Using roads in NSW State forests
Forestry Corporation maintains an extensive network of roads and fire trails throughout its forests. These serve a practical purpose – allowing access for timber harvesting and for protecting the forests from summer bushfires. But the roads also provide access to the forests for the community including tourism and recreation – both to get to our fantastic visitor sites or perhaps use four-wheel drives or trail bikes to explore the forest.
Rules of the road
You are welcome to use State forest roads in line with the following conditions:
- Normal road rules apply to State Forest roads
- Drivers and riders must be licenced as required by law (this means no underage riding or driving)
- Vehicles, including motorcycles, must be registered, the issued registration plate must be fitted and clearly displayed (this means unregistered bikes and ATVs are not permitted)
- Riders must wear safety equipment as required by law
- Vehicles, including trail bikes and 4WDs, are only permitted on roads, formed vehicle trails and fire trails. Creation of new tracks and bush bashing is not permitted. Single tracks through the bush, which may have been created by a previous rider, are not permitted and it is an offence for riders and drivers to both create or use single trails.
- Single trails are not formed roads and are unauthorised trails unless written permission is given by Forestry Corporation
- You must obey any signage, directions and gates to ensure sensitive areas and assets are protected; private properties adjoining State forests are respected; and your safety and that of other forest users is maintained.
- Cumberland State Forest is Australia's only metropolitan State forest — camping, trail bike riding and 4WDing are not permitted at this forest.
Note: Unregistered vehicles are not permitted in State forests. Modified 4WD that are not compliant to current road rules are not permitted on State Forest. All terrain vehicles (ATV), buggies, pit bikes or quad bikes are not permitted in State forests. Conditional registration of ATV or quad bikes does not apply to State forests and does not permit their use in State forests. For information on conditional registration of ATV or quad bikes visit the Roads and Maritime Service website.
Protecting our roads
With 60,000 km of forest roads within NSW State Forests, we all need to protect our roads from unnecessary damage. Please treat our roads with respect and ensure they remain open for recreational use.
- Avoid driving in wet weather conditions to prevent unnecessary damage to the road and environment
- Slow down and respect all road users including trucks, vehicles, runners/walkers, cyclists, horse riders and dog walkers.
The following behaviour is unacceptable in State forests. Penalties apply and Forest Rangers or Police can issue fines. Please report any of this behaviour to the Police or to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Damaging roads, drainage structures or infrastructure, or showing a disregard for the environment and the safety of other forest users
- Creating new trails or 'bush bashing' with any vehicle
- Driving or riding off formed roads to 'find mud'
- Spinning vehicle wheels to cause damage to the road.
NSW and ACT 4WD Association
The NSW ACT 4WD Association (www.4wdnow.com) has a state-wide agreement in place with Forestry Corporation that enables affiliated 4WD Clubs to run Club events in State forests. Forestry Corporation supports the Association’s 4WD Code of Conduct
Be safe, be cautious
Most forest roads are unsealed, can be narrow and winding in places and may become slippery when wet or snowing. Many roads are only maintained to a 4WD standard and not all roads are regularly maintained.
Please remember to drive cautiously. Plan your trip and know your route. Check the weather forecast for fire, wind, rain, flood and snow. Many of our roads are in remote areas with limited or no mobile phone reception.
Remember that these forests are working forests, roads are also used by trucks and other forest visitors. Other heavy equipment such as excavators, bulldozers and graders can be encountered in the forest at any time so always drive at a speed which will allow you to stop if you meet any other vehicles.
Before you visit
Take a look at important information when visiting state forests for tips on safety and sustainable recreation.
Remember, permits are required from Forestry Corporation for commercial activities and most organised events in State forests.