There’s a lot to consider when traveling off-road for an extended drive or touring on a trail system—but it will only happen at your pace. Take your time and memorize these tips so you’re (eventually) able to adapt to any trail.
Pack in, pack out—never leave garbage of any kind…anywhere. Bring an extra bag and some gloves to help clean up if you see trash where it doesn’t belong.
Fees & permits
Even if you have 100 acres of space in your backyard, you’ll eventually want to venture out into new areas. Off-road parks and trail systems commonly have affordable access permits, day passes, or fees to pay before heading out for the day.
Do your very best to stay on distinguishable trails and avoid narrowing trail paths, or disturbing barriers, fences, or gates. If crossing a stream, always travel the shortest distance across the stream—never travel along a stream or use any waterway as a path, this causes significant environmental and habitat damage and is illegal in most areas.
Dirt, dust, and debris are a part of off-roading, but try and keep the dust you kick up to a minimum.
Shared trails & paths
Your Can-Am isn’t the only vehicle you’ll see off-road. From hikers to mountain bikes, horses to logging trucks, stay alert, bring your speed way down, and yield the right of way. Leave enough of a gap when passing and make eye contact—a wave is always welcome, too—it’s your duty to respect trails and travelers alike.
Group rides & hand signals
We recommend keeping a 3-to-5 car gap between vehicles; never follow a vehicle up a hill until it’s reached the top.
When leading a group, as you encounter oncoming vehicles, hold up as many fingers as there are riders in your group, with 5 fingers meaning 5 (or more) in the group. Riding alone or last in line? Hold up a closed fist, indicating “0”, as in no other riders behind you.
If you come across someone who’s stopped on or near the trail, be courteous and considerate—it only takes a few moments to check in and see if they need your help. Pay it forward! You might need a stranger’s help one day.
Rules & trespassing
Every trail system and riding park has rules for a reason: they keep people safe. So follow ‘em. We also recommend planning a route and watching the trail for any signs you may be trespassing or traveling near restricted areas.