Practical Tips for Choosing Best Lodgings For Snowmobile Tours…
Begin your snowmobile tour planning by defining your budget and the kind of accommodation: full service resort, chain hotel, mom & pop motel, lodge with cottages, outfitter cabin or bed and breakfast? How many will be in your group for your snowmobile tour and how many beds do you need? Some lodgings may be more suitable for families and couples than others. With a larger group snowmobile tour, it’s fun to stay in a chalet with multiple bedrooms and a central living space where you can social without interruption. Some places really cater to snowmobilers with home-cooked meals and little extras like providing brooms and rags for cleaning off your sled in the morning or providing free use of dryers for wet gear. I’ve even had one place call me before I left home to offer a rebooking for a later date because snow conditions deteriorated.
Wherever possible, try to restrict your snowmobile tour selections to only those facilities that advertise on snowmobile trail maps published by snowmobile associations or clubs. At least you know these places offer some support back to snowmobiling. Then make some calls…
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – Is It Trail Accessible?
If arriving by sled, your first question is: Can I get there directly by groomed snow trails without having to run along bare streets or back alleys? Ask what trail number to take and what local spur if applicable, and what signs to look for. If you’re trailering in and expect to leave your rig for a period of time, confirm that parking arrangements are possible, secure and free. If the person on the front desk can’t answer these basic questions, my inclination is to try someplace else.
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – Is There a Snowmobile Package?
Next, inquire as to any applicable snowmobiler packages or specials. Sometimes you can get a better rate for multiple nights, multiple rooms or during the week. Then, find out what services are available on site or nearby: restaurant, gas, convenience store, and any dealers. Wherever possible, also ask about a ground floor room that has its own outside door, and whether you can park my sled in front of it for easy loading and observation. An increasing number of places offer secure snowmobile parking in fenced tennis courts, outdoor pool areas or in special tents or garages – and some require advance reservations.
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – What Guest Services Does it Provide?
Inquire about available guest services. Is the front desk open 24 hours or not? Is there free Wi-Fi? What about the restaurant hours of operation? If you plan to get away early or arrive late, will you get fed? Do they have a hot tub? What about pop and ice machines? Finally, ask the clincher: do they have The Weather Network so you can fine tune your riding plans and wardrobe for next day’s ride?
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – What about Room Amenities?
Are there phones in each room and are they usable 24 hours for both outgoing and incoming calls? Is there a fridge and microwave? Is the heat centrally controlled or individually set in each room?
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – What is their Cancellation Policy?
If most of the preceding is answered to your satisfaction, you’re as certain as possible that the lodgings will be snowmobile-friendly. So confirm a room and get a reservation number, being sure to ask what their cancellation policy is in the event of a meltdown or breakdown. If you change my mind later, call and cancel so other snowmobilers can find a place to stay.
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – When to Book?
It used to be that I toured on the fly, not booking rooms ahead, but those days are gone. Too may places have closed for the winter, while others sell out their rooms for the winter to mining, logging, utility and construction workers. So my motto is always to book ahead; how long before depends on several factors…
As with any lodgings, there are peak times and slow times. Weekends are obviously busier than weekdays, unless it’s during Christmas holidays or March break. The weekend and weekdays prior to the third Monday of February can be very busy too (Try Our Trails + Family Day Weekend).
Lodgings in the most popular snowmobiling areas or where there’s more snow that season than anywhere else will get booked up more quickly. It’s better to have a room confirmed and have to cancel due to breakdown, storm or other factors, than to have to sleep in the local school as I did one night in the boondocks.
If I have a spacious room with lots of convenient places to hang gear, place helmets and boots out of the way, and more than one measly coat hanger, I’m a happy camper. Then if my wake-up call is on time, I’ll hit the trail early – and be sure to tell everyone about another great place for snowmobilers to stay!
Snowmobile Friendly Accommodations – My Recommendations
Check out some of my favourites places to stay in…
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The tips and advice in this blog are the opinions of the author, may not work in every situation and are intended only for the convenience and interest of the reader, who has the personal responsibility to confirm the validity, accuracy and relevancy of this information prior to putting it to their own use.