“Hey, bro, let’s go hit up that happenin’ club. It’s legit!”
“I dunno, man. What if it’s lame?”
“Dude, it’s got ATVs, mountains, mud, and more horsepower than you can shake a sprocket at. Here, let me show you what this club is all about . . .”
Club hopping looks a little different when scouting potential ATV clubs—as opposed to whatever clubs city folk tend to get excited about. If you’re looking to find out more info and potentially make the jump to an ATV club, look no further. Here’s everything you need to know about why you should join an ATV club in Canada:
What benefits are there to being an ATV club member?
1. Meeting new people with some of the same interests as you.
2. Finding new, different and safe places to ride.
3. Getting information about rides, events, do’s and don’ts as well as safety tips.
4. Adding to the voice of and being part of a provincial organization (such as ATVBC, AOHVA, SATVA or ATVMB), the parent ATV organisation that works with many different groups and governments to keep trails in each Canadian province open and safe.
5. Saving money on insurance and discounts from other sponsors.
Choose a club
There are many good reasons to join an ATV club. For starters, joining an ATV club is easy. To become an ATV club member, first select your provincial organization (such as ATVBC, AOHVA, SATVA or ATVMB) and then decide which of their clubs you would like to join. Next, contact the representative of the club of your choice or in the area you prefer to ride. If necessary, get in touch with the provincial office or any director and they will point you in the right direction.
ATV clubs have a motto: “Pack it in, pack it out.” — Photo courtesy Dave Mackintosh
Once you’ve selected the club that’s right for you, you’ll find some fun people to hang out with.
“When you become a member, you meet new people, make new friends, and see new areas of our province,” said Dave Mackintosh, director of ATVBC. “You also do your part to add to the club’s voice and the voice of ATVBC, the parent organisation working with the public and the governments to keep trails open and further enhance ATVing in our great province.”
ATV clubs in Canada have many poker rides and get-togethers during the year. They organize group rides to clear trails, clean up garbage from trails and upgrade more trails to keep them clean and safe for riders. Riders can go on Facebook and join the many ATV club sites to see some of their rides or keep informed of new rides. Some of the clubs post many beautiful pictures of the sights they see on their rides and others put out weekly newsletters.
“One of my favorite poker runs is the annual Three Valley Gap poker ride that the Revelstoke ATV Club puts on annually and have changed the format to be COVID-friendly,” Mackintosh said. “You camp and ride in smaller groups to find the preplaced GPS points and email in all the coordinates. These points are put out at some very interesting and great view points.”
Teamwork makes the dream work
The camaraderie shared between ATV club members is bolstered even more when they work together to keep their beloved trails clean, clear, safe, and open for years to come.
“ATV clubs are always working to make riding better and safer for all ATVers,” said Mackintosh. “There are many examples of different clubs doing great things to make our provincial trails safer, cleaner and more fun for everyone.
“In the Arrow and Slocan Lakes, both clubs have been working for years to keep the rail trail open for motorized as well as non-motorized recreational sports. It is now in the final stages of being able to have a trail from Nakusp to Roseberry. There have been many people putting in many hours of trail work and meetings to get this happening.”
ATVing is a great sport for many different reasons. Some like the thrill of going fast and the challenge of getting to difficult-to-reach places. Others like to take their time and smell the roses.
“ATVing gives many the chance to see and do things in our great outdoors that maybe they couldn’t do without the ATV because of age or mobility issues,” said Mackintosh. “For myself, I would not be able to hike to 99 per cent of the places I ride to, which gets me out and able to breathe the fresh air and see vistas and scenes I could only dream of without my ATVs.”
Make your selection
Now that you know what the benefits are of joining an ATV club in Canada, it’s time to pick the one that’s right for you. Whatever new crew you choose to join will likely have organized some enjoyable social events to take part in throughout the riding season, so there will be no room for boredom or a lack of things to do with your new buds.
“I have been a club member for many years and you get out of it more than you put in,” Mackintosh said. “Try it. What do you have to lose?”
ATVing resources in Western Canada:
Each Western Canadian province has an ATV club that represents its community. If you’re looking to find the ATV club closest to you, start with your provincial organization.
ATVBC: Quad Riders ATV Association of BC - 41 clubs to choose from
AOHVA: Alberta Off-Highway Vehicle Association - 19 clubs to choose from
SATVA: Saskatchewan All Terrain Vehicle Association - 5 clubs to choose from
ATVMB: ATV Association of Manitoba - 8 clubs to choose from