Montana Outdoors

Dec 4, 2013 4:10 PM by KPAX News Staff

Snowmobile grooming starting in Western Montana

MISSOULA - Thanks to the recent snowfall in the mountains means that the Missoula Snowgoers to begin grooming the snowmobile trail system at higher elevations on the Missoula and Powell ranger districts near Lolo Pass.

The grooming of the trail system by the Snowgoers is permitted by the Lolo and Nez Perce Clearwater National Forests and supported by the Montana Department of Fish Wildlife and Parks.

The Snowgoers will begin grooming Wednesday in the Granite and Lolo Pass areas, from the warming hut down the East Fork of Lolo Creek. The remainder of the system will be groomed as snow accumulates at the lower elevations.

It should be noted that the trails in Gold Creek on the Missoula Ranger District are still available for snowmobile use but are no longer being groomed by the club.

As grooming begins gates will be closed to prevent vehicle access and ensure the roads/trails are available for snowmobiling.

Meanwhile, the West Central Montana Avalanche Center will issue their first advisories on Dec. 13. Two advisories a week will be issued - on Fridays and Tuesdays.

A beacon park will also be set up this winter near the Lolo Pass Visitors Center for those wanting to test and practice using their avalanche beacons.

Winter recreation passes will be required to park at the Lolo Pass Visitors Center beginning on Dec. 14. Day and season passes will be available at the Visitor Center Thursday through Monday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Pacific Time.

Season and day passes will be available at Lolo Hot Springs, The Trailhead, Outdoor Supply and Rental in Trempers shopping center, as well as the Lolo National Forest Supervisors Office at Fort Missoula.

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