Sharing the Trails with KATVA

It’s that time of year when everyone is suffering from the winter blues and excitedly waiting for spring to come.  Especially those in the off-road vehicle community.  While there may only be less than 3 months before the trails open, don’t let that stop you from getting out for a ride.

Although there are no winter trails here in the Kawarthas, there are a number of Ontario ATV trails that are open during the winter season. 

Most ATV clubs who have winter trails are careful to plan trails that won’t conflict with the snowmobilers in winter.  The number one reason that ATVs and snowmobiles don’t share many trails in Ontario is for safety.  ATV and Snowmobile riders tend to operate at different speeds in the snow.  The second but equally important reason we try to keep ATVs off snowmobile trails in winter is because we want to respect the short season snowmobilers have here in central and southern Ontario.  ATVs, SxS and off-road motorcycles are guaranteed a 7-month riding season, but snowmobilers aren’t afforded the same opportunity, so we need to let them enjoy the trails while they can. 

In many cases the ATV clubs and snowmobile clubs’ partner to manage and maintain the local trails, so they have an agreement to respect each groups time to access the trails. This collaboration and mutual respect between the two sports goes a long way to benefitting the riders in Ontario.

If you’re looking for places to ride your ATV or SxS in the last couple of months of winter check out the Haliburton Forest & Wild Life Reserve or the Lake of Bays ATV Club.  If you’re already a member of Kawartha ATV Association you can ride the Lake of Bays trails at no additional cost, or you can buy a day pass from them directly.  There are also many winter riding opportunities in Eastern Ontario.  The winter ATV trails are subject to some of the same conditions and closures due to lack of snow, as snowmobile trails are.  It’s always best to call ahead and check to see if the trails are open, to avoid disappointment.

As always, remember to wear your safety gear and dress warm, but most of all have fun on the trails!

Kawartha ATV Association,

PO Box 21, Lindsay