Download maps of trails and always use caution on trails you are not familiar with.
"Every ATV and snowmobile rider must be an ambassador for the sports. Please give careful consideration to your effect on the trails, environment and others. The future of your sport depends on it." ... DCNR
ATV Trails Info & Downloads| Pa. ATV Law Brochure *.pdf | Snowmobile and ATV Guide
ATVers control own destiny while vandalism hurts image-builders’ efforts

ATV enthusiasts have come a long way in our region in gaining acceptance from the general public. But like any sport that can create noise or infringe on the rights of others, it only takes a few renegades to damage progress made by individuals and organizations to make a sport safer and less offensive.

ATV riders in Northern Cambria Borough have stepped over the line near a residential area, speeding, kicking up dust and vandalizing property, it was reported at a recent borough council meeting. 

Police have promised a crackdown. Police Chief Kevin Stanek said that, while he acknowledges a serious problem, he has instructed his officers not to make chase.

After being forced to pay the costs for their vandalism, the renegades should be required to attend an off-road vehicle-safety course at the site near Patton where the Rock Run Recreation Area is being developed.

Rock Run is a 6,000-acre former strip mine that is being developed primarily for 4-wheelers, dirt bikes and other off-road vehicles. 

In a wonderful program, a local group is working with the Greater Johnstown-Cambria County Chamber of Commerce and the Rock Run board to train 20 adults in off-road vehicle safety. They in turn will educate youngsters about safety and etiquette for all-terrain-vehicle riders.

A park for ATVers and efforts at reining in “outlaw” riders through education should go a long way to easing public concerns for a growing sport that offers fun, excitement and socialization.

And when completed, Rock Run will also be a tourism destination, creating an economic boost for northern Cambria County. 

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The DCNR (Department ofConservation and Natural Resources) has updated their site that includes a new Pennsylvania Online Rails-to-Trails Guide with interactive maps, photographs of the rails trails and an abundance of information free for public use. This includes a total number of Open Rail Trails: 95. There are 968.6 miles of open trail, 101.5 miles under construction, and 654 miles in proposal phase. "Contained in this web site is information on Rails-Trails open to the public, under construction, and proposed. DCNR will periodically update this site as information comes into us from our many trail partners." ... DCNR 
In the near future all trails included in the Rails-to-Trails projects will carry the DCNR insignia  with the link to their respective page for more information.
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Riding ATV's can be fun but the rider must know the laws in Pennsylvania!Enforcement

Failure to register your ATV or abide by the rules can be costly. First offenses range from $50 to $200 plus the cost of prosecution. A second offense carries a fine of $100 to $300 plus the cost of prosecution. Failure to register your vehicle or failure to have liability insurance is an automatic $300 fine plus cost of prosecution. 

Law enforcement agency responsibility:

All law enforcement officers in the state, including local and state police, are authorized to enforce the Snowmobile/ATV Law. 

In general: 

  • State Forest and State Park lands - DCNR Rangers 
  • State Game Lands - Wildlife Conservation Officers and Deputy WCOs 
  • Municipal and state roadways - municipal and state police 
  • Private property - municipal and state police 
You must stop when signaled by a law enforcement officer. Failure to do so could result in fines and loss of your registration. 
ATV Registration, Titling and Insurance
Who must register and title?
All ATVs in Pennsylvania, except ATVs used solely for business or agricultural purposes, need to be registered and titled with DCNR. ATVs used in Pennsylvania must be registered and titled with DCNR's Snowmobile/ATV Section. The ATV registration and titling fees are NOT user fees for the privilege of using trails on state-owned land. The fees provide funding to administer the program, maintain trails on DCNR-managed parks and forests, and provide grants to profit and non-profit organizations for developing additional riding opportunities. 

Two types of registrations apply:
For ATVs used anywhere off of your own property or property leased by you, such as designated State Forest trails 
$20 fee every two years 
Limited registration

For ATVs used solely on your own land or land leased by you 
Free registration
No expiration, unless ownership of vehicle changes 

Pennsylvania registration is NOT required for:

  • ATVs used exclusively as utility vehicles for agricultural or business operations; 
  • ATVs owned by nonresidents covered by a valid registration in their state, province or country that honors Pennsylvania registration; 
  • ATVs owned and used by a federal, state or local government body; 
  • ATVs owned by a dealer who has been issued a dealer registration certificate and used only in connection with the dealer's business. 

