Snowmobiling

Brandon Gabrielson

As many would say, a bad day of snowmobiling is better than a good day of work. Snowmobiling is a sport that many people in the Northern states of America have enjoyed. Snowmobiling has been in existence for barely over 100 years, but oddly enough, men flew before creating a machine to go on snow. Many people may see snowmobiling similar to driving a car or an ATV, but that is not the case. According to the International Snowmobile Manufacturing Association, Snowmobiling is a sport that is great exercises and relieves stress that allows riders to interact with nature (16).

History

Snowmobiling has been around for over 100 years, the first snowmobile built was constructed in 1908. This "snowmobile" is nothing what you'd imagine. The first snowmobile was a Ford Model-T with ski's on the front wheels. This snowmobile didn't actually ride on snow, but through snow. The first snowmobile to ride on top of the snow surface was built in 1909. It was about 10 feet long and could barely steer.

Snowmobile Types and Sizes

Today in Wisconsin there are four main types of snowmobiles. Ski-doo, Arctic-Cat, Polaris, and Yamaha. There are other types of snowmobiles but they aren't common in Wisconsin because they are built for other uses, such as mountain or sport use. Smaller snowmobiles are recommended for people new to snowmobiling, a such snowmobile would be a Yamaha SRX 120 because it won't accelerate as fast or have as high of a top speed compared to a Arctic Cat T660. Arctic Cat is a favored brand. A review of the Arctic Cat ProCross F 800 SnoPro, "It's nice. It's got plenty of power and has a great rap to it. The 128" track is awesome off the trail. The sled holds up very well while riding through ditches or carving up the mountains." (1).

Gear

Traveling at high speeds in freezing temperatures can easily make a person chilly and give frostbite. It is important that a person uses proper gear while snowmobiling. A snowmobiling helmet, a thick jacket, gloves, boots, and snow pants are suggested. There are different brands that sell this critical gear and other gear such as socks and helmet liners. 1 snowmobile helment brand is HJC. On Helmet City they include the quote "Best helmet I have ever bought. It is awesome. Very comfortable, and delivery was fast - one happy customer! Thanks!" (Kevin Boulder). f a rider uses improper gear while snowmobiling they could get frostbite on open skin or get hypothermia.

Snowmobiling Recreational Use

Today the most common use of a snowmobile is for recreational use. Many people buy snowmobiles and ride on public trails. Public trails are maintained by snowmobile committees or business that want to make their business a pit stop for snowmobilers. Trails are routed go right next to gas stations and popular restaurants. Recreational use snowmobiles are usually between 500 and 800 cc. A snowmobile license is required to ride on public trails. According to "Stats from 2011-2012 Season Promising for Snowmobile Market,""In North America, we average 1414 miles a year on our sleds" (Team Aftermarket 5). 80% of snowmobilers use public trails to snowmobile on. There are over 225,000 miles of snowmobile trails in North America.

Effect on the Economy

So far in 2012 there have been 129,087 snowmobiles sold in the world, 48,689 of those snowmobiles were sold in the United States. Annually the US brings in $23 billion. Over 100,000 jobs are created in North America due to the snowmobile industry. Throughout America, snowmobilers gave a total of $3 million to charity. Non snowmobilers may get angry if they have to pay extra taxes for snowmobile trails that aren't owned by clubs or businesses. According to ACSA, "The sport of snowmobiling has rejuvenated the economics of many communities" (8).
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Works Cited

"Economic Impact of Snowmobiling-ACSA-American Council of Snowmobile Associations-a National Organization That Was Formed to Unite the Snowmobile Community."Economic Impact of Snowmobiling-ACSA-American Council of Snowmobile Associations-a National Organization That Was Formed to Unite the Snowmobile Community. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. <http://snowmobilers.org/facts_economicimpact.html>.

"Facts and Statistics about Snowmobiling - ISMA (International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association)-Information for Snowmobilers: Snowmobiling Trails and Safety; Facts and Trends." Facts and Statistics about Snowmobiling - ISMA (International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association)-Information for Snowmobilers: Snowmobiling Trails and Safety; Facts and Trends. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.snowmobile.org/pr_snowfacts.asp>.

"Recent Articles." TEAM Aftermarket. Team Aftermarket, n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://teamaftermarket.com/news-events/article/stats-from-2011-2012-season-promising-for-snowmobile-market>.

"Reviews of Motorcycle, ATV, Snowmobile and Watercraft Vehicles." Reviews of Motorcycle, ATV, Snowmobile and Watercraft Vehicles. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. <http://www.powersportsnetwork.com/enthusiasts/review_detail.asp?rv=73123>.

"Shop for Snowmobile." Snowmobile Accessories, Equipment & Products At Sportsman's Guide. Sportsman Guide, n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.sportsmansguide.com/net/browse/snowmobile-snow-clothing.aspx?c=92>.

"Snowmobile Hall of Fame - Inductees." Snowmobile Hall of Fame - Inductees. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.snowmobilehalloffame.com/inductees.htm>.

"Types of Snowmobiles." - WeSnowmobile.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2012. <http://www.wesnowmobile.com/Types-of-Snowmobiles.aspx>.