In the interest of public safety and protection of sensitive resources, DCR has instituted a trail riding permit program for the use of All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) and Off Highway Motorcycles (OHMs) on designated motorized trails at Pittsfield State Forest, October Mountain State Forest, and Beartown State Forest. All ATV and OHM riders will be required to secure a free daily riding permit before using OHV trails. The Off Highway Vehicle (OHV) permit program is intended to facilitate communication with OHV riders, help us to better manage motorized use and improve safety of both motorized and non-motorized trail users. OHV trails may be open for ATV and OHM use as early as May 1st through the last Sunday of November depending on local trail conditions. Please call each forest before visiting to find out when trails open or visit: Off-Road Vehicles
1) How do I get a permit for use of ATV/OHM trails?
The easiest and most convenient way to get a permit is to reserve in advance (up to 60 days) beginning May 1, 2014 by calling (413)358-2172 or via email at email@example.com This central reservation system will issue permits for Pittsfield State Forest, October Mountain State Forest and Beartown State Forest. Reservations must include the operator's name, address, phone # or email, date Of birth, Year/Make/Model of Machine, MA OHV registration number, and ATV Safety Course Certification # for any operators under 18. Please call each forest for permit pick up locations.
2) Where do I need a permit to ride my ATV/OHM on DCR properties?
Pittsfield State Forest (Pittsfield, Lanesborough, Hancock) Park HQ tel.# (413)442-8992. Approximately 16 miles of ORV trails suitable for motorcycles or ATVs. Approximately 20 miles of previously designated OHV trails are now closed to ATVs and OHMs to protect resources regulated under the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act, (M.G.L. c. 131A).
Beartown State Forest (Lee, Great Barrington and Monterey) Park HQ tel.# (413)528-0904. Approximately 16 miles of ORV trails suitable for motorcycles or ATVs.
October Mountain State Forest (Lee, Lenox, Washington and Becket) Park HQ tel.# (413)243-1778. Approximately 28 miles of ORV trails suitable for motorcycles or ATVs.
3) Is there a fee for the ATV/OHM permit?
No. The permits are free of charge.
4) How many permits will be issued each day?
DCR will issue a maximum of fifty (50) permits per day at Pittsfield State Forest and seventy-five (75) permits per day at both October Mountain and Beartown State Forests. These limits are based on national safety standards recommended for OHV use per mile of available trail.
5) Can I get a permit for multiple locations?
Yes. The easiest and most convenient way to get a permit is to reserve in advance beginning May 1, 2013 by calling (413)358-2172 or via email at Pittsfield.ATVfirstname.lastname@example.org This central reservation system will issue permits for Pittsfield State Forest, October Mountain State Forest and Beartown State Forest.
6) Can I reserve a permit for multiple days of riding?
Yes, you can make a reservation for up to five consecutive days of riding.
7) Is there a limit on the number of permit reservations I can make and what if my riding plans change?
No. There is no limit to the number of permit reservations individuals or groups may make for the riding season. If you cannot make your reservation, please contact the permit office so your permit can be reissued. Individuals and/or groups who make a reservation and 'no show' two times, will lose their reservation privileges.
8) Can I get a permit for the entire season?
No. Recognizing the popularity of OHV trail usage and the limited availability of designated ATV/OHM trails in Massachusetts, DCR seeks to maximize availability of the permits to the largest number of users.
9) Can I get a permit at the last minute - on the day I want to ride?
DCR will not withhold permit reservations for last minute riders. However, if permits are still available, we will do our best to accommodate last minute riders. We recommend calling (413) 358-2172 before leaving home or arriving, to see if permits are still available.
10) Can I make reservations for other members of my party?
Yes, individuals may make a reservation for their entire party. Reservations must include the name, address, date of birth, phone # or email address, type of vehicle (OHM,ATV,or UTV), and Massachusetts OHV registration # for EACH operator.
11) Can ATV/OHM clubs or organizations make a reservation?
ATV and OHM clubs perform valuable maintenance, trail patrol and education activities on DCR's ATV/OHM trails. DCR will allow recognized ATV/OHM clubs and organizations to reserve permits for club trail stewardship activities.
12) I plan to camp at one of the OHV State Forest's . Can I make my permit reservation through Reserveamerica/Active Network when I make my camping reservation?
No. Permit reservations will only be available through the permit process mentioned above.
13) Do I need to have my permit with me while I ride?
Yes, all operators must have a valid daily permit in their possession while riding on the ATV/OHM trails. Operators without a valid permit will be subject to fine, eviction or both.
14) Where can I access the trails?
Pittsfield State Forest Balance Rock State Park parking area off of Balance Rock Road in Lanesborough is the primary trail access point. Limited parking is available at Potter Mt. Road. Trails cannot be accessed from West St. or Route 20 in Pittsfield or from adjacent properties.
October Mountain State Forest Trail access and limited parking available at Becket Rd. in Lee (Finerty Trail), County Rd. in Washington (Finerty Pond Trail), and on Schermerhorn Rd in Washington (Spruce Trail and Felton Pond). Note: Lower Schermerhorn Rd in Lee is closed. OHV lots on Schermerhorn Rd must be accessed from Becket Rd or West Branch Rd.
Beartown State Forest Trail access and limited parking available at OHV parking lot on Benedict Pond Rd. in Great Barrington (Wildcat Trail access).
15) What are the conditions of the OHV trails like?
The condition of the OHV trails at all three forests include some technical, steep and rocky sections and are more appropriate for skilled riders.
16) Who maintains the OHV Trails?
Across Massachusetts, OHV clubs and local volunteers assist with the maintenance of trails. DCR welcomes the support from OHV community and encourages volunteer stewardship of OHV trails.
17) Where else can I ride my ATV/OHM on DCR properties?
Tolland State Forest (Tolland, Sandisfield and Otis) tel. # (413)269-6002. Tolland State Forest is open to street legal motorcycles only. MGL CH 90b prohibits operation of OHVs on all public roads,
therefore, all OHMs accessing TSF trails must be registered for both street and off-road use.
These two forests are open to OHM use through the partnership of the Pilgrim Sands Trail Riders and King Philip Trail Riders who help to maintain the trails for all visitors. For more detailed information, trail maps and directions go to:
Freetown-Fall River State Forest (Freetown and Fall River) tel. # (508)644-5522. Approximately 25 miles of single track trails for the expert rider. Motorcycles only.
F. Gilbert Hills, Wrentham and Franklin State Forests (Foxboro, Wrentham and Franklin) tel.# (508)543-9084 Approximately 8 miles of single track motorcycle trail in each of the three forests. Best suited to intermediate to expert riders. Motorcycles only.
For more detailed information, trail maps and directions visit MassParks