Snowmobiling Safety Tips and Things to Bring

Recently I had the chance to go snowmobiling with my boyfriend in Vail, Colorado. We had a BLAST!!! During the trip we were riding up and down the bumpy slopes and endured some quick turns. I gained so much knowledge and appreciation for the sport. Living in Colorado my whole life, I feel as if I’ve missed out on many years that I could have been enjoying the beautiful scenery, mountain air and powdered show.

free snowmobile picture

Today, I would like to share with you, my First Class Fashionista readers, some of the tips I learned while riding and encourage you to go out there, and slide down the mountain whenever the chance arrives.

Before Leaving Flat Land:

  • Wear layers
  • Avoid cottons and sweatshirts that retain moisture.
  • Your first layer of clothing should be polypropylene and thermal under garments, because they release moisture while retaining heat.
  • Wear nylons instead of leggings, because they stay on your feet and will not get pulled up while you are putting on your other layers.
  • Wear heavy socks that will fit loosely inside your boots.
  • Wear snow/waterproof pants
  • Wear a long under shirt that you can tuck into your pants (because snow can and most likely will get into that gap).
  • Wear a long-sleeve shirt
  • Fleece jacket
  • Heavy/waterproof jacket with reflective trim on the arms and back.
  • One heavy and one light hat (sometimes the helmet is to tight for a heavy hat).
  • I recommend a face covering hat or mask, because snow and cold air flies at your face.
  • Waterproof, insulated snow boots, like the brand SOREL.
  • Insolated, leather mittens because they give one more blood circulation and protection than gloves.
  • Make sure you bring a reflective helmet (with a face guard) and good quality, UV-protected goggles.

Bring a survival backpack containing:

  • Water in a thermos
  • Shovel
  • Extra socks and mittens
  • Compass
  • Thermostat
  • Spare belt
  • Spare spark plugs
  • Manufacturer’s tool kit
  • Extra wrenches nuts & bolts sized for your sled
  • Tow rope
  • Pry bar
  • Duct tape
  • Wire jack-knife
  • And a fully charged cell phone

While Riding:

  • Slow down and use your weight to turn into the quick corners and turns.
  • If you can not see in front of you, slow down.
  • Don’t drink and ride
  • Alcohol causes the body temperature to drop at an accelerated rate, which increases your susceptibility to the cold and hypothermia.
  • Slow down when snowmobiling after dark
  • Ride with individuals familiar with the area
  • Be certain that all lights are operational
  • Avoid riding on frozen lakes and rivers, because ice conditions are never guaranteed. Ice conditions can change in a period of several hours.
  • As a rule of thumb, “If you don’t know, don’t go.”

Watch Out For:

  • Oncoming snowmobiles, other vehicles, grooming equipment (snow trucks), skiers, and hikers.
  • Thin ice and open water
  • Unforeseen obstacles beneath snow
  • Unexpected corners, intersections and stops
  • Road and railway crossings
  • Logging/Forestry operations
  • Snow banks and drifting snow
  • Trees and branches on the trail
  • Wildlife and domestic animals

If you do break through the ice, don’t panic. Follow these self-rescue tips:

  • Kick vigorously into a horizontal position and swim to the nearest ice edge.
  • Place hands/arms on unbroken ice while kicking hard to propel your body onto the ice.
  • Once clear, stay flat and roll away to stronger ice.
  • Stand, keep moving and find shelter fast.

I hope this information helps and inspires our readers to get ready for a day of fun and adventure!!! Ride safe!!!