Snowmobiling Growing in Importance as a Job Generator around Yellowstone
woman snowmobiling outside of west YellowstoneHaslett, MI - Decent jobs in rural North America are often hard to find. The loss of the commodity based economic engine (i.e.: timbering, mining) has been replaced in most cases by tourism related activities and snowmobiling is certainly a major job generator in some markets.

This past winter we enjoyed a generally cold winter with adequate snow cover. During the 2003-2004 snowmobile season, slightly more than 2.3 million snowmobiles were registered in North America. If you compare the registration numbers from the 1980's, which were 1.6 million, you discover an increase of 43% in the total number of registered snowmobiles in North America over the last two decades. The growth of the sport serves as testimony to the importance of snowmobiling as a healthy family winter activity. Economic Impact Studies performed by Universities located throughout the snowbelt show over $25 billion worth of economic activity in the US and Canada can be directly related to snowmobiling. Across the snowbelt, approximately 10% of all travelers spending can be directly related to snowmobile activity. An average snowmobiler spends $88.30 per day while snowmobiling. An average snowmobile trip is 2.5 days with the average party size being 5 snowmobilers. The average household makes 12 snowmobile trips per season and reports the following breakdown in expenditures:

· Meals - 23.6% of total costs
· Accommodations - 19.4% of total cost
· Recreational Activities - 8.2% of total cost
· Food Stores - 7.1% of total cost
· Retail Stores - 13.7 % of total cost
· Ground Transportation - 7.7% of total cost
· Services and other - 20.3% of total cost

snowmobiling Island ParkSnowmobilers are taxpayers and the largest single source of snowmobile travelers spending which becomes a government revenue, is room and meal tax. Approximately 9% of every dollar spent by snowmobilers ends up in a government treasury.

Snowmobile tourism is big business and a large North American employer. Over 95,000 jobs are directly related to snowmobiling. Travel Plans continue to change, thus snowmobile activity will be more important in the future. International tourism is down by more than 24% and domestic North American air travel is down by 7%. We can be assured that automobile related travel will account for a vast majority of tourism related activity in North America. Over 75% of all tourism related activity includes automobile travel.

Travel and recreation trends support the optimism of the snowmobile community since more families plan on recreating close to home and more of those families are interested in winter recreational activities.

snowmobiling Yellowstone National ParkSnowmobiling Is entering its 50th year as the chosen recreational activity in North America for millions of families. The industry is mature and snowmobiles are more reliable now than ever. All of the manufacturers are introducing new technology vehicles, which are cleaner, quieter, dependable and user friendly with creature comforts exceeding expectations. More females are purchasing new snowmobiles, and in many regions of North America, 40% of all snowmobilers are females. Your snowmobile trail and riding area infrastructure continues to improve with increased support from local governments and Visitors and Convention Bureaus that understand their need to encourage and support the snowmobile activity and the economic impact it generates. High quality resort developers continue to build resort complexes adjacent to snowmobile trails. Public awareness of the technology improvements is leading to a greater acceptance of snowmobiling and the vehicles we ride.

Snowmobiling is a great family sport that allows parents and their children and grandchildren to recreate together in the winter and enjoy all the magic that nature has to offer.

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