situations can cover the trails again. We constantly remind patrons to use extreme caution when using trails. We discourage bicycle traffic during those times.
Fortunately, the snow and ice usually only remain a few days. Most years, the majority of the trails are clear for more than 48 weeks. Snow covers streets and sidewalks about 2 weeks during the course of a year. Keep in mind that the trails are multi-use trails. Cross country skiers may also utilize these areas during snow events.
We certainly appreciate any information you want to share about areas that are not cleared by warmer weather in a few days. I understand that areas in shade take longer to clear. Staff may be able to treat those areas. Your information will help us plan where to treat in the future.
If I can provide further information, please contact me again.
Park Service Area Manager
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
response from Arlington on bike paths in winter
I received a response from an Arlington official regarding my post on snow and ice on bike trails: