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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    northern illinois
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    Default First Time Riding West

    I am an experienced rider in the northern Wisconsin or the UP areas but I have never been out west. I just booked a trip at Togwotee for end of January/beginning of February. My wife and I will mostly stay on trails with a guide the first day then alone the other 2 days. Are there areas where a person can do some minor off trail riding without getting into trouble? I assume this is prime time for that area?

    Excited!,
    Jeff

  2. #2
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    Dec 2009
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    West of Indianapolis Indiana
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    454

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    Stay with your guide. He will let you play in the powder and show you some meadows. Lot of fun, but a whole new experience being a Midwest rider.

  3. #3
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    Dec 2009
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    back to cuttin wood
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    What kind of long tracks are to taking ?

  4. #4
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    Dec 2009
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    NE Pa
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    something I will advice you, that you may not have thought about
    pay attention to how you;s feel, the altitude difference from where your at to there can make some folks SICK, so if you start to get headaches, or feel dizzy sick like, take breaks drink water, and if need be, get lower!
    I know most folks don;t have a issue, buy some do
    I took a girlfriend out once, and she got very sick the second day, lucky we were closer to where we stayed and it was lower in elevation that many spots where your going!
    so food for thought for you
    if possible get there a day early too, to help accumulate to things! and if your not in the best of shape, start getting in what you can before you go, thin air will make you work a lot harder than at home in lower elevations! LOL
    you can also get some maps for the CDT trail system,,. as that's what you will be riding
    and can look at making some loops
    from Tog to over to say the Line shack(if still open, been a few yrs since I was there) is a nice trail ride!
    if your really JUST There to ride trails, make calls and find out if you can still make it over to Cora/pinedale say like Green river guest ranch(they gave up there web site a few yrs back, but were still open as far as I know) , or Kendlal valley lodge, they both used to carry fuel and had cabin rentals

    http://muleshoeoutfitters.com/kendallvalleylodge.htm


    as if your a trail rider, thats a ALL day event, might even be worth looking into, riding one way, stay over and go back!
    I know two yrs ago the trail had some issues with washouts , but pretty sure all back up and open
    trails there get FLAT FAST and groomed every night almost, and LOW riders, as when you get lower down towards Pinedale, Cora, its a lesser known area and all the crowds seem to stay up higher near Tog!

    'I used stay in Cora and ride the other way, had awesome trips and almost never seen anyone else riding,trails, or many off trail, and million acres to play in

    things to take IMO< back pack with basic's
    a GOOD GPS, and basic safety gear if your going to ride without a guide!
    Maps can be had here too

    https://travelwyoming.com/wp-content...ntaldivide.pdf

    can go here fill out info and they will also send you a bunch of things from maps to other info on area!

    https://travelwyoming.com/travel-res...vacation-guide

    and take a good camera, scenery there is awesome!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    NE Pa
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    Default

    OH and keep this in mind too, almost NO one trail rides out west at night, so don't really expect top be ding much of night time riding!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Hamlet, IN
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    786

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    Take an avalanche awareness class at a minimum. Get all of your safety gear and practice using it.

    Your safety gear is not for you, its for the person finding you. Their safety gear is only as good as them; if they can't find you and dig you out, whats the point?
    Last edited by HardwaterHoosier; 12-07-2019 at 04:43 PM.

  7. #7
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    Dec 2009
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    River Falls, WI
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    They have the gear for rent that you will need. Leaving the trail for some powder is accessible. Keep in mind while going off trail if you get stuck will your other half be able to come help you get unstuck. Getting stuck on flat ground is miserable. Try and ride upward slopes off the trail. That way you can roll sled out of hole and point it back down to trail on your own. Plenty of people to mingle with during social hour to find out pretty much anything you need to know. If renting a car make sure and enjoy one of many awesome restaurants in Jackson. $$$$$ but good. After all, you are visiting an area that the billionaires kicked out the millionaires.

  8. #8
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    Dec 2009
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    Watertown WI
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    Do your off trail riding the first day with the guide. That way when you get stuck he can get you out. He will teach you the best ways to get unstuck. Lots of areas to play off trail but yet close to trail. Warming hut is over by Lava Mtn. Make sure the fire is going good when you leave unless its late.
    The Pinnacles are over by Brooks Lake, good picture spot.
    Im assuming you're staying at TML? Food and gas at Lava Mtn Lodge, and I believe at the place down the hill towards Dubios, I forget the name of it. Food also at Brooks Lake lodge, not sure about gas though, but its close to Lava mtn lodge anyway.
    Have fun!

