One of the wonderful things about living in the United States is that there is a ton of space. For outdoor enthusiasts, that means there is something great to do outside in just about every corner of the country and you can get into nature and the wilderness in a way you often can't do elsewhere.
When it comes to people who love riding ATVs, there’s even better news. There are fantastic ATV trails in almost any U.S. state, including New York.
Like many other states, there are some specific requirements you should know about if you want to go ATV riding in New York, but there are also a lot of fantastic trails.
New York’s Top ATV Trails
Demon Pond Trail
Demon Pond Trail is a shared-use area designed for hikers, biking, and off-road driving. It's a great location if you're looking for a scenic route, don't mind some twists and turns, and want to explore the ups and downs of natural New York terrain.
With a total length of 9.4 miles, there’s lots to explore. Though not the biggest trail system by any means, it’s a fun one to ride and one that you’ll probably want to ride more than once.
Although it's a multi-use area, it’s not very likely you’ll see other people on the trail while you’re here, and even if you do, it'll only be a few and not the crowds you find on many other trails.
Wolf Pond Road
Wolf Pond Road, like a lot of trails in New York, is a multi-use area. But it’s also one of the more challenging options out there. It’s a shorter trail, but you’ll find that its short route will test your technical skills every inch of the route.
However, the biggest drawback here (a common issue on trails in New York) is that you're likely to see hikers and others making use of the trails. Dogs are required to be leashed, but you should be prepared to share the road and deal with slower pedestrians and bike riders if you’re going to use this trailhead.
Demon Run ATV Trails
If you’re looking for an array of experiences, Demon Run ATV trails is a great place to go. Demon Run is a combination of ATV trails and other ATV challenges, as well as a campground for those seeking to stay longer.
With 20 miles of wooded trails to explore at various difficulty levels, it's perfect for riders ranging from novice to advanced.
All of the trails are incredibly well marked and have good signage throughout.
Plus, in addition to the beautiful woodland trails, Demon Run offers mud holes, hill climbs, and an ATV play area for experimentation and fun.
Adirondack ATV Tours
If you're looking for more of a guided and controlled ATV experience, you can get that at Adirondack ATV Tours, a great tour for beginners and true novices because no prior ATV experience is required.
If you’re someone interested in this hobby but not really sure if it’s actually for you, this is a great way to go. You can get a taste of ATV trail riding and an incredible experience with low stakes and no long-term commitment.
However, this isn’t a good place for youth riders, since you need to be at least 18 and have a valid driver's license to participate in the tour.
It’s also not a strictly novice-level ride. Instead, the guides are there to show you what to do and how to do it, and this woodland rollercoaster does have its difficult or more technical moments.
So you’re going to get a real taste of ATV riding, not just the novice run that many beginner trails offer.
Western New York Trail Riders
Western New York Trail Riders is probably the best location for beginners getting started in New York trail riding or people visiting from out of state looking for a novice trail system to ride.,
They do have a few technical trails you can ride to test your skills and see if you’re ready for more difficult runs, but a majority of the more than 50 miles of trail rides are beginner-friendly and highly approachable.
This area is really designed for leisure riding, which makes it a great place to introduce children to ATV riding, and a good place for seniors who are interested in ATV riding, or who still enjoy hitting the trail, but don’t want the added risk or challenge of a more technical trail.
With more than 2,000 acres of private land to traverse and 30 miles of ATV trails for you to explore, there is a ton to do at Hilltown Riders.
These trails are available for riders of all skill levels that are well marked so you always know what kind of difficulty to expect.
The trail-riding area is also incredibly welcoming and people are very friendly and generally willing to offer tips or tell you a little more about the trails if it's your first time here.
Stoney Creek Ranch Resort
If you've heard about the 1,000-acre ranch, this is the same ATV riding area, just under a new name. There are 25 miles of incredibly beautiful trails here, with a few minor elevation changes and water crossings to help keep things interesting.
They also maintain a couple of mud pits for enthusiasts looking for a little more adrenaline when they’re on the trails.
Trails don’t tend to be too technical or extreme here, and it’s a good place for people who are looking for a good leisure ride or at a medium skill level. Advanced riders will still have fun, and novices have a few trails available, but the majority of the property is ideal for people who have some experience and skill under their belt.
Lewis County ATV Trail System
The Lewis County ATV trail system is actually the only public ATV trail system in New York. Other trail systems in New York are on private land, and have different rates and fees or membership requirements, while this trail network is maintained by a lot of the private clubs in the area.
You do still need a permit to ride. There are 3-day permits and annual permits available for this trail system.
However, it is important to keep an eye on trail markings, since some of the trails in this riding area are reserved for club members. This is one of the rewards clubs get for banding together to maintain this trail riding area, so respecting their private areas is important for keeping this public ATV area open to the public and available for visitors.
Black River Valley Four Wheelers Club
Last but certainly not least, Black River Valley Four Wheelers club is a great place for ATV riders of all skill levels and experience levels. They are a family-friendly club, and have low membership fees that help keep ATV riding an accessible hobby in New York.
They’re also active and consistently share information for other ATV clubs in the area, post about road closures, and available rooms and camping in the area around the ATV club.
That’s fantastic because it means that not only can you enjoy the incredible trails and club areas, but you also get a lot more insight into ATV riding in New York more generally.
If you want to know more about riding your ATV in New York, either as a resident or as a visitor, keeping an eye on Black River Valley Four Wheelers club is a great way to get that insight.
Common Questions About Riding ATV Trails In New York
There are a few things you need to know about riding ATV trails in New York. Like a lot of states, there are a few specific rules and requirements that are state-by-state and, as a traveler, it's your responsibility to know what regulations apply to you.
Are There Any Unique Rules Or Requirements For ATV Trail Riding In New York?
There are a few things you need to know about riding ATVs in New York. The first is that you must register your ATV with the DMV in New York if it’s going to be driven in New York, even if you aren’t a resident.
You are also required to carry ID and proof of ownership while operating an ATV in New York.
Additionally, riders and passengers are required to wear helmets, and additional safety equipment is recommended.
Riders are also required to have adequate liability insurance coverage for their ATV. Minimum coverage is $50,000/$100,000 for death and $25,000/$50,000 for injury, and $10,000 for property damage.
Can I Rent ATVs For Trail Riding In New York?
Yes, in fact, finding an ATV rental is probably the easiest way to ride an ATV in New York if you live out of state. While registration fees aren’t very high in New York, it can still be frustrating and difficult to register your ATV in New York before you travel there.
Rentals are available that come with registration and insurance held by the renting company. They’re usually relatively reasonable fees for renting an ATV, and renting companies are often affiliated with an ATV or off-roading club, and often also have private riding areas that are well maintained, safe to drive, and convenient to the rental location.
So, if you’re looking for a good way to ride ATVs in New York as a visitor, this is the easiest and one of the best ways to go.
What Should I Pack For An ATV Adventure In New York?
First, remember that safety is always the most important thing when you’re planning an ATV trip, whether you’re traveling across the country or riding around in your own neighborhood. It’s important to make sure you have appropriate safety equipment for everyone who is going to be in the vehicle, as well as proof of identity, licenses, and any other necessary information.
It’s also a good idea to have a phone charger, and you might want to bring backup communication tools in case of a dead battery or lost signal.
Make sure someone who isn’t coming on the trip knows where you’re going, when you should be back, and who is coming with you.
You should also have spare clothing to change after you’re done riding in case of wet clothing, mud, sand, or other hazards.
A backpack to store everything in is critical.
And don’t forget to pack water, snacks, and any medications you might need on the trail.
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