A Minnesota man was killed in a tragic snowmobile vs. van accident earlier this week south of Pond’s lodge.Â According to witnesses, he failed to stop at the intersection where the trail he was riding crossed highway 20.Â The collision occurred when the driver of the van was unable to stop and the snowmobile was struck broadside, killing the driver of the snowmobile instantly.
While there are those who criticize the markings on the trails (particularly the placement of stop signs, etc.) the fact is that many people ride those trails like they have completely lost their minds.Â It’s not uncommon on any of the local trails to have riders on high-powered snowmobiles doing nearly 100 miles per hour blow past you like you are standing still.
Please understand I’m not suggesting that the man from Minnesota was speeding or making any other kind of judgment about him or his riding (only the investigating officer can make those determinations.)Â We feel nothing but a deep sadness over this accident and have no desire to judge the snowmobiler or anyone else.
It is fair to suggest, however, that if you want to remain safe while riding in Island Park (or anywhere for that matter) it might be prudent to slow down and drive defensively.Â That’s especially true in areas with which you are not familiar.
All of us here at islandpark.com extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of the snowmobiler from Minnesota who so tragically lost his life in our back yard.Â We love it here, as this good man did, and we want everyone who comes here to recreate to be safe and have an enjoyable time.Â Hopefully this accident will be the impetus to creating a safer environment (through better signage, etc.) and will encourage everyone to recognize the inherent dangers in snowmobiling and take appropriate precautions when riding.