Top 10 Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud: Recommendations & Reviews

SUVs are becoming more popular by the day, but not because of their off-road capabilities. Instead, people buy SUVs for the greater practicality they offer. Real off-road enthusiasts today steer away from large SUVs and ride ATVs.

These small vehicles have nothing to do with a car – instead, they are more connected to a motorcycle. The most important thing about them, though, is that they are super fun to drive on the trail. A good ATV will give the rider hours of great fun on various surfaces, including dirt, gravel, rocks, sand, and mud.

With that said, even the best ATV in the world won’t behave as it should without a good set of tires. Tires are always important in vehicles, but they are especially important in ATVs. The best ATV tires for trail and mud should be able to attack and conquer various off-road surfaces, or at least the surface they are designed for.

On top of that, these tires should also be durable, specifically because you will use them on uneven terrain. Tires with tough casings can easily withstand sharp objects and can be driven at lower pressures for your next “Baja” adventure.

The thing is, the market today is flooded with many different options. You will find ATV tires from various manufacturers, some that you probably never heard of. This makes choosing the best ATV tires for trail and mud a bit of a hustle, especially if you don’t know much about tires.

Furthermore, ATV tires are divided into many categories, each covering different types of terrain. Many people make the mistake of choosing tires that aren’t designed for the surfaces where they ride their ATVs. Obviously, using tires that aren’t made for the surface you’re riding on can only leave you unsatisfied.

Fortunately, you’re just in the right place to find everything there is to know about ATV tires. In this article, we will cover the 10 best ATV tires for Trail and Mud. In that list, we will cover tires that work better on the trail, tires that work better in the mud, and tires that work on both surfaces. That way, everyone can find a favorite set of tires.

If you’re a newbie to ATV tires, you can read our short buying guide at the end, where we will explain the differences between various types of ATV tires. Let’s dig into the matter and find the best tires for your ATV!

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud Combination

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

Right now, the ITP Mud Lite II is the best ATV tire for a combination of trail and mud driving. In other words, if you don’t know where you’ll use your ATV mostly in the next period, the ITP Mud Lite II is the best bet. You certainly won’t be disappointed with this tire.

The best thing about this tire is that it’s not overly expensive, despite its excellent toughness and durability. The tire comes with a 6-ply rating, which should be enough even for the most aggressive drivers out there.

But, let’s start with trails because that’s where this tire truly shines. In our testing, we found that the Mud Lite II provides the driver with excellent responsiveness on hard-packed surfaces, as well as excellent stability at higher speeds.

On rocky surfaces, the Mud Lite II continues to shine, achieving excellent traction and toughness. The angled and deep lugs work very well for driving on wet trails and gravel, but also give excellent mud traction.

Sure, you will find better mud tires, but none will have the same trail performance as the Mud Lite II. And unlike all-terrain tires, ITP’s gem has a redesigned tread pattern for better mud cleanout, which helps in demanding conditions.

Finally, we were positively surprised at how the Mud Lite II handles road driving – the ride is smooth, and there’s enough grip for normal driving.

Pros

  • Excellent performance on a wet trail
  • Usable on the grass and wet gravel
  • Very good performance in mud
  • Usable on the street
  • Tough and durable

Cons

  • Not the best option for deep mud

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud Combination

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

The Kenda Bearclaw is another all-rounder that works on every surface. Like the ITP Mud Lite II, the Kenda can cover both hard-packed surfaces and mud. However, in this case, the mud traction is the better one.

The angled lugs with large holes on the Bearclaw pay the dividends any time you encounter mud. This tire works outstandingly well in light mud, where the traction is second to none. The Kenda Bearclaw is also usable in deep mud, more so than other tires in its category.

Furthermore, despite the large angled lugs, the Bearclaw is also very useful in other trail sections. Hard-packed surfaces shouldn’t be an issue – the Bearclaw has enough straight-line stability and side-to-side grip for fast driving. The tire is also very responsive, thanks to the carefully-designed center lugs. The Kenda Bearclaw is even very useful in the winter – snow traction is excellent.

