Jan 08

Attention Young Riders

The OFSC wants to better understand what young adult and teenage snomobilers between the ages of 12 and 29 are looking for in the Ontarion snowmobiling experience. This important input will help them plan how Ontario snowmobiling can better meet your needs, as well as those of all snowmobilers, in the future.

For more information and to complete the survey, please visit www.ofscsurvey.ca

Dec 30

OPP Ice Safety

Waterways in Ontario are beginning to freeze. They may look safe to walk or drive onto, but are they? Changing temperatures makes ice unpredictable, ice could be several inches one day and only a couple the next.

IS THE ICE SAFE TO GO ON ??

Waterways in Ontario are beginning to freeze. They may look safe to walk or drive onto, but are they? Changing temperatures makes ice unpredictable, ice could be several inches one day and only a couple the next.

Everyone including, Snowmobile (MSV) and All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) operators need to use extreme caution when traveling on or near frozen bodies of water.

Even though ice may appear to be safe, NO ICE IS WITHOUT SOME RISK!

STAY OFF ICE 3 INCHES OR LESS!!! A minimum of 4 inches (10cm) of New Clear Hard Ice, is required for one person, ice fishing. A minimum of 5 inches (12cm) of New Clear Hard Ice is required for one MSV or ATV. Between 8 and 12 inches (20-30cm) for one car or small pickup truck.

Everyone traveling on ice should wear floatation suits and always carry ice picks in their pocket.

Ice needs to be checked in several different places for thickness and you should stay away from; 1. slushy ice 2. ice on or near moving water 3. ice that has thawed and refrozen 4. layered or rotten ice caused by sudden temperature changes

Dec 10

OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show

Please read the attached letter from Bruce Robinson about your participation in the new OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show.  Also, please go to the OFSC website and click on the new show logo to download the latest info about the show. It clearly explains why the OFSC is embarking on it’s own show.

As many of you already know, my priority is to reenergize and renew TEAM OFSC by focusing on our people and our product. Our new mantra is: How can we help?

Now Im asking you to help the home team.   As you know, we are launching the OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show next fall. Our show focuses on our people, our clubs, our trails and our safe, family snowmobiling experience. Its purpose is to help grow snowmobiling and all proceeds will go back into sustaining what we do together. The OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show truly belongs to each and every one us!

So we need your assistance throughout the upcoming winter to help us get the word out to snowmobilers about our new show. Reaching them while they are interested and active during the winter is very important, because it will help make a connection between their great memories from this season and the OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show.

No matter where you are in Ontario, your participation is essential to our shows success, because we are exploring ways to include all districts and to reach out to all clubs, volunteers and snowmobilers.

Soon you will be receiving more information about a few easy, simple and inexpensive ways you can help promote our show and how the OFSC intends to assist your district to participate. On behalf of TEAM OFSC, I ask for your cooperation to make the OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show an exceptional showcase for OFSC snowmobiling!

Meanwhile, Liz and I wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Yours truly, Bruce Robinson President

Dec 03

BEAST AGM for 2007

The 2007 AGM was held Dec. 7th and those in attendance voted in your executive. The meeting was held as per usual at the Club House located on the 6th Line of Beckwith just off of Hwy 15

It’s that time again. Come join us and vote in your Executive. Thursday, December 7th.

Meeting starts at 8pm and as usual will be held at our Club House located on the 6th Line of Beckwith

2237 6th Line of Beckwith, Carleton Place. For more information or directions to the club house, you can call Jim Lackey at 613-253-5486

Oct 05

Polaris Way Out Woman travel through District 1 raising money for Breast Cancer Research

On January 29/06, 6 members of the BEAST headed off to Vars, Ontario to connect with the WOW riders that participated in a cross country ride to raise money for BREAST Cancer Research. 3 excited ladies will ride Polaris Snowmobiles for the next 8 days for the Ontario leg of this quest. BEAST President, Jim Lackey, his wife Debbie and son Alex, joined up with BEAST/ADSA members Dave Hunt, Brian Moreau and Stuart Spoor to help escort the ladies through the OFSC trails in District 1. The WOW riders, Nancy Ord (Parry Sound), Heather Mehlenbacher (Fergus) and Janet Lachapelle (Blind River) joined up with the group as well as other alumni from the District at KC’s in Vars for supper and meet and greet. The ladies were overwhelmed by the reception and response of support for their first day on the ride.

This event is a special one for BEAST President Jim Lackey as his Mother passed away from BREAST Cancer and his Father also recently passed away from Cancer. It is the 2nd time that Jim has made this ride with the ladies and the 2nd time the BEAST has made such a generous donation.

