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Course Outline

Snowmobiles have minimal environmental impact when used properly.

  • Impact on grasses and other ground cover is minimal when vegetation is covered by at least four inches of snow. Since a snowmobile distributes its weight over a wide area, the pressure (weight per square inch) is much lower than the pressure created by a person on foot.
  • Snowmobiles are built to federally mandated noise control standards. Engine noise has little or no effect on humans when trails are properly located away from residential or business areas.
  • Scientific studies indicate that compaction of snow by snowmobiles has no negative effect on crops such as winter wheat or alfalfa.
    • Compaction often eliminates snow mold and increases yields.
    • Compaction may decrease soil erosion.
Snowmobile impact comparison
Ten snowmobiles and riders stacked on top of one another equal the same ground pressure as one person on foot.
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