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Trail Etiquette
Trail Etiquette
Motorcycles on an alpine trail. Image courtesy of Stay the Tails.

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Louder doesn't mean faster.

Excessive sound from dirt bikes and ATVs has become one of the biggest threats to off-highway vehicle (OHV) use. Fortunately, loud dirt bikes and ATVs can be fixed without losing any speed or power.


Ride only on routes wider than your vehicle​.

Different trail types are constructed for different widths of vehicles. In this section, learn about different trails and which trails are designed for which vehicles. Remember to only ride on trails wider than and open to your vehicle.


Ride only on routes open to your vehicle.

​​In Colorado, we use brown signs with white graphics and, on lands managed by the​ Forest Service, motor vehicle use maps (MVUMs) to designate which trails are open to which types of vehicles. A red slash across a sign indicates a trail is closed to that type of vehicle.


Ride over obstacles; not around them.

Going around obstacles widens trails, impacts vegetation, and causes erosion. Challenge yourself by staying on the trail. Use caution when going over obstacles and remember to be courteous to other trail users.


Hunting with Off-Hi​ghway Vehicles

Hunting with OHVs requires extra caution. Fines may be assessed for violations and some violations may include penalty points assessed to hunting and fishing licenses.



Slow down for​ your fellow riders.

Care is required when passing or meeting fellow OHV enthusiasts on narrow trails. Slow down. Let the other rider know your intentions. Stay on the trail so you do not flatten vegetation or widen the trail.


Be an ambassador to no​n-motorized trail users including livestock and wildlife.

Your trails are always in danger of being closed. On any day of riding you become the face of OHV recreation to other users—leave them with a good impression of your sport. Always yield the trail to non-motorized users.


​Know Yo​ur Width

Some side-by-sides exceed 50 inches in width and are too wide for typical ATV trails. These wider vehicles are limited to designated 4x4 routes only. Observe all signs and access barriers.


Staging

Pull off the road at the trail head to prepare your vehicle and group. Don't block access to the trail while staging. Be mindful of trailers and stow your ramps.


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