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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i was talking to my aunt who runs a motel in wawa. she was telling me that all the business owners who are involved with snowmobiling in the area have really started to notice that the snowmobile business has been dropping off steadily for the last few years. they said ATV business is really starting to increase. also noticed is that the general snowmobiler seems to be in a higher income bracket. they said they used to get a wide range, from a few older sleds on open trailers to the more common four door deisel with 4 or 5 place enclosed trailer. now it seems it's only the guys who can afford the big set ups are the guys doing the travelling. trips and loop traffic is dropping off too. they are getting more people staying for 3 or 4 days and just doing day trips rather than the superior loop and stuff like that.
i was told that an ATV group has been approaching the town and snowmobile club to organize a trail system to get the ATV business up to where the sled business is, similar to quebec i guess.

to see that sleds are really dropping off and ATVs continue to boom makes me depressed. we could see the end of organized snowmobiling as we know it in the not so far future. i have nothing against ATVs, they are just not as much fun, or fast in the winter and harder to cover the same distances etc in the same time frame.

anyway, what do you guys think about this? i know pretty much all sledders own quads too but you just can't do the same kind of travelling with them. pretty close but not quite.

thoughts?
 

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My thought is that atv's won't make it to the level of snowmobiles.
#1 reason they destroy the property they ride on! versus a snowmobile!
The only time you see snowmobiles destroying property is if the idiots ride them when theres no snow and base established!
Nothing against atv's or the people that ride them !

Rich
 

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I agree snowmobiling is a dying sport. Atvs are getting to be the next big sport. It will be interesting to see what happens to the snowmobile manufactures in the next 5-10 years. With Polaris ,Arctic Cat, and Skidoo expanding their atv markets I see sleds becoming a smaller part of the bussiness. Just my thoughts on it.
 

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You might alos take a look at what Gas is costing now compaired to a few years ago too. Look at how many Yamaha 4 strokes are running around out there too. Then compair the resale of a quad to a sled. I have a 2001 Polaris Sportsman 500HO. I could sell it for maybe $1,000.00 less then what I paid for it. My 04 Renegade if I tried to sell it now, I am sure I would not even come close to what I paid for it. Quads are on the rise, but they are still not the same as running a sled.

REVBob
 

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I talked with my local dealer today and hear some of the MSRP's of the new '06 sleds. Yikes!
I like expensive toys, but my God, I think they are about hitting my limit. I'm going to run my '04 for another year (I have NEVER kept a sled 3 years) and see what next year brings. Another winter like this one and maybe I'll make it 4 years.

Its not the money, its come to a point where my common sense is taking over.
 

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i think the biggest thing is that the population is getting older, all thoses baby boomers. my dad is the last of them and he retiring from sledding pretty soon although his sled did get stolen this year. and i doubt he'll buy a new one. it will come back though when the rest my generation (the echo) gets money. 2 of my friends bought sleds for the first time this year. Plus the sleds are getting so good how can they improve?(other than obvious wieght reduction) i mean there is nowhere i cant go, that i want to.
 

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Atv's will never pick up in NY state... It is illegal to ride them in the Adirondack state park and all of the local lands, south of the adirondacks, that were designated for atv use got shut down by the state. these same areas are open to snowmobiles though and the state is spending big bucks to fund local clubs...

Ride on!!
 

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Sledneck, what hotel does your Aunt own? I go up to Wawa usually 4 or 5 times a year. I say usually because we haven't had the best of conditions this year. Then one other time this year we got to the Sault and the highway was closed for two days. But I was just wondering what hotel it was! By the way, I am with everybody else here, I think they are pricing themselves out of the market. There isn't a whole lotn of people that want to pay 10,000 dollars for a sport that we can only ride 4 or 5 months. Thats my 2 cents. See ya!
 

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dam,4-5 months were lucky if we get 2 months in ny. and as far as expensive, i never thought i'd see the day that i would pay 175$ for a piston let alone 33$ for a spark plug wire but its fun and i don't think its dieing just yet. i can see where weather and the cost could put a damper on things though.
john c
 

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i have to agree on the price,there is no way in he!! i could afford 10k for a sled that gets maybe 2-3 months use,i myself am actually to the point of getting an atv for around my farm,i figure i could use it pretty much all year around.and as someone said resale.man they really hold their value..i still like my sleds though, just that not using it syndrome that makes me think otherwise.i'll always have at least one around though.
 

