Snowmobile trails open in northern Oconto County
January 3, 2022
by Eric Peterson, FOX 11 News
OCONTO COUNTY (WLUK) -- After weeks of preparations and working with the changing weather conditions, it's time for some outdoor play.
Snowmobile trails in northern Oconto County are open and ready for business.
With a signal from the cab of the groomer, Larry Mertz made his way down the trail Friday morning. He put some finishing touches on part of the 85-mile system the Paul Bunyan Riders Snowmobile Club maintains in the Lakewood area.
"We always look at, if we can get the trails open by Christmas, that's the bonus, and we did. Christmas Eve," said Dennis Pommering, Paul Bunyan Riders Snowmobile Club president.
Pommering says grooming started relatively early in the season, but the recent warm temperatures and wind, had an impact.
"That took a lot of trees down and also branches, large branches of all sizes and stuff. So we had to go back out with a road crew and clear the trails again," he said.
Pommering says cleanup is complete, and the Paul Bunyan trails are ready to go.
"The important part is give them a very good, flat trail to ride on. It's very comfortable. Nobody wants to ride on moguls, which are the bumps," he said.
Just up the road in Townsend, Mike Malueg and Bob Berth are testing the 65 miles of trails the Red Arrow Snowmobile-ATV Club maintains.
"We'll make sure our signs are clear and we don't want any branches in the trail," said Bob Berth, Red Arrow Snowmobile-ATV Club president.
Berth says weather conditions delayed last season's opener until February. He says December is off to a much better start.
"Just be a little cautious on corners, things like that. But the base we have should pretty much last the whole rest of the season. We're really happy with the way everything turned out this season," he said.
Not all of the routes are open, and conditions can change on a daily basis.
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