Continuing in our series of articles analyzing the ATV laws in every state, which stemmed from this article, we are addressing the ATV laws in Wyoming in this article. It should also be noted that, while I am an attorney, I am not your attorney, not licensed in Wyoming and am not giving legal advice. If you have questions, you should consult a local attorney.
Are ATVs and UTVs defined as ORVs in Wyoming?
Much of the laws in Wyoming specifically deal with ORVs (Off-Road Vehicles); however, the definition used by Wyoming for ORV is not completely straight forward for ATVs and UTVs. It includes three types of vehicles.
A Type 1 ORV is defined as “a recreational vehicle primarily designed for off-road use which is fifty (50) inches or less in width, and has an unladen weight of one thousand one hundred (1,100) pounds or less.” In most cases, an ATV is going to fall into a Type 1 ORV, but it could vary depending on the size and weight of the biggest quads. If you want an idea of what ATVs fit this category, look at our weight guide and size guide.
A Type 2 ORV is defined as “any unlicensed motorcycle which has an unladen weight of six hundred (600) pounds or less and is designed to be ridden off road with the operator astride upon a seat or saddle and travels on two (2) tires.” This category is going to cover your dirt bikes.
A Type 3 ORV is defined as “any multi-wheeled motorized vehicle not required by law to be licensed and is designed for cross-country travel on or over land, sand, snow, ice or other natural terrain and which has an unladen weight of more than nine hundred (900) pounds.” Type 3 ORV is the catch-all category which is going to include most UTVs. Some smaller UTVs are going to be excluded. Check out our UTV weight guide to see what is included.
Can you Ride ATVs/UTVs on Public Streets in Wyoming?
While you can’t ride any ATV or UTV on public streets in Wyoming, it is possible to make your ATV or UTV street legal. A street legal ATV or UTV may be operated. To become street legal, you must obtain an MPV permit that is displayed on your ATV or UTV. With an MPV permit, you are able to operate your ATV or UTV on any public roads in Wyoming that are not interstates.
To obtain an MPV permit and ride your ATV or UTV on public roads, your ATV ATV must have a current license plate, you must have a valid driver’s license with an M or MR endorsement or a permit , you must have proof of liability insurance, and your ATV or UTV must be equipped with the following:
- Tail light
- Brake light
- Red rear reflector
- Left hand rear view mirror
-Note, if you are under the age of 18, you must also wear a helmet while operating an ATV or UTV on a public road. If you want an awesome helmet that won’t break the bank, check out our Recommended Gear.
If you do not have an MPV permit, you may obtain an ORV permit to operate your ATV or UTV on roads and trails that are part of the Wyoming ORV Program. The ORV permit is $15 and can be purchased online (link) or over the counter at several locations (map).
-Note, if you have an MPV permit, you do not need a separate ORV permit to operate on roads in the ORV Program, but you do need an ORV permit to operate on trails and open areas in the ORV Program.
Additional rules for riding on roads and trails
In addition to having an MPV or ORV permit, the operator of an ATV or UTV must have a valid driver’s license and liability insurance to operate on a public road, whether or not the road is part of the ORV Program.
The following rules and regulations are applicable to operating an ATV or UTV on roads and trails in Wyoming:
- If you cannot maintain the maximum posted speed while operating your ATV or UTV, you must ride on the extreme right side of the road. In this situation, your ATV or UTV must also be equipped with a reflectorized flag or slow moving vehicle emblem.
- When operating after sunset and before sunrise on roads that are part of the Wyoming ORV Program, your ATV or UTV must be equipped with operational brake lights, tail lights and headlamps.
- You may only operate off the roads and trails if the area is specifically identified as “open” for motorized travel.
- Some designated trails in Wyoming have size and weight restrictions. If you are operating a machine over 50 inches wide, you should check with the local area land manager for restrictions before making the trip out to a riding area.
- If you are operating on designate ORV roads or trails, and you are under the age of 18, you are required to wear an appropriate helmet. If you want an awesome helmet that won’t break the bank, check out our Recommended Gear.
- Your ATV or UTV must have an operational muffler and spark arrester when operated on ORV roads or trails.
There are two exemptions to the permit/registration requirements discussed above. The first is for state-owned ATVS and UTVs. The second is for ATVs or UTVs being used ” for agricultural use, including but not limited to irrigation, fencing or moving livestock, are exempt from this article.”
When and where can you ride ATVs/UTVs in Wyoming?
Wyoming is blessed to over 640 miles of designated riding trails. The ATV/UTV riding season is typically between April and December so make sure you are aware of the current season when you are planning your trip.
Most of these trails are located in state parks, national forests and other public lands. The most popular riding areas in Wyoming can be found in the the Bighorn, Black Hills and Shoshone national forests.
ATV and UTV equipment requirements in Wyoming
The following equipment requirements are applicable to ATVs and UTVs being operated in Wyoming:
- Your ATV must be equipped with a working muffler system.
- Your ATV must be equipped with a spark arrester.
Hunting with an ATV or UTV in Wyoming
There are some laws and regulations you need to be aware of if you are using an ATV or UTV while hunting in Wyoming.
- It is unlawful in Wyoming to molest, stir up, rally or drive, in any manner, any game animals or game birds with an ATV or UTV.
- It is unlawful in Wyoming to shoot from or across the traveled portion, shoulders or embankments of any public road.
- As discussed above, you may not leave the road or trail on an ATV or UTV unless the area is designated open for motorized vehicle use.
- You may not enter private land to hunt, fish or trap, without permission of the landowner.
- You may only carry a passenger if your ATV has a second seat designed for a passenger.
Other ATV/UTV Regulations in Wyoming
- It is unlawful in Wyoming to operate an ATV off roads or trails in a manner that damages or unreasonably disturbs the land, wildlife, or vegetative resources.