Snowmobilers hoping for cold temps and more snow

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- Several weeks of warm, dry weather has had snowmobilers in southern Wisconsin hoping for cold temperatures and snow to return soon to revive a slow season.

Janet Meister, president of the Prairie Riders Snowmobile Club, said by January, they are usually preparing for trails to open.

"Ideally we hope that there's snow in December that holds over to January," Meister said.

Members of the club also mark snowmobile trails in Sun Prairie. Usually, they are done by mid-December but unseasonably warm weather and late harvests have delayed things.

"We have a few miles of trail left not put in due to the fact of the late harvest and the wet fields," Meister said.

The weather has not been ideal for snowmobilers either. The best conditions are temperatures below freezing and at least six inches of snow on the ground.

Because of recent warm temperatures, the ground is not frozen yet which means even with several inches of snow, trails might not be ready to open.

The slow season is impacting businesses as well. Todd Kluever and his brother own three local bars, including Seminary Springs Tavern in Madison. Kluever said they usually see plenty of snowmobilers at all three bars, and it is great for business.

"If there was snow and there were snowmobilers right now, it would definitely be something that a lot of us were looking forward to," Kluever said.

With no snow on the ground, Kluever said his business is missing the extra traffic.

"It's a nice boost to your normally slower time of the year," Kluever said.

Both Kluever and Meister hope the weather turns to snow before the season is over.

"Hopefully it snows and that we can get our snowmobiles out here locally and not have to travel three hours to get our snowmobiles warmed up," Meister said.

Meister and other members of the Prairie Riders are heading back out on Sunday. They hope to finish the marking the last few miles of their trails in Sun Prairie.