Routt National Forest officials would like to remind winter recreationists that they need to be aware of where they are on Forest lands, as regulations for usage vary widely east of Steamboat. Many areas are open to all forms of winter recreation, motorized or non-motorized, whereas some areas, such as Buffalo Pass, Rabbit Ears Pass, and wilderness areas have permanent restrictions in place. Operating any motorized equipment, including snowmobiles, is illegal in all wilderness areas. The west side of Buffalo Pass has a Winter Backcountry Permit Area, where a permit is required for all use. It also provides an area where only non-motorized use is allowed. Rabbit Ears Pass has separate areas for non-motorized and motorized use. There are also several areas near Steamboat designated as wildlife winter range where motorized travel is off-limits and non-motorized use is discouraged. Every year, there are Forest users who choose to ignore the boundary signs and ultimately end up with a citation and associated fine for failing to abide by area regulations. Penalties can include fines, and in some severe cases, jail time and equipment forfeiture. For more information, click here.