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mtb:scale=6 and differentiation node/way

Mtbikers and also the bikes get better and better. Inofficially many riders use level 6 and even level 7 to highlight really difficult spots. To accommodate this fact I have added mtb:scale=6 to the classifcation. Note 6 is so difficulty that a longer way of that difficulty would not be rideable. Therefore it is to be used for single spots, that are of exceptional difficulty. On the other hand I noted trails being marked mtb:scale=5 that were clearly (not even partly) rideable even for the best mtbikers anymore. Therefore I added 6 as a difficulty for ways, that are clearly not rideable anymore. Note that there is also via_feratta_scale but this does not really help, cause good mtbikers can still bike on many easy ferattas (but not all). Also sac_scale=T5 or T6 is sometimes usable for mtbikers, but not always, so a new value was needed.--Extremecarver 17:55, 9 June 2011 (BST)

IMBA Trail Standard

The International Mountain BIking Association is now the international peak body for mountain biking. It's trail standard is as close to and ISO standard that MTB trails is further more based off the long established Ski trail difficulties.

The IMBA scale should be the standard for tagging mtb trail difficulty....not some arbitrary scale or a standard that applies to just a few countries.

If riders can't ride it...then it is no longer an accessible trail....or is clearly IMBA Double Black.

Read the old discussion bout it. IMBA is very good for bikeparks and artificially built trails/obstacles, but it gives absolutely no separation for natural trails (or hiking trails in alpine regions). It's simply useless for most non artificial trails.--Extremecarver 16:24, 2 July 2011 (BST)


Currently mtb:scale applies only to either highway=path or highway=track.

However, there are other roads suitable for mountain bikes. For instance, residential, unclassified, or even tertiary roads are unpaved sometimes, and so can be used for mtbiking, like rural or forest tracks.

Why don't we extend the use of this tag also to other (unpaved?) highways (highway=*)? The same could be done for mtb:scake:uphill as well. -- solitone, 20120118

Crux places

The idea with avoidable crux places denoted as a point outside of the way seems rather impractical to me for processing reasons. In such a case, I would suggest creating two ways (sort of a split fork), one with lower difficulty, the other with higher difficulty. This makes it clear to which way the difficulty belongs, without having to measure closeness of the point to the ways. --Hopet (talk) 09:02, 7 April 2013 (UTC)


STS can be applied to stairs as to paths. I think we should suggest using this tag for highway=steps too. --Ppong (talk) 11:43, 18 July 2014 (UTC)

Well of course - but is there actually a consensus to use highway=steps instead of steps=yes on highway=path? I'm not sure if there is a need to point out that mtb:scale can be applied also to highway=steps...--Extremecarver (talk) 10:01, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

  • do this tag exist (steps key)? i can't find it on this wiki. --Ppong (talk) 13:24, 22 July 2014 (UTC)
  • stairs can be easy or difficult when they are short as when they are long, sure it's not very useful to add mtb:scale tag to a 10 m stairway, but it's no less useful than to add the same tag to a 10 m section of a path or to a very short path that could be an easier variation of a difficult path or a connection between two different paths. therefore, since stairs have different difficulties, i think mtb:scale key would be useful combinated to highway=steps in places where is used on paths too. --Ppong (talk) 08:36, 29 July 2014 (UTC)

About riding uphill in mtb:scale section

I understand perfectly well the following statement : "This shall be used for classifying the level of difficulty of using a trail that is more or less level (no inclination) or is used for riding down. Additionally one can tag mtb:scale:uphill=0 to 5 to specify the difficulty of a way cycling uphill "

But then why in "mtb:scale" section do the following statements appear ?

Easy to ride uphill.

Difficult to ride uphill.

Only very skilled riders can go uphill on this.

Nearly impossible to ride uphill.

Note that in original german description from the uphill part is not mentionned. In my opinion everything about riding uphill should be contained in mtb:scale:uphill.

This comment comes from the fact that I know some mtb:scale=1 paths which are absolutely not "Difficult to ride uphill."--230Vsapik (talk) 18:51, 28 March 2017 (UTC)

Unrealistic maximum gradients

It is not easy when wheels are at different distances from a camera but compare on ,,example" pictures how much higher are rear wheels than front wheels in % of a distance between wheels. In pictures for S4 and S5 this differences in angles between wheels and a camera are the smallest and gradients are about 50 % and on the S4 picture the rear wheel is much above the rock. To make it > 70 % rear wheels on S4 and S5 should be about half wheel higher. Pawcio (talk) 12:02, 12 August 2017 (UTC)

And mtb:scale:uphill=0-5 gradients are more suitable for road cycling where longer roads with 15 - 20 % gradients are the hardest in the world: Pawcio (talk) 13:02, 12 August 2017 (UTC)

The reasoning behind those maximum gradients was more like - if it's above this gradient, then it has to fall into this category - no matter how easy anything else is. I also agree that it's confusing. --Extremecarver (talk) 11:04, 13 May 2020 (UTC)

Is it possible to have mtb:scale:uphill=1 on asphalt road?

So asphalt road with 15% incline would get mtb:scale:uphill=1 - right?


And 40% Baldwin Street would be mtb:scale:uphill=4 - right? ( - "Baldwin Street's 34.8%"?

Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 10:21, 16 September 2022 (UTC)

Can mtb:scale:uphill be lower than mtb:scale?

For example paved road but with some obstacles. Right now it would be mtb:scale:uphill=0 even if it would be mtb:scale=2 if text is being read strictly.

Maybe it should be clarified that anything that pushes up to higher mtb:scale=* (obstacles etc) is applicable also to mtb:scale:uphill=* ? Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 11:22, 16 September 2022 (UTC)

An actual example: Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 11:54, 16 September 2022 (UTC)