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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Too far from the snow
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    2,148

    Default Albany lodge area with trail sleds

    I have 5 days set aside around President's Day for my one and only trip this year. We were planning to do the usual UP backpack trip. Now I am concerned there won't be any decent snow, and if there is, the only place there will be will be in the Western UP, and everyone in the midwest will be riding there that weekend. So, looking at other options. Looks like the Albany lodge area might be the closest to us with decent snow. It's about 1,000 miles from where our sleds and trailer are stored (south suburbs of Chicago). Can you ride that area with short track sleds, provided they are jetted correctly? I assume you'd be somewhat limited but can ride trails and find play areas for the short trackers if we're not stupid. Also looking at South Dakota or Wawa as alternatives. The trail permits and gas prices of Wawa and the difficulty I've had in finding info about South Dakota have made the Albany Lodge area more appealing. Also open to other ideas. We've ridden the Tog area twice and loved it, but we've rented mountain sleds when we were there. Trying to do something with our own sleds this year, and trying not to drive all that way this year.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    il
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    Absolutely! Albany is great place to go and trail ride. Also plenty of meadows and such to play in. Elevation is a bit lower by Albany, so late season snow can be iffy, but should be plenty to trail ride.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    ne ia, new hartford
    Posts
    70

    Default

    The northern Big horns by sheridan wy would have good conditions too.We are going out over spring break in march and staying at bear lodge resort. They have a nice trail system any easy access for short stacks.We were out the 1st part of jan and there were lots of short tracks out there then. We are near waterloo ia and the big horns are about 2 hours futher than the snowies for us.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    South Eastern Minn
    Posts
    159

    Default

    I would agree on Albany ....Just make sure to have extra Gas with you

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Default

    Would a clutch kit be required to ride the Albany area? I know we'd have to re-jet. Thanks. I don't know if I want to get into clutching also.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Sussex, WI
    Posts
    587

    Default

    Clutching is not required, but it will make a huge difference in how your sled will run. If off trailing, it is necessary IMO. You will be lucky to pull 7000 rpm's with low elevation clutching up that high. Your typical 800 motor is only putting out 110 HP at that elevation. Now factor in SIGNIFICANT UNDER-rev, and that same 800 may be making 70-80 hp. You can decide from there.

    At bare minimum throw some lighter weights in the primary to at least get the RPM's in the ballpark.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Default

    How hard is it to clutch a sled and how long does it take? We have 600's if it matters. Do we need any special tools? Perhaps these are better questions for a dealer out there. Last question for now: what would a reasonable price be for a dealer out there to set up our sleds so they are clutched and jetted properly? Thanks for the answers.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    ne ia, new hartford
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    70

    Default

    What sleds do you have? We have cleanfire polaris' and only change weights ,takes about 1 hr. The polaris is real easy. In our ski doos we change to hollow pins If they have dpm or are fuel injected. You have to pull the clutch to do this. Rode both out there last march and ran great.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Too far from the snow
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    A fusion 600 and an iq 600. Both carbs. The other guy in the group has an efi cat and has the clutch parts for altitude
    Last edited by Hoosier; 02-07-2012 at 09:06 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Waiting for SNOW!!
    Posts
    282

    Default

    Yes, jet and go!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Sussex, WI
    Posts
    587

    Default

    Just look up the primary weight recommendations for 8000 feet and up. Install those. Changing the weights on the p 85 clutches is a breeze.

    Pull clutch cover, remove bolt holding the weight, install new weight, reinstall cover, and you are good to go.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    The Keweenaw Peninsula
    Posts
    3,125

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by thebreeze View Post

    Pull clutch cover, remove bolt holding the weight, install new weight, reinstall cover, and you are good to go.
    It can even be a bit easier than that if you want. Just get these tools and you can just (after removing the belt) compress the sheaves of the primary with the fork-like tool and then slip the clip over the outside edge of each sheave to hold the primary compressed. Then change out the weights, and use the tool to compress the clutch enough to take the clip off and done. Comes in handy when the primary is stubborn about coming off the crankshaft! Also very quick. I can change weights in probably less than 20 minutes without even rushing. You can also compress the primary with a small pry-bar or large screwdriver, but I have found the fork tool to work very well and is pretty cheap.

