Yes, snowmobile season will be here before you know it. There are somethings that can be done now to get ready for and plan that snowmobile vacation this winter. I have been snowmobiling many years and enjoy it. If you are lucky to be able to snowmobile from your house for day trips, great. For many traveling to a resort and snowmobiling from there is their reality.
Snowmobile: It isn’t too early to get that snowmobile out of storage and check it out. Make sure that it starts. Change any worn-out belts and if it is a 4-stroke, change the oil. Order any extra belts and supplies to have on hand. If you want to add a windshield and you haven’t already ordered it, do it now. Then you can take your time to install it (or bring it to a mechanic to install).
Trailer: Check the tires. Do they need replacing? How about the bearings? No one wants to be stuck on the side of a road on their way to vacation with a broken down trailer. Check the ramps and make sure that they can be secured to the trailer. You don’t want to lose them on the road. Check the lights: breaks, running lights, blinkers. Is the electrical connection to the truck secure and working well?
Clothing: Non-snowmobilers often ask me if I get cold on the trails. My answer is usually NO. If you are dressed for the season and the weather, you can certainly stay warm. If the weather is below zero, I typically don’t go out. But certainly some people do. Make sure you have the right clothing to keep you warm. Windshields can cut down on the windchill. There are heated helmets and chest warmers available. Buy enough of the hand warmer packs. I don’t like getting cold on the trail so I make sure I am ready for the weather.
Supplies: You can check now that you have what you need on the trails. If you are on groomed trails you may need different things than if you are make your own trails. Have a “go bag” ready. Bring more hand warmers, first aid kit, tool kit, phone charger, snacks (OK that isn’t always necessary, but it is nice to have a snack if you are on the trails for a while), maps (or snowmobile app on your phone), extra clothing (at least an extra pair of gloves), matches/lighter, tow strap and a shovel. Just think ahead and prepare for anything that can happen.
Trail Stickers: In Minnesota the snowmobile state trail sticker and snowmobile registration decal shave been combined in one decal. If you are using a grant-in-aid snowmobile trails the state trail sticker is required (three year trail sticker is $51 and is valid from Nov 1 – June 30.)
Renting a cabin: We have many resorts that are open in the winter to accommodate your snowmobile vacation needs. It isn’t too early to plan your winter vacation now. Click here for search for our resorts that are open in the winter.
Submitted by: Karen Senger
Retired Resorter and avid snowmobiler