Snowmobiling off-trail (backcountry)
You may operate a snowmobile on thousands of acres of state-managed public land available for off-trail, backcountry snowmobiling.
- If you are going to ride the backcountry, always avoid private property, active logging operations, forest plantations and sensitive plant and wildlife areas. Know where you are going before you get there.
- Online maps and the can help snowmobilers identify public lands managed by the DNR.
- Keep the backcountry clean, replace loud cans or pipes with stock exhausts and ride slowly with paddle tracks on designated snowmobile trails to prevent damage to groomed surfaces.
Snowmobiling on Frozen Water Bodies
You may operate a snowmobile on frozen surface of public waters with the exception of riding when you are:
- Within 100 feet of a person who is not also on a snowmobile, including a skater.
- Within 100 feet of a fishing shanty or shelter except at the minimum speed required to maintain forward movement of the snowmobile.
- In an area that has been cleared for ice skating, unless the area is necessary for gaining access to the public water.
Snowmobiling on the Unplowed Shoulders of State Highways (except limited-access highways)
A snowmobile may operate on the unplowed shoulder of a state highway under the following conditions. The snowmobile must:
- Operate at the extreme right of the open portion of the unplowed right-of-way (or shoulder) and with the flow of traffic.
- Travel in single file and not side-by-side, except when overtaking or passing another snowmobile.
- Come to a complete stop before entering onto the roadway or shoulder to cross a bridge or culvert. The snowmobile operator yields the right-of-way to any approaching motor vehicle.
- Cross a public highway at right angles only and bring snowmobiles to a complete stop and yield the right-of-way to all oncoming traffic.
Snowmobiling on County or Local Roadways
- Snowmobiles may be operated on some roads in county or local road systems. Please check with the local jurisdiction for details.