A great way to enjoy Casper Mountain's Winter Wonderland is by skimming across its drifts on a snowmobile. Whether you're just discovering the excitement of motorized snow play or have been riding machines for years, there are over 45 miles of groomed trails to explore.
Adventure Guide Don Higbee, owner of Karst Motor Sports has been riding snowmobiles since he was 6 years old. He and his family have only been Casper residents for 3 months, but "we've been lifelong enthusiasts of snowmobiling and ATVing, and we've been coming to Wyoming for 15 years," he praises. " We're really glad to be in town."
Higbee believes there are several attributes that draw people to this area. "I think what makes Casper so attractive is just the variety of outdoor activities that are available to everybody," he says. Activities like skiing, snowboarding, and fly-fishing, to name a few. And, Higbee notes, Casper has "some of the best ATV riding in the country." He also mentions the Casper Events Center, which brings in a variety of sporting and cultural events. "It's a very well-rounded community to come and enjoy."
Beartrap Meadow is the trailhead for snowmobiling on Casper Mountain. Located straight up Casper Mountain Road just minutes from downtown, its parking lot is the perfect place to park a trailer and head out on the well-maintained trails. You can also follow the trails over to Muddy Mountain and drop into some of the larger, deeper powder snow for some great back country riding, as well.
Easy access, well-groomed and well-marked trails are some of the reasons Higbee says the area is very snowmobiler friendly. "It's a good area for the beginning and mid-range type of snowmobiler to come and enjoy some of Wyoming's scenery," he says. "I think what attracts the beginning snowmobiler to Casper Mountain is the detail that the county uses on plowing the different roads, and making sure that Beartrap Meadow is easily accessible. And the trail markings are second to none." However, the mountain does have different terrain, offering something for all levels of snowmobilers, from the beginner to the more experienced rider.
Like with any other sport, safety is always an issue to keep in mind. Higbee suggests taking spare belts and spark plugs - anything you might need to maintenance your machine. Also, food and water or Gatorade, "because you never know when a storm is going to blow in." The main thing, Higbee emphasizes, is "you always want to make sure you're prepared when you're out riding."
As for the gear you'll need? There are a couple of downtown locations to explore. Just For Kicks (265-0228) carries a variety of snowmobiling accessories. And, Higbee offers, "Karst Motor Sports...we have a full range of machines, clothing, and helmets." There's also an annual fee to ride snowmobiles in the state of Wyoming, and those $25 stickers can be purchased not only at the courthouse, but at Karst, as well.
"My favorite thing about Casper Mountain is being able to go up there with the family and having it in such close proximity to Central Casper," Higbee says. "My daughter's just learning how to ride, so we allow her to ride a little bit up there. We can also do other things such as cross-country ski, and there are some great sledding hills up on Casper Mountain as well. It's just a good family day."
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