a question for california riders

I'm thinking of getting rid of my DRZ-S in favor of a WR450, but as you know the WR is a red sticker bike. Has that been a problem for you WR riders? Do rangers really care about the red sticker or are they more concerned about noise. Will a stock WR pass the new 2003 sound standard of 96 decibels?

I ride in the desert and have no interest in forest riding, so my thinking was that maybe riding a red sticker bike year round won't be a problem. Truth is, I rarely even see another rider where I go, and I've never seen a ranger, but that doesn't mean it will stay that way forever.

Thanks for your help.

from what i have been told, up here it is just luck of the draw if you get a green or red sticker.. a friend with a yz426 has a green sticker, while another with a yz has a red.. i have no clue is what i am saying.... :)

Alot of bike that are supposed to be red stickers are getting Greens. I got a green sticker for my 02 426. The DMV has no idea what they are doing. They are completly inconsistent and they rangers have a hard time enforcing rules that the DMV has made and are unable to follow.

But a lot of people on TT have mentioned that they have been sound tested. I am wondering it that's because they ride in high traffic areas, or is enforcement on the rise.

Should I be discouraged from buying a WR because it is a red sticker bike?

I don't know of anyone that has been sound tested. But thats in SoCal. Up north with all the tree huggin hippies is another story. Besides who cares about the noise out in the desert. Your lucky if you see any other riders.

well, i blasted by the ranger station at hollister 3 weeks ago with a yosh race pipe on.. they didn't even look at me.. (ok, not BLAST by, but in 1st and running it high...) and nothing happened at any other time of the day...

Well, like you said. There are not many people riding in the desert and there are fewer people watching what your doing. I ride all over the desert in socal on BLM land. Ive yet to see a BLM ranger or any law inforcment for that matter. So, if your worried about the Red sticker and not being able to ride in SoCal I think you will be ok.

Besides, if you dont want to ride in the dez on any given weekend there are several motocross tracks open and there is also Kennedy Meadows for forest riding that allows red stickers bikes all year round.

Go nab that WR426 and roost!

I've ridden my '01 426 for a couple of years now, with a red sticker, and no one has ever said anything. I do run into park rangers regularly, but have had no problems.

I just got my updated registration (every 2 years) and the new one is GREEN! That's the DMV for you...

The only problem Ive seen and been through is at Hungry Valley and Hollister Hills on the weekends. I work in Hollister so i'll ride there during the week and ride at Clear creek during the weekends no rangers at all. Hollister and Hungry Valley do sound testing all weekend and look for Green\Red stickes when it's that time of year. Some can be very nasty. I think they tend to hit the more popular areas.

Interesting....I rode hollister a lot this summer, never even had second look at the red sticker.

Where's Kennedy Meadows?


Kennedy is near the end of 9 Mile Canyon Rd at the southern tip of the Sequoia Nat'l Forest.

Through Mojave on hwy 14 to hwy 395 Junction. Continue on 395North for maybe 15-20 more miles until you see the Kennedy Meadows sign pointing up the hill. It's a steep one about 20 miles or so. Fish Creek or Troy Meadows campgrounds are dirt bike friendly, but you want to have your current registration, whether it's green or red. Don't bother to go up there in the winter. It's probably at about 6000 ft or so and snowed in between Nov and April.


Hungry Valley do sound testing all weekend and look for Green\Red stickes when it's that time of year. Some can be very nasty.

I have never been sound tested at Hungry Valley except once when I asked a Forest Service Ranger to test my WR426F with the baffle out. He said it registered like 3 DB's to high, but if I put on a downturned end pipe it would probably pass (since it shoots the sound downward and away from the sensor). He was cool about it. I have never had a State OHV ranger try to test me. As far as the stickers, All three Law Enforcement agencies, the local Sheriff Department Deputies (who I know well), State OHV, and Fed Rangers have told me that ALL they care about is being current! They admit to being colorblind. As it is I just bought a new 2003 YZ250F. I don't yet have my stickers. I bring in my paperwork from the DMV just in case. Once they checked my spark arrester, every other time they have just waived me through. It might be because I have an annual pass which they might interpret to mean I've already been checked, but they haven't even asked to see my paperwork even with NO stickers on the forks!

If you can't seem to get a green sticker from the folks in CA, you could always cheat a little. By this I mean, you could go out of state and get a "Non-Resident". The only catch is that you'd have to do it every year. That's how we folk in NV get our CA stickers. Just walk into a shop, buy the sticker (20 bucks), put it on our bikes, and go ride. No questions, no sign-up forms, no nothing. I know a guy or two around Ridgecrest that do that.

I must have sign on my motorhome or have a black cloud follow me on the weekends when I go to these places. Ive been to Hungry Valley once this year, and I s**t you not, as soon as I fired my 426 up a ranger was on my ass, asking me to go get it tested and was looking for my reg. I usally will ride Hollister during the week since I work down here, but I have gone down a couple of weekends and as soon as you pull in and pay if they are testing that day there will be a line & I have been it it more than once.

I've been pulled over at Stoddard Valley - one of the last places I would have expected. They wanted to see current registration and the green sticker. My buddy had a brand new bike with no reg on him and no sticker yet and they let him off the hook, but they did check.

Currently the red sticker riding restrictions are not consistently enforced - but may be as soon as this summer according to some. In the past, issues such as DMV computers failing to flag some bikes that do not qualify for green stickers has made prosecution in court unlikely (equal protection stuff), so no enforcement occurs. What I was recently told by an insider was that those computer issues are behind us and that groups concerned about air quality have threatened to go to court over the state's non-enforcement to date, prompting the state to begin enforcement in the near future. Different areas in the state have different ride criteria, for example, I was told that in Hollister the non-ride for red-sticker months are may or june through october.

The 96 db sound limitation goes into effect Jan 1. I'm told that Hollister will grant a one-time reprieve if you're over, but the next ride - no dice unless you meet stds. They put a sound-pass sticker on the red or green sticker so they know who has passed and who hasn't.

Save your money and stress and keep the DRZ. If you're going to upgrade buy a YZ450F like I did. I sold my DRZ with no regrets. The YZ has lots of power and lots of fun. RED/Green nobody has a clue. It's all about money anyway. Gray Davis YOU SUCK!!!!!!!!!

dirt4lunch I already sold the DRZ so that option is out. What do yo do with the YZ during the non compliance months? And more importantly, how easily does your YZ start. Electric start is the only thing about the WR that appeals to me over the YZ, then is getting the WR worth it?

Uh oh Bill, that's where I ride, Stoddard. I can't beleive anyone would care way out there. I can't remember even seeing a bush out there. If they are going to check even out there, I might start getting a little worried.

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