The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is reminding off-road vehicle users to ride responsibility and sustainably on Crown land. The new Fact Sheet includes some guidelines to help preserve the integrity of trails and protect the natural environment.
Operators of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and off-road vehicles are reminded of the following best practices when using Crown land trails and roads for recreational purposes.
Using Crown Land
ATV and off-road vehicles can generally be used on Crown land, excluding provincial parks and some conservation reserves provided that:
- Access to the land is not limited by Crown land use planning and/or placement of a sign
- Riders comply with municipal by laws or other relevant legislation.
As a best practice, to preserve the integrity of trails, some off-road vehicle organizations recommend not using trails until after May 1st to avoid damage to trails and the environment. During the spring, when trail surfaces are water logged, they can be more susceptible to erosion.
Activities that Require Approval
Approval from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is needed to undertake the following activities on Crown lands administered under the Public Lands Act:
- Construct a new trail
- Construct a water crossing
- Hold an organized event on Crown land for which the person or organization wishes to control public access (e.g. racing rallies)
Protect the Natural Environment
Help protect the natural environment and be mindful when using Crown lands for recreational purposes by:
- Staying on existing trails
- Picking up litter and taking out garbage
- Avoiding sensitive features such as wetlands, streams and wildlife habitat
- Not harming, killing or collecting plants, trees, habitat or other wildlife
- Washing ATVs and other off-road vehicles after each use to help prevent the spread of invasive species.