ATVing in Maine
by Cathy Genthner
Maine has a wealth of ATVing opportunities.
There are more miles of ATV trails in Maine than in almost any other state in the country. That makes ATVing in Maine an excellent adventure! There are 6,000 miles of trails that traverse a diverse landscape of woods, mountains, fields, lakes, streams and salt water marshes. “We have the largest variety of trails in terms of geography as well as different types of trails. We have everything from a major gravel road to a remote trail that meanders through some of the western Maine mountains,” said Dan Mitchell, the president of ATV Maine.
One of the most beautiful places to ride an ATV in Maine is on the newly opened Down East Sunrise Trails, which spans over 85 miles in Hancock and Washington Counties. “It is an incredible ride and the variety of scenery is amazing. You can go from thick forests and it will open up into big bog areas and there are mountains right along the trail as well,” said Joe McPhail, the president of the Dennysville ATV Club. “We’ve seen wildlife including deer, turkeys, partridge, fox and eagles. It isn’t a dead end ride. You can get somewhere.”
Getting somewhere is what ATVing in Maine is all about. In fact, ATVs can get you to places that are inaccessible by car or too far to travel by foot. “I love to ride in the woods and I can ride to many places that are just too far to reach by hiking,” said Bill Lombard, the trail chairman of ATV Maine. “I often ride my ATV to some great places where I can fish or hunt. If I get a deer, it is a lot easier bringing it out on an ATV.”
Many campgrounds have direct access to ATV trails. If you don’t own an ATV, there are several outfitters and other types of businesses that can rent ATVs for around $100 per day, depending on the type and model of the ATV. State law requires riders and operators under the age of 18 to wear a helmet. Youths age 10 to 15 must have successfully completed an ATV safety course in order to operate an ATV and must be accompanied by an adult.
For more information about ATVing in Maine visit: www.ATVMaine.org
For information about ATV laws and regulations, visit: www.maine.gov/ifw
For information on the Downeast Sunrise trail visit: www.sunrisetrail.org
For information about renting an ATV visit: