Jeff Outdoors –

Trail Users

Here in Washington, the “tweens” are over.  The mountains have snow and every yahoo with a pair of skis, snowshoes, or snowmobile is digging through closets and garages.  It doesn’t matter which group you belong to, you’re going to run into the other group. To avoid conflict on the trail, there are just a few simple rules of the road to follow.

Stay out of closed areas.  Nothing will get a 70 year old woman mad enough to kick you off your Ski Doo faster than taking your snow mobile onto a non-motorized road.

Don’t walk on the ski track.  Cross country skiers put a lot of energy (and sometimes money) into the ski track.  If there isn’t a snowshoe track already in place – MAKE A NEW ONE – which doesn’t cross the ski track.

If you’re riding your sled on a multiuse trail, ride down the middle so that the ski tracks on the side aren’t destroyed, and use common sense courtesy by slowing down when you pass snowshoers and skiers.  The noise of the two strokes and the smoke can ruin any non-motorized users day, so if you show a little respect, you’ll get loads in return.

If you are a non-motorized user and a snowmobile passes you, hold up the number of fingers that correspond to the number of skiers or snowshoers in your group BEHIND you. This lets the motorized user know how many more people to watch out for so that they’re not surprised.  It also increases the positive communication between these contentious groups (unless you use the wrong finger for “one”).

Happy skiing, sledding, snowshoeing, and playing in the snow! And remember, GET OUTSIDE!