Exploring the outdoors is a thrilling experience on an ATV. You will face different types of terrains, each with its own set of challenges. In many riding areas, you will have to navigate up hills and over rocks and logs, which requires special skills. If you are new to ATV riding, save the extra rocky trails & hills until you are more experienced. Get used to riding on rough terrain and uneven ground; then you can graduate to an area with a few patches of rocky sections & small hills.
Evaluate & Plot Out Your Riding Path
When you approach a difficult piece of terrain or are at the foot of a hill, you should first evaluate the best path to take, before charging on ahead. If someone experienced has gone before you, try to follow the same path. It is easy to plot out the path of least resistance from the bottom of a hill, as you have a clear view of the terrain in front of you. If you have good riding skills and are looking for a challenge, you can scout a moderately difficult path with more rocky patches.
Tips for Riding Uphill
Start your ATV and take a standing stance that feels comfortable. Rev your machine to about half its full capacity and ride the trail in second gear. As you progress up the slope, you will have to increase the throttle to keep to the same speed; just don’t try to go too fast. Allow plenty of space between yourself and other riders.
Tips for Riding Over Rocks
When you come to a rocky patch, speed up a little and switch to third or fourth gear (whichever feels comfortable). Lean back a little to be more grounded, but make sure your front tires have not lifted more than a couple of inches. You’ll have to maintain some speed while crossing over rocky terrain, but your reflexes are going to be tested when your tires try to slip and slide over the rocks. If you are traveling in a group, the safest way to go uphill would be to send the most experienced rider up the hill first. Another rider should start only when the first has reached the summit, and so on.
Climbing Over a Log
Another challenge is riding over a fallen tree that is lying across your path. Here you will need to consider the size of the log, as well as the ground clearance and type of your ATV. Do not attempt to drive over logs that are more than two feet in diameter.
First, shift to first gear and slowly approach the log. When you are almost touching it, rev your vehicle, lean back, and engage the clutch. As soon as the front tires touch the log, release the clutch, your ATV will lift off. Shift your body weight forward at this point, to the middle of your ATV; if you continue to lean back as you climb over the log, your machine will flip over backwards. This requires quite a bit of practice, but as you gradually learn more about what your ATV is capable of you will be able to climb over objects that lie in your path more easily.