Taking Your Off Road Vehicle For A Spin?
We’ve rounded up the best of the best off-road trails of Utah, Nevada, and Northern Arizona to provide our customers with a comprehensive list of trails that are perfect for trail newbs all the way up to veterans of the great unknown.
Whether your new to the game or have been playing for some time, it’s important to review the off-road rules of the state you’re touring through before you embark on a new adventure. We promise we won’t bore you with run of the mill safety tips, like “wear your seat belt” or “let someone know where you’re going” – just do it. The following rules will keep you safe and worry free as you explore beautiful landscapes and never-ending horizons.
According to VisitUtah.com, by complying with the registration laws and treading lightly on the trails, you’ll be as good as gold the next time you’re out on the trails. Registration regulations include:
- Any OHV (ATV, UTV, motorcycle or snowmobile) must display a current OHV registration sticker.
- Most non-resident OHV operators are required to purchase a Non-resident OHV Permit for each ATV, UTV, OHM and snowmobile they bring into the state.
Permits are available here and at vendors located to most of the popular OHV trails.
While Utah’s trails, mountains and landscapes are breathtaking, they are also fragile. Some trails may be considered private land, so it is vital to heed all restrictions and rules in order to protect yourself and the landscape for future generations. You can check with Forest Service, the BLM, or State Park offices to make sure you’re in the clear before you head out.
- Registered off-highway vehicles may be operated on public land, trails, streets, or highways that are posted by sign or designated by map or description as open to off-highway vehicle use by the controlling federal, state, county, or municipal agency. According to this law, all roads, etc. are closed to ATVs unless posted open.
- On U.S. Forest Service and BLM-administered land, off-highway use of any vehicle is permitted in designated areas only. Check with local agency offices for brochures and maps of appropriate areas.
- Off-highway vehicle use is NOT allowed in most national parks, wilderness areas or on lake shores.
Nevada’s rules are a little less stringent, nonetheless, use your common sense, register your vehicle, stay informed of local and state laws before off-road trail blazing and you should have nothing to worry about, from their Frequently Asked Questions Off-Road Nevada, gives a brief summary of off-road rules:
Any motorized vehicle which does not have the normal safety equipment such as lights and mirrors or is not built to federal vehicle standards is an off-highway vehicle and is restricted to off-highway use only. This includes all-terrain vehicles, pocket bikes, motorized scooters and snowmobiles.
If a vehicle was manufactured and designated for “off-road” or “non-road” use only, it may not be driven on Nevada public streets or highways even if it has safety equipment. The designation for off-highway use is usually indicated in ownership documents, the owner’s manual or by a U.S. DOT label attached to the frame of the vehicle. Only two-wheeled motorcycles may be converted to on-road use. Other OHVs may not be converted.
There are no driver license or minimum age requirements for OHVs operated off-highway in Nevada(drivers under 16 must be accompanied by an adult). City and county governments may designate small portions of public streets for access to or from off-road areas only and some age restrictions or other requirements may apply.
Though Nevada’s rules may be less severe than Utah’s, Arizona’s Off-Road laws could fill up a small book. In Arizona, you must stay on roads and/or trails, you can not make up your own route. We’ll give the basic rules here, but be sure to read the additional resources provided and to contact local and state law before traversing through Arizona’s wild country. Some basic requirements, provided by the National Park Service are:
- OHV’s must display the MC (Motorcycle) or RV (Recreation Vehicle) license plate and OHV decal if operated within the state of Arizona.
- Title only license plates (plate sequence starts with RV), with the OHV/user fee decal; can only operate on BLM, some USFS, designated trails or off-road special use areas, and trust land roads.
- Off-road driving is not permitted within the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument (in case you were wondering).