All-terrain vehicle users registered for private or agricultural use can explore both the old and new trails without cost Sept. 7 to 9. Typically they would pay the registration fee ($60 for three years) to ride the public trails.
Minnesota has 3,000 miles of state forest and grant-in-aid trails available to ATV users. The state also has more than 200 miles of new trails that were completed this year.
Out-of-state riders can explore Minnesota ATV trails that weekend as well, without the need for a nonresident trail pass ($30 annually). This is the fifth year that Minnesota is providing ATV riders with free access during “No Registration Weekend.” The date was pushed back from June so new trails could be completed, including the 159-mile route connecting communities in northwestern Itasca County, as well as a trail connecting Balsam and Bigfork.
“The September weekend gives us a great opportunity to introduce a wide variety of state and grant-in-aid trails across Minnesota,” said Mary Straka, off-highway vehicle (OHV) program consultant for the Parks and Trails Division at the DNR. “There are a large number of privately registered ATVs across the state. During the No Registration Weekend, ATV owners can check out the public trails for free.”
Minnesota’s two newest trails are:
The Alvwood to Squaw Lake trail, which makes a 159-mile scenic tour through Bowstring State Forest and the Chippewa National Forest. Enjoy the many communities along the route. The trail is provided by Itasca County and the Alvwood-Squaw Lake ATV Club.
The Bigfork to Balsam (B&B) 33-mile trail is full of diverse northern landscapes. It connects to the Little Moose ATV Trail off Co. Road 336.
Other recreational favorites include these:
The Iron Range Off-Highway Vehicle State Recreation Area, a 1,200-acre OHV park in Gilbert with 36 miles of scenic trails for riders of all abilities.
The 100-mile trail system in Nemadji State Forest, which connects to the Matthew Lourey State Trail and the Gandy Dancer Trail.
The 29-mile Spider Lake trail system in Foot Hills State Forest, where riders will curve around lakes and ponds, go up and down a variety of hills, and view overlooks from the ridges throughout the forest.
The 200-mile Northwoods Regional Trail System in Aitkin and Itasca counties, where riders will use the Soo Line Trail to connect to local communities and trail loops.
Safety training is recommended for everyone that operates an ATV. It is required for ATV riders born after July 1, 1987. Children under age 18 must wear a DOT-certified helmet. Children age 16 and under must fit the ATV they are operating and be able to properly reach and control the handlebars and reach the foot pegs while sitting upright on the ATV. Trail maps, updates on trail conditions, Youth ATV Safety training and other OHV information can be found online at www.mndnr.gov/ohv.