Trail Ratings according to Michael Haynes

A designation from 1 to 5, with 1 indicating suitability for all fitness and experience levels and 5 indicating suitability only for experienced and very fit outdoor people. These ratings are based on considerations of length, elevation change, condition of treadway and signage.

Novices should choose level 1 and 2 hikes initially, and work up with experience. Level 4 and 5 hikes include an indication of what qualifies them for their higher rating.

 

Trail Ratings from the American Volkssport Association

Part 1 – Incline Part 2 – Terrain
1. Very small hills or very little stair climbing. Probably suitable for strollers and wheelchairs. Elevation gain from starting point: up to 500 feet A. Almost entirely on pavement. Probably suitable for strollers and wheelchairs.
2. Some moderate hills and stair climbing. Probably suitable for strollers. May not be suitable for wheelchairs. Elevation gain from starting point: 500-1500 feet B. A significant part of the route is on well-groomed trails with very few obstacles. Probably suited for strollers but may not be suitable for wheelchairs.
3. Some significant hill or stair climbing. Not suitable for strollers or wheelchairs. Elevation gain from starting point: 1500-2500 feet C. A significant part of the route is on somewhat difficult terrain (rocky/rooted paths or soft sand). Not suitable for strollers and wheelchairs.
4. Lots of significant hills or stair climbing. Elevation gain from starting point: 2500-3500 feet D. A significant part of the route is on very difficult terrain.
5. Many steep hills. Elevation gain from starting point: more than 3500 feet E. The majority of the route is on very difficult terrain.

Examples:

A route that is mostly on flat pavement would be rated 1A.

A beach walk would be rated 1C.

A route with moderate hills on well groomed trails would be rated 2B.

From http://www.aztrekkers.org/AVA_STUFF.htm

A simplified table:

Part 1 – Incline Part 2 – Terrain
1. Very small hills A. Almost entirely on pavement.
2. Some moderate hills. B. Well-groomed trails.
3. Some significant hills. C. Somewhat difficult terrain.
4. Lots of significant hills. D. Difficult terrain.
5. Many steep hills. E. Very difficult terrain throughout.
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