Ask Capt. Oliveira: Which Way Should Peds Walk?

Image of bike trail with spray painted instructions that pedestrians keep to the left and cyclists to the right.

This trail shows the correct flow of pedestrian and cyclist traffic on area trails. / Photo courtesy Capt. Steve Oliveira

THE NATOMAS BUZZ | @natomasbuzz

“Can you please clarify the traffic flow on the bike path? Walkers normally go against traffic on the dirt side (or as close as you can to the edge). This way cyclists can see you and you them. Someone has spray painted traffic flow. But, it is the way you drive. Walking to right, always.” -Chyanne Bartlett

Capt. Steve Oliveira

Dear Reader,

Great question. I enjoy running on trails and I believe most people are unaware of the rules or etiquette when it comes to using them. Pedestrians should walk or jog facing oncoming traffic and use the left shoulder. When possible, walkers and joggers should stay on the dirt shoulder off paved trails to minimize the chance of an accident. If you are walking in a group, it’s important to stay aware of oncoming bicyclists. Staying single file will also help reduce the chance of being involved in an accident. If you walk or jog in the early mornings or evenings when it’s dark, I recommend wearing a reflective vest or lights so bicyclists can see you sooner. I will let the Park Rangers know about the spray painted directional arrows so they can address it. For more information, you can visit

—Capt. Oliveira

Capt. Steve Oliveira oversees the Sacramento Police Dept.’s north-area command, which includes Natomas. To submit your questions to Capt. Oliveira, send an email to [email protected] with “Ask Capt. Oliveira” in the subject line.

Image of paved, two-lane bike trail where the word "walk" has been written in chalk or spray painted with an arrow.

The directions on this Natomas bike trail are not correct for walkers and/or joggers. / Photo

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