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Carteret County ATV Four Wheel Drive Trail Resources > NC Off Road Vehicles

Public maintained list of Carteret County ATV four wheel drive off road vehicles (OHV) trails that area residents can use. To add a trail or public area, please use the comment form below. Additionally, please consider sharing this page on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter so that others can give us ATV information in the county.

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Radio Island
Request For Information: We are looking for anyone who has visited Portsmouth Island on the Outer Banks to find out their four wheel drive and ATV rules and regulations on that Island. Is the entire island controlled by State Parks? Do they allow unrestricted ATV use or is it only for transportation to and from point A and B? Subscribe to and leave a comment to let our readers know.

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In our research, we found no areas in Carteret County specifically open to ATV and OHV riding for the public. We do know in off-season months the Bogue Banks communities of Atlantic Beach, Pine Knoll Shores, Indian Beach, Salter Path, and Emerald Isle allow for four wheel drive trucks to operate in specific areas on the beach, but you will have to make contact with each of those municipalities to find out the time of year, guidelines, and fees to do so.

Croatan Forest: While much of the Croatan Forest is located in Carteret County, it appears that the only place you can specifically ride ATV off road vehicles is at the Black Swamp OHV Trailhead which is actually in Craven County between New Bern and Havelock.

Directions: On Hwy 70, look for a white church closer to Havelock and turn on the road next to the church. Once the road changes to gravel, go to the second bridge and take the next left on Black Swamp Road. The OHV trailhead will then be on the left. There is a fee to ride this area which can be purchased at Fisher Oil, Pender Park, 2845 Hwy 24, Newport, N.C. 28570. The fee is $5 per day or a year pass can be purchased for $30.

Our research indicates that no ATV or OHV vehicles are allowed on the Neusiok Trail.

Cape Lookout National Seashore: While Cape Lookout does allow for the use of off road driving along the North and South Core Banks area, it is only for transportation to and from areas in the park and no recreational driving is allowed. Please call (252) 728-2250 to get more information on the restrictions for this area.

Area Attractions And Information

Are there any private owned lands in Carteret County that allows for the public to ride their ATV vehicles? Are there any public land areas that we missed?

Are there any unpublished lands open to riding in down east areas or in areas near Cedar Island?

Again, from our research, given that off road driving is very popular and there being very few areas for recreational driving in the county, I smell a business opportunity!

Tip Guide

Michael Sharp

Native of Carteret County NC, Father to Makayla and Savannah. You can add me on Facebook. Interest include web development, encryption, and other technologies.

2 thoughts on “Carteret County ATV Four Wheel Drive Trail Resources > NC Off Road Vehicles

  • December 9, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    I always go to Busco beach but I know that to drive anywhere on Portsmouth Island you HAVE to have a four wheel drive ATV, but not sure about the rules.

  • November 13, 2018 at 5:51 am

    Most people in Carteret County go to Busco Beach in Goldsboro where there is a large area built for 4×4 recreational vehicles. Even places in our community that allow off road vehicles to go like over at the beaches, it is for getting to point A and B only and not for recreational riding.


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