  9. #9
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    Feb 2010
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    East Peoria IL
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    48

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    Crooked Creek & Brooks Lake both have gas. Brooks Lake has a great lunch!

  10. #10
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    Dec 2014
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    northern illinois
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    Thanks for all the input. We are staying at TML and we will be there a day and a half before snowmobiling, just to get acclimated in the area as suggested. I look forward to checking out some of the sights in town along with restaurants. We are renting sleds out there and they say we will have Ski-Doo Renegade 600s for the trails. I'm ok with that as this is just a get away trip for my wife and I. I appreciate the tips on staying "up hill" in case we get stuck. I don't want to spoil my wife's taste of the area by getting stuck so bad/often that she won't enjoy the trip. She's a good rider as long as we are on trails. I really can't wait to see the sights as we've never been anywhere "out west". I welcome any more ideas for the trip. I'll be sure to post reports. Should I expect a lot of traffic on the trails? In northern Wisconsin the trails get pretty busy, but out west I figure most will be riding off-trail. ??

    Thanks. Jeff

  11. #11
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    Dec 2009
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    Watertown WI
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    Quote Originally Posted by jblanck View Post
    Thanks for all the input. We are staying at TML and we will be there a day and a half before snowmobiling, just to get acclimated in the area as suggested. I look forward to checking out some of the sights in town along with restaurants. We are renting sleds out there and they say we will have Ski-Doo Renegade 600s for the trails. I'm ok with that as this is just a get away trip for my wife and I. I appreciate the tips on staying "up hill" in case we get stuck. I don't want to spoil my wife's taste of the area by getting stuck so bad/often that she won't enjoy the trip. She's a good rider as long as we are on trails. I really can't wait to see the sights as we've never been anywhere "out west". I welcome any more ideas for the trip. I'll be sure to post reports. Should I expect a lot of traffic on the trails? In northern Wisconsin the trails get pretty busy, but out west I figure most will be riding off-trail. ??

    Thanks. Jeff
    We are usually out west during the week, but some Saturdays. More traffic obviously on weekends, but still very very little traffic compared to midwest trails.
    Most out west ride much slower than people on trails here. Most everyone uses hand signals, and they are not afraid to stop in the middle of a corner 2 wide.
    If you are not driving like ricky racer, you will have no problems at all.
    I can't imagine you will be doing much "powder" riding with a 600 gade. If the snow is hard and set up, that sled will be fine off trail. There is a lot of huge meadows that will be all tracked up, especially close to TML, that the gade will be fine on. Unless of course the get a fresh dumping while you are there.

    Your guide will know what those sleds are capable of. You and your wife will be fine, it will be a great time.

    2 quick tips. 1. If you get stuck, don't panic, take your time. No need to get the sled unstuck as fast as you can.
    2.The air is thin, you will be out of breath a lot quicker. Therefore reread tip 1.

    Bonus tip, haha. If your wife gets stuck, don't get yourself stuck trying to get to her. That will really suck. Like I said before, do the off trail stuff with your guide. Let him get you unstuck. Its easier to give him a nice tip than it is to get yourself frustrated by getting stuck all the time.

    You flying into Jackson? Look out the window of the plane as you approach and land. Its cool.

  12. #12
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    Dec 2014
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    northern illinois
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    Good to hear the sleds we are getting will do what we need. We are comfortable with them. I like the idea of letting the guide get us unstuck if it happens. I'm excited for the trip. I'll post a report when we get back. Thanks for the help.