Titling is NOT required for:

  • ATVs used exclusively as utility vehicles for agricultural or business operations; 
  • Snowmobiles bought or acquired prior to Oct. 23, 2001; 
  • ATVs owned and used by a federal, state or local government body; 
  • ATVs owned by a dealer before and until sale; 
  • ATVs owned by a nonresident;
  • ATVs owned by a Pennsylvania resident, but registered and used in another state. 
  • Titling: $22.50 
  • Registration: $20, for a two-year period 
  • Limited registration: Free 
  • Replacement of lost or damaged registration certificate, limited registration certificate, registration decal, registration plate or expiration sticker: $5 
  • Transfer of registration to a new machine by the same owner: $5 
  • Dealer registration: $25 
Plates and decals:
  • An ATV owner will be issued a registration plate for the vehicle. 
  • An expiration sticker to be affixed to the plate will be issued for standard registrations. 
How to register and title your ATV:
If you purchase your vehicle at a registered dealer, you will be issued a registration plate with a temporary 45-day registration sticker. The dealer will handle your application for title and registration. 

If you purchase your ATV privately you will need to supply DCNR with:

  • Completed application for registration and titling 
  • Proof of Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) 
  • Fees 
  • PA sales tax or proof that tax has been paid 
  • Applications for registration and titling of ATVs and snowmobiles are available from the Snowmobile/ATV Registration Section, ATV and snowmobile dealers, forest district offices, and State Park offices. 
  • Applications also are available on DCNR Web site.
The registration and titling application form along with the registration and titling fees and sales tax statement, must be completed and sent to:
Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Snowmobile/ATV Registration Section
P.O. Box 8553
Harrisburg, PA 17105-8553
Liability Insurance: 
If you are using your ATV solely on land owned or leased by you, you are not required to get liability insurance. All other riders must carry liability insurance. Proof of that insurance must be carried with you when you ride. There are no minimum requirements or coverage standards established by DCNR or the Snowmobile/ATV Law for the liability insurance. 

How to transfer title/ownership of your vehicle
If you are transferring the title of your ATV to a new owner, complete the assignment on the back of the certificate of title and obtain notarization. The new owner must then apply for a new certificate of title and registration in his/her name. DO NOT REMOVE THE REGISTRATION DECAL OR PLATE FROM THE MACHINE. 

Registration cannot be transferred from one owner to the next. If you no longer need registration because you have disposed of your vehicle in some way, complete the reverse side of your certificate of registration indicating the disposition status, listing buyer's name (if applicable), signing, dating and returning to DCNR within 15 days of disposition. 

You may request the remaining months of your current registration be applied to a new registration of another vehicle that you have acquired. The fee for this transaction is $5. 

Changes of Address: 
You must notify DCNR's Snowmobile/ATV Section in writing of any change of address within 15 days. 

All-Terrain Vehicles are defined as follows:

  • Class 1 ATV - A motorized off-highway vehicle, which travels on three or more inflatable tires and has a maximum width of 50 inches and a maximum dry weight of 800 pounds. 
  • Class 2 ATV - A motorized off-highway vehicle, which travels on three or more inflatable tires and has a width which exceeds 50 inches or a dry weight which exceeds 800 pounds. 
ATV Operation
Operation on streets and highways
ATVs may be operated only on streets and highways designated and posted as an ATV road by the government agency having jurisdiction over that road. 
An ATV may make a direct crossing of a street or two-lane highway if: 
  • The crossing is made at an angle of approximately 90 degrees to the direction of the highway and at a place where no obstruction prevents a quick and safe crossing; 
  • The ATV is brought to a complete stop before crossing the highway; 
  • The driver yields the right-of-way to all oncoming traffic that constitutes an immediate hazard; 
  • The crossing of a divided highway is made at an intersection of that highway with another street or highway. 
  • ATVs may be operated on streets or highways during periods of emergency, if declared by the jurisdiction, or when necessary to cross a bridge or culvert. 
Operation during special events:
ATVs may be operated on highways and streets for special events of limited duration approved by the local authority having jurisdiction over those roadways. 
Operation on private property:
It is illegal to ride your ATV on private property without permission from the landowner. 

Operation on state-owned property: 

  • Designated ATV trails on State Forest lands are open from the Friday before Memorial Day through the last full weekend in September. Some ATV trails reopen for winter use in conjunction with the snowmobile season from the day following the last day of the regular or extended deer season through April 1, conditions permitting. Check with the District Forester to be sure that winter use is permitted. The trail also may be open to snowmobiles. 
  • Only Class I ATVs may be operated on State Forest trails designated for ATV use. Class II ATVs may be operated on State Forest land ONLY if the person has been given specific permission from DCNR or the trail is specifically posted open to Class II ATVs of a particular width and weight. 
  • State Forest roads are NOT open to ATVs. 
  • State Parks and State Game Lands are NOT open to ATVs. 

