The Handbook of Montana Snowmobile Regulations
The Official Snowmobiling Handbook of the Montana State Parks - Web Version
Table of Contents
Beginning to Ride
- Use the kneeling position.
- Lean uphill.
- Increase the throttle to maintain your speed. The deeper the snow, the more speed you need.
- Don’t stop until you get to the top. If you lose forward momentum, you may not be able to start climbing again.
- Use the sitting position.
- Sit as far back on the seat as possible.
- Stay focused and be prepared to stop—losing control is the greatest hazard.
- Do not release the clutch. Keep the clutch engaged to help you slow down.
- Pump the brake firmly every few seconds to maintain a slow speed or stop. Applying a hard brake abruptly can cause the snowmobile to slide.
- If you are at the top of a hill and other snowmobiles are coming up, allow them to pass you before going down.
Traversing a Hill
- Use the kneeling position with your uphill leg standing on the running board and your downhill leg on the seat.
- Lean your body uphill at all times, which keeps your weight on the uphill side of the track.
- On hard-packed snow, your snowmobile may slide. Try pointing the front at a steeper angle uphill, or look for more loosely packed snow.
- Lean into turns to gain more control while turning.
- Placing more body weight forward and into the turn puts more load on the inside ski and keeps it down on the snow, giving it a better bite.
- Pull over to the extreme right.
- Stop on the right side of the trail.
- Don’t stop on a curve or hill
Crossing a Road
- Select a crossing point that offers good visibility in both directions.
- Before crossing, come to a complete stop on the shoulder of the road.
- Look both ways and yield to any traffic on the road.
- Drive forward slowly. A snowmobile is hard to handle on pavement.
- Drive straight across, not at an angle, to minimize the distance you need to travel.
- Large snow banks often line both sides of the road. To drive down a bank, post and lean toward the top of the bank as you descend. Never attempt this if a vehicle is approaching. To climb up a bank, lean toward the bank and apply the throttle.
- When traveling in a group, appoint a crossing guard who crosses the road first. The crossing guard then gets off his snowmobile, watches for traffic traveling in both directions, and signals for one snowmobile at a time to cross the road.
- Ride only where permitted.
- Be courteous to others on the trail.
- Ride on the right side of the trail.
- Slow down when someone is passing you.
- Yield the right-of-way to skiers, horses, and hikers.
- Leave gates as you find them.
- Report downed trees and trail maintenance needs to land managers.
- Report illegal riding.
- Carry out what you carry in.