On the road, though, the Kenda Bearclaw isn’t the best choice out there. The ride is smooth enough and the handling responsive, but you will experience a lack of grip and traction.

Like most Kenda tires, the Bearclaw is super tough and durable with puncture-resistant casing and 6-ply construction.

Pros

  • Excellent mud traction
  • Usable on hard-packed surfaces
  • Very good snow traction
  • Tough and durable

Cons

  • On-road dynamics could be better

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud Combination

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

Interco’s aggressive ATV tire is the best option for riders that are only interested in driving performance. Wherever you go, the Swamp Lite will provide you with outstanding traction and drivability, which competes with racing tires.

Driving fast on various trails with a set of these tires is pure joy. Thanks to the optimized V-forward tread pattern with vertical center lugs, the Swamp Lite is super responsive during fast riding. The strong construction adds excellent high-speed stability to the mix.

When it comes to surfaces, the Swamp Lite can easily handle them all. The tire is perfectly usable on hard-packed surfaces and even some intermediate surfaces. Light mud is another area where the Swamp Lite excels, providing the rider with outstanding traction.

That said, deep mud poses a bigger problem for the tire. It is usable, but we recommend against pushing it too hard – you might get stuck. On the positive side, the ride on the street is very smooth and safe.

Finally, the Swamp Lite is known for accelerated wear when driven on very hard surfaces, something that its competitors fully rectified in their latest tires.

Pros

  • Excellent performance on various trail surfaces
  • Very good traction in light mud
  • Very good traction in the snow
  • Tough and durable

Cons

  • Not the best option for very deep mud
  • Accelerated wear on hard-packed surfaces

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud Combination

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

If you are interested purely in performance, then the SunF A027 will be a great fit for you. Thanks to the lightweight construction, the A027 weighs 30% less than its competition.

That is unsprung weight, which can affect performance in a great way. When fitted on your ATV, these tires should improve its performance and lower the fuel economy. And, who doesn’t want to go fast and safe fuel at the same time?

When it comes to cornering performance and traction, the SunF A027 again doesn’t disappoint. The knobby tread pattern on this tire is different from most, which is good because it provides the rider with outstanding traction and drivability.

The A027 is especially good on hard-packed surfaces, better than almost any other tire on this list. Riding fast with a set of these tires on dry trail feels safe – the tires are very responsive, have outstanding traction, and excellent grip in the corners.

That said, the SunF isn’t the best option for deep mud, even though it is perfectly usable in light mud. Nonetheless, that is always the case with knobby tires.

On the positive side, the SunF A027 is impressively tough and durable and offers excellent on-road ride and stability.

Pros

  • Excellent traction on various surfaces
  • Very good traction in light mud
  • Lightweight design improves performance
  • Tough and durable

Cons

  • Not many large sizes are available
  • Not the best option for very deep mud

Best ATV Tires for Trail

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

Carlisle’s All Trail tire is one of the most popular ATV tires among off-road enthusiasts. There is a reason for that – the tire performs outstandingly well across various surfaces and weather conditions.

The busy tread pattern with a large number of grooves makes this tire a true all-rounder. With a set of these tires, your ATV can conquer almost any surface you encounter, provided it’s not very deep mud.

We had a very good experience on hard-packed surfaces, such as dirt and gravel, but also rocks, and grass. The Carlisle All Trail is even usable in light mud, but we recommend against pushing it too far.

The best thing about this tire is that it’s very responsive and stable at higher speeds. Driving fast on a trail with the Carlisle is fun, but more importantly, safe.

Furthermore, due to the larger contact patch, this tire has when compared to mud tires, it performs very well on the street. Stability is very good indeed, and the tire is DOT-approved, so you don’t have problems with authorities.

With that said, you will be paying a bit more to get all those qualities in one tire – the Carlisle All Trail is more expensive than its rivals. Nevertheless, the tough and durable tread compound means that you won’t be changing these tires frequently, which partially rectifies the higher price.

