Snowmobiling: What are the rules, how to be safe

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It’s time to dust off your winter toys to enjoy the outdoors in the cold weather.

But it’s also important to remember the rules for snowmobiling in Massachusetts. And in Buckland, it’s the community of the snow-covered trails.

22News met with the president of a Buckland snowmobile club to learn about the local snowmobiling trails and the rules of the trails. 

You can minimize the risk by following the rules. 

Buckland Riders President Steve Howland told 22News, “There’s age minimums, there’s speed limits, but a lot of them are not really rules… they just sort of have to do with being polite.”

In other words, trail etiquette, slowing down when passing skiers, hikers, horseback riders, and other trail users.

What is the most important rule when riding in Massachusetts?

“Well when riding in Massachusetts or in any other state you have to have a trail pass so that you can ride on the trails that are on private land… and really you should always ride with friends and ride safely,” Howland told 22News.

The Buckland Riders club maintains about 50 miles of trails in Franklin County.

“We try to clear the trails back 6 to 10 feet wide, so you can see the snowmobiles coming the other way and try to clear a lot of downed trees every year,” said Howland.

He said he hopes they can get out snowmobiling by January.

You might be surprised to learn there are more than 2,000 miles of trails throughout Massachusetts.

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