Q. How much does it cost for a Town of Webb & Inlet snowmobile trail permit?

A. If you purchase the permit before November 15th, the cost is $65 per snowmobile. After November 15th, the cost jumps to $80 per snowmobile.

There is also a Seasonal weekday permit for $50 per snowmobile. That permit is good for the entire season from 5pm Sunday evenings to 5 pm Friday evenings. That’s a great deal for those of us who stick to riding midweek. 🙂

You can also get a weekly permit for $45 per snowmobile which is good for seven days from the date of purchase. The 7 day permit must be purchased in person on the first day of use.

Q. Is there a way to bypass the Town of Webb & Inlet trails so you don’t need to buy their permit?

A. Trail C7 on the railroad tracks will allow you to legally pass through Old Forge without paying for the permit for those riding from Forestport to Big Moose, Stillwater Reservoir and points northward. You can use the new Moose River Plains-Raquette Lake trail (now part of C8) to side skirt the Inlet Permit trails as well.

There are ways that knowledgeable locals and visitors minimize use of the permit trails in Old Forge and Inlet by utilizing lakes and roads, but I won’t get into them. It seems silly for snowmobilers who spend thousands upon thousands of dollars on costs related to their pastime and balk at the cost of the Town of Webb & Inlet trail permits. Not getting the permit cuts off a lot of good riding options if you want to ride from Indian Lake to Inlet/Old Forge and points west.

If you’re interested in riding that area, just suck it up and get the trail permit. Their trails are almost always groomed and in good riding shape whenever I ride them midweek.

Go to www.oldforgeny.com/snow.

Q. I have a snowmobile registered in Pennsylvania. Do I need to register my snowmobile in New York State also if I want to ride the New York State trails?

A. According to New York State Law: Yes!

You can register your out-of-state snowmobile online.

Q. Where can I park and ride in Indian Lake?

A. There is a private pay lot ($5 per sled) on Cedar River Road on the Brown Farm about a mile before the end of Cedar River Road.

The parking lot between the little league field and the Town Barn is used as a park and ride spot for snowmobiling. As you pass thru town from the east, take a right onto Pelon Road (across from the school), then keep left where the road splits onto Benton Road. After you park, you can ride your sled further down the road past the new cemetary and access the trail system. The first trail on the right is 42nd and Broadway, the next trail on the left would take you to either the village or Moose River Plains and the trail at the end of the road would take you to Lake Durant & Blue Mountain. Best of all, no fee collected at that lot.

Q. Where can I find a snowmobile safety course near me?

A. New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation web site has a listing of upcoming snowmobile safety courses. Most classes require pre-registration.

Q. Are you really a meteorologist?

A. Yes sir! In the spring of 1994 I completed work on my Bachelors Degree of Atmospheric Science from the State University of New York at Albany. My professors have written many of the atmospheric science textbooks that aspiring meteorologists study and learn from.

Q. Those trails sure get rough on the weekend. Can anything be done about that?

A. Hundreds of weekend snowmobilers versus 2 or 3 groomers is a terrible mismatch. If you want to see the best we offer, I suggest trying a mid-week trip. Usually it takes Monday and Tuesday to smooth out the weekend bumps; then Wednesday thru Friday is really nice riding when the snow cover is good.

Q. How much snowfall does Indian Lake get each winter?

A. Although snowfall can vary greatly from year to year, it averages about 115 inches per winter at the village with a maximum snow depth usually around 2 feet. The higher elevations of Moose River Plains and Perkins Clearing can pick up over 200 inches of snowfall in a winter due to lake effect snow.

Q. How come you never offer lake ice thickness information with your trail reports?

A. Venturing on frozen bodies of water is always at your own risk. There are many factors that can undermine the integrity and structure of the ice you choose to ride on. On occasion I will describe riding conditions on lakes that I cross, but that does not guarantee structurally sound ice. If you have any doubts about crossing frozen bodies of water…..stay off!

Q. Who grooms the Indian Lake village trails?

A. The Town of Indian Lake Parks and Recreation Department. They also groom the Moose River Plains area from the Cedar River Parking Lot to Silver Run turnaround. The Town of Inlet takes over after Silver Run.

Q. Who grooms Perkins Clearing?

A. Town of Lake Pleasant.