(4:25 PM) Lack Of Accumulation Grounds Local Snowmobile Club

P-J photo by William Mohan

MAYVILLE — Members of the Chautauqua Lake Snowmobile Club are hoping a blast of snow the next couple of days will salvage an otherwise non-existent snowmobiling season.

Unit now, there has been little to no snow for snowmobilers to hit the local trails. The situation has provided a unique set of challenges for the club, based in Mayville, such as having to close trails that would normally have seen heavy use by now.

However, that may all soon change.

The National Weather Service in Buffalo, in a winter storm watch for the majority of Western New York, said as much as 2 feet of snow could fall between today and Thursday afternoon. The impacted areas include Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Wyoming and Southern Erie counties.

With the lack of snowfall until now, most snowmobiles have had to go out of town this season. Among some of the locations cited by the Chautauqua Lake Snowmobile Club include the Upper Peninsula region of Michigan, New England or Tugg Hill, N.Y.

Fresh accumulation could be good news for anyone who wants to run their sleds in the county. But even with 2 feet of snow possible in some locations, CLSC President Chris Jaynes is certain the snowfall won’t solve the problems plaguing this season.

Jaynes predicted the accumulation won’t provide enough of a sturdy base for efficient use; traction is important for snowmobiles to run at their best.

“I kind of doubt we’re going to get enough,” Jaynes said. “We’ll need almost 2 feet of snow to get a base to start riding.”

Any snowmobiling that could have been had was also occupied by New York’s hunting season. For that reason, members have not had a chance to ride this season.

“By the time the trails could be open, the snow had melted down too much,” Jaynes said. “The three weeks that we could have been riding it was during hunting season and the state doesn’t allow it.”

Despite all of the frustration, Jaynes said this year is not the worst for snowmobiling season. That honor belongs to the 2012-13 season.

“That year we had a day and a half of snow in Mayville during the year and nothing after that,” Jaynes said. “Its frustrating when things like that happen because it doesn’t justify any grant moneys we receive.”

In spite of the current situation, the lack of snow has not been all bad news for the snowmobiling club. The club has been performing maintenance that otherwise could have not been completed with the snow on the ground.

“It gives us more opportunity to do things that we wouldn’t be able to do otherwise,” CLSC membership coordinator Barb Farrell said.

See Wednesday’s edition of The Post-Journal for more.