Off-Highway Vehicle Riding
Photo courtesy of Moab Tour Company
Moab has numerous trails suitable for ATV's. Much of the public land surrounding the National Parks is open
to ATV travel on existing trails. (However, please note that ATV riding
is not allowing within either Arches or Canyonlands National Park.) ATV
enthusiasts can use all of the popular Moab
4WD Trails, or explore the backcountry trails that surround the Moab
No one under eight years of age is allowed to operate any OHV on public
lands, roads or trails in Utah. Operators eight through 15 years of age
may operate an OHV provided they possess an Education Certificate issued
by Utah State Parks and Recreation or equivelent from their home state.
operators 16 years of age or older may operate an OHV if they possess either
a valid driver’s license or an OHV Education Certificate.
Education Certificates are issued to anyone eight years of age or older
who completes Utah State Parks and Recreation’s Know Before You GO! OHV
education course. Education Certificates are issued for snowmobiles, ATVs,
and motorcycles. For information on this training opportunity, contact
the OHV Education Office at 801-538-7433.
Properly fastened helmet, having at least a “DOT Approved” safety rating
for motorized use are required for all OHV operators and passengers under
the age of 18 years. A properly fitting, safety rated helmet is the most
important piece of safety gear available to an OHV rider.
All OHVs are required to have certain equipment in working order while
being operated in Utah, including:
- Brakes sufficient to stop and hold the machine
- A headlight and taillight while being operated between sunset and sunrise
- A brightly colored whip flag attached to the OHV and at least eight
feet off the ground while being
operated on designated sand dune areas
- A muffler and spark arrestor (snowmobiles are exempt from the spark
We want you to have a fun, safe, and hassle-free time while visiting Moab. Street-legal equipment requirements largely parallel the safety equipment you expect to find on a traditional motor vehicle. However, please note that if a vehicle is street legal in your home state it may not necessarily be street legal in Utah. Carefully examine the requirements below:
ATVs and UTVs are allowed to be operated on paved roads, streets, and highways in the Moab area when the vehicles are:
- Properly registered as street-legal.
- Properly insured for highway use.
- Comply with all of the UTAH street-legal equipment requirements shown above.
If your ATV/UTV does not meet these requirements it must be transported to and from the trailhead.
Note that off road permits still apply if you are going to use your ATV off road. For more information in Street Legal ATV on Utah's streets and highways, click here.
Any OHV being operated or transported on public lands, roads or trails
of the state of Utah must display a current OHV registration sticker. Dual
sport off-highway motorcycles may be registered as street legal vehicles
if they possess the proper safety equipment, have passed a state safety
inspection, and carry the proper insurance, or they may be registered as
off-highway vehicles. All OHV registrations are handled by the Utah Division
of Motor Vehicles.
Owners of ATVs, UTV's and unlicensed off-highway motorcycles brought
into Utah by non-residents must obtain a non-resident permit for their
machine. (Street legal, licensed off-highway motorcycles are not required to obtain a permit.) Non-resident permits cost $30 and are good for one year from the month of purchase. Some states offer reciprocity, meaning there is a mutual agreement
between states not to charge non-residents fees.
The State of Utah has a reciprocity agreement with several other states. This reciprocity agreement allows residents of those states to ride currently registered OHVs in the state of Utah without having to purchase our 'Non-Resident Permit'. This reciprocity also allows Utah residents the same privilege in those states. Many states do not have this reciprocity agreement with Utah;
The following is a list of states that do not have a reciprocity agreement with Utah. If your state is listed below, you MUST purchase our 'Non-Resident Permit'...
AL AK CO CT FL GA HI IL IA KS KY ME MD MA MI MS NE NV NH NJ NC RI SC SD TN TX VA WV WI WY
Note: This list is updated frequently by the state of Utah. Click here to see the latest list from the Utah State Parks website.
Permits are available in person at authorized vendor locations throughout
the state of Utah. The following authorized vendors are located in Moab:
Moab Information Center
Center and Main
Dead Horse Point State Park
1805 S Hwy 191
435 N Main
985 S Hwy 191
Spanish Trail Shell
2420 Spanish Trail Rd
in person, you will need the following:
- Proof of residency: driver's
license or other state issued identification.
- Proof of ownership
generated from OHV user fees are dedicated to construction, improvement,
operation and maintenance of OHV trails.
For assistance with questions concerning OHV's, along with online registation forms, visit:
Utah State Parks and Recreation
1594 West North Temple, Ste 116
There is one area that is particularly popular for riding ATVs - White
Wash Sand Dunes. The White Wash Sand Dunes are located 48 miles northwest
of Moab. The dunes are quite scenic, with large cottonwood trees growing
within them. Red cliffs to the east of the dunes provide a dramatic backdrop.
White Wash, a popular travel route, borders three sides of the dunes. In
addition to the dunes and White Wash, there are many miles of dirt roads
in the area. On these roads, a rider can access Crystal Geyser and the
Green River, as well as many other points. Riders should obtain detailed
maps, as they are necessary to navigate this system of unmarked roads.
