By Mike Kruzman /

As the weather starts to warm up, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources warns Livingston County off-road enthusiasts to be extra careful due to reduced trail maintenance.

Though motorized trails are open, the DNR is urging people using them to take greater care, this spring. Due to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s updated “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order, active through May 28th, and the State of Michigan’s discretionary spending freeze, ORV trail maintenance has been temporarily suspended.

ORV grant sponsors traditionally handle needed maintenance work before the riding begins, but under the executive order, pre-season activities like clearing dead or fallen trees, trimming brush, grading, and replacing signage have not been completed. This means it is more likely that riders will come across these hazards, or more, in their travels. As such, the DNR is asking riders to slow down, take corners with extra caution, watch for potential hazards, and stay on designated trails.

Greg Kinser, one of the DNR’s Lower Peninsula trail coordinators said they have seen a sharp rise in ORV trail use. He cautioned people against taking for granted that they are familiar with their favorite trails, as those same trails, this year, will require more advanced riding. He said, in a release, that they will begin the process of assessing trails and returning to regular maintenance activities, as soon as possible. In the meantime, Kinser and the DNR are asking everyone to slow down and stay safe.