UTVs (utility terrain vehicles), also known as side-by-sides, have become an invaluable tool for farmers and ranchers. With their powerful engines, cargo beds, and ability to add accessories, UTVs can take on all kinds of jobs around a property. For those considering purchasing a UTV, it’s important to weigh the many potentials uses to determine if the investment will pay off. The following are six of the top uses for a UTV on a modern farm or ranch.
1. Hauling And Towing Equipment
One of the biggest advantages of a UTV is its hauling and towing capabilities. The cargo bed in the rear allows you to transport equipment, tools, feed, firewood, and more around your property with ease. UTVs can tow weights of over 2,000 pounds, letting you pull small trailers, sprayers, seeders, harrows, and other implements. This saves significant time compared to loading/unloading equipment on/off a trailer to transport with a truck. A UTV becomes an indispensable utility vehicle for hauling gear from project to project. Most models have built-in towing packages and attachments available for increasing hauling functionality.
2. Scouting Fields And Checking Livestock
Cruising around pastures, fields, and pens on a UTV is an ideal way to scout crops, check fences, or monitor livestock. The off-road capabilities and ground clearance of UTVs allow you to traverse almost any terrain on your property without getting stuck. Large cargo beds provide plenty of space to carry spare fencing, tools, and supplies for making quick repairs. For checking on livestock, the reduced noise and size of a UTV, compared to a truck or ATV, makes animals less likely to become spooked or startled. The Power Lodge Ramsey has a full cab enclosure to provide protection from the elements while patrolling. Overall, a UTV is a speedy and nimble ranch/farm vehicle for keeping an eye on your land and animals.
3. Maintaining Fences And Facilities
On large acreages, one never-ending task is checking and maintaining fencing and outbuildings. From tightening wire and replacing damaged posts to sealing structures and painting, UTVs are the perfect size vehicle for fence maintenance. Standard cargo beds provide space to haul lumber, tools, wire, t-posts, and anything else needed for fencing jobs. For facility upkeep, UTVs can transport ladders, painting supplies, and materials with ease. Their small size allows you to zip in and out of tight spaces that are difficult to access with larger vehicles. The versatility of UTV attachments like front/rear racks, winches, and plows makes short work of fencing and building maintenance.
4. Groundskeeping And Property Upkeep
UTVs equipped with the right implements become an all-purpose groundskeeping and landscaping machine. Mid-mount mowers allow you to trim grass in tight spaces that a tractor cannot reach. Front or rear blade attachments are ideal for clearing brush, leveling ground, pushing snow, and more. UTV sprayers and spreaders allow for applying chemicals, seeds, fertilizer, ice melt on paths/driveways, etc. For ancillary tasks like tree trimming, hauling logs, and driveway maintenance, UTVs provide the flexibility needed for general upkeep around your property.
5. Recreational Family Use
Even with primarily utilitarian purposes, UTVs can also provide fun family recreational opportunities. Most models allow seating for 4+ people, making them perfect for trail riding, fishing, and hunting excursions. Optional equipment like full-enclosure cabins, windshields, roll bars, and cargo boxes give UTVs versatility comparable to a golf cart. Riding trails through woods and pastures or cruising rural roads on a UTV is an exciting way for the whole family to explore the property. Some higher-end UTVs even offer tunable suspension, high-performance engines, and aftermarket accessories that transform them into recreational 4×4 sport vehicles. With the right setup, a UTV provides hours of off-road family fun when not tending to ranch/farm tasks.
6. Hunting And Working Stock Animals
For cattle ranchers and farmers with stock animals, a UTV becomes an indispensable tool for working livestock. UTVs allow you to quietly approach animals for inspection as opposed to the noise from ATVs or trucks. Front-mounted cattle pushers make gathering livestock and herding simple. UTVs give you the speed and maneuverability to keep pace when working stock in open pastures or pens. They also provide ideal ground transport for hauling animal feed to different locations. For hunters, UTVs allow quick access into woods, fields, and remote areas to place tree stands, wildlife feeders, and hunting blinds in advance of seasons. Outfitted with a winch and plow, UTVs can also be used for creating hunting trails to access your favorite spots.