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As a young man I remember riding through the woods and not even considering the potential damage I could have been doing to the actual ground – I mean it’s the woods right? At that age I never even thought someone could actually own the property I was riding on.

The years rolled by and now as a property owner myself I think much differently. Even riding around my own yard makes me cringe when think of the damage that is happening to the ground and grass under my ATV.

Most never consider the damage that can occur when riding off trail or when attempting to create bypass obstacle while making an “easier path”. It is actually better to move or simply drive over the blockage in the trail and it conserves the integrity of the trail.

We need to look at every trail a little differently. Staying on the designated path should always be your primary goal.

I find myself trying to remove the downed trees or brush from the trail instead of driving off the trail to go around it. This not only helps clear my path, it makes the trail clear for the next rider coming through.

We also need to be conscious of running over exposed tree roots. If you scratch up the dirt from the roots of the tree with your ATV it can begin a fatal process for that tree.

Riding responsibly is something we should all learn and pass on to other riders in order to have a place to ride in the future.

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