Assessment of Tracked OHV Use on Groomed Snowmobile Trails

Many snowmobile trail managers are facing new management challenges related to OHV use that have been evolving over the past ten to fifteen years. This evolution has included significant growth in overall OHV numbers, the addition of wider side-by-side utility vehicles (UTVs), and some OHVs now being equipped with tracks. Consequently a growing number of local administrators must evaluate what’s best for their local area: continuing to provide only ‘single use’ motorized trails for snowmobiles – or integrating concurrent snowmobile/OHV use onto some groomed trails.

by American Council of Snowmobile Assns. (ACSA)


Assessment of Tracked OHV Use on Groomed Snowmobile Trails


This project builds upon a similar assessment conducted by Trails Work Consulting in 2005-2006 on behalf of the International Association of Snowmobile Administrators (IASA) and the American Council of Snowmobile Associations (ACSA). The 2006 study can be viewed here. Since the 2006 project addressed only wheeled ATV use on groomed snowmobile trails, this project focused on filling information gaps related to tracked OHV operation on groomed trails.

For this project’s Trail Manager Survey, the term ‘OHV’ generally included three off-road recreational vehicle types equipped with either wheels or tracks: ATVs, UTVs/ROVs (also known as side-by-sides), and motorcycles. Wheeled OHVs were included in the 2013-14 survey only to compare 2006 wheeled survey data against current data. This project’s limited 2014 field test evaluated only one tracked ATV and two tracked ROVs – no tracked motorcycles were tested. While no wheeled OHVs of any type were field tested in 2014, some comparisons were made with 2006 field test observations that included wheeled ATVs.

Published September 01, 2014

About the Author


ACSA is a national organization uniting the snowmobile community and promoting snowmobiling as a safe, fun and environmentally friendly family sport.

More articles by this author

More Articles in this Category

Equestrian Etiquette - Protecting Trees and Park Structures

Responsible equestrians should actively protect trees and other park structures when out on the trail. Equine expert Lora Goerlich gives her take on this topic.

Rail Trail Development: A Best Practices Report

This report focuses on the issues surrounding the proposed development of the Palouse to Cascades Rail-Trail.

The Emergence of “Fat Bikes” in the USA; Trends, potential consequences and management implications

In the USA, sales and use of “fat bikes” (bicycles with 75–120 mm-wide tires) have increased dramatically in the past five years. These bikes are designed to open new terrain to cyclists, including snow-covered trails and softer ground surfaces impossible to ride with a standard mountain bike. In this paper, we discuss the extent and possible trends of fat bike use, potential impacts, conflicts and land management approaches.

Facts and Myths About Snowmobiling and Winter Trails

Did you know that the majority of the 135,0000 miles of snowmobile trails are open for multiple use? Read about the facts and myths of multiple use winter recreation!