Quandary: Can you joyride a snowmobile down the recpath?
Can I drive my snowmobile on the recpath?
Let’s just take a couple seconds and think about all the ways this could go horribly wrong. After all there are year-round users on the recpath of the two- and four-legged variety as well as travelers on anything from two feet to bikes and roller skates. On any given day there may well be more people walking along the recpath than even walking along town streets, so no, it probably isn’t the best place for your next joy ride. I mean, we all saw what happened during the Iditarod this year when a snowmobiler decided to take a short cut — don’t be that guy.
In fact, all motorized vehicles are banned from the recpath, except the ones that have to be there. The fellows with exemptions include emergency and maintenance vehicles so you might struggle to justify your snowmobile romp as they haul you away.
You are allowed to have a dog on the recpath, but it must be under physical control at all times. Like I mentioned, there are a lot of users, and none of them want to be attacked by your “friendly” puppy. Sadly, you won’t see me sauntering along the path though, as all other animals are forbidden. Good luck telling that to the skunks and moose though (they tend to get a pass on this sort of thing). However, if you’re a rancher don’t try and take the herd down to the lake for a drink, that one will get you in trouble. Even Santa had to get his reindeer out of there ASAP when Rudolph went rogue a couple years ago.
A note on multi-use trails
It seems questions beget more questions for this old goat. After my information on multi-use trails a couple weeks ago we received a question on how to handle the Willowbrook trail. This particular trail isn’t wide enough to create multiple paths without one person ending up belly-button deep in powder. Guess you all can’t just be satisfied with a blanket answer, eh? Well, just like each person is a sparkling individual, so is every trail.
With this trail specifically, the sad fact is, a snowshoer might just have to go tromping over Nordic tracks already laid by a skier. Safety is the key here, and although the polite thing to do is leave skier tracks alone, that is only the case if you stand a reasonable chance of living through the detour.
If you are looking for information about other trails, the best way to find out is to directly contact whatever group is responsible for the area. For example, with Willowbrook this old goat contacted the Dillon Ranger District. For other trails in the area contact either the Forest Service or Summit County Open Space and Trails. You could just stay there until a volunteer ranger wanders by, but your family might start to worry.
Quandary, an old and wise mountain goat, has been around Summit County for ages, and has the answers to any question about life, love and laws in the High Country. Have a question for Quandary? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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