HAPPY AND JOYOUS NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE.
I hope by now we will have had significant snowfall to ride. Remember Safety First! Obey the “rules of the trail”. Respect landowners. Respect the Forest. Thank property owners and state personnel for allowing a snowmobile trail across local and state property.
Trails don’t just happen. It takes many hours of hard work to construct a trail. Then many more hours to keep the brush clipped, holes drained, bridges reinforced, drainage pipe repaired, equipment maintained etc. OFFER TO HELP YOUR LOCAL CLUB OR FORESTRY PERSONNEL WHERE YOU RIDE. Make an additional donation to the club or PSSA to help with trail maintenance and grooming if you cannot help. Good snowmobile trails take the cooperation of everyone. Trails are not free.
Report trail problems to the local forest park or the local club. The Keystone Snowmobiler publishes all the club information. It can also be found on the PSSA website. www.pasnow.org Standardized signage will help you locate the nearest club. We want everyone to be safe.
Make an additional donation to the club or PSSA to help with trail maintenance and grooming if you cannot help. Good snowmobile trails take the cooperation of everyone. Trails are not free.
PSSA did receive a smaller trail maintenance grant for 2013. The amount was $60,000. (Is the cup half full or half empty?) This money will be distributed to clubs who apply for grants to help maintain trails and groomer equipment. This amount is much less than PSSA received in the past.
To quote what I have mentioned in the past: “In addition to the volunteer hours/labor/equipment already mentioned clubs also accumulate many hours/labor/equipment over and above what is needed to cover grants. They have more expenses than what the current grants can cover. Most other states (to make a comparison) reimburse clubs for grooming and trail maintenance based on the number of miles groomed and maintained. This varies from $300 - $500 dollars a mile. The return on this investment shows in the quality of trails in other areas and the effect the trails have on the state economy. PA has approximately 5500 miles of trail with $160,000,000 return on the investment. We cannot improve the system without more consistent financial backing.” The current $10 Registration fee does not cover costs to maintain and improve the entire system.
These grants require real data to support the request for funds. An on-line survey will be given to clubs to gather information to support larger grants to PSSA in late January. This survey will be answered on line and the data will be used as needed to acquire more funds to help fund projects across the state.
PSSA also received a $35,000 grant to continue the GPS/Standardized Signage program. State Standardized signage will be placed on trails using a county-number system along with the GPS information. You will have access to it on the PSSA web-site.
Finally you can view all the SnoCams across the state on the PSSA web-site. The Kane Snowmobile Club has theirs up and running.
Thanks to all the volunteers, donors and sponsors who build and maintain our trail system!
Have a Happy and Safe Riding Season.
Reminder: Ask a friend to join PSSA. Spring Membership Meeting April 6, 2013 at State College.