Rutted up Trail
Careless ATV riders are causing a big headache for fellow off-road enthusiasts.

On Wednesday, damage to a trail system established on private property was discovered making it impassable for the landowner.

“It’s very frustrating when something like this happens. There are people, volunteers, who work hard to maintain and establish the legal trails. There’s a real level of anger when this happens,” said Kent Walsh, interim president of the East Prince Quad Trax ATV Club No. 5.

Walsh and other members of the club learned about the incident on May 1 and have shared a post on Facebook about the issue regarding riders using the trail systems while they were closed.

The trails have been closed since March 20 and the club issued a reminder about it on the weekend.

“The ruts out there are about two feet deep. We’ll go out there and repair the damage once the conditions are a bit better, but obviously we’re trying to respect the private landowners by working with them. If this continues it could be the closure of that trail area.”

The East Prince Quad Trax ATV Club No. 5 is responsible for trail systems in Borden-Carleton, Kinkora and Kensington – over 80 kilometres of trail.

Walsh said when riders take to the trails while they’re closed, or conditions aren’t right and cause damage, it can give the whole ATV community a bad reputation.

“We work hard with environmental groups, government and other stakeholders to ensure and protect the land and respect it, too. We can’t paint everybody with the same brush, but when this happens it can really damage what we’re trying to do.”

The group has logged about 1,600 volunteer hours in establishing the trails.

Peter Mellish, president of the P.E.I. ATV Federation, said it gives the community a “black eye”.

“If we want to succeed at it, the message needs to be out there that we can’t have this going on,” he said. 

Mellish said huge progress has been made when it comes to the federation and other clubs working with private landowners in order to establish legal trails.

“You can’t just go out wherever you want any more, there are other people to think about.”

When the established legal trails are closed it’s possible for riders to be charged with trespassing if they are using them, but Mellish said he doesn’t want it to come to that.

“If you wouldn’t do it in your own backyard, I would hope you wouldn’t do it in someone else’s.”

Anyone with an ATV trail pass can use the more than 350 trail systems across the Island.

Mellish said the federation, clubs and riders are at the mercy of trail users when it comes to keeping the systems open.

“We love our sport and we want a place to ride. We could destroy something we’ve worked so hard to establish.”

He said the federation receives calls about the damage to land and trails in spurts.

“There’s a lot of winter wheat on the Island and people don’t realize it’s a winter crop. But we try to take care of the trails and the land we use.”

Mellish said any riders looking for more information can visit

Orginal story is here 



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