If you are a snowmobiler, you probably see this machine all the time while on the trails. It