    Jeff

  13. #13
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    Dec 2009
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    NE Pa
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    not sure if this helps or not
    but the last time I took a girlfriend out west, she too wasn't much of a rider, tails were all she wanted to ride
    so what I just did, was found places where she could park trail side and let me ride off trail, where she could watch or take a break.
    it worked well for the first few days(7 day trip)
    then about day
    3-4, she decided to TRY off trail while I was off climbing some smaller hills
    she NEVER told me she was going to TRY it
    went off without me knowing it, got stuck on the back side of a hill, where I couldn;t see her, shut sled off, couldn't get it re started?
    it was rather windy day, so couldn;t hear her yelling, ONCE I realized she was MISSING(about 5 minutes only too? till I seen she wasn't parked where she was?)
    at first I thought maybe she got pissed off waiting for me, but it was only 5-7 minutes MAX I left her??
    but never know with some people RIGHT?
    we were about 30 miles from the nearest places, literally in middle of NO where
    so, I quickly tried to get to high ground where I could see far and HOPED to find here that way,
    that didn;t work, ran up trail a bit, then other way?
    then back
    thinking maybe she went for a shirt trail ride and would come back??
    as honestly she had NO clue how to read a trail map, (not good folks tried to teach but was rather useless LOL)
    after a lot of me climbing different hills looking, I found her ROLLING down a hill like a LOG to the trail, as snow as about 7 fr deep and she couldn;t walk in it, so she found rolling down hill worked LOL
    as she would stay on top
    when I got to her she was crying her eye's out, as she thought every time I left I was leaving here LOL
    when I got to her she told me OFF TRAIL looked like FUN< and wanted to try some, and started up a hill,as she started to go down other side, she panicked, got scared she wouldn;t make it back up from the bottom, and decided to try to turn back up the hill, which ended up her tipping sled over, and then she hit the kill switch by accident and didn;t know she did it.
    couldn;t get it re started, due to klill switch was on, then tried to roll sled over down hill, as she THOUGHT that would help???? HAHA no clue on that one
    but couldn;t do so!
    and from there waited for me to find her, first 30 minutes any how??
    then she decided to leave sled and go back way she came, but snow was too deep to walk in for her?
    so, sat a while, and then brain storm, to roll down hill, which worked

    Best part of this whole deal was IF she woul;d have just drove down the hill, as she was, there was a small hill at bottom(lots of tracks too on it) and just over that hill was the trail she was parked on the whole time, but where she got stuck, was hidden from sight!


    SO< LONG story , Maybe invest in taking some hand held walkie talkies out there with you
    I wish I would have had them with me, would have made that situation a LOT less stressful, as things could have gone really bad where we were, just due to how far away from help we were!
    riding with just two can have its disadvantages, where were were, we seen only about 6 other riders the WHOLE week, so help randomly driving by wasn't really a option! trails were AWESOME though, couldn;t find a bump if you wanted one LOL
    girl logged on over 1500 miles in 7 days, and had no real sled experience! LOL

    this also made me really realize, how important it is that the folks you ride with have basic skills, and know how(trail map reading and understanding, knowing where they are, how to get back, what to do is something happens, NOT to take off without saying something?? and basic's on getting a sled started and un stuck if need be!))

    Make sure your BOTH on same page with plans, , that SHE know's how to read a trail map, and what to do, if you get hurt or??
    as honestly if your going to trail ride, you can be REAL far from help or walking out, all the more so if a snow storm rolls in, snow can build FAST out there faster than you think, and white outs can happen,
    NOT trying to scare you, just food for thought here on things that can maybe help you enjoy things

    they Might even have helmets with communicators in them
    me personally, due to I also rented sleds, I took my own helmet and gear out with me, paid extra to fly it, but rather knowing what I have fits me and works for me!
    back when I was out there last, several yrs ago now, trails once past main places were bare on riders, and they were groomed almost every night, so they were FLAT as could be , extra wide as to most trails, many places 30+ ft wide was normal, and most places listed on the map, had fuel, and I filled up every time I stopped any place, rather have fuel than need it,a s most places were 30 miles or so from where I stayed( I again prefer to stay in the Cora/pinedale side of things and ride to the north, way way way less traffic and riders and still tons of snow and off trail) and well, a nice ride or loop to them, and to other places then
    I was more a trail rider most trips, so I liked having to ride to get get places, over being closer to places to stop
    just as I said, if it was me before I would plan any LONG trip to any place far away, I would call ahead and make sure they have fuel in, as mostly have elevated fuel tanks, and pending business, I gather depends on how often they fill them
    you don;t want to drive far to get some place and find out NO fuel to get back!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    West of Indianapolis Indiana
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    454

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    Riding out west can't be taken lightly. We went out a couple years ago and I admit I can be a little cocky on the sled. I climbed a large Mountain and ended up getting stuck. The guides tell you not to spin the track once you get stuck and to roll the sled over to get it back on top of the snow. Well, rookie mistake on my part I rolled the sled right on top of me. Here I was, on the side of a mountain with a sled on top of me. It was so heavy, I could barely breathe. Every-time I tried to push the sled off of me it seemed to put more weight on my chest. So I just sat and waited trying to breathe. It was really the first time in my life, I felt this could be the end. Very scary and I won't ever forget. I was with a guide, and I could hear him close by looking for me, I kept praying and he finally found me and said are you ok? I said thank you God for having him find me. I'm not sure if I would of made it. No cell signal, I did have a transponder on but not sure if it was GPS equipped. I owe my life to our guide, and take them with you! True story. It can be alot of fun, but also very dangerous for similar trail riders like me. I would highly recommend going, just don't bite off more than your capable of.

