Riding ATVs in a National Forest…Yeah, they Can Do That Out Here

Yogi Naresh rents ATVs and takes clients up into the Idaho Panhandle National Forest to enjoy them. We got outfitted with helmets and gloves and with a few words of training, we were zooming off on 500 cc Polaris 4-wheelers.  As a resident of the world’s bluest blue state, Massachusetts, it was fun to be enjoying such an un PC activity as riding an ATV in a national forest.“People are friendly to ATVs here,” said my friend, who is from Washington, where things aren’t quite as red as in Idaho.

Watching Yogi stop to pick up some litter made me rethink some of my  assumptions about the riders of these vehicles. The joy of zooming down a trail at 35 mph was literally a thrill, it was the driving itself, not the destination, that we enjoyed. But the top of the mountain where we climbed up a fire tower wasn’t bad either. From the top of the 80′ fire tower, a 360 panorama on one side 25-mile long Lake Coeur d’Alene, and in the far distance, the border with Washington State.
The trail was full of sharp rocks and deep ruts, but the independent suspension of the ATVs made navigating just about any terrain pretty easy. We leaned with the vehicle and the only thing that made it difficult was the trail of dust that rose from behind each one.  We got off looking like we had gone overboard powdering our faces with mom’s make-up kit.