Updates on motorsport trails

Courtesy of Skip Schulz Before and after images of the work that the Keweenaw ATV Club has done on the Multi Use trail near the Delaware Mine.

Anyone else notice how the weather changed its mind as much as your spouse changes his/her mind when ordering fast food? This reporter was going to write about this past Monday’s Keweenaw ATV Club Meeting, but when some areas were hit with enough snow to ride their sleds on the State Owned Multi-Use Trail, I was in a quandary.

Write about Snowmobiling or about Off Road Vehicles (ORV)?

We have news on both fronts. With the devastating low snow winter, it wasn’t just the Dealers, Motels, Restaurants, and Gas Stations that felt the ‘pinch.’ So did the Manufacturers. The All Electric Taiga Snowmobile Company has laid off 70 employees and currently shut down production. BRP, manufacturer of Ski-Doo and Lynx Snowmobiles has seen a 10% decline in North American retail sales that is sales on snowmobiles in the fourth quarter of 2023, which is roughly twice as much as other powersport manufacturers. The company states on line that this decline is due to a number of factors, including the impact of last year’s shipments, the mild winter, and an industry-wide decrease.

Polaris reported a 4% decline in worldwide sales for the third quarter of 2023, compared to the same quarter in 2022. In 2023, Polaris also saw a 0.5% decrease in U.S. snowmobile sales, with 53,553 units sold. Sales increased in the Midwest and West, but decreased in the Northeast. In Canada, sales decreased by 4.5%, with 48,252 units sold.

While this reporter was unable to find the Sales of Arctic Cat Snowmobiles, the sled is a part of Textron Industries.

Overall, worldwide sales of new snowmobiles dropped by 4.5 percent to 124,769 units, largely due to limited build-quantities by the snowmobile manufacturers plus the complete shutdown of sales in Russia. Also, supply chain issues in recent year caused many orders have been cancelled or delivered very late.

Plus the low snow winter will give new snowmobilers and current snowmobilers looking for a new 2024 Sled some of the very best deals of the past 20 years! Dealers are looking to ‘wheel and deal’ on the inventory they have of 2024 sleds, ESPECIALLY right now.

However if you’re looking to get the final year of Yamaha Snowmobiles, you’re going to have to get in line and hope the model you want is available. Regarded as one of the most dependable snowmobiles made, their already is a long list of people looking to buy a 2025 Yamaha Snowmobile.

With the lack of snow and the short season to groom trails, we asked Doug Rich of the Michigan DNR if the agency had a surplus of money that they had budgeted for grooming. He stated at a recent Western Upper Peninsula Citizens Advisory Council ‘that trail sticker sales were down, so the income and expenses was a draw.’

ORV Trail News

The Keweenaw ATV Club (KATV) held their monthly meeting this past Monday. They have already begun working on the trails. One of which is the popular Montreal Meadows Trail. “We completed the second part of the Montreal Meadows project. The KATV club repaired and graveled two miles of the main trail south of the Delaware Mine,” Daryl St. John of the KATV Club explained.


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