Francis Marion MVUM FAQs

Motor Vehicle Use Map Logo


Q: Where can I get a MVUM?

A: Paper copies of these maps are available free of charge at each of the Forest Service ranger district offices. Other partners and distribution locations may be developed over time to help disseminate maps. Offices are open Monday- Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Q: How many MVUM's are there for the Francis Marion National Forests?

A: The Francis Marion National Forest has one map.

Q: How do I print the MVUM?

A: The MVUMs are large maps measuring 44x33 inches in most cases which require large format printers that can be found at copy stores like Kinkos. You can also download and view the maps on home computers using Adobe Reader. From there you can zoom in on a particular section of the map and choose "Current View" from the print menu. This will print only the section you are looking at, not the whole map, on an 8.5 x 11 sheet.

Q: What does a MVUM show me?

  • The map displays all NFS roads, trails and designated areas allowing public motor vehicle use.
  • Motorized use includes but is not limited to Motorcycles, ATV’s, and 4-wheel drive vehicles.
  • Designation details, including vehicle class, time of year, and any motorized access for the purpose of dispersed camping (camping in locations other than campgrounds).
  • The MVUM also shows roads where only highway-legal vehicles are allowed because of user safety considerations.
  • Motor vehicle access may occur on routes not shown on the MVUM for the purpose of limited administrative access by Forest Service personnel; for fire and law enforcement for emergency purposes and; by persons authorized by a written special use permit or contract from the Forest Service.

Q: Does the MVUM also show mechanized and non-motorized trails and over-snow vehicle uses?

A: No, a visitor use map or recreation opportunity map will provide information on motorized routes as well as non-motorized routes, including mechanized trails, hiking, and horse trails. Over-snow vehicle use is exempted from designations on the MVUM.

Q: What do you mean by vehicle class?

A: By vehicle class we are referring to certain categories of motorized vehicles. It’s important to understand that routes and areas shown open to certain vehicle classes does not mean they are maintained for or suitable for travel using those vehicles. It simply means it is legal to use them. For example, many low standard roads may be open to all motor vehicles. This designation includes passenger cars, although it may not be prudent to drive this type of vehicle on the route due to the condition of the surface or during inclement weather.The following are typical vehicle class route designations:

  • Roads open to highway legal vehicles only
  • Roads open to all vehicles (licensed and unlicensed)
  • Trails open to vehicles 50 inches or less in width (ATV, motorcycle, etc.)
  • Trails open to all (full size) vehicles (trails may be rugged and narrow- intended for jeeps)
  • Trails open to motorcycles only (single track)

Q: What do you mean by a season allowance?

A: Some routes or areas may be open only during certain times of the year for various reasons such as to reduce wildlife disturbance, protect users from unsafe or impassable conditions and to reduce impacts to other resource values.

Q: Are there road and trail route marker signs on the ground?

A: Routes designated for motorized use may not always be signed. In some cases, a route marker may exist at the entrance of the road/trail with symbols indicating which classes of vehicles are allowed. Routes designated for motorized uses will be identified on the MVUM. The MVUM is an enforcement tool to ensure individuals are on the correct route. It is the responsibility of the user to determine if they are on a route designated for the motor vehicle being used. MVUM's will be developed for each forest nationwide. It is not only a tool for motorized users, but also a consistent and standardized law enforcement tool.