If you’ve never been off-roading before, New Hampshire is a good place to start! With our variable terrain and striking forests, taking a vehicle through the less explored regions of the state is as daring as it is breathtaking. Off-road enthusiasts in New Hampshire utilize tracks in winter that have been covered in snow to ride ATVs or other off-road vehicles in designated locations. If you are looking for something to do that is a bit out of the ordinary, this is the activity for you.
Tell me more about it!
Off-roading is typically seen as the activity of driving a vehicle on unpaved roads or tracks. Usually these paths are made of rough of materials such as sand, gravel, riverbeds, mud, snow, rocks and other natural terrain. Riders have a choice of taking out an ATV (all-terrain-vehicle) on their own or ride with others in a larger vehicle designed to brave the elements. One such vehicle, the Pinzgauer, is especially designed to climb mountains, scale difficult terrain and conquer some of the most challenging environments in the world. It should be noted that there are no public, legal off-road trails in the state of New Hampshire. However, there are legal trails on private land that are available to visitors.
What do I need?
You simply need to dress in warm, comfortable layers to ride and have access to an ATV or other off-roading vehicle. It is also highly advised to wear gloves and a hat for extra warmth and protection. If you are planning on being outdoors all day, it is advised to pack snacks, water or other things to keep you going if you don’t plan on stopping somewhere to eat. Also, on sunny days, winter snow can create a bright glare that can temporarily “blind” riders, so you should pack a pair of sunglasses. It is also a good idea to wear sunscreen if it is a sunny day.
Where can I go off-roading in New Hampshire?
There are several locations where you can go off-roading here in New Hampshire. Here is a link that lists multiple trails designated for ATVs:
Some of those parks are not open during the winter season. Make sure you check the seasonal availability of these trails.
Also, there is a great outdoors venue in Lincoln that features an “Extreme” off-roading experience for individuals or the whole family. Alpine Adventures offers winter excursions in their rugged Pinzgauer. This impressive vehicle can cut through all challenging terrain and can accommodate up to eleven people at once! Here is a link to their website for more information:
When you are weary and exhausted from your off-roading experience, you can always stay overnight at a nearby hotel to regain your energy. Here are two links with useful lodging information:
Is off-roading safe for small children?
Riding ATVs is not for children, however, young children can participate in off-roading excursions with an adult as long as they pass the appropriate height and weight restrictions. Also, in some cases, all riders must sign a waiver for a release of liability.
A word on safety.
Off-roading can be dangerous. It is best not to go off-roading on your own and it is always advised to wear a helmet. Also, it is required in the state of New Hampshire to have a license to operate an ATV.
What is the average cost?
Renting or bringing an ATV on private land will vary in cost. For the Alpine Adventures off-roading tour, here are the approximate prices: