If the trails are closed or you know conditions are bad, you should be out riding road, gravel, skatepark, or a different trail with better conditions. However, even with the best of intentions you’re going to encounter mud sooner or later. How can you keep from destroying the trail?
The answer is: Ride through puddles and mud pits on the same course as the trail. Try to find a dry route around it and you’ll likely just make it wider. Simply put, stay on course and do not go off trail, even if it means getting splashed. This prevents giant traffic circles from forming on our narrow singletrack.
Thanks to Pisgah area SORBA for giving me the thumbs up on this message.
You likely have some kind of “ORBA” in your area (offload bicycling association) even if it doesn’t have the same acronym. Consider a monthly donation so they can continue advocating for you!