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I think that the ATV business and trail system could be a help to the snowmobile industry. Common trails that we could share the cost of developing and maintaining. There is an arguement about tearing up the landscape with an ATV, but if these trails are two track roads, is it really an issue? The manufacturers need to come up with a universal recreational vehicle. One that could be used year round. Remove the skis and track and add the wheels - boom - ready for the summer...........yeah just BSN, I wish it would snow!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
i didn't even think of the US economy, don't really pay attention to what goes on down there lol. that would be a major contributor though.

as far as ATVs sharing sled trails, IMO it's not a good idea. in quebec they only share about a mile or two at a time. the quads just travel much slower on the snow, particularly loose or warm conditions. never mind the ruts they leave in those conditions.

my aunt runs the wawa motor inn. she said all business owners have noticed the change but i'm sure the economy is the main reason.

sleds are getting too darn expensive though. as for price of gas, i read somewhere (doesn't mean it's true) that if you look at inflation, gas has not gone up as much as it should have. if you take the relative cost of living now compared to say 15 years ago, we're pay less for gas now compared with other products. maybe true, maybe not.
 

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sledneck96 said:
i didn't even think of the US economy, don't really pay attention to what goes on down there lol. that would be a major contributor though.

as far as ATVs sharing sled trails, IMO it's not a good idea. in quebec they only share about a mile or two at a time. the quads just travel much slower on the snow, particularly loose or warm conditions. never mind the ruts they leave in those conditions.

my aunt runs the wawa motor inn. she said all business owners have noticed the change but i'm sure the economy is the main reason.

sleds are getting too darn expensive though. as for price of gas, i read somewhere (doesn't mean it's true) that if you look at inflation, gas has not gone up as much as it should have. if you take the relative cost of living now compared to say 15 years ago, we're pay less for gas now compared with other products. maybe true, maybe not.
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Wawa Motor Inn, that is where we usually stay. Great chalets! We stayed there 5 nights in January.

Beyond the economy, sled prices, and the cost of gas, there are a couple of other things to consider.
1) the exchange rate is not good for the US right now. I used to exchange $250 US and get $425 Can., now I exchange $250 US and get $300 Can.
2) Ontario trail permits have gotten expensive. In 2002 I paid $90 US for an annual, this year they were $155 US.
3) Beyond the Wawa area, the snow has not been very good up there this year. We usually ride up to Hornepayne and loop around, but Hornepayne has not gotten the snow this year like they usually do.

If the snow sticks around, we will be staying at your aunt's place March 11th and 12th.

Later,

MMM Gade
 

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ben9 said:
Atv's will never pick up in NY state... It is illegal to ride them in the Adirondack state park and all of the local lands, south of the adirondacks, that were designated for atv use got shut down by the state. these same areas are open to snowmobiles though and the state is spending big bucks to fund local clubs...

Ride on!!

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Too bad. User funded state ATV trails, via state registration fees, would be win / win. Good for ATVers, good for rural economies, good for the environment (DEC managed trails versus the current rogue use), and good for snowmobilers (giving the ATVers a place to ride and help keep them off of the snowmobile trails).

I do not support shared ATV/Snowmobile trails unless ATVs cannot use the trails when there is more than 3" of snow and if the ATV Trail Fund was used for maintainance and to prevent any permanent damage.

Thanks to Sheldon Silver, a NYC Liberal Democrat, and NY Assembly Majority Leader, this will never become a reality in NY. Too bad, as it is hurting our environment, rural economies, and tourism.

Let's face snowmobiling is ridiculously expensive, especially the cost per mile, when compared to ATVs or dirt bikes. And it is all dependant on the weather. Whereas you can usually ride an ATV no matter what the weather.

As for Canada, between the trail fees and exchange rate, I cannot justify the costs of going there, yet. Maybe the Canadian Tourism Board should investigate reduced rate trail passes for tourist ... they get their money in other ways.
 

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Funny that I noticed this thread today, when I'm just about to start promoting ATV's with their own specific forum on our own site. I've been starring out the window here in Eastern Ontario at grass for like the last 3 months.

The only way I can see myself getting into an ATV is a total performance unit... 4x4's bore the heck out of me personally.... I'd need a Raptor on Nitrous or something.. just not the same kick as a well set up hyper sled


And yes... they do wreck every path they cross... Very brutal on property.
 

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When buying my '05, I thought seriously about getting an ATV instead but the whole experience on a sled is so different (and more appealing to me). That is, when there is a good snow base. This goes back to having been brought up with sleds.

I think BRP has the right idea though--they have to focus on getting more young people into the sport (i.e., Freestyle) at a relatively cheap cost; otherwise it will only be a sport for the higher income folks. It seems that they are trying to market the Freestyle to the 'snowboarder' group--to get them off the slopes and onto the trails.

Again, as some of you have stated, I think it comes down to a practical cost issue for a lot of people---buy an ATV that you can use all seasons (and also plow your driveway, hunt, haul etc) or buy a sled and hope/pray for a good winter!
 
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