To reach White Wash Sand Dunes, drive 13 miles east of Green River on
Interstate 70. Take Ranch Exit 175 to the south. This county road is known
locally as the Floy Wash Road. (This exit is seven miles west of U.S. Highway
191.) From 1-70, continue southwest on the Floy Wash Road for 12 miles
(be sure to bear right 4.5 miles from Interstate 70, and continue straight
at 7.8 miles from Interstate 70). Go east (left) at 12.3 miles southwest
of 1-70. You will drive by some oil production facilities. The Sand Dunes
are visible from this intersection. There are two very large (natural)
parking areas just west of the sand dunes. Larger vehicles may wish to
consider parking at the area on the top of the hill.
There are no facilities of any type at White Wash Sand Dunes. Visitors
must pack out all trash. There is no drinking water in the area - be sure
you bring plenty of water and other supplies. If you camp, please use a
previously used camping spot and keep a clean camp and fire ring.
There are several points to remember about riding in the White Wash Area.
Please avoid the oil production facilities, and never chase or harass livestock.
When going through gates, please leave them open or closed as you found
them. Please stay on roads and trails when riding outside the dune area
to maintain scenic qualities and the integrity of these routes. Bighorn
sheep inhabit this area; riders should avoid stressing these animals by
giving them the space they need. The cottonwood trees growing in the White
Wash area are quite unique. Please avoid damaging these trees give them
wide berth to reduce potential for soil compaction.
If you camp in the White Wash area, be advised that the closest dump stations
are in Green River. Green River is a full service community, offering restaurants,
repair facilities and grocery stores.
NEW: White Wash Sand Dunes Requires Use of Portable Toilets
Although specific campsites are not marked in the White Wash Sand Dunes area, portable toilets are required. This location is popular for camping, and sanitation concerns have prompted this requirement. Campers are required to possess, set up and use portable toilets. Campers may not bury, or leave exposed, solid human body waste and soiled toilet paper. The disposal of solid human waste off public land is required.
Campers are also reminded that it is illegal to dump sewage from recreational vehicle holding tanks along roads leading from the dunes. Sewage must be disposed of in an approved manner. Campers in the White Wash area may utilize recreation vehicle dumpstations at two commercial camp parks and at Green River State Park in the nearby town of Green River. A fee is charged for this service.
By following a few simple rules, OHV riders can make certain that every
trip is a safe and enjoyable experience.
- Always ride in control. Ride within your abilities and your machine’s
capabilities. Never attempt anything that is beyond your skill level.
- Always wear the appropriate safety gear. At a minimum, this should
include a helmet, shatter resistant eye protection, long sleeves, long
pants, gloves, and boots that cover the ankle.
- Only carry passengers if your OHV is specifically designed to do so.
ATVs and off-road motorcycles are designed to be ridden by only one rider.
Carrying passengers can alter the balance of the machine, causing a loss
- Riders under the age of 16 should be supervised by a responsible adult
at all times.
- Riders should be able to straddle the machine with a slight bend to
the knees while both feet are on the footrests. Riding a machine that
is too big is a major cause of injuries to young riders.
- Always tell someone where you are going and when you will return. Provide
them with a map of your intended riding area.
- Be prepared for any emergency. Always carry a tool kit and spare parts,
a first aid kit, and survival equipment when you ride. Carry plenty of
extra food, water and fuel.
- Check the weather forecast before leaving home. For winter riders,
always check the avalanche forecast before venturing into the back country.
Avalanche information is available from
the Avalanche Forecast Center at (801) 364-1581.
- Never, ever drink and ride. Alcohol and OHVs don’t mix, but create
a deadly and illegal combination.
Utah OHV Brochure
Utah's off-highway vehicle laws and rules have been formulated to promote safety and protection for people, property and the environment. The information in this pamphlet highlights Utah's OHV laws and rules. It answers frequently asked questions about OHV activities on public lands, roads, and trails, and provides important contact information. Riders are cautioned that additional laws and rules apply to the operation of off-highway vehicles.
Once you arrive in Moab, detailed trail maps and guides
are available for sale at the Moab Information
Located in the center of Moab, on Main & Center Street, the MIC staff
is always happy to assist you.
GPS - Moab Info Ctr
38° 34' 22.4" N
109° 33' 0.1" W
Detailed trail maps and guides may also be purchased online from the Canyonlands Natural History Association, the company that stocks the information center. They can be reached on the internet at cnha.org or at 800-840-8978.
Preserve & Protect
Moab's roads and trails are famous because they offer a combination of challenge and scenery that cannot be found elsewhere. Please remember that riding on public lands is a privilege, not a right. Protect this privilege by staying on designated roads and trails. Cross-country travel damages plant and soil resources, and leaves ugly long-lasting scars. Enjoy your recreational activity in the Moab area while staying on roads and trails.
K-M Trailer Parking
2431 Spanish Trail Rd
Moab, UT 84532
OHV Vehicle Rentals
Because of the popularity of Off-Highway Vehicle Riding in Moab, the town has quite a few companies that rent vehicles. Click here for a complete list.
Guided OHV Trips
If you'd rather sit back and enjoy the ride, book an OHV tour with one of Moab's experienced guides. Click here for a complete list.
These lands are administered by the Bureau of Land Management. If you
have any specific questions about current conditions or regulations, contact
Bureau of Land Management
Moab Field Office
82 East Dogwood
Moab, Utah 84532