Connecticut and surrounding states offer a selection of parks to enjoy legal off-roading. From ATVs to motorcycles and off-highway vehicles, these trails are available to the public. They provide a range of experience levels and riding challenges so that children and beginners have a chance to test out their new skills. Be sure to follow the state park guidelines when researching your next off-roading adventure as some require permits and fees.
Mettowee Off Roading Extreme Park
607 County Road 12
Whitehall, NY 12887
With just over 200 acres and 70 trails, the Mettowee Off Roading Extreme Park is worth the drive. This land features rock crawling, tire trench, log trench and many more attractions for off-highway vehicles. Jeeps, ATVs and bikes are welcome on the trails. Pressure washers are available on site to wash your vehicles. Off-roading is available on weekends from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Overnight camping is available at the park including $10 a night tent camping or $30 a night for your RV. A $10 per person spectator fee will apply to each spectator ages seven and above. A $25 per vehicle plus one rider charge will be applied as well.
Pachaugh State Forest (Chapman Area)
Voluntown, CT 06384
Those with a valid motorcycle license will love the trails at Pachaugh State Forest. There are 58 trails for off-roading motorcyclists. The state park is open year round, with the exception of the mud season. Follow the red arrows on designated motorcycle trails or roads open to vehicles. These trails are not to be confused with hiking trails which motorcycles are restricted from. The parking lot entrance is located off of Spaulding Road.
Beartown State Park
69 Blue Hills Road
Monterey, MA 01245
ATVs and off-highway motorcycles are permitted in daylight hours at Beartown State Park. There are 25 miles of designated trails, separate from hikers and camp sites. Trails are open May through November. It is suggested that you call ahead to ensure trails are not closed due to wet conditions. Expect rocky hills and mud puddles along the trails. Be cautious of wildlife including bears and bobcats. Only 75 free riding permits will be issued daily due to safety and to preserve resources. Reserve your permit by calling (413) 499-5112.
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Franklin State Forest
Forge Hill Road
Franklin, MA 02038
Two hours from Hartford, CT is the perfect location for beginners and children to test ride their off-road motorcycles. There is free access to off-road vehicle riding trials May 1 through the last Sunday of November. The Franklin State Forest trails are overseen by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. These trails provide gravel, slightly rocky paths that are convenient for those learning this sport as they are found to be less challenging. Parking is available across from the water tower on Forge Hill Road.
Mount Pleasant State Off-Roading Vehicle Park
2651 Petersburg Road
Woodbine, NJ 08272
Mount Pleasant State Off-Roading Vehicle Park is now a state off-highway vehicle (OHV) park. It is a designated area that permits the use of ATVs and dirt bikes. The land features a motorcross track, trails and play pits. The targeted experience level is beginner and intermediate riders. All vehicles must be registered and show proof of insurance. Riding is open for business Fridays through Sundays.
Kimberly Ord is a freelance writer and lifetime resident of Connecticut. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.