Riders on recreational snowmobile trails urged to use extra caution as storm cleanup continues

Snowmobile trail. (DNR)
Snowmobile trail. (DNR)

DETROIT – Crews are still working to clear and clean up snowmobile and ski trails in northern Michigan and urging those who use the trails to be extra caution.

“The number of downed trees and limbs is astonishing,” said Rob Katona, central Upper Peninsula trails specialist with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ Parks and Recreation Division. “We haven’t seen conditions like this in recent history.”

Many trails are still open but riders should be careful and keep an eye out for hazards that could be obscured by snow. Those hazards could be logs, rocks, stumps or trails left impassable.

Storms brought more than 2 feet of snow to some areas and blocked trails and weighed down tree limbs. In some places smaller trees have been bent over and arched across trails to the ground and then buried in snow.

“Heavy, deep snows have created a good base for snowmobile riding but with that has come fallen and blown-down trees,” said Jerry Fitzgibbon, DNR acting district law supervisor for the eastern Upper Peninsula. “Trail crews have been working to clear the trails, but many trails remain cluttered and not passable.”

The DNR’s contracted snowmobile clubs have been working to clear downed trees and grooming trails.

If you plan on using a recreational trail you should refer to local snowmobile and ski clubs for information on the latest trail conditions.

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