On Monday morning, the 3 anxious riders headed out on their first full day of the ride which would take them from Vars, Ont. to Pembroke, Ont. Not a bad stretch for the first day! Jim had an extra treat as previous WOW Rider Sue Barlow (the WOW coordinator for Ontario) was with the group and had arranged for Jim to ride the VIP sled for the day which was a Polaris FST Switchback. A very cool sled!!The BEAST group joined up with various reps from the district and escorted the ladies through our trail system where we stopped to make a donation of $1,000 at the Simpson’s Farm Billboard sign. The ride paused briefly at the home of Nancy and Jim Emery (thanks for for the rest stop) and continued on up into West Carleton trails and eventually to Arnprior where we turned back for home. All trails were in excellent condition given the low snow conditions and the ladies appreciated the smooth ride!

Oct 04

SDHSA Presents $500 to Stittsville Foodbank

Darrell Drew and Doug Argue present a $500 cheque to the Stittsville Foodbank (Lynn Arsenault) as part of their continued initiative to show snowmobiler’s in a positive light and demonstrate community involvment. The donation was derived through the many fundraising activities they establish each year. Thank you SDHSA!

Oct 03

Jumping the Gun

By Craig Nicholson. (©2005 by Craig Nicholson. All rights reserved.)

Over eager snowmobilers everywhere strain at the leash to get their first ride in. Some jumped the gun early and laid rubber to snow, most likely in far less than ideal conditions. So the arrival of pre-Christmas snow across much of Ontario begs the question: when will the trails be open?

The easy answer is when club-grooming operations are regularly underway. The commencement of this action varies from region to region and club to club, but what it all boils down to is having enough snow to make a hard packed base of snow.

The objective of early grooming is to fill all the holes and compress the snow so it can freeze into a solid foundation that will last the season as subsequent layers of snow are compressed on to it. Creating this base requires that the frost be well into the ground first, so that the earth is as cold as or colder than the snow that falls on to it. Until it is, the base won’t set up properly.

This operation is far from simple. Early snow is more of a tease than anything useful for grooming. Usually there’s not enough of it. Most times, it’s too light or fluffy to have much substance. More often than not it melts within hours. It normally falls before the ground freezes and then acts as insulation to slow that process. Frequently, just enough accumulates to cover and hide, but not cushion, obstacles that can damage a groomer or sled. On farmland, sleds riding prematurely on too little snow may damage crops, which can result in the club having to permanently close that trail. Worst of all, early snow tempts snowmobilers to give it a try, sometimes with tragic consequences.

As soon as snow falls, clubs are under tremendous pressure to start grooming and open their trails. As avid riders, club volunteers are torn between wanting to get trails open fast and waiting to make a trail base that will last. Each winter, over eager clubs relearn the hard lesson that grooming too soon can result in very expensive equipment repairs — paid for with dollars that should have been used to pay for grooming later in the season.

Another factor determining the start-up of grooming is ice conditions. Many sections of snowmobile trail are impassable after spring thaw, because of standing water, creeks, run off or bogs. Until all water on the trail is frozen solidly enough to bear the considerable weight of a multi-ton groomer, these sections of trail remain unreachable and ungroomable.

Again, clubs have paid the price of being too keen. Sunken groomers have to be laboriously (and expensively) recovered with heavy equipment, then reconditioned to ensure that all moisture is eliminated before being put back into service. So pre-season snow is a very dicey proposition. On the one hand, it heralds good times ahead. On the other, it causes considerable frustration, unnecessary expense and even tragedies.

Clubs are also reluctant to list their trails as “Open” until they can safely say this about their whole system. Meanwhile, some clubs list some trails or parts of trails as “Limited”, meaning they are marginally passable for snowmobiling, but require cautious riding. “Limited” trails mean that connections and linkages are probably not open either.

So what’s an eager rider to do when pre-season snow falls? The best bet is to keep the sleds parked until trails are open. The risks of riding anywhere before then are enormous. Sled damage (expensive), bodily injury (perhaps season ending), death (definitely season ending) and/or trail closures (decreased riding options) often result. Conditions are never predictable pre-season, and certainly not as good as they will be later. So whether you choose to ride off trail or buy a permit and ride on trail, assessing and understanding snow and ice conditions properly can make the difference between life and death — and how much you are able to enjoy the rest of the season!

Oct 02

SDHSA AGM

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held September 26 th , 2006, 7:30 pm, at the Stittsville Grace O’Malley’s. This meeting was used to elect club positions for this coming season, and to review any pending issues for the upcoming season. We have had crews to get out to address any problem areas, brush hanging limbs, remove windfalls, and install signage.  As per usual, we would really appreciate a helping hand in these activities. Contact sdhsa_general@yahoo.ca if you can lend some time.

Oct 01

Become a Volunteer

The volunteers at the B.E.A.S.T. still require help to remove pickets and signs to end off the season. If you would like to assist us, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Anna Mould at 613-257-5545