Pros

  • Excellent traction and grip on the pavement
  • Usable for light off-roading
  • Durable tread compound
  • Strong casing

Cons

  • Expensive
  • There are better mud options

Best ATV Tires for Trail

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

EFX’s ATV tire called MotoClaw has a tread pattern that’s unlike anything else on the road. A quick look at the tread and you already know that the MotoClaw is designed to work both on hard-packed surfaces and mud.

To make all of that possible, EFX made the lugs as strong as possible. That is very important in a tire that will be used on intermediate and hard surfaces, such as rocks, dirt, and gravel.

This also means that the tire is supremely responsive – you don’t have to wait for the lugs to bend and start gripping the surface. Here, everything happens immediately.

Thanks to all of that, the EFX MotoClaw is super fun to drive on the trail. The tire has enough grip and traction for a safe ride, and enough responsiveness to provide the driver with excellent steering feel.

On top of that, the MotoClaw is also useful in the mud. Sure, it won’t dethrone any real mud tire in deep mud, but light mud shouldn’t pose a problem for this tire.

Furthermore, the MotoClaw is even usable on the street, where the ride is very smooth.

Like most tires made from EFX, the MotoClaw is supremely tough and durable – it should last a pretty long time.

With that said, this is also one of the most expensive ATV tires right now.

Pros

  • Outstanding drivability on the trail
  • Good performance in mud
  • Smooth ride on the street

Cons

  • Expensive

Best ATV Tires for Trail

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

If you’re looking for aggressive ATV tires that will work on most surfaces, look no further than the GBC Kanati Mongrel. This tire is designed to work on most off-road surfaces, and it succeeds with high points throughout.

One of the best things about the Kanati Mongrel is that it has a 10-ply rating. This means that the tire is super-tough, but also that you can use it with very low pressures without worrying about damaging it. Right now, only a few competitors offer a 10-ply rating.

The excellent toughness is joined by very good performance on a trail road. The Kanati Mongrel handles hard-packed surfaces like a champion. It is very responsive, allows for great high-speed pursuits, and has high levels of grip and traction.

Furthermore, the Kanati Mongrel also works on wet surfaces. Driving in light mud shouldn’t pose any issue – the aggressive tread pattern takes care of giving you enough traction. The tire is also usable in deep mud, but for serious mid driving, we still recommend going for a proper mud tire.

Lastly, this tire is DOT-approved, which means that you can use it on the road legally. More importantly, the ride on the pavement is very smooth, more so than mud tires. Handling is also pretty good, albeit not exceptional.

Pros

  • Excellent performance on hard-packed surfaces
  • Smooth ride on the pavement
  • Extremely tough and durable

Cons

  • Not the best option for deep mud

Best ATV Mud Tires

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

The Kenda Executioner is one of the best ATV mud tires right now, thanks to the unique combination of outstanding traction, responsive handling, and excellent toughness and durability.

The Executioner is a specialized mud tire for riders that want to have fun on the most demanding surfaces. This is a tire that can easily tackle light mud, get its lugs dirty in deep mud, and even give you enough traction in mud-covered with puddles of water.

The deep, angled lugs with a hole inside prove to be the perfect design for driving in mud. The traction you will get from these tires is second to none – just twist the lever, and the ATV will easily go forward.

The Executioner is usable on other surfaces as well. Driving on sand is possible, thanks to the reinforced knobs that can work at lower pressures. The same knobs are also strong enough to provide good stability on hard-packed and intermediate surfaces.

Like most Kenda tires, the Executioner is very tough and durable, with a 6-ply rating and puncture-resistant casing.

The only area where the Kenda isn’t as good is the on-road performance, where the ride quality isn’t as smooth as we’d like.

Pros

  • Outstanding traction in deep mud
  • Responsive and stable on uneven surfaces
  • Excellent traction and grip for trail driving

Cons

  • On-road characteristics could be better

Best ATV Mud Tires

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

The ITP Cryptid is absolutely the best ATV mud tire for driving in a very deep muck. This tire is so good at digging through very deep mud that you’ll need a pretty powerful ATV to get the most out of it.

