Motorcycle Council of NSW Ph: 1300 679 622 (1300 NSW MCC) |

The BIG question is, are you Registered or Not?

The options of riders in NSW are pretty clear. Buy an un-registerable MXer or mini bike and you are restricted to private property, a handful of riding parks, or competition events on licensed tracks. Buy a registered bike, and the world opens up to you. Remember too that registered bikes are designed to cope with varied riding conditions and their designs, especially in suspension, give much better handling in the bush. MXers are set up with very stiff suspension so they offer a rough, harsh and skittery ride over roots and rocks. They also have abrupt power deliveries designed to work aggressively on relatively smooth tracks, and not with the finesse of the broad power spread required on technical trails. In the bush, registered ‘enduro’ and trail bikes rule.

Riders who are too young to be licensed obviously can only ride on private property.

Most quad bikes (All Terrain Vehicles – ATVs) cannot be registered as they do not meet the relevant safety standards and therefore can only be ridden on private property.

Motocross bikes, pit-bikes and mini-bikes are not designed for registration and do not have the equipment such as lighting, horns etc, for registration. These bikes therefore can only be ridden on private property.

Conditional Registration (for Stockton Beach only)

Stockton Beach north of Newcastle has a recreation vehicle area available for use by vehicles that have conditional vehicle registration. A Beach Vehicle Driving permit must also be obtained before beach riding is undertaken. For further information about Stockton Beach and how to obtain a permit see:-

There are currently no other areas in NSW available for use by vehicles with conditional registration.

For more information about conditional registration for Stockton see Transport for NSW webpage

Click here for Transport for NSW’s Conditional Registration application form (Form No. 1246)

Click here for Transport for NSW’s Customer Roadworthiness Declaration form (Form No. 1245)

What is a Road?

A road is now legally defined as any highway, back road, trail or single-track that can be accessed by the public (Road & road related area legislation). So even a single-track on private property can be classed as a road-related area if it isn’t fenced off from public access. And if you’re riding on a public road or road related area, you must have a rider’s licence and be riding a registered bike. The fines if you get caught riding unregistered and unlicensed add up to nearly two thousand dollars; it just isn’t worth the risk. Its more than the difference between a registered and unregistered bike, so get caught out once and you could have bought and paid the difference between the MXer and the ‘enduro’ bike, and what’s the freedom and peace of mind of riding legally worth?

So what is a public road? This one is tricky. Public roads range from the obvious road network that link our towns and cities, to tracks through the bush. These days, if a track is closed it will be clearly sign posted and the fines for going around these signs are steep. It is also illegal to leave formed roads in State Forests and National Parks, and this applies to existing single-tracks. Old logging tracks are another matter. Many were recognised as roads and appear on maps, but have been allowed to regenerate as they fall into disuse. Strictly speaking, they’re still public roads and there are many brilliant trails along such tracks, particularly in State Forests. Ask your local land managers about using them, and you may be surprised at the great riding to be had.

From the Forestry Corp website

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.

There are places that are closed to the public. Management trails in National Parks are generally closed, you cannot enter private property without permission, and declared Wilderness Areas are definite no-go zones for all but walkers. All of these areas will be clearly sign-posted, so if you obey the signs, you won’t get into strife. On the other hand, if you are licensed and registered, you have full access to every public road, track and trail in the State giving hundreds of thousands of kilometres of riding options.

Click here for types of Parks and Reserves in NSW

To ride on roads and road related areas you will need to be licensed. Click here to find out about getting a motorcycle licence.