ATV Trails in Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area, West Virginia

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ATV riding is not allowed in Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area.
ATV riding is not allowed in Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area is located on about 23,000 acres of mixed pine-oak and hickory forests in Morgan and Berkeley counties in West Virginia. There are 75 campsites within the area as well as hunting, hiking and biking trails nearby. Sleepy Creek Lake provides fishing, kayaking and other water activities. Sleepy Creek is located less than 15 miles from Martinsburg and Berkeley Springs, WV and about 2.5 hours from Washington D.C.

ATV Use in Sleepy Creek

All terrain vehicles are not allowed in Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area. In an email interview with the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, Wildlife Manager Larry Hines says illegal use of all terrain vehicles at Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area has become a "big problem" and he is always trying to get the right information to outdoor enthusiasts.

"People are usually surprised to discover that ATVs are not permitted on any public lands in West Virginia," Hines said. "In most of the state, you can drive an ATV on unlined state roads." He went on to point out that both counties where the Wildlife Management Area is located (Morgan and Berkeley) do not allow ATVs on any roads.

ATVs in State Parks

West Virginia law states this about using ATVs in state parks:

"Motor vehicles including, but not limited to, trail bikes, motorbikes, snowmobiles and all terrain vehicles may be operated only on public roads usable by automotive vehicles, and on trails and areas designated for their use by the area superintendent by posted signs. It is unlawful for any unauthorized motor vehicle to go beyond a gate, cable or other obstruction, or to proceed beyond any sign prohibiting such travel. All persons operating motor vehicles in state recreational areas shall obey and comply with all applicable state laws and rules."

Nearby State Parks

Cacapon State Park and Berkeley Springs State Park are both near Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area. Adhering to West Virginia's rules about ATV use in state parks, visiting these parks may be an alternative to Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area and may provide additional entertainment.

Berkeley Springs is located in Berkeley Springs, WV. The park is known for its bathhouse and mineral springs which produce over 2,000 gallons of water per minute from five different sources.

The nearby 6,000 acre Cacapon State Park provides opportunities for golf, hiking and lake opportunities. The park also has a lodge, vacation cabins and a restaurant on-site. It sits near the Cacapon mountain, which at 2,300 feet is the tallest in eastern West Virginia.

ATV Alternatives

ATV enthusiasts may also enjoy a similar activity offered in the area. Hines points out that locally, the Tomahawk Motocross facility is a popular alternative for ATV riders. "Their events bring in hundreds every weekend contributing to the tourism economy," Hines said. "I have had lodgers who came just to go there for events."

Tomahawak is located in Hedgesville, WV and is about 16 miles from Sleepy Creek Park Wildlife Management Area.

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