  15. #15

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    Take your wife up to Brooks Lake lodge for lunch. It is a cool place and not that far from Togwotee. Your guide can show you how to get there. Have to go by sled.
    There are lots of play areas right next to trails. Just don't venture out of eyesight of the trails if without a guide. The mountains can be damn dangerous if you do not know what you are doing. Since you are renting sleds you must be back at lodge by 4:30pm.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Chisago City MN
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    Have fun and take pictures. I found after 4x that the elevation sickness does happen. Not always for me,but the last couple was enough for me to not go with my buddies and explore off-trail. So, after I felt somewhat better I just rode the trails. As stated by others, they are groomed nightly and don't get really beat up unless new snow or weekend riders. The CD trail makes for a main trial to get you back and forth. Try a few others, and if possible go to the top of Lava Mtn., the view is fantastic. Most of the trails will give you a variety of sights, you will also see many opportunities for some off trail. If conditions create a flat light,be very cautious as small creeks,ravines,or rocks are hard to see as you're flying across the snow. Most of all,have fun! One of the best sled areas!

  17. #17

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    First off.....lots of bad info on here for you to digest......my name is Carter.....one of the guides at Togwotee, come find me in the morning, we can talk about a lot of this stuff before your day. Best thing to do right now is drink water til you hate it. Hydrate........you will find your guide to be awesome in all things and you will see the wisdom in staying with him your whole trip. Consider an upgrade sled for that off trail day.....Otherwise come and have fun....everyone in the rental shop is ther for you.

  18. #18
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    Dec 2009
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    River Falls, WI
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    ...
    Last edited by fireworks; 12-10-2019 at 08:46 PM.

  19. #19
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    Dec 2014
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    northern illinois
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    Carter - thanks for the hydration tip. Its stuff like that which could make a day better. We will not need an upgraded sled as we are only planning on trail riding and taking in the sites. We don't think we'll be doing any off-trail riding. We will try to look you up. Thanks again. We are looking forward to the trip.

    Jeff

  20. #20
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    Dec 2009
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    NE Pa
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    Quote Originally Posted by carter View Post
    First off.....lots of bad info on here for you to digest......my name is Carter.....one of the guides at Togwotee, come find me in the morning, we can talk about a lot of this stuff before your day. Best thing to do right now is drink water til you hate it. Hydrate........you will find your guide to be awesome in all things and you will see the wisdom in staying with him your whole trip. Consider an upgrade sled for that off trail day.....Otherwise come and have fun....everyone in the rental shop is ther for you.
    please tell me what info is BAD here so far, as I don;t see any?
    I see all info given as meant as help so far and nothing that is BAD!

  21. #21
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    Dec 2009
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    River Falls, WI
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    Anyone that knows out west riding doesn't go to Togwotee. The only bad info in the western thread is sad *** corporate owned Togwotee Lodge. Like I have said before, we ride at the turnout early season and late. Otherwise, stay away from the likes of Tourism Traps.

  22. #22
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    Dec 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireworks View Post
    Anyone that knows out west riding doesn't go to Togwotee. The only bad info in the western thread is sad *** corporate owned Togwotee Lodge. Like I have said before, we ride at the turnout early season and late. Otherwise, stay away from the likes of Tourism Traps.
    While I do partially agree, I still think there is no better option other than Togwotee for a first timer.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by indy_500 View Post
    While I do partially agree, I still think there is no better option other than Togwotee for a first timer.
    Come on since JD first endorsed Tog everyone jumped on the bandwagon. Over the past few year's we have not seen the thread traffic

  24. #24
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    NE Pa
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireworks View Post
    Come on since JD first endorsed Tog everyone jumped on the bandwagon. Over the past few year's we have not seen the thread traffic
    IMO< if someone wanted to go west for the first time and see sights and mostly all trail ride,
    TOG and the area wouldn;t be at the top of my list
    it would be west Yellowstone, way more to see and do, for the trail rider, and honestly better rates and packages IMO too!

    and if not there, Island Park , which again, IMO offers more for trail riders, those that want to ride to places to eat and more like trails than OFF trail attraction!
    Tog and area is a nice as well, but IMO, its more for more experienced OFF trail folks or s-those that want to try it, it gets snow soon and holds snow long and there are GREAT off trail guides and a ton of folks with experience in the area that stay and work there yr round!(same can be said for WY too)
    all comes down to what your looking for or want in a first time experience IMO
    I honestly doubt anyone will care, where they go as long as there is good snow LOL, scenery in most places out west, can be awesome to those never there before!