    -John

  13. #13
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    Dec 2009
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    Thanks for the input, everyone.

    Where is a good place to get clutch weights from, if we go that route?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Carver MN
    Posts
    116

    Default

    Ummm the Polaris dealer?

    Setting up your sled is part of the fun of going out west. Get all the guys together and do it together over a few beers and its done in about 35 minutes per sled. You will want to bring extra jets out west and may want to fiddle with jetting a bit when your out there. The Polaris charts are a little fat. The biggest thing is your needle clip placement, one clip slot off and it will run like crap.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Too far from the snow
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    Thanks - I live in Indiana but usually work with a dealer in Wisconsin where we normally ride. This trip is coming together as a last minute alternative, due to conditions in the northwoods. I contacted a dealer in Laramie. If we head that direction, I'll buy weights from them. We may just go to South Dakota so we only have to change jets, or to Ontario, and not do anything to the sleds (but buy $6 gas).

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    ne ia, new hartford
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    70

    Default

    I am pretty sure you wouldnt have to do any jetting in the black hills. Some guys i know went out in dec with sleds set up for the midwest and didnt have any problems,but it wouldnt hurt to call a dealer out there just in case.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Mass City and Milwaukee
    Posts
    314

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier View Post
    Thanks - I live in Indiana but usually work with a dealer in Wisconsin where we normally ride. This trip is coming together as a last minute alternative, due to conditions in the northwoods. I contacted a dealer in Laramie. If we head that direction, I'll buy weights from them. We may just go to South Dakota so we only have to change jets, or to Ontario, and not do anything to the sleds (but buy $6 gas).
    We drove through South Dakota twice in the last week on our way to Togwotee. Unless that snow is hiding somewhere I didn't see a thing - ANYWHERE in South Dakota. I wouldn't count on making that a destination...

    CLuthcing and jetting like others have said, is a very quick project. Go for it!

  18. #18
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    Dec 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by blutooth View Post
    We drove through South Dakota twice in the last week on our way to Togwotee. Unless that snow is hiding somewhere I didn't see a thing - ANYWHERE in South Dakota. I wouldn't count on making that a destination...

    CLuthcing and jetting like others have said, is a very quick project. Go for it!
    These are the sites I was looking at for SD (specifically the Black Hills):

    http://gfp.sd.gov/to-do/snowmobile/b...onditions.aspx
    http://twitter.com/sdsnowbhills

    I am a little wary of it though because it doesn't seem like a big destination, which is also why I am also considering the Albany/Centennial area instead. I think we've ruled out Ontario because the other guys have certain issues (registration/insurance) that they won't have taken care of in time to get over the border.

    Anybody have any opinions on the Black Hills vs the Snowies, especially with trail sleds?
    Last edited by Hoosier; 02-10-2012 at 01:10 PM.

  19. #19
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    Dec 2009
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    Default

    We ended up booking at the Old Corral this coming weekend (Albany was booked by the time we made our minds up). Polaris dealer in town will help with jetting and we'll put some weights in. A little nervous to see how the shorties do out there but most of the feedback I've seen says we'll do fine - just can't obviously go everywhere the long tracks go.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    il
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    Staying in Centennial is a poor choice for trail riding! Much better off in Albany, Fox Park, Wycolo, Ryans Park. Many better choices than Centennial.
    Just be prepared to deal with little to no visibility going over the top.
    Last edited by snoluver1; 02-13-2012 at 04:20 PM.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    gilberts IL.
    Posts
    21

    Default

    hey Hoosier, there are 8 of us heading out tomorrow from chicago. we all rode short tracks our first few times and now were all on longer track sleds. if you get to centennial before friday look us up at the Durango cabin which is part of the Old Corral ownership. walldoo

