Trail Etiquette: Follow the Golden Rule The problem with rules for trail etiquette is that new skiers usually don't know the rules and experienced skiers don't always agree on them, however here are some guidelines and things to consider to help everyone stay safe and have a good time:
Classic skiers ski on the right hand side of the trail. If there are two sets of tracks then please keep to the one on your right. If no one is coming in the opposite direction, and you have a clear view ahead, then you can also occupy the left track, but you need to jump out of that track quickly for any on-coming skiers. On blind corners, whether up- or down-hill, always keep to the right. Skate skiers are obviously in the centre lane, but on blind corners be vigilant and prepare to move to the right in case you encounter an oncoming skier.
If you need to stop along a trail, or are visiting with other skiers, step aside so you don't block the trail.
Don't stop at the bottom of a hill where other skiers might have trouble avoiding you.
Do a shoulder check before stepping out of the classic track or moving laterally across the trail so you don't interfere with a skier approaching from behind.
Because skiers on the downhills have less control, they are generally considered to have the right of way over skiers climbing, but courtesy is the operative word here!
Ski in control at all times.
It used to be that faster skiers approaching from behind could call out, "Track!" and slower skiers would step out of the tracks to allow the faster skier to pass. This convention is falling out of favour. Most expert skiers are happy to step out of the track to pass - they are the better skiers, after all.
Do not skate or herringbone on top of the classic ski tracks. This damages the tracks and can spoil the experience for classic skiers.
If you ski with ear buds, be aware that you will not hear any friendly warnings other skiers might give you, for example when overtaking you from behind.
If skiing with a dog, remember that beginner skiers are already fearful, so please keep your dogs away from them and beware of snagging other skiers if your dog is on a leash.
…And most importantly, respect the custom and always say a friendly ‘hello’ when passing other skiers!