Riding ATV in the Winter

8 Tips for Riding Your ATV in the Winter

Hitting a trail full of snow in your ATV is a unique & satisfying experience. The magical winter landscapes give the riders a sense of calm and serenity. Many prefer to take advantage of all the cold white powder around them.

Traversing in the snow-covered terrain, surrounded by the frosted trees, is exciting but risky. Precautions are necessary for your and your ATV’s well-being. If not prepared, you will face many challenges while riding in the snow.

Understanding the effects of the cold weather on your ATV is a must. So is the knowledge of ATV parts, fuel maintenance, understanding of battery, tires, etc. If you don’t know the most common ATV parts, you may get stuck in the middle of the trail if one of them fails. The same is true regarding fuel, battery, and tire maintenance.

A little prep work, common sense, some caution, and cold weather gear for your ATV are the keys to having a memorable riding experience.


Tips for Riding Your ATV in Chilly Winds and Snow

Below is a list of practical tips that will enable you to securely revel in the biting cold weather while harmonizing with nature and yourself on an ATV.

Layer Up!

Staying warm should be your number one priority in freezing temperatures. The essentials are thick wool socks, dual-pane goggles, insulated gloves, a helmet, and neck warmers.

The outermost layer of clothing should be waterproof. Clothes with built-in heaters can turn out to be a good investment. These layers will protect you from getting hypothermia or frostbite, which can be lethal during riding.

Follow the Rules of the Trail

It’s easy to lose sight of the trail in heavy snow. There’s a risk of running into fallen trees, sudden drop-offs, boulders, etc. If your track includes ice, you should only ride if there is a minimum of six inches of solid ice. Also, you should ride on an ATV that has a permit for all-weather riding.

Never Ride Alone

You should never take your ATV for a winter spin alone. Winter generally puts off most of the people from riding. If you are stuck somewhere, had a breakdown or met with an accident, you may find yourself all alone.

Since the days in winters are shorter, you can also be susceptible to hypothermia due to excessive cold. Having a friend along can aid you in case of any emergency.

Plan Ahead

Planning is vital if you want to take your ATV for a winter ride. The primary things are deciding the route, outlining the trails, having extra batteries, etc. You should know the essential workings of your vehicle in the case of any mechanical glitch. You should also watch the weather forecast to prepare for any worst scenarios.

A routine inspection of your ride before the journey is vital. Some essential tools should also be collected beforehand, like nylon rope, knife, emergency thermal blanket, spark plugs, etc.

Vehicle Clearance

The height of terrain vehicles is the deciding factor of whether they can be ridden somewhere or not. Walkways, bridges, gas stations, etc., all have signs displaying the height allowed in those places. Such vehicle clearing signs are essential; they tell you whether you can drive under a structure or not. These can damage the vehicle and cause accidents if not followed correctly. It also includes ground clearance, as low ground clearance can have your vehicle scratching its underside on bumpy roads.

First Aid

Carrying first aid is fundamental for a rider. In addition, you should also take a small survival kit. Having waterproof matches can aid you in making a survival fire. Heat packs can help you in surviving the cold. Electric visor wire can help you in case of a poor connection. These can help you survive the freezing temperatures even in an emergency.

Temper Your Driving

Smooth driving is the only way to have a smooth ride. Being gentle with your ATV will give you much more satisfaction. You must avoid jerking the vehicle, twisting it, stomping abruptly on the brakes. Especially in winters, these can lead to fatal accidents, vehicle breakdowns, etc.

Tires must be checked and changed if they are very worn. Traction will be your best option in harsh winters.

Adjust Your Speed

Riding in winters can be extremely tricky. The terrain’s true nature can be hidden from snow. Low speed can help you avoid many tricker spots like ice patches and save you from accidents.


You can ride your ATV in any season you want. You should not let the winter season stall your call for the wild. Grab your UTV and maneuver the trails you love. Just remember to plan your adventure, take care of safety, and follow these safety tips to have a wonderful experience.

Last Updated on February 8, 2022

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