We are a non-profit snowmobile club that was created in 1967, and are a continually growing organization. Currently, our club membership runs around 50 family memberships. We are active year-round in many different activities, but November through April are our most active months with a monthly general club meeting and a board meeting.
Some of our activities include club barbecues, several club rides, a Christmas party, club play days, and a steak feed. We also have play days to raise money for our chosen charity, Klamath Hospice. Club rides are a great way to meet new people and to explore new areas to ride! Club rides always cater to the least experienced rider that attends, so you will never feel left behind, regardless of your experience level.
Safety and fun are top priorities of the club. We have a wide range of rider skill levels, so you can always find a group you feel comfortable riding with. We work to educate our members regarding changes in laws, trail conditions, and weather conditions through our website, club meetings, and our monthly newsletter, “The Drifter”. The club schedules training for beginning riders from age 10 to 16 to assist them in obtaining their ODOT trail permit. We also schedule avalanche awareness training to learn of the dangers of avalanches and how to avoid riding in areas that may slide.
All of our club members are also members of the Oregon State Snowmobile Association (OSSA). OSSA is in contract with the State of Oregon to maintain and groom the snowmobile trails throughout the state. The money that is provided to OSSA pays for the groomer (the 2015 Pisten Bully is almost $300,000!) as well as fuel and maintenance on the machine. OSSA is also our voice in State and Federal government, fighting to keep our snowmobile trails and rights as snowmobilers from being taken away from us.
The Klamath Basin Snowdrifters is a grooming club, which means that volunteers from the club run the OSSA-owned 2015 Pisten Bully snowcat during the snow season to keep the 360 miles of designated trails groomed for smooth, clear, and safe riding. In a good snow year, these volunteers groom over 2,000 miles, with more than 600 man-hours logged. The new cat is wider than ones we have had in the past, which has created some concerns with trail width. Removal of trees in narrow sections of the trail system is necessary to allow the new cat access for safe grooming. Those issues are being resolved with the Forest Service to insure a safe travel corridor for snowmobiles as well as the cat.
During the summer months, we have volunteers that help out with trail maintenance. This includes putting up more trail markers and removing brush and downed trees from the trails. We work closely with the Fremont-Winema National Forest, the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, and Klamath and Medford Districts of the Bureau of Land Management in maintaining the snowmobile trails to keep them open and safe for riders. We also have four winter warming huts that we maintain. With the help of the Rogue Nordic club, the Brown Mountain, Summit, Four Mile, and Big Meadow shelters are stocked yearly with firewood for use by snowmobilers, cross-country skiers, hikers, and snowshoers. The shelters are open winter months to use to warm-up or in case of an emergency.
So please become a member to help support this wonderful sport, and keep it alive and preserved for future generations to enjoy.