Explore Alaska ATV Laws & Regulations before You Ride

Last Updated on November 9, 2023 by ATVNotes

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Earlier on, if you wanted to ride your ATV on public lands in Alaska, you had to ensure that your ATV was registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles. However, after changes in Alaska ATV laws, one can now ride his or her ATV on Alaska’s streets worry-free. These laws came into effect on January 1, 2022. However, you can ride your ATV on nearly all roads with a speed limit of 45mph and below. However, this is not the case with states like Utah, Minnesota, Maine and others.

Besides this, you can ride your ATV on those streets apart from cities, towns, or other places where specific communities have not banned ATVs on their roads. This means you can only ride your ATV in federal parks and other designated trails and areas. 

Interestingly, this is nearly the case with ATV laws in Arizona, Alabama, Maine, Michigan, and other ATV zones in the US. However, if you are up to riding on the trails of Alaska, read on to develop an in-depth idea of ATV laws and regulations in this state and the rules mandatory to abide by in the courses and terrains here. 

Alaska ATV laws

In-depth Guideline Alaska ATV Registration 

To utilize your ATV on Alaska’s public land, you need to register and title your model first as registering OHVs is a crucial part of the OHV laws of any off-road zone. To get started, you must visit Alaska govt DMV site and then fill out the form you will find there. As you fill out this form, ensure that you state that ‘Vehicle will be used as an APV’ in the affidavit section.

By doing so, your registration and titling will not be processed so that your ATV can only be used on private properties. Such is usually the case with voluntary enrollment. However, if you want to utilize your ATV on public roads, consider the idea we have mentioned above. Once you fill out this form accordingly, ensure that you attach any of the following documents:

  • A copy of your warranty card
  • A copy of the bill of sale
  • A copy of your purchase order from the dealer.

After attaching the downloaded form with any of the above-mentioned documents, consider submitting it to the nearest DMV office. As far as registration is concerned, be certain that you can do so for your ATV for a period of 2, 4 or 6 years. Here is the breakdown of the registration fees that you can expect to incur.

  • For 2-year registration, expect to part with $10
  • For 4-year registration, brace yourself to part with $20
  • Finally, for 6-year registration, expect to pay $30.

Supposing you purchase a brand-new ATV, your dealership must register and title your model. In fact, some dealerships process everything for you. However, others will submit your application to Alaska DMV on your behalf. Thankfully, the application will be in your name.

In case you are not in a position to prove that you own the ATV, be sure that your model will not be titled. However, you will be free to register for it. Remember that your model will bear the ‘No Title Issued’ registration mark.

Such is usually the case if you purchase a used ATV or one that is not titled at all. However, once 2 years of ownership are over, and no one has contested for the ATV ownership, be sure that you will be able to title it in your name.

What should I know about Alaska ATV laws?

It is no secret that Alaska is one of the best zones where you can enjoy riding your ATV with friends or family members. If you are planning to ride your ATV in this state, here are the ATV laws that you should be conversant with:

  • You are only to ride your ATV on the shoulder of a highway or roadway when crossing these sections. Better still, you are only allowed to utilize them if there is a lot of snow on the road, so motor cars cannot use the road. Lastly, you are allowed to use them on a highway in case the highway contains a sign that shows that it is open for OHVs.
  • You are not allowed to operate an ATV when you are intoxicated. In simple terms, you should not be under the influence of drugs when riding your ATV in Alaska.
  • Your ATV does not have to be registered with this state.
  • You are at liberty to ride your ATV on private property if the owner permits it.
  • To talk about the age restriction, you will note that there is no set age limit for riding an ATV. 
  • You do not need to obtain a title from the state.
  • If you come across a state-maintained road, you should refrain from riding your ATV on such surfaces. Also, you cannot ride your ATV on bike lanes and sidewalks.
  • If you are a rider, you can only operate your ATV while seated on a permanent seat attached to your model.
  • Your ATV should carry, at most, the recommended number of passengers. More importantly, ensure every passenger has a seat before starting.

Going through the ATV laws of the target area will add to your peace of mind and eliminate apprehension.

Do I need to insure my ATV?

If you operate an ATV bearing your name, you must insure it. However, if you do not own a recreational vehicle, there is no need to carry your insurance.

Otherwise, you should ensure that you own the vehicle and that it has a line with a financial institution. For instance, if you purchased your model via a bank loan, you will be required to insure your ATV.

Do I need to wear a helmet while operating an ATV?

Yes. If you have to operate an ATV, you must wear a helmet. If you must ride the ATV on the state parks’ trails, you must wear a helmet. However, if you want to ride the ATV on the permitted roads, you do not need to wear a fitted helmet. Although the driver may not require a helmet in such scenarios, the passengers present must wear their individual helmets. To keep safe, a helmet is a must while riding an ATV or any off-road powersport, whether it is the law of the land or not. 

Make sure that it is a fit helmet and that you clean it regularly. A Clean and perfect fitting is neither a law nor a rule but a guarantee of your riding comfort and safety. 

laws and rules for ATVs in Alaska

What are some of the equipment that your ATV should possess?

According to the new Alaska ATV law, your ATV should have the following equipment:

  • One rear-facing red taillight
  • A headlight
  • Brakes
  • Rear-facing red brake light
  • Throttle
  • Carburetor

Should kids be helmeted?

Yes. According to the new law, kids must wear a helmet when riding an ATV. Besides this, the kids should fasten their seatbelts to remain safe as they enjoy their ATVs’ rides. Ensure it is a perfect ATV helmet size for your kid. 

Does one need to be licensed to ride an ATV?

Yes. You must have a Class D driver’s license or similar documents to be allowed to ride your ATV on Alaska’s public roads. In case you are not licensed, you will only be permitted to ride your ATV on private properties.

Am I allowed to ride my ATV on private lands?

As far as riding your ATV on private lands, you will realize that the old law applies. This means that you are permitted to do so worry-free. Besides this, you are not required to register or even title your ATV. 

Finally, you are not required to have a driver’s license. All these relaxed regulations allow unlimited fun whenever you want to ride your ATV on private property with friends or even alone.

Which places should you ride your ATV in this country?  

Alaska boasts of having an array of places to ride your ATV and have unlimited fun. Some of the popular places where you can enjoy operating your ATV include:

  • Colorado Creek Trail
  • Bald Mount Trail
  • Knik Glacier Trial
  • Eureka Trails
  • Chugach State Park
  • Petersville

Some of the places where you are not allowed to ride your ATV in Alaska include:

  • Anchorage
  • Kenai
  • Homer
  • Palmer
  • Fairbanks
  • Juneau

Bottom Line

Since the old Alaska ATV laws were amended, most locals still need to know about the changes. However, ATVs are not street-legal in Alaska. Here, you can only ride them on roads with a speed limit of 45mph and below. Moreso, you need to ensure that your ATV is titled and registered. You are also free to ride it in the designated areas mentioned above. Consider all the ideas discussed in this article, and you will not be penalized or fined for not adhering to Alaska ATV laws and regulations.

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