Have Sled, Will Travel

Snowflakes make most of spring ride

October 2010 Feature LANE LINDSTROM

Editor's Note: Because of its participation at the Utah Snowmobile Show last fall, the Davis County Snowflakes earned the right to have one of its club rides featured in SnoWest Magazine.)

There are a lot of things snowmobilers are known for-both good and bad. One of our better traits-at least one we'd like to be known for-is that we're not afraid to find the snow and we'll travel to get to good snow.

That was the case this past spring when the Davis County (Utah) Snowflakes decided just a few days before its final official club ride of the season to move from its traditional sledding spot at Fairview, UT, to the Uinta Mountains in northeast Utah-about 150 miles northeast as the bird flies.

The reason was simple.

The Uintas had just got pounded by a spring snowstorm and the conditions were excellent for snowmobiling. Fairview was good but the Uintas were going to be that much better.

It was April 10 and more than a foot of new snow blanketed the Uintas. Somewhat warm temperatures prior to the weekend ride had settled the snow by the time the club rolled into the parking area near Christmas Meadows but it was pretty much still untracked as we headed south on the Mirror Lake Highway under overcast skies.

It didn't take long before the group headed off trail and into the trees as the sledders made their way towards the Whitney Guard Station, located just west of the West Fork of the Bear River. While the snow was best described as "spring conditions," that didn't mean there weren't a few in the group that didn't manage to get stuck. But there was plenty of help around and even more good-natured ribbing to go along with it.

Once the Snowflakes regrouped at the Whitney Guard Station it was decided to head for Double Hill, a popular hillclimbing area not too far west of Whitney Reservoir.

Double Hill is actually more of a ridgeline than a couple of hills, with the highest point (on the south end of the ridge) sitting at about 10,382 feet. As you travel north on the ridgeline it tapers down to about 10,200 feet. It's mostly open with just a few stands of trees scattered about, which is why it's so popular with the horsepower crowd.

We spent a good portion of the day at Double Hill as several of the Snowflakes worked over the top end of the hill jumping up and then launching off the cornice. Others were content playing in the trees-where the snow was still the deepest and lightest.

Toward the end of the day we headed north and a bit west toward Moffit Basin to play before heading back east and then farther north to the parking lot and loading up for home.

Riding with the Davis County Snowflakes once again reminded us of the benefits of being a member of a snowmobile club, no matter where you live. You get to hang out with friends doing something everyone enjoys-snowmobiling. The day we sledded there were riders of varying abilities but we all pretty much stayed together (kind of, sort of) and had a good time. It didn't matter that one rider couldn't ride as high on the hill as another or that someone didn't have the latest hardware. The club members were simply having a good time.

This marks the second year in a row that the Davis County Snowflakes have been featured in SnoWest. It's a fairly big, active club that works hard to support the Utah Snowmobile Association and its mission to promote snowmobiling.

The club, formed in 1987, was started in Kaysville, UT, and most of its members today come from the surrounding communities.

For more information on the Davis County Snowflakes, log on to www.daviscountysnowflakes.org.

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