If your ATV isn’t powerful enough and you encounter deep mud, the tires might put a lot of strain on the engine and transmission components.

Still, if you own a powerful ATV, we can’t think of a better tire. The ITP Cryptid provides the rider with unparalleled forward traction on most surfaces, and especially mud.

The Cryptid can give you traction even where you don’t expect, including deep mud covered with over 20 inches of water. In other words, the ITP Cryptid is as good as you’re brave.

On top of that, the grooved center lugs channel away mud and debris from the tire, keeping it clean and ready for the next big puddle of mud.

Apart from mud, the ITP Cryptid is perfectly usable on other surfaces. Traction is outstanding on every surface, but you might experience slightly worse side-to-side action than on all-terrain, hard-packed, or intermediate tires.

On the positive side, the ITP Cryptid is supremely tough and durable – owners report that the lugs can take a very hard beating without significant wear.

Finally, the Cryptid provides a smooth ride on the road and good stability.

Pros

  • Best-in-class mud traction
  • Excellent responsiveness on the trail
  • Very good stability
  • Surprisingly usable on the road

Cons

  • You need a very powerful ATV to get the most out of this tire

Best ATV Mud Tires

Best ATV Tires for Trail and Mud

There is no way we make a list of the best ATV tires for trail and mud and not include the Maxxis Mudzilla. The deep lugs with an incision in the middle will give you outstanding traction on every surface you encounter, including very deep mud.

Maxxis took care of cleaning as well – the step-down tread improves cleaning and lug strength. On top of that, the advanced rubber compound enhances straight-line traction, which is unique for a mud-terrain tire.

On the trail, the Mudzilla is as good as the best mud tires around. Thanks to the stiff sidewalls, responsiveness is top-notch, while the stability is excellent throughout.

With that said, the Mudzilla performs best when in the mud. Thanks to the specifically designed tread pattern constructed to flex more in mud-accumulating areas, the Mudzilla provides the rider with outstanding forward thrust on the most demanding surfaces. In other words, the tire works successfully both in light and very deep mud.

With that said, the Mudzilla isn’t the smoothest-riding tire around, which is bad news for riders that ride their ATVs on the road. Still, at least the stability is good, and overall the handling is very safe.

Pros

  • Outstanding mud traction
  • Usable on other off-road surfaces
  • Excellent stability and responsiveness on the trail

Cons

  • The ride could be smoother

Type of ATV Tires That Work on the Trail and Mud in 2020

Trail and mud are two very different concepts. Trail might mean a hard-packed surface, such as gravel and dirt, and surface covered in light mud. On the other hand, mud is mud.

That’s why, when choosing the next tires for your ATV, it’s important that you calculate how much you will ride on each surface.

If you plan on using your ATV mostly on the trail, we recommend going for hard-packed terrain tires. These tires work excellently on fast sections covered in dirt, but also on rocky surfaces. Mud traction will be worse, though.

Intermediate tires are designed to work specifically on rocky surfaces. These tires are usually very tough and durable, with strong lugs. They should also have ample traction for riding in light mud.

Sand tires are only designed for sand driving. They aren’t overly useful on other surfaces but will give you by far the best performance on the sand. If you’re a Baja enthusiast, these tires are the way to go.

Mud tires are designed specifically to tackle very deep mud. These tires have very deep and large lugs, which churn through every surface. Mud tires are also very good for driving on snow. That said, they might lack responsiveness and stability on hard-packed surfaces.

Finally, all-terrain tires are designed to give you a combination of all the qualities mentioned above. They aren’t the best in any category, but at least they work everywhere. We recommend all-terrain tires for riders that use their ATVs on various surfaces.

Conclusion 

We are confident that the tires in the list above will give you long-lasting performance and safe ride. However, to truly get the most out of your tires, you always need to choose them according to your riding needs and style. In other words, there is no point in buying mud tires if you only drive on hard-packed terrain. 

Also, be sure that the tires you purchase are fitted by a professional and that the wheels are strong enough to sustain the high forces generated when driving on demanding surfaces.

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