Winter is in full swing. The sun is bright, the air is fresh, and the countryside is covered in heaps of snow. There are two ways you can experience the winter weather: you can stay cooped up indoors, or you can experience it the right way – from the driver’s seat of a new snowmobile.
If you’re considering buying a snowmobile, you probably have a few questions on your mind. In this short guide, let’s answer a few of the most common snowmobile questions, including how to maintain one, what safety gear you will need and a few rules of the “road.”
First of All, Should You Buy a Snowmobile?
The short answer to this question is: yes, absolutely. Not only do snowmobiles allow you to take full advantage of winter activities like skiing and snowshoeing, but it’s also an exciting activity all on its own. If you’re unsure whether to buy a snowmobile, here are a few compelling reasons to take the plunge:
- It’s a great way to experience the outdoors during winter, including for hunting and racing.
- You can explore off-the-beaten-track locales.
- It can be an effective and safe mode of transportation.
- It’s easy to get started.
Now that you have made your mind up to acquire a snowmobile, let’s explore three critical facets of snowmobile ownership: maintenance, gear and local guidelines.
How Do You Maintain Your Snowmobile?
It’s essential to keep your snowmobile well maintained both on- and off-season. To do that, find a professional, trustworthy local company that offers snowmobile accessories for sale, and staffs mechanics with experience in servicing small engine vehicles like snowmobiles.
It’s wise to take your snowmobile in for preventative maintenance at the start of each winter season, and it is especially important to service the vehicle as it approaches 5,000km (or 3,000 miles).
To undertake your own seasonal maintenance, you can also buy parts from your local small engine vehicle dealer. Find replacement tracks and sprockets, as well as synthetic snowmobile oil and pump repair kits. With the right maintenance, you’ll never be left out in the cold!
What Kind of Gear Do You Need?
To keep yourself safe and comfortable while you ride, get the right gear. The same small engine dealer that services your snowmobile should also offer a variety of accessories and apparel. Invest in an insulated jacket to protect against the wind, a helmet designed for backcountry adventuring and warm pairs of boots and gloves.
If you are unsure which brands to choose, just ask the dealer; they can point you in the right direction.
Who Can Ride One, And Where?
To learn more about snowmobile driver requirements, where you can ride and what rules you have to follow, refer to your local Ministry of Transportation guidelines for snowmobiles.
In general, you will need either a valid driver’s licence or a motorized snow vehicle operator’s licence, which you’re required to carry while riding. In some jurisdictions, anyone over 12 is permitted to ride a snowmobile on designated trails (those under 12 may still be able to ride on private property,) making it a fun family activity. Again, refer to your local Ministry website for details like speed limits, access, helmet guidelines and planning recommendations.
In short, snowmobiles are an exhilarating, accessible way to enjoy the winter. They are easy to maintain with the help of a professional, local company. And all you need to start is the right gear and a little know-how. Happy trails!