Snow Trail Groomer
by Don May of Trout Creek, MI
Want to groom sled trails, freeze skid trails, or set cross-country ski trails?
Here is a relatively inexpensive device that has numerous advantages over the conventional chain link fence, bedspring, log, tractor tire, etc., etc.
It is easy to construct, manhandle, and store. It bounces or steers itself through openings smaller than its overall width. Needs minimal horsepower. One of the major advantages over some other methods is that it allows the snow to stay on the trail rather than pushing it to the side. This action allows it to cover rough surfaces such as roots, rocks, and ruts.
Much effort is often made to press, pound, and compact snow with downward pressure. Under most conditions the desired trail foundation can be had by just knocking the air out of the snow. Knock out the air, allow a short waiting period, and the snow will “set up.”
Materials necessary are probably closer at hand and less expensive than one’s first thought. The cross-width pole could be cast off highway signpost, old water pipe, or an old metal fence or gatepost. Various lengths and/or weights of chain could be a worn-out log choker or leftovers from a jammer or tie-down wrapper repair job. Hook it all together with old nuts, bolts, and washers found stored around most farm workshops and machine sheds. Nothing fancy here, it’s not a matter of life and death.
Hitched single, double, or behind your workboat, people hauler, or log sled, it will smooth out a lot of skids and ridges, as well as improve tractability.