Motor Vehicle Use on the Colville National Forest

National forests are required to designate a system of roads, trails, and areas that are open to motor vehicle use for both off-highway and highway-legal vehicles through a process called travel management.  Subpart B of the 2005 Travel Management Rule provides a National framework with local decision making for designating National Forest roads, trails, and areas for motor vehicle use.  The premise of the rule is that roads, trails, and areas are closed to motor vehicle use unless designated as open on the Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM).  The MVUM reflects administrative decisions regarding motor vehicle use.  These decisions are informed by public involvement. 

The goal of the Colville National Forest’s travel management process is to create a safe and sustainable road and trail system that provides recreational opportunities and appropriate access while protecting forest resources.  

Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUM)

The Motor Vehicle Use Map shows National Forest System roads, trails, and areas that are designated as open to motor vehicle travel.  These roads, trails and areas are designated by type of motor vehicle allowed and the allowable season of use.

For example, on National Forest System Roads that allow motor vehicle use, the two primary designations are Roads Open to Highway Legal Vehicles Only and Roads Open to All Vehicles.

Some examples of the vehicle types that are highway legal are: passenger cars, pickup trucks, SUVs and motorcycles that by state law are licensed for general operation on all public roads within the state.

Some examples of vehicles that are not highway legal include: ATVs, UTVs (side by sides), off road motorcycles, golf carts and any other motor vehicle that by state law is not licensed for general operation on all public roads in the state.

A road that is designated as open to all motor vehicles allows any motor vehicle both licensed and unlicensed for general operation on all public roads in the state which would include all Off Highway Vehicles.

Refer to the appropriate Motor Vehicle Use Map to determine the allowed motor vehicle use for a specific National Forest System road, trail or area.  These free maps are available at any of the offices listed below or on-line by clicking on the following links.

**The pdf files below require Adobe Acrobat.  They are large files that may take some time to access depending upon what type of internet connection you have.  We apologize for this inconvenience.

About the MVUMs

  • The MVUMs implement the 2005 Travel Management Rule and are tied to a National regulation (CFR §261.13) that restricts motor vehicle use to roads, trails, and areas designated on the motor vehicle use maps.
  • Travel management is an on-going process and our designations may change on an annual basis.  Check this webpage or your local Forest Service office to ensure you have the most current map. 
  • In some cases motor vehicle use is permitted up to 300’ from the centerline of designated routes to access dispersed (undeveloped) camping sites. This allowance is for dispersed camping only and is not available on every Forest, nor on every road. Check your MVUM carefully before setting out.
  • There is no allowance for using motor vehicles off of designated roads and trails for retrieving game.  Special provisions are provided for disabled hunters through the Disabled Hunter Access Program.
  • State laws regarding motor vehicle use such as age, safety equipment, and licensing requirements, apply on National Forest System roads. Vehicle operators should familiarize themselves with Chapter 46.09 Revised Code of Washington (RCW); OFF-ROAD, NONHIGHWAY, AND WHEELED ALL-TERRAIN VEHICLES
  • Washington State Law defines a Wheeled All-Terrain Vehicle (WATV) as any motorized non-highway vehicle that meets the requirements to be licensed with a metal tag.  WATVs are not considered highway-legal vehicles by Federal standards; therefore, they cannot be operated on roads designated as open to highway legal vehicles only.
  • Counties have rules, regulations, and restrictions for motor vehicle use (including OHVs) of County roads.  Please contact the appropriate County for more information.

Motor Vehicle Use Maps(MVUM) now on Avenza!

If you own a mobile device such as an iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch or Android (4.0.3 or newer), you can take the Colville National Forest MVUMs with you.

Image: QR code to Avenza website

1. Download the Avenza PDFMaps app, available at http://www.avenza.com/pdf-maps to your mobile device.

2. Once you have Avenza on your mobile device, use your device to download the maps at pdf-maps.com while running the app select 'Get Maps' and search for “Colville MVUM” to download MVUMs for Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest parts of the Colville Natioanl Forest.

With the app and maps installed on your mobile device, you will be able to:

  • View your location on the PDF maps using the built-in GPS device 
  • Measure distances and areas
  • Plot waypoints 
  • View maps offline
  • And more…

Through a no-cost contract with Avenza Systems, Inc., the USDA Forest Service has made electronic versions of its Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs) available as free downloads for smartphones and tablets.  

Travel Management References and Links

Supervisor's Office
765 S. Main
Colville, WA 99114
(509) 684-7000 (Toll Free 1-877-727-8704)

Newport Ranger Station
315 N. Warren
Newport, WA 99156
(509) 447-7300

Republic Ranger Station
650 E. Delaware
Republic, WA 99166
(509) 775-7400

Sullivan Lake Ranger Station
12641 Sullivan Lake Rd
Metaline Falls, WA 99153
(509) 446-7500

Three Rivers Ranger Station
255 W. 11th
Kettle Falls, WA 99141
(509) 738-7700

Bureau of Land Management
Spokane District Office
1103 N. Fancher Road
Spokane, WA 99212
(509) 536-1200