Minerva Snow Travelers Snowmobile Club very much alive and well

MINERVA Despite the often iffy snow conditions over the past couple of years, the Minerva Snow Travelers have been doing what they thoroughly enjoy doing: snowmobiling. Under the leadership of President Jeff Palmatier of Olmstedville, the Snow Travelers Club has been growing in numbers as well as reputation, promoting the sport of snowmobiling in Minerva and surrounding areas. The club also strives to provide instruction, entertainment, safety, greater enjoyment and leadership for all snowmobile operations. The club has grown from 62 members during the 2005-2006 season to 122 members for the 2006-2007 year; membership is expected to expand even further during the current winter season. Most members are from the Town of Minerva, but members also hail from as far away as Long Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The club has been very active over the last year, having developed a corridor trail that links Minerva to Schroon Lake and Newcomb. A future goal is for the corridor trail to include both North Creek and Chestertown. The Travelers have been working very closely with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation to recently develop a trail on State land from State Route 28N to the Northwoods Club Road. This past Saturday (November 10), a work party spent around eight hours clearing trails, with another effort set for Saturday, November 17. Palmatier is very satisfied with the work going on. Im pretty proud of what weve done with the snowmobile club he said. The Snow Travelers maintain approximately 20 miles of groomed trails within the Town of Minerva, and are looking to work with more trail miles, especially on private land. According to Palmatier, one of the main concerns that private landowners have in regard to snowmobile use on their properties is liability. Through the NYS Snowmobile Association (of which The Minerva Snow Travelers is a member club), liability coverage is available to the club if there is an accident involving snowmobiling, trail construction, grooming, etc. on private land where the club has been given permission to operate. In addition, Title 1 of the NYS General Obligation Law (Conditions on Real Property) provides strong protections to landowners who allow their property to be used for a diversity of recreational activities, including snowmobiling. The Minerva Snow Travelers is a group that is working hard to build positive relationships with private landowners. The club recognizes that it needs the support and cooperation of these landowners in order for it to grow and develop new and improved trails. Palmatier and other club members have taken trail-signing, trail grooming, and other maintenance training to ensure snowmobile trails are built and maintained in a safe and environmentally friendly way. He said has been very happy with the response from snowmobilers regarding the clubs work, mentioning that people from out of town (e.g. Friends Lake) have said that they really enjoy the trails, Palmatier added The club has been an active fund raiser over the years, offering an annual spaghetti dinner which takes place during Minerva Winter Carnival weekend the next one planned for January, 2008. The Snow Travelers is also joining with Sportys Iron Duke Saloon in Minerva to sponsor uphill snowmobile drag races, to take place on Saturday, Feb. 9. In addition to Palmatier, the Snow Travelers officers include Jack Green (vice president), Corrine Coyle (secretary), and Jeff Barnett (treasurer). By joining the Minerva Snow Travelers, you receive a voucher that reduces your yearly NYS registration fee by $55, which would be $100 without the voucher. For more information, contact Palmatier at (518) 251-4025 or via e-mail at JeffPalmatier@gmail.com or pick up at application at Sportys.

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