  25. #25
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    Mar 2013
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    Ptown, Ill
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    X 2 mrbb!

  26. #26
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    Dec 2009
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    Freeland MI
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    My group has been riding our west for a lot of years now and we still tend to hit Togwotee up for one of our trips out west each season. While I much preferred the pre-Aramark run Togwotee, the lodge it is just plain easy for planning a trip. In reality there aren't as many places as you would think that you can ride from your cabin with food/drink/gas,rentals and a guide service that is still only$60/day. Not to mention you meet guys like Carter who for an old guy can still rip and has a ton of fun.

    Our other trips we book a cabin or a house, bring food, bring gas, sometimes have to trailer and it is cheaper, just not as easy. These trips are more or more for great riding on a budget, a trip to a place like Tog is more like a vacation.

  27. #27
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    Dec 2019
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    Kent
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    Tog is much more comfortable to stay at, right?

  28. #28
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    Freeland MI
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mcfall View Post
    Tog is much more comfortable to stay at, right?
    Hmm, compared to what? Comfortable as it has everything you need in one place then yes.

  29. #29
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    Dec 2009
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    River Falls, WI
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    If ride from your door lodging is your thing. Bryan is an awesome operator. https://www.beavercreeklodge.com/

    Home cooked meals. Not Sysco food truck.

    Ridden this area many times. You can also, find townhomes near by for cheap..


    Boondock Nation

    https://youtu.be/bDpH3zZTDt8

  30. #30
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    Dec 2009
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    Freeland MI
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireworks View Post
    If ride from your door lodging is your thing. Bryan is an awesome operator. https://www.beavercreeklodge.com/

    Home cooked meals. Not Sysco food truck.

    Ridden this area many times. You can also, find townhomes near by for cheap..


    Boondock Nation

    https://youtu.be/bDpH3zZTDt8
    I've looked at staying there several times but (unless I'm misunderstanding) their website says that that their room rates must include a sled rental? Seems odd to me since BD Nation had their own sleds on the episode I saw.
    From BCL website
    "Because we specialize in snowmobile packages, room reservations from December 1 - March 31 must include snowmobile rentals, unless the reservation is made within 30 days of the arrival date."

  31. #31
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    Jason- Yeah, it is all inclusive. Sled rentals are required. Back in 2009-2012 I was buying 2 rental sleds in March from Bryan and reselling them back in MN/WI. I would get 2 nights free lodging. Had to pay for meals/gas. Worked out pretty slick. Made enough off the sleds to pay for gas, trailer brakes, sled to ride etc. Anyways, after that I would call and be able to stay last minute middle of the week when they were not booked. Lot's of great terrain to ride. North over backside of Ski The Beav is Franklin Basin. Which, gives you White and Boss Canyon for some awesome riding. I have stayed in Garden City as well. Town homes are cheap cause their peak rental season is summer. You can ride North of GC up west of Bloomington Rd to Bloomington and Paris Peak. Awesome climbing and views.

    In one trip we started in Garden City, Utah. Rode Franklin(Beaver Lodge) Bloomington headed northeast across border and hit Turnerville, Thayne, Bedford area. North to Sheep Creek(palisades) and finished in Cora.

  32. #32
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    The trails around and near Tog are NOT marked like they are here in Sconny. Not every corner is going to have a corner ahead sign, not every dip is going to be pointed out. Have fun, it's a great area, and still one of my favorites!
    Lake Effect Snow, my three favorite words.

  33. #33
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    Dec 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skylar View Post
    The trails around and near Tog are NOT marked like they are here in Sconny. Not every corner is going to have a corner ahead sign, not every dip is going to be pointed out. Have fun, it's a great area, and still one of my favorites!
    You definitely don't want to miss a corner there!!
    Corner by brooks comes to mind!!!
    Trails are great thats for sure!!