  22. #22
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    Dec 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by walldoo View Post
    hey Hoosier, there are 8 of us heading out tomorrow from chicago. we all rode short tracks our first few times and now were all on longer track sleds. if you get to centennial before friday look us up at the Durango cabin which is part of the Old Corral ownership. walldoo
    Cool. We're supposed to get there Thursday. Sounds like the Durango cabin is right by Old Corral? We've rented mountain sleds near togwotee twice but haven't been to the snowies before. Can't wait.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Mass City and Milwaukee
    Posts
    314

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    Have a great time! We will be out there the 25th! Remember to bring fuel caddies with you! Sounds like they are getting dumped on right now, so hopefully they get a chance to go out and groom the trails for you! If you have a GPS send me your email address and I can send you the trail system as a GPS file!

    The snow will be deeper on the west side, and if things aren't groomed the first couple days,m head south across libby flats where the snow will not be as deep.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by blutooth View Post
    Have a great time! We will be out there the 25th! Remember to bring fuel caddies with you! Sounds like they are getting dumped on right now, so hopefully they get a chance to go out and groom the trails for you! If you have a GPS send me your email address and I can send you the trail system as a GPS file!

    The snow will be deeper on the west side, and if things aren't groomed the first couple days,m head south across libby flats where the snow will not be as deep.
    I sent you a pm with my email address. Thanks for the tips. By fuel caddies do you mean tanks that mount on the sleds? We don't have any of those, plus I'm not sure where we'd mount them on our short-tracks.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    209

    Default GPS Files

    blutooth- Do you mind sending me the gps file? I have a garmin and use map source. My wife and I pulled the pin on our 5 day back pack trip in UP last week. Was hoping to chase a storm in the next week or two, but I see the temps and doesn't look good. I ride Pro Rmk & wife rides RMK 144. Usually go to Tog but can't get myself up to the extra 5 hours in a vehicle. My email address is brent@snapfireworks.com.

    Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by blutooth View Post
    Have a great time! We will be out there the 25th! Remember to bring fuel caddies with you! Sounds like they are getting dumped on right now, so hopefully they get a chance to go out and groom the trails for you! If you have a GPS send me your email address and I can send you the trail system as a GPS file!

    The snow will be deeper on the west side, and if things aren't groomed the first couple days,m head south across libby flats where the snow will not be as deep.

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Too far from the snow
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    We ended up riding this past Friday through Monday. Stayed at the Old Corral in Centennial. Had an incredible time. Just such a blast to play in the snow out there. We had a dealer in Laramie jet the Polaris' before riding (the Cat is EFI) the first day, and then we changed the clutch weights ourselves for the last 3 days (sleds were dogs with the sea level clutching). It was a long drive, but well worth it. We obviously couldn't venture as far out or climb as well as the mountain sleds, but we were pleasantly surprised by where our trail sleds went. We rode quite a bit of the trails out there to see what was out there and get our bearings, but we stopped and played quite a bit also.

    Blutooth - your gps files were extremely helpful out there. Particularly on the day when it was real windy, it made it a lot easier to find our way around and know where we were.

    We had two problems - ruined a trailer tire on the way out, and 80 was shut down on the way back East of Laramie. We found an alternate route between Laramie and Cheyenne that was open but wish we would have just waited for 80 since it was a difficult drive.

    Can't wait to head back to this area or somewhere else out West. Since my track is nearly shot, I'll probably return with my same sled but a better track, perhaps longer but at least with more of a paddle on it. Going to look into going with Mom's motorsports next time also. Seems like it would be worth a little extra to not have to drive and deal with our trailer.

  27. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Il.
    Posts
    7

    Default

    this is kmlaw2. Been to albanya couble of times. Greet snow.,also drive to saratgo, about 120 miles further and stay at hacienda motel 307 326 5751.Can go down town for night life.

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