Accumulation expected to help delayed snowmobile season

Photo by William Mohan A recent blast of snow is expected to help local snowmobile trails. However, riders are encourage to wait until Thursday so trails can be maintained due to rain in

After missing out for most of the winter season, snowmobiles can soon begin to safely take part in riding the trails.

However, riders are encouraged to wait until Thursday so trails can be maintained and allow time for snow to set. The current forecast from the National Weather Service calls for rain and wind today with more snow developing overnight. Thursday and Friday calls for chances of snow with precipitation ranging from 30 to 80 percent throughout the rest of the week.

When asked about how many members have been out riding this year, Chautauqua Lake Snowmobile Club president Chris Jaynes said he was unaware of anyone.

“We (the club) have hardly ridden this year,” Jaynes said. “I have been busy working with the club this year to even think of riding.”

In spite of the recent snowfall, Jaynes is not optimistic that the conditions will be ideal all week.

“There is rain in the forecast, and whenever that happens, my knees shake because it’s not safe to ride,” Jaynes said. “We need filling for snow and nothing is helped by the rain.”

Yet in spite of the forecast, he is grateful to perform whatever is necessary to see that the season goes well this year.

“It was cold over the weekend, so we didn’t get to do any work on the trails,” Jaynes said.

To that end, the club will close its trails on today so that maintenance can be performed and the trails will have time to settle.

“If they are left untouched for a day it allows the snow to create a bed so snowmobiles won’t be stuck,” Jaynes said.

On Jan. 9, Jaynes told the newspaper that almost 2 feet of snow was needed to make a sturdy bed for snowmobiles.

The Chautauqua Lake Snowmobile Club encourages riders to use caution when riding and not to be alone. Groomers have not been out to maintain the trails yet.

As of Sunday, the Westfield trail (S-49) below S-46 is open. Toward Mayville, a tree is blocking trails that volunteers were working to cut down and move. The Brocton trail (C4B) is open between Mayville and Brocton. Riders toward Stockton might face downed trees and unmarked trail sections. The Snowmobile Club will be officially opening trails again from Thursday onward.

For more information visit chautauquasnow.com or call 785-8723.

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