Friday, March 25, 2022

Top Tips for Safe Snowmobiling

 

Image by Grand Adventures from Pixabay 

Many people frown on winter weather. While the chilly temperatures may not be ideal, snow and ice support several exciting sports. A common favorite is snowmobiling. If you plan to take part in the fun, follow these tips on snowmobile safety to protect yourself from the weather and accidents.

Take a Course

There are approximately 14,000 snowmobile-related injuries in the United States each year. Scott Sandell daughter was in an accident, and you could be too. Inexperience is a contributing factor.

Consider taking an educational course before you hit the trails. You'll learn safety procedures, riding techniques, and local rules. Some states require that drivers earn a certificate before riding. 

Wear Proper Gear

Proper gear will help keep you protected from the elements and injuries.

Clothing

Your clothing should help keep you warm and dry. Opt to wear several layers so you can adjust to the weather. Polyester is the best fabric to wick moisture away, while cotton is the worst. Damp cotton can freeze.

Outerwear

Safe riding involves an assortment of outerwear. You should ideally don a full snowmobile suit or coveralls. Protect your head with a DOT-approved helmet, face shield or goggles, facemask, and hat. Keep your extremities warm with waterproof gloves, thick socks, and boots.

Watch the Weather

Checking the weather forecast before heading out for a ride serves two purposes. The temperature and wind chill projection will help you select appropriate clothing. It's vital to avoid white-out or icy conditions as well.

Bring a Friend

Riding with a friend isn't just more fun. It can also keep you safer. Having a buddy provides a second set of eyes for hidden obstacles, extra judgment, and assistance in the case of an accident or vehicle malfunction.

Whether you ride alone or with a partner, tell someone back home where you are heading. Many trails take you into backwoods where there is no cell phone service. In the event you don't come home on time, your friends and family will know where to start looking.

Stay On a Trail

Sticking to a trail in unfamiliar areas is important to protect yourself from trespassing and hazards.

Trespassing

Straying off the path can bring you on to a private property. Trespassing leaves you open to prosecution. Illegally accessing areas may result in heavy fines and jail time.

Hazards

Unfamiliar and ungroomed terrain leaves you open to many hazards. Deep snow hides everything from ditches to barbed wire fences and bodies of water to large rocks. There is an increased risk of encountering hikers, low-hanging branches, or skiers once you leave designated snowmobiling paths.

Pack a Bag

You can be prepared for almost anything by packing three types of kits in a go-bag. An emergency kit with survival items is helpful if you become lost or stranded. A first-aid kit is a necessity for minor injuries. Even if you inspect your snowmobile at the start of the day, bring along a basic repair kit.

Snowmobiling is a great winter sport. Just make sure you hit the trails responsibly.

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