  34. #34
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    Dec 2009
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    Bayfield, Wisconsin
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireworks View Post
    Jason- Yeah, it is all inclusive. Sled rentals are required. Back in 2009-2012 I was buying 2 rental sleds in March from Bryan and reselling them back in MN/WI. I would get 2 nights free lodging. Had to pay for meals/gas. Worked out pretty slick. Made enough off the sleds to pay for gas, trailer brakes, sled to ride etc. Anyways, after that I would call and be able to stay last minute middle of the week when they were not booked. Lot's of great terrain to ride. North over backside of Ski The Beav is Franklin Basin. Which, gives you White and Boss Canyon for some awesome riding. I have stayed in Garden City as well. Town homes are cheap cause their peak rental season is summer. You can ride North of GC up west of Bloomington Rd to Bloomington and Paris Peak. Awesome climbing and views.

    In one trip we started in Garden City, Utah. Rode Franklin(Beaver Lodge) Bloomington headed northeast across border and hit Turnerville, Thayne, Bedford area. North to Sheep Creek(palisades) and finished in Cora.
    I will agree with Beaver Creek Lodge. Bryan runs a first class show. Great food, selection of sleds, full gear, comfortable rooms and fantastic meals prepped by Gerald & Viv. If I ever go out west again, BCL is where I will go. Its a spendy trip as we flew in to SLC, car rental and the full package at BCL. But it beats the long round trip drive in the dead of Winter and the cost of motels, food, etc. and miles on the vehicles along the way.

    jblanck. 600's are no match for off trail unless there is a solid crust. Watch out for the slopes that don't see much sun as that is where the deep soft white stuff is and also the tree wells. My wife was with us on our second trip to BCL and she wondered off on her own and got stuck in a tree well. The plan was for her to follow me but.......... She was only a quarter of a mile or so from the staging area but it took us 15-20 minutes for us to locate her. She hates getting stuck. She was pretty upset with herself and that never happened again.

    As others stated, play in the meadows next to the trails. There will probably be some short climbs available. Watch for the tracks of other sleds. If there are there, it should be fine. If not stay away.

    Mountain riding is a whole different animal but be prepared and have a plan. Whistles, shovel, flares, lots of water, insulated space blanket, energy bars, spare socks, etc. all fit nicely in a backpack. Take it with you even if you don't use it.

    Have fun. Its a trip of a lifetime.

  35. #35
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    Freeland MI
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireworks View Post
    Jason- Yeah, it is all inclusive. Sled rentals are required. Back in 2009-2012 I was buying 2 rental sleds in March from Bryan and reselling them back in MN/WI. I would get 2 nights free lodging. Had to pay for meals/gas. Worked out pretty slick. Made enough off the sleds to pay for gas, trailer brakes, sled to ride etc. Anyways, after that I would call and be able to stay last minute middle of the week when they were not booked. Lot's of great terrain to ride. North over backside of Ski The Beav is Franklin Basin. Which, gives you White and Boss Canyon for some awesome riding. I have stayed in Garden City as well. Town homes are cheap cause their peak rental season is summer. You can ride North of GC up west of Bloomington Rd to Bloomington and Paris Peak. Awesome climbing and views.

    In one trip we started in Garden City, Utah. Rode Franklin(Beaver Lodge) Bloomington headed northeast across border and hit Turnerville, Thayne, Bedford area. North to Sheep Creek(palisades) and finished in Cora.
    Quote Originally Posted by woodside View Post
    I will agree with Beaver Creek Lodge. Bryan runs a first class show. Great food, selection of sleds, full gear, comfortable rooms and fantastic meals prepped by Gerald & Viv. If I ever go out west again, BCL is where I will go. Its a spendy trip as we flew in to SLC, car rental and the full package at BCL. But it beats the long round trip drive in the dead of Winter and the cost of motels, food, etc. and miles on the vehicles along the way.

    I might have to consider Beaver Creek for a trip when we plan a last minute trip so I don't have to rent the sleds. We rented one time, a long time ago on our first trip out west, and I said I would only return with my own equipment which we have many times now. I get the argument that it is easier to fly and so on but for me having my own sled, set up perfectly me with my own mods means I don't have to spend any time getting used to a rental.
    My original point still applies though There just aren't many places to stay in prime snow country that offer all the amenities at the price that Tog does so in spite of some negatives aspects it still remains a popular place.

    Fireworks - how would you compare riding out of Garden City vs Alpine? Never been to either and trying to decide what to do for a March trip.

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