It is the ultimate getaway for many lovers of the great outdoors.
Trail bikes can provide a unique sense of freedom, the perfect escape from the daily grind.
You’re out in the fresh air, enjoying often spectacular scenery and there is also the thrill of pushing your machine to the limit – or at least, your own limits.
Enthusiasts usually match their enjoyment with their dedication to doing things properly.
Their bike will be perfectly maintained, it will be fully registered, they will be licensed and they will be acutely aware of how to keep it all safe – from knowing their limitations to wearing the correct safety gear.
Knowing what you’re doing, after all, only adds to the enjoyment while ensuring you don’t have an accident.
But the way of the world means there are those who are willing to ignore the warnings, to ignore their own well being.
The way they thumb their nose at the world means other innocent people who do actually do the right thing are then put at serious risk.
They are happy to grab their trail bike, unregistered and probably unroadworthy anyway, and get out into the national parks and tear up the tracks.
It is a shame that these fools make what is a passion for most into such a dangerous, foolhardy exercise.
But their antics certainly have not gone unnoticed by authorities.
Victoria Police is well aware of these people and has committed to clamping down even further on such lawbreaking.
That means anyone foolish enough to put themselves and others at risk is likely to be found out in the Alpine National Park over coming months.
That comes with a step-up in the ongoing campaign by the force’s solo unit, which has been taking to the park’s dirt tracks on motorbikes.
Statewide the numbers are impressive – though probably also disappointing – with 900 people charged in forests over the past nine months.
The unit has also handed out 1200 infringement and defect notices for unlicensed riding and unroadworthy bikes.
It is almost hard to believe that people would ignore the absolute legal basics, yet they do – and the police are clearly on their tail. Thankfully this campaign will help greatly in reducing the likelihood of a serious or fatal crash.