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Guided snowmobiling tours in Winthrop

Not being able to get my "snowmobiling fix " in Chelan, I jumped on a great opportunity to go on a guided four hour snowmobiling trip in Winthrop.

Snowmobilers use Winthrop for their adventures into the North Cascade Mountains. Two popular snowmobiling parks near Winthrop are Boulder Creek and the Eight Mile Creek sno-park on the west side of the Chewuch River. The latter was the one, we went to for our tour. Here, sledders can cruise up one of the most popular, accessible and spectacular destinations around Sweetgrass Butte.

The tour was organized by Don Lundgren, the owner of the Chewack River Guest Ranch. The Ranch is conveniently located just 10 minutes away from downtown Winthrop. You have the choice of two and four hour guided tours. If you are an experienced rider, you can rent a snowmobile for a full or half day ( 4 hours), and they will deliver it to the trailhead ( minimum two riders/snowmobiles required). For guided trips they provide all the gear ( sled,full tank of gas, helmet, snow suit, boots ).

The ride itself was awesome. Having two guides ( one leading, another "sweeping") provided a safe and fast pace. Unfortunately, the weather that day ruined the whole experience . Thick fog, that set in over the weekend, obstructed the panoramic views of the entire Methow Valley.

In my opinion, exploring the backcountry with a guide is the best option for visitors who don't know the area or winter safety practices. While learning how to operate a snowmobile is the matter of minutes, there is more to it when it comes to your personal safety. Lot's of things can go wrong : you lose control of your sled, damage the machine, get stuck in the deep snow, run out of gas, get lost in the backcountry....

Another reason I prefer guided snowmobiling tours is that they are planned, hassle free, safe and fun adventures ! You don't have to load/unload, transport, fill in with gas, fix it, think where and how far you want to go... Besides, snowmobiling is not something I would personally do on a regular basis.

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