Recreational use of off-highway vehicles will be restricted on some state forest trails and access routes during the upcoming firearms deer hunting season, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Vehicles affected by the restrictions include all-terrain vehicles, off-highway motorcycles and registered off-road vehicles, such as four-wheel drive trucks. At certain times of day (listed below), these restrictions do not apply to vehicles being used by a licensed deer hunter in conjunction with deer hunting.
The effective dates of the recreational riding restrictions are:
- Nov. 5-20 for the northeastern Minnesota 100 Series deer season.
- Nov. 5-13 for the Minnesota 200 Series deer season.
Recreational OHV trails located in southeastern Minnesota close by Nov. 1 each year, so no additional OHV riding restrictions are necessary during deer season in that part of the state.
The restrictions, which do not apply to state forest roads, aim to protect recreational riders from potentially unsafe riding conditions and to minimize the potential for conflicts between deer hunters and recreational riders.
Licensed deer hunters may still use restricted routes in conjunction with their hunting activity during the following time periods:
- Before legal shooting time,
- From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and
- After legal shooting hours.
“It’s important to always put safety first,” said Joe Unger, OHV program consultant for the DNR. “We thank everyone, in advance, for their safety vigilance and for sharing space in Minnesota state forests.”
For more information, visit the OHV Trail Closures page of the DNR website (mndnr.gov/OHV/Closures.html); the 2022 deer season online map (files.dnr.state.mn.us/rlp/