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Trail safety and warning signs

Signs to caution trail users about unexpected conditions or potential hazards. Signs may cajole, plead, explain, or threaten the user entering a park or trail. Where well-developed trail facilities are provided, the standard of care for users is higher than on a primitive trail. Risk management concerns are a big factor in providing more signs for what could be argued are trivial changes in trail surface, grade, or curvature. However, people are used to constant warnings on roadways, so many trail managers adopt highway standards for providing signs. The following examples are from a wide variety of trails across the United States.

arrow Also see photo gallery of Fencing and warning signs for trailside construction

arrow Also see photo gallery of maps at trailheads and trailhead signs

Click on any photo to see it full size:

(Commentary and photos by Stuart Macdonald, November 2009)

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