Riding rules:
To make the use of the trails safe and enjoyable for yourself and others, please:

  • Do not disturb, drive, or pursue wildlife with your vehicle 
  • Do not carry loaded firearms on your ATV 
  • Abide by State Park and Forest Rules and Regulations and the Snowmobile/ATV law and regulations 
  • Stay on designated trails and roadways 
  • Operate your vehicle in a safe and responsible manner 
  • Place all litter in waste containers, where provided; otherwise practice the "carry-in, carry-out" procedure ·
  • Wear a securely fastened helmet.
Illegal operation:
Any of these activities may result in a fine or the loss of your registration: 
  • Riding at a rate of speed that is unreasonable or improper under existing conditions or in excess of the maximum limits posted for vehicular traffic; 
  • Riding in a careless way so as to endanger the person or property of another, such as riding double on an ATV; 
  • Riding while under the influence of alcohol, narcotics or drugs; 
  • Riding in an area, or on a trail or roadway that is not open to ATV use; 
  • Riding without a securely fastened helmet.
All ATVs operating in Pennsylvania must be equipped with:
A brake system capable of producing deceleration of 14 feet per second at a speed of 20 miles per hour; 
A muffler in good working order. The sound intensity produced by an ATV may not exceed 99dbA (decibels), when measured at 20 inches; 
An operating headlight and tail light if operating at dark or when visibility is less than 500 feet. The headlight must produce a white light sufficient to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of 100 feet. The tail light must produce a red light plainly visible during darkness from a distance of 500 feet. 
Plate/Sticker display:
The registration plate for an ATV is provided by the Snowmobile/ATV Section. Pictures below are examples of the Class I and Class II plates. This registration plate shall be securely attached to the upper half of the rear of the ATV. No part of the plate shall be in line with a tire. The information on the plate must be clearly visible from behind the ATV. It is important to clean mud and dirt off your ATV registration plate at frequent intervals so the information on the plate is clearly visible. The registration sticker must be placed in a bottom corner of the plate.
Liability insurance:
If you are using your ATV solely on land owned or leased by you, you do not have to get liability insurance. All other riders must carry liability insurance. Proof of that insurance must be carried with you when you ride. There are no minimum requirements or coverage standards established by the law for the liability insurance. 
What you need while riding
While riding your ATV you must carry with you or on the vehicle:
  • Certificate of registration 
  • Proof of liability insurance 
  • Registration plate affixed to the vehicle 
  • Expiration stickers (does not apply to limited registration) 
  • Valid safety certificate (ages 10-15 if riding off of parent's or guardian's property) 
Where to ride:
Know before you go. It's important you know what lands you will be riding on and if they are open to ATV use. Contact the appropriate land management agency to find out what is open. 
Generally speaking, ATVs may be operated (see Youth operation for restrictions on child operators of ATVs):
  • On private property with the consent of the owner; 
  • On state-owned property on clearly marked and previously designated trails; 
  • On highways and streets for a short distance when necessary to cross a bridge or culvert. 
  • On highways and streets during periods of emergency when so declared by a governmental agency having jurisdiction; 
  • On highways and streets for special events of limited duration that are conducted according to a prearranged schedule under permit from the governmental unit having jurisdiction; 
  • On streets and highways that have been designated as "ATV or Snowmobile Roads" by the governmental agency having jurisdiction. 
Where NOT to ride:
  • Private property without the consent of the owner 
  • State Forest trails not designated for ATVs 
  • State Forest roads, State Game Lands, State Parks 
  • On municipal or state-owned roads or streets that are not signed open to ATVs 
Youth operation:
It is prohibited for a child under 16 * to:
  • Operate anywhere other than land owned or leased by a parent or guardian unless the child has a valid safety certificate or is under the direct supervision of a certified instructor during a certified safety training course. 
  • Operate across highways or connecting streets or operate on State Park or State Forest roads designated for joint use (use by both motor vehicles and snowmobiles or ATVs) unless the child has a valid safety certificate and is under the direct supervision of a person 18 years of age or older. 
  • Drive on state or local highways, roads or streets designated for joint use. 
  • *A child under 10 is not eligible for a safety certificate and is prohibited from operating anywhere except private property. 
All municipal and state-owned roadways open to ATV use are designated as such with the following sign: 
DCNR ATV Trail Sign for all trails allowing access to all-terrain vehicles.All ATV trails on State Forest lands are designated with signs. Stay on the marked trail. Roads for joint use by ATV's and vehicular traffic are marked with caution signs at all road junctions. 

ATV operation for people with disabilities:
State Forest lands:
DCNR allows a person with disabilities to operate an ATV in designated areas of State Forest land with an approved letter of authorization from DCNR. Most of these areas are open year round. If the person wishes to engage in hunting from his or her ATV, a permit to hunt from a vehicle as well as a valid hunting license is needed from the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
State Game Lands:
The Pennsylvania Game Commission allows disabled hunters who possess a special permit from the Game Commission to hunt from a vehicle to use an ATV on designated State Game Land roads. Roads are open for use by permitted persons from 14 days prior to the opening day of the hunting season to the closing day of the hunting season.
The ATV used on State Game Land roads must be registered with DCNR and be covered by liability insurance.
ATVs operated by disabled hunters are defined by Game Commission regulations as a motorized off-highway vehicle 58 inches or less in width, having a dry weight of 900 pounds or less traveling on four or more low-pressure tires and having a bench seat.

ATV Safety and Training

ATV riding can be a risky sport. Before you ride, learn how to properly use all the mechanical controls and safety devices of your vehicle. Read your owner's manual. Most importantly, take a safety course before riding. 

Safety Tips:

  • Wear a helmet and eye protection at all times and other protective clothing suitable to the environment. 
  • Do not carry passengers on your ATV. 
  • Do not let young or inexperienced riders operate ATVs without training and supervision. 
  • Do not use alcohol or other drugs when you ride. 
  • Learn proper riding skills from an instructor or qualified rider and practice such skills before riding. 
  • Always maintain a safe distance between riders. Tailgating can lead to collisions and injuries. 
  • Ride with others and let someone know where you are riding. Never ride alone. 
  • Obey the laws. 
  • Stay on trails designated for ATVs. 
  • Be informed of local weather conditions and dress and equip yourself appropriately. 
  • Know the area you are riding in. Be aware of its potential hazards. 
  • Always ride at a safe and responsible speed. Know your abilities and don't exceed those levels. 
  • Make sure your equipment is in top working order; check before heading out. 
  • Carry a map of the trail or area you intend to travel. 
  • Use common sense. 
Reporting Accidents:
If you are involved in an accident that results in the injury or death of any person, or property damages to the estimated amount of $100 or more, you must report the matter in writing within seven days to: 
Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Bureau of Forestry
PO Box 8552
Harrisburg, PA 17105
It is a violation of the Snowmobile/ATV Law not to report an accident. 
If involved in an accident, you must stop and give your name and address, the name and address of the owner of the vehicle and its registration number to the other person(s) involved in the accident or to a police officer. 
Accident forms are available upon request from the Snowmobile/ATV Section, Bureau of Forestry, Bureau of State Parks and State Police stations. 
You can be held liable for injuries or death or damage to property resulting from the negligent use of your vehicle. 
Where to get training:
Inexperienced riders are much more likely to be involved in serious accidents. Always read your vehicle's owner's manual and all warning labels. DCNR oversees a training and safety program for ATV riding. It is recommended that all new users of ATVs take an approved safety course before riding their vehicles. Those successfully completing an approved course will be provided a safety certificate. 
DCNR authorizes the training of safety instructors. For more information on a safety instructor near you, call DCNR's Bureau of Forestry at (717) 783-7941. 
DCNR has approved the safety course offered by the ATV Safety Institute (ASI), a nonprofit division of the Specialty Vehicle Institute of America (SVIA) formed in 1988 to implement an expanded national program of ATV safety education and awareness. ASI's primary goal is to promote the safe and responsible use of ATVs, thereby reducing accidents and injuries that may result from improper ATV operation by the rider. For more information call the ATV Safety Institute at 1-800-887-2887. 
Youth safety and training: 
Each year, hundreds of youth are involved in ATV accidents, some resulting in death. While riding these vehicles is fun, it also can be very dangerous. Because of a child's leg and arm length, hand size, and strength, it is often difficult for children to properly control an adult-sized vehicle. Children driving ATVs should always be under the direct supervision of a responsible adult. 
Keep in mind:
  • Children often emulate parental behavior; set good examples. 
  • Children often underestimate the danger and risk because of inexperience. 
  • Children often overestimate their skill level. 
  • It is mandatory that all youth ages 10-15 take an approved ATV training course if they are planning to use their vehicle off of their parent's or guardian's property. 
  • No child under the age of 10 is allowed to operate an ATV on public lands. 
For information on youth training, call DCNR's Bureau of Forestry at (717) 783-7941, or the ATV Safety Institute at 1-800-887-2887
We do our best to gather all public trail information available from public sites and place it in one area for your convenience. We know there are many trails not mentioned that we are not aware of or do not have access to. Please send us any information you have on any trails and we will add it to its respective page and keep them updated. mailto: trailmaster@pa-conservation.org

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