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Lewistown Field Office
Release Date: 04/01/10
Contacts: Craig Flentie 406-538-1943    

BLM Reminder About OHV Travel

As spring finds its way to central Montana, and more and more recreationists start using public land, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) would like remind everyone that driving off-road (cross country travel) is not allowed on public land.

In 2003, the Montana/Dakotas BLM completed a public planning process that concluded the agency should move toward reducing user conflicts; and protecting fragile soils, riparian areas, vegetation and wildlife habitat by limiting motorized vehicle use to existing roads and trails.

Since then, most recreationists have done a good job of keeping their vehicles (all terrain vehicles, pickups, motor cycles, etc.) on the existing roads and trails. However, a few are still finding old habits hard to break.

The tracks, trails and damage created by driving off road are quickly visible, well documented and understood by most recreationists. Limiting vehicle traffic to existing roads and trails is another means of balancing recreational opportunities with the need to protect multiple resource values.    

There are exceptions to the off-road regulations. Administrative or emergency services (fire fighting and medical emergencies) are allowed off road and livestock grazing permittees are allowed off road in the course of administering their grazing permit (fencing, moving livestock, and checking wells or pipelines).     

“This time of year brings about quite an increase in traffic on our public lands as horn hunters, fishermen and recreational drivers make their way to public land. The BLM certainly encourages everyone to enjoy their public lands, but to enjoy them in a responsible manner that leaves them in good condition for future generations of recreationists,” added Jon Edwards, a BLM law enforcement ranger in Lewistown. 

If you have questions about off-road regulations on public lands, please contact Jon Edwards at 406-538-1900.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

Lewistown Field Office   920 NE Main Street      Lewistown, MT 59457  

Last updated: 06-28-2012