b'VAST NEWSTRAIL TIPS: SAFE BREAKS & BEAUTIFUL PHOTOSBy Mike MutascioWhat a chore! I was browsing and reorganizing years of trail pictures Id loaded onto my computer. Wow, there were so many files that I added another storage drive! Then there was the tedious job of scanning old photos - boxes of them, along with a few crumbled strips of negatives (yes, Im dating myself).Nonetheless, these were great snowmobiling memories from several states and Canada.Over the years of photographing, it didnt take long to learn there was more to simply stopping and grabbing(Wayne Davis, ISMA photo)that gorgeous Vermont trail picture. First, I had to overcome the inherentkeep the trail safe while the groupDo we need to keep our sleds on fear of disrupting the group ridetook a break. the trail, or is it reasonable to park to stop and snap the perfect photo.alongside? Is there room for bi-It didnt take long to learn anotherFinding the right place to take a breakdirectional traffic to safely pass? Is important factor: a responsibility torequires some serious consideration.there visual field that allows reaction time for oncoming traffic?Then of course, there is the reality that some stops are not planned. Mechanical breakdowns, obstructions, and even emergencies can stop your group in its tracks. The spot might not be optimum and may even be obscured. Things just happen. Now what?Whether planned or unexpected, we should remember to make our presence known when stopped on the trail. When possible, ensure ample visibility and allow enough space for the safe passage of traffic. Assign a lookout to announce and warn approaching snowmobiles. Consider marking a makeshift stop with flagging tape, pine branches, other objects, or even writing in the snow that announces to oncoming traffic, Hey, somethings up ahead.So hit the trails with family and friends. Grab those photos. Wrap your ride in awesome Vermont scenery. Take a break, open your visor and inhale. Just remember to be large, in charge and make your stop a safe one.2 | Snowmobile VERMONT'