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sluice box
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I don't believe it has to be a safety concern. Responsible riders (Snowmachines and fatbikes) can co-exist on the same trail. Bikers should dress as they are biking on City streets and have reflective clothing and bright lights. Not all bikers are as sensitive to smell and noise of machines, I actually like turning gasoline into noise, and a little ditch-banging and brapping is almost as much fun as a true wilderness experience.

As for the North woods of Wiscodisco, the snowmachine clubs working with WDRN are the ones who negotiate the trail access with many of the private land owners along the trail and maintain the trail system (grooming and signing) with club dues and snowmachine registration. I have been trying to get our DNR/parks to let non-snowmachines register (bikes and dogsleds) to support the snow grooming pool in my state (AK) as I appreciate and support the work the clubs put into our winter trail system.
 

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Will the trails stay open to bikes in the summer as they currently are? That would be my question as we go up there for a week every summer and my son and I love the fact that there are 100's of miles of snowmobile trails that are open to bikes in the summer and are completely unused. We rode for many hours this summer and saw not a single other human. The trails are not groomed at all so a fat bike is a good fit. My son had his and he blazed the trail so I could follow on my 29er. We are looking forward to the trip this summer where we will both be fat.
 

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As someone who went snowmobiling for the first time last weekend, up in St. Germain, WI, I can say the last thing I'd want to see on the trails riding a sled are bikers or hikers. The speed differences are much too extreme and would be dangerous for both sides IMO, and I'm by no means a safety nut.
 

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sluice box
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As someone who went snowmobiling for the first time last weekend, up in St. Germain, WI, I can say the last thing I'd want to see on the trails riding a sled are bikers or hikers. The speed differences are much too extreme and would be dangerous for both sides IMO, and I'm by no means a safety nut.
What about oncoming sleds?

I think it should just be about the $$$ not safety. But we are talking about Wisconsin here so most people on braps prolly have a BAC of .2 :skep: and from kIllaniose. I seen how they drive down there, you know?
 

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What about oncoming sleds?
Good point, but unavoidable unless they are one-way trails. My thought is the speed disparity going in the same direction would create a much higher incident rate when coming up on someone too fast due to winding trails, hills, etc, to slow or avoid other people. Motorized vehicles in the same direction are less likely to have such a speed disparity. That's my opinion on the matter coming from new exposure to the situation. I'm sure there are valid points all around.
 

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sluice box
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Not this sh!t again...
Straight from Ashwaubenon.
Beloit is the sound it makes as it falls into the toilet.

I'd rather groom my own singletrackthan share a trail with a bunch of drunk slednecks. I've seen snowmobiling inthe midwest, it's not a pretty thing.
Ohh-
You know I'm sure there are some bikers who think bikes should not be in the road, sidewalk or ski resort also. Just dare preference.
 

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I ride the beaches at Harrington Beach State Park a lot in WI. That's my drop-in point, anyhow.

Last year I got stopped by a park ranger. No bikes on the beach. Now that right there is a douchey law...
 

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The trails I ride are "shared use" and open to snowmobiles when there is 4 inches or more of snow. Hikers, skiers, and snowshoes are welcome. I ride with lights at night and get to the trail side when I hear the snowmobiles coming on. I don't see a safety issue here unless fat bikers get a little too full of themselves and insist on having the right-of-way.
A little courtesy goes a long way.
 

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aka bOb
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I'd rather groom my own singletrack than share a trail with a bunch of drunk slednecks. I've seen snowmobiling in the midwest, it's not a pretty thing.
You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Gigantic again.

I was asked by a fatbiker to sit in on a meeting that included about 8 different snowmopile clubs from all over Central WI to help plea for fatbike usage on their trails. First off the average club presidents where over the age of 60 and would have nothing to do with the notion. Second thing is all the land user agreements with the private land owners stated snowmopile use only. Then the safety argument was brought up about meeting a bike in a curve and I thought to myself what if they meet another snowmopile in a curve coming at them at 100mph (stupid slednecks). I didn't say a word because I knew it was over before it ever started. Anyhoo after that discussion was done they proceeded to talk about all the poker runs they where planning for the year, if anyone doesn't know what a poker run is they basically hop from bar to bar drinking and collecting cards for the best poker hand on machines that go well over 100mph. Right then I decided this was a stupid idea and put my mind to building winter single track. See ya all Saturday in Wausau for the Badger State Games fatbike race. Shameless plug time ;)
Fat Bike - Rules | Badger State Games
 

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I think the safety concerns are valid. I used to ride a sled and the speed they are capable of is incredible. Mix that with a little booze and bad judgment or an idiot who wants to buzz the bikers at 100+ and someone is getting killed. I am not saying that they have a right to be drunken asshats but its bound to happen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I think the safety concerns are valid.
The safety concern is totally unacceptable! To admit publicly that these guys operate in this manor is cause for grave concern. As Bob said below "what if they meet another sled in the corner", or a deer, or a groomer? Maybe I am naive but I am certain these guys are at least a little bit cautious as a general rule. The sleds I encounter are almost always pretty courteous but probably because the trail I ride is multi-use with bikes, skiers, and dog walkers. I personally feel that is the direction these trail operators need to go. Make the trails multi-use and require some level of courtesy toward the pedestrian users. Going across a frozen lake is a whole different story but on trails in the woods they are not likely to operate at the same speed. I think it's similar to riding your bike on the road. Even though there are laws about speed, alcohol, and right of way, there are still people operating cars under the influence, speeding, distracted, and sometimes just hateful. People are killed on the road regularly but we are still riding our bikes on them and that is the way it is.
 

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I can assure you that you will find guys are going 100+ through the woods and we have several sled on sled fatalities a year. I don't think it is right its just true. They are barely policed if at all. Go to a bar off a sled trail to see how it really is. They also will never willingly turn the trails into multiuse pedestrian right of way trails. They pay for and maintain them they want to use them as thwy see fit. I was never into riding drunk and alot of other are sober riders to but there are way more drunks on sleds than in cars. I wouldn't want to be on the same trail as a drunk 25 year old going 110
 

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Actually I would be afraid to fat bike on narrow trails with a snowmobile. The guys here ride fast as hell and have slammed themselves into trees, rocks, and other trail users. Its actually why I gave up snowmobiling myself. People with an IQ of under 100 shouldn't be on a 200 HP machine.
 

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Safety issue?

Which of these sounds safer to you:

1)Two sleds going towards each other each going 30MPH. Neither can hear anything other than their own engine.

2)One sled going 30 MPH towards a biker going 10 MPH who can hear it coming for about a mile and can instantly get to the side.

The safety issue is nonsense spread by those who just don't want bikes on trails.

In low use areas, snowmobile trails are awesome. Here's two pics from just a couple days ago.
 

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Dirt Huffer
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I think the safety concerns are valid. I used to ride a sled and the speed they are capable of is incredible. Mix that with a little booze and bad judgment or an idiot who wants to buzz the bikers at 100+ and someone is getting killed. I am not saying that they have a right to be drunken asshats but its bound to happen.
That was me and my friends in High School.
Always drunk and driving 100+mph on sled trails. I don't know how no one got killed. The one time I rode on a sled trail, i was really uneasy about being there and kept looking behind me.
 
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