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    |   December 13, 2012     |   Posted by admin   |   Comments (2)

The Department of Environmental Conservation and the Adirondack Park Agency are collaborating with local municipalities and snowmobile clubs to build a major new community connector snowmobile trail connecting Raquette Lake and Inlet to the Moose River Plains. The twelve mile trail project is slated to wrap up at the end of December with anticipation to have it open for the 2013 snowmobile season.

This is the first such community connector snowmobile trail to be built as part of a continuing effort to promote snowmobiling in the Adirondacks. Snowmobiling is a vital economic driver for tourism during the slow winter months and delivers a positive economic impact of $245 million annually to the Adirondack region. That’s 28% of the total economic benefit in the entire New York State Snowmobiling economy.

Data collected from NYSSA economic assessment of snowmobiling on the NYS economy. For more information click here: Snowmobiling NYS Blog

With the looming opening of the trail, the possibilities for new trips and loops between Long Lake, Inlet, Indian Lake and Newcomb expand, but it can’t happen unless the twelve miles of new trail is groomed and groomed well. Leaders of the involved municipalities met this week to discuss the options and have made the commitment to make this trail a huge success and they can’t wait for the snow to fly. Local leaders look forward to showcase their ability to maintain and helm a project that is valued by the public and respectful of the environment.

Everyone at the table has a stake in the success of this trail. Bill Farber, Hamilton County Supervisor, has touted the need to make this trail a huge success to benefit all of the involved communities. Both the Town of Long Lake and Inlet acknowledged the need to make outstanding effort at stewardship of the trails to meet the strict criteria of grooming and trail maintenance as set forth by the requirements of the DEC and the APA.

The progress on this trail has been a long road of hard work and collaboration of the DEC, the APA and with the support of the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and the New York State Snowmobile Association and local clubs including the Inlet Barnstormer’s and the Long Lake Moonlighter’s Club. Travelers on the route 28 corridor between Raquette Lake and Inlet have seen DEC vehicles parked along the road all fall as workers tackled an incredibly ambitious project. Entry points for the construction have included both the 7th Lake Boat Launch and the 8th Lake Campground.

Maps are not available yet, and the DEC trail crews will continue to work through the end of December to get the trail open. The trail has the character of a foot path, so some corners will be tight due to geographic impediments, including unmovable boulders, and aging trees. The DEC has made a vigilant assessment of all the engineering specs to make the trail safe and passable, while meeting the strict standards as expected with a trail of this magnitude. This trail will be outside of the permitted system in Old Forge and Inlet, and this trail will NOT require a permit. All riders need to be registered with the NYS department of motor vehicles and we encourage everyone to register their sleds in Hamilton County so we gain the revenue to keep grooming the trails. Click here to join the Moonlighters.

Riders will need to use caution until the trail receives a heavy snow pack.

An announcement about the trail opening will be made soon.

Now all we need is snow.

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