WEST CARTHAGE, N.Y. (WWNY) - The pandemic kept many people cooped up inside this winter, but not everyone! Snowmobile registrations in New York state have skyrocketed and traffic has been heavy on north country trails.
“Snowmobile registrations in New York state are up 10,000 this year in comparison to last. We’ve actually doubled our grooming schedule on the busy weeks to keep up with it,” said Andrew Gamble, president, Missing Link Snowmobile Club.
While many people curse COVID, it gets credit from the Missing Link Snowmobile Club in Carthage for an increase in traffic since kids couldn’t play sports, leaving families looking for fun things to try.
“We’ve had this parking lot behind us and over across. It’s been standing room only,” said Gamble.
But the Carthage club isn’t alone.
Because a couple of lake effect snowstorms have ventured out of the normal snow-belt area and hit north of Watertown, the Thousand Islands Snowmobile Club revved to life.
“This year we had about a month of real snow and cold, so it kept the base for us and allowed the riders to actually get out and enjoy the trail systems,” said Troy Beach, vice president, Thousand Islands Snowmobile Club.
For the first time in two years, the Thousand Islands Snowmobile Club was able to groom more than 80 miles of trails and that had new members, like Patti Curtis, out on the trails, thankful for the club’s work.
“I got to use them this year. They were marked well. We went all over the place. It was a lot of fun,” she said.
While it’s getting closer to putting snowmobiles away for the season, riders from Carthage to Clayton will look back at this past season and say it was a good one.
If you’re interested in becoming a member in a snowmobile club, you can find more information here.