We stopped by Yellowstone Polaris today to check out the new ATV that will be given away to some lucky winner as an early bird prize for the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway. When I walked in, all the sales associates were busy with customers which gave me a few minutes to wander around the showroom and browse the inventory.

For many of us, our first encounter with an ATV was likely a Big Red Honda 3 wheeler. Launched in the US in the 70's, by the early 80's they were the fun toy to have. Safety concerns and regulatory pressure over 3 wheelers tendency to roll and flip drove manufacturers to develop 4 wheelers (the first being Suzuki in 1982) and by 1988 the 3 wheeler was eliminated/banned.  ATVCourse.com has a nice history of the ATV HERE.

Get your St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway ticket before midnight on June 12th and you could win a Polaris 450 4x4 ATV nearly identical to this model.

Credit: Michael Foth TSM

ATV's are extremely popular and the industry is enjoying nice growth. Report Linker says that in 2019 the All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) and Utility Terrain Vehicle (UTV or side-by-side) market was worth $5.98 billion in North America and is projected to climb at nearly 5% over the next five years. I asked Yellowstone Polaris salesman Robert Wiseman if he knew the numbers of registered ATV's and UTV's in Montana. He kind of chuckled and said, "a lot."

Credit: Michael Foth TSM

While I couldn't find any concrete numbers of how many ATV's there are in Montana, you don't have to look far to see that ATV's and side-by-sides are everywhere in Big Sky Country. When equipped with legally required lights & mirrors and proper registration, you are allowed to ride them on the nearly all streets and roads in Montana. Wiseman said that UTV sales actually overtook ATV sales about 3 years ago. I asked Robert why he thinks ATV's are are so popular and he gave a handful of reasons.

  • Work. You'll find an ATV on every farm or ranch in Montana. They're also used in train yards, oil field sites, lawn care and snow removal business and so many other industries.
  • They're useful. Hunting, plowing snow, spraying weeds or rounding up cattle are all easier on an ATV.
  • Lots of places to ride. With literally thousands of miles of trails on Forest Service, BLM and State land you have a ton of options to ride in Montana. Montana FW&P's has some resources on where to ride responsibly.
  • ATV's are just plain fun. Take an ATV to an isolated mountain lake for a day of fishing. Head to the dunes in Idaho and scream over the sand on a paddle wheeled quad. Load up the family in the side-by-side and drive downtown for ice cream. Everything is more fun on an ATV.

Remember to purchase your $100 St. Jude Dream Home ticket by midnight June 12th for a chance to not only win a house, but you could also win a 2020 Polaris 450 4X4 ATV.