MINOT, N.D. – Snowmobilers at the northern border might want to start packing a passport this season. A joint effort by Snowmobile North Dakota (SND) and a larger Canadian club is working to connect trails so riders may cross the international boundary.
"No different than travelling by vehicle: You pull up at the border and you'll need a passport and registration," Saskatchewan Snowmobile Association executive director Chris Brewer told the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix.
The 23,000-member association struck a deal with SND to link their two trail systems this winter.
The group is planning an "international ride" to celebrate the link’s completion, expected around Feb. 15. SND is joining the Sled N' Slap photography contest run by the snowmobile associations in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta.
The two trail systems will meet at the Port of Carievale, about 70 miles northeast of Minot. In Canada the portal is just east of Estevan, Saskatchwan, and in the United States it’s just north of Sherwood, N.D.
The clubs, which maintain the existing trails, are getting landowners' approval for the connection.
Brewer said the project came about after he and his North Dakota counterpart examined maps and noticed the gap between the two jurisdictions' trial systems was only about 30 miles on the North Dakota side of the border and 9 miles on the Canadian side.
The SSA says North Dakota snowmobilers with a legal vehicle will be able to cross into Canada free of charge. Saskatchewan residents with sleds that are legal in North Dakota must buy an out-of-state permit for $15.
Posted by Holly Wagner