Dirt bikes are two-wheeled motor bikes designed for off-road riding. The term "motocross bike" refers to any type of motorized, off-road bike. The state of Massachusetts hosts several dirt bike arenas, parks and trails. Many of the state's dirt bike venues are located in the western, southwestern and southeastern portions of the sate.
Several dirt bike parks and trails are located in the western part of the state near the New York state line, such as Pittsfield State Forest (1041 Cascade St. Pittsfield, MA 01201; 413-442-8992). Pittsfield State Forest features waterfalls, streams, 65 acres of azalea fields as well as a designated off-highway vehicle (OHV) and all-terrain vehicle (ATV) trail. This location offers approximately 14 miles of trails open to dirt bikes and ATVs.
Motocross bikers have access to several dirt bike riding facilities in the southwestern part of the state, close to the northern border of Connecticut. The Moto-X 338 motocross facility (motocross338.org), situated on 28 acres of land in Southwick, features a 1.3-mile long motocross track. Owned by American Legion Post 338, this motocross track hosts American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) racing events throughout the year. Moto-X 338 hosted its first AMA motocross racing event in 1976.
The southeastern area of Massachusetts between Rhode Island and the Atlantic Ocean also hosts several dirt bike riding venues such as the F. Gilbert Hills State Forest (45 Mill St., Foxboro, MA 02035; 508-543-5850). This forest covers 1,027 acres of land in the towns of Foxboro and Wrentham and offers 23 miles of trails. OHVs such as dirt bikes are permitted on these trails between May and December. October Mountain State Forest ( 256 Woodland Rd., Stockbridge, MA 01262; 413-243-1778) also offers several miles of trails designed for hiking, mountain biking and OHV riding.
Operating dirt bikes on and off-road can be a dangerous activity. Riders need to employ several safety devices and measures to prevent injury while operating a dirt bike. Employing a helmet greatly reduces the likelihood of a dirt bike rider incurring head trauma from a dirt bike accident. To promote safety and prevent overuse of trails in such areas as the Pittsfield State Forest, the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) requires dirt bike riders to acquire a trail permit before they can operate their vehicle around the designated trails.