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People riding down a trail in ATVs in a forest.

Muskoka is well-known as a hot spot for ATVing in Canada. It’s packed with thousands of kilometres of well-maintained trails ranging from smooth gravel roads to wilder off- road routes. Whether you enjoy hunting, viewing wildlife, or joyriding, you can never go wrong with a Muskoka ATV trip.

But there are some things to consider before you hit the road. You’ll need to think carefully about the type of ATV you need (if you don’t already have one), how to stay safe on your trip, and the best trails to try. Read on to find out more.

Best ATVs for Different Trail Conditions

Although they share similar features, ATVs are not all alike. When choosing an ATV, it’s important to consider your experience level and preferred trail types.

First, remember that you should never buy or rent more ATV than you can handle. Not all ATV engines have the same amount of power. The higher the engine displacement,the more driving experience you need.

New adult riders should look for engines of around 400-500cc. More experienced and aggressive riders can experiment with 550cc and above. Kids and teens should use vehicles with engines under 400cc.

Next, think about what trails you’d like to try. Do you feel more comfortable on smoother trails or do you want to explore the backcountry? Although some ATVs are great for any trail, others can’t hack too much off-roading.

Easy Trails

Many Muskoka ATV trails are perfect for beginners. They are usually marked with green lines on ATV route maps. Beginner trails are typically made of gravel or dirt and don’t include steep, rocky climbs.

Any ATV can be used on these trails, but Sport or Sport-Utility ATVs are ideal.These models tend to be lighter and they’re built more for speed than tricky terrain.

Advanced Trails

Some people prefer to put their ATVs to the test on more remote routes which may include steep hills, large rocks, or deep forests.

Make sure you have a fair amount of ATV experience under your belt before tackling these trails.

Opt for a more heavy-duty Sport-Utility or Utility ATV to drive these tougher trails. These models have better suspension, more engine power, and solid tires.


Some people love mudding. If you’re one of them, make sure your ATV is ready to handle it. While technically any ATV can do it, it’s best to use tougher Sport-Utility or Utility models.

You may also consider getting a snorkel kit to save your engine and belt drive.


ATVs can be a lot of fun in winter too.

Although some sport models do okay on groomed trails, heavier Sport-Utility or Utility ATVs are best in snow.

If you plan to drive in snow quite often or want to explore deep snow, consider getting a track kit.

Why the 2023 Rubicon 520 DCT Deluxe is Perfect for Trail Riding

Still unsure which ATV to choose? You can’t go wrong with the Honda 2023 Rubicon 520 DCT Deluxe.

With a 518cc engine, this Rubicon is a good option for beginners, but won’t disappoint more experienced riders.

It has great fuel efficiency, which is important when you’re on the trail between gas stations.

The dual front hydraulic disc brakes are great for quick stops to prevent you from slamming into other vehicles or wildlife on your route. The built-in scraper system keeps brake callipers clear of mud and other debris.

You’ll also have a smooth ride, even on the roughest paths, due to the Rubicon’s independent rear suspension.

The Rubicon 520 DCT Deluxe can eat up any terrain, even deep mud. It has two-wheel and four-wheel drive. When using the four-wheel drive, you can choose between atorque-sensing front differential or a locked front differential for
extra traction.

Safety Measures and Equipment for Trail Riding

Even though you won’t need to stop for many red lights out on the trails, it’s still important to drive safely.

Make sure you know the rules of the trails – and the roads. In Muskoka, most trails are maintained by ATV clubs. Clubs may have their own rules and procedures to follow, and charge a permit fee to use their trails.

In Muskoka, you can only drive your ATV on the shoulder of certain highways and you need a driver’s license to do so. Some highways can only be crossed by an ATV.

Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Watch your speed and always be on the lookout for other drivers and wildlife. It only takes a few seconds for an accident to happen.

Also, make sure you have the right equipment. Don’t hit the trail without:
∙A helmet
∙Protective clothing
∙An emergency kit including first-aid supplies and flares

Essential ATV Maintenance Before You Hit the Trails

If your ATV is older, make sure it’s in good shape before you head out.


Pump up your tires and double-check them for leaks. If the treads are worn down, have the tires replaced.


Check the battery to make sure it’s in good working order. Be on the lookout for bulges, discolouration, or leaking fluid.

Also, check the battery’s open circuit voltage and load test it. If you aren’t sure how to do this, bring your ATV in for a tune-up.

Brake Pads

You’ll also need to inspect your brake pads and ensure they aren’t too worn. Replace them if needed.

Best Muskoka ATV Trails

Muskoka has scads of ATV trails to choose from. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Settler’s Trail is a fantastic option with stunning views. It starts at the Old Perry Township Office and continues to Huntsville. On the trail, you’ll find dirt roads and some off-road stretches.

The Algonquin West ATV club maintains 350 kilometres of trails starting just north of Huntsville and travelling northeast of South River. The trails are mapped, and the club posts regular trail condition updates on its website.

Seguin Trail is another popular option for more experienced ATV drivers. Seguin runs south of Parry Sound along an old rail route as part of the Park-to-Park trail system.

Muskoka Powersports – Your ATV Trail Partner

If you’re looking for a new ATV or want a tune-up, drop us a line! We’ve been helping
ATV enthusiasts hit the trails since 1970.