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Forerunners of the snowmobile existed as early as the 1800s, and versions of the snowmobile have been around since as early as 1910. Here are some notable dates in the history of the snowmobile.

1927
Carl Eliason patented the feature of his motorized toboggan, which defined the first workable, single-track, one-passenger snowmobile.
1937
J. Armand Bombardier patented a tracked vehicle for traveling over snow.
1940s
An “iron dog” machine went into production. Larger, slower, and clumsier than modern snowmobiles, it was used primarily by hunters, trappers, and power company service crews.
1956
Polaris Industries in Roseau, MN, developed a snowmobile that could travel on rugged, snow-covered terrain.
1959
J. Armand Bombardier, who had spent decades patenting and perfecting features, launched the Ski-Doo® snowmobile. The lighter, more maneuverable machine was a huge success with the public, and numerous other companies soon rushed their versions into production, giving rise to the sport of snowmobiling.
1961
Arctic Enterprises was founded by Edgar Hetteen in Thief River Falls, MN. Arctic Cat snowmobiles are still manufactured today.
Antique Snowmobiles
Vintage machine photos courtesty of Linda Aksomitis, www.snowridermag.com
1966 Fox Trac Model 412C
1960 Polaris Sno-Traveler
1960 Polaris Sno-Traveler®

Snowmobiles have increased the popularity of outdoor winter recreation. More than three million people in the United States and Canada snowmobile each winter, enjoying more than 230,000 miles of groomed public trails.

(Vintage machine photos courtesy of Linda Aksomitis: www.snowridermag.com)