MEMBERSHIP: open to all 12-20 year olds who are SD Snowmobile Association members
MISSION: The purpose of the SD YETIS Youth Program is two-fold. First it is to give the youth an in-depth understanding of how the total snowmobile program is organized, starting from the local clubs up to and including International. Secondly, YETIS is considered a leadership training program for young snowmobilers. As dedicated volunteers are getting older, our goal is to train the younger members to take over leadership roles in order to keep our organizations strong and continue to be advocates for snowmobiling in our state.
Black Hills snowmobile trails seeing best conditions in recent years
Governor’s snowmobile ride slated for Saturday
By Lacey Peterson Black Hills Pioneer
Feb 17, 2018
BLACK HILLS — With recent snowfall and even more forecast for the coming days, Black Hills snowmobile trails are experiencing optimal conditions going into the Governor’s annual snowmobile ride today.
Shannon Percy, supervisor of the Black Hills Trails District with the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish, and Parks, said each trail on the 350-mile trail system is in good to excellent condition.
“They (conditions) are awesome right now; we’re sitting at excellent basically all over our trail system,” he said.
The governor’s annual snowmobile ride is slated for this morning at the GF&P’s Hardy Camp, 20 miles south of Lead. Percy said the conditions couldn’t be better for the large influx of outdoor enthusiasts and with even more snow forecast over the weekend, the trail season outlook is great.
“That’ll really push us into March,” he said. “Which it’s been a couple years since we’ve been able to do that. This same time last year we were struggling to try to even get a ride going because we weren’t sure where we were going to go.”
This year, he said, it’s totally different.
“It’s great conditions,” he said.
Percy said the trail system currently has between 5-inches to a foot of base snow level on the trails.
“Lots of great snow,” he said.
The governor’s annual snowmobile ride is housed out of the GF&P facility at Hardy Camp however, the South Dakota Snowmobile Association coordinates the event.
Percy advised those wishing to take advantage of the good trail conditions procure a current snowmobile trail map as the system has re-routes each year and last year’s trails may be different than this year’s.
Maps can be found at all trailside businesses, local chambers of commerce, and outdoor sports outlets throughout the Black Hills.
Gary Gall, operations manager at the Spearfish Canyon Lodge, told the Pioneer Friday that trail conditions are the best he’s seen in a number of years.
“We haven’t had them all in excellent shape in years,” he said. “I personally went out riding two days ago and it was phenomenal.”
Gall said there are portions of the trail system that have 4-feet of snow coverage.
“It gets better the further south you go,” he said.
Gall said he would classify every trail to be in excellent shape.
“There is not a bare spot anywhere,” he said. “You can get off trail and it really is nice.”
“It’s going to be a great weekend,” Gall added. “We have all of our snowmobiles rented out.”
Julie Ebright, owner of Trailshead Lodge in Lead, echoed Gall’s sentiments.
“Best they’ve been in over six years,” she said.
The snowmobile season, which opened Dec. 15, 2017, will run through March 31.
Although people can still snowmobile after the official season closes, Percy said GF&P will no longer groom the trails.
Members of the Board of Directors gathered for a photo op just before Governor’s Ride 2018. From left to right: Darin Cooper, District one; Mike VanDenHemel and Tim Lund, District five; Diane Hiles, Treasurer;Gary Ulmer, Executive Director; Sheridan LaFramboise, District two; Johnny Rider, District seven; Mary Anne Grabow, Secretary/editor; Brian Erickson, Past President; Rachel Watkins, YETIS; Scott Erstad, President-elect; Jeff Thorne, District three; Jon LaFramboise, President. Not pictured: Duane Stahl and Travis Fischer. Snow and weather conditions were the best that they have been in YEARS and the event was a great success! Arctic Cat provided sleds for the event (and we appreciate their continued support!!!)Many thanks to the Winter Wheelers for their donation and Kitchen & Windows Unlimited Sioux Falls for their great support of the event. The Black Hills Snowmobile Club provided a delicious breakfast for everyone in attendance!
Here’s another photo of Jon riding on trails East River. (Beresford area) He said the riding was good today!
Our SDSA President is riding the newly groomed loop of the Trailbuster’s trail today .
Jon is in the area taking in a couple SDSA club meetings, and getting a few miles in on the trail while he’s at it!
We are an organization of Snowmobilers working to promote and protect snowmobiling in South Dakota and throughout the country. We work closely with South Dakota GF&P, local federal forest managers and many State and local legislators to keep the outdoor recreation of Snowmobiling alive and well in our State for generations to come. SDSA also partners with the American Council of Snowmobile Associations. ACSA works on a more national level and brings the state associations together as a single stronger voice for Snowmobiling.
We invite you to join us no matter where you reside. Numbers and membership are key to keeping our voice heard locally and abroad!