Getting stuck is not necessarily an emergency, but it sure can be if you’re riding alone. (Riding alone is NOT allowed by this company, but will be addressed, “Just in case.”) It is a common and frustrating problem for even the every-weekend rider.
Learning how to read the snow
Knowing the type of snow you are riding on will help avoid getting stuck. Your machine can easily sink if the snow is loose, light, deep powder. When these snow conditions occur, keep your RPMs and power high enough to keep momentum but don’t overpower the machine; it can quickly dig the snowmachine’s track into the loose snow and result in getting very stuck in a very deep hole.
If you get stuck
Be extremely cautious when trying to move your snowmachine. Overexerting yourself can lead to back injuries. At least 2 people are required to move a snowmachine by hand. Do not get on your machine and rev up the engine to drive it out of the situation. This can easily cause your machine to sink even further into the snow. Have 2 or more people lift the back of the snowmachine up out of the trench and onto the top of the snow. Be careful that you don’t strain your back on this one!
Try these methods when stuck on flat ground:
- With your feet on the running boards, rock the snowmachine slowly from side to side while feathering the throttle
- Shut off the engine, clear the loose snow from the track and try to pack the snow under the track for a firm base
- Try walking ahead of the machine and trampling a path in the snow to help reduce drag on the machine
- If you are carrying an avalanche shovel or small folding shovel, use the shovel to dig snow out from around and beneath the snowmachine, as well as to shovel a path in front of the machine
Getting stuck going uphill
Your machine may get stuck while you are riding uphill in certain snow conditions. Use 2 people to get the snowmachine unstuck.
- Shut off the machine and get off on the uphill side
- You will need to turn the snowmachine around, so assess which direction is the safest and easiest to turn it downhill
- Trample the snow on the side of the snowmachine you choose to turn it toward and dig out the ski loop on that side if needed to gain a good hand-hold
- Grasp the ski loop on the side of the snowmachine you are turning toward and begin easing the snowmachine around
- Continue to turn the sled 180 degrees until it’s facing downhill. Use caution when on steep slopes so the machine does not roll over on you or take off downhill uncontrolled
- Start the snowmachine and drive it back down the hill – and don’t try that again.
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