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Trails slated to open

Besides the over 106 miles of Wayne National Forest designated hiking trails that are open year round, the other 338 miles of trails will be reopened for the year Wednesday, beginning at midnight.

Opening are the 148 miles of motorized ATV trails, the largest of its kind in the state, 83 miles of designated horseback trails and 107 miles of designated mountain bike trails. In the Lawrence County District, there are 46 miles of horse trails, 31 miles of hiking trails and 66 miles of ATV trails.

“We’re looking forward to all of the people coming out and enjoying the trails,” Carol Boll, of the WNF, said. “They are all in good shape thanks to all the volunteers that keep up with them.”

The forest’s campgrounds and picnic areas will also be open for the season at the same time.

Although there are no designated bike trails in the Ironton District, Boll said that both biking and hiking are permitted on the ATV trails and hiking is permitted on the horse trails.

Trail permits are required for ATV riders 16 years and older for use of the ATV trails. If riding an ATV, those under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a licensed motor vehicle operator at least 18 years old who also has a permit. Seasonal permits are $45 and begin at midnight on Tuesday through midnight on December 15. Three-day and daily permits are also available for $24 and $12 respectively.

Last year, more than 8,000 trail permits were purchased and the WNF estimates that the ATV trail system receives 20,000 to 30,000 motorist visits a year. To purchase permits and for more information, visit the Wayne National Forest website, www.fs.usda.gov/wayne.