Snowdusters declare trail system groomed and ready for action

MANITOULIN—The Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) trails are officially open on Manitoulin, including picket lines from Little Current to Killarney, Little Current through the Wabuno Channel to Whitefish Falls, Gore Bay to Spanish and a brand new picket line, Honora Bay to M’Chigeeng.

Wayne Williamson, president of the Manitoulin Snowdusters, explained that Snowdusters volunteers picketed the new ice trail on Monday morning. The trail leads from Gaida’s Sideroad in Honora Bay, across Highway 540 to Honora Bay Road and leads from Honora Bay to M’Chigeeng—running about six kilometres on the ice.

Snowmobilers will be happy to learn that the Manitoulin Snowdusters have again groomed a trail from Sheguiandah to Mindemoya.

Rick Bond, Snowdusters board member, explained that the trail follows Green Bush Road to the 20th Sideroad and the 20th Sideroad to Limekiln Road. Riders will then follow Limekiln Road for a short piece before joining the trail again at the old sawmill.

There is very little “road running,” Mr. Bond explained, as the groomer created a trail along the roadside ditch.

There is still no trail from Sheguiandah to Manitowaning, but riders can access Manitowaning the long way around via Sandfield and then Tehkummah.

Back to Sheguiandah, one of the major crossroads of the trail system, the Snowdusters have regained access to Bass Lake and will be working on picketing the lake to create a trail to Green Acres Restaurant, a popular stop among the snowmobiling set.

The Snowdusters once ran picket lines on Pike Lake and Lake Manitou but will not be doing that this year. Mr. Bond warned snowmobilers that both Bass and Pike Lake and Lake Manitou are incredibly slushy, so rider-beware.

Mr. Williamson noted that the groomer had made a pass from Mindemoya to South Baymouth, but the trail is in need of signage and so is not officially open until signs are posted but that will be soon.

Riders can also rejoice in the news that trail is again free and clear from M’Chigeeng to Gore Bay.

With the snow from yesterday (Tuesday) and today, Wednesday, February 13, the groomers will be heading out again in full force this week, giving Island riders some of the best trail riding they’ve had in a few years.

Mr. Williamson reminds snowmobilers that before they head out they must have a valid OFSC permit which can be purchased online, and also snowmobile insurance.

To stay up-to-date with trail conditions, download the Go Snowmobiling app on your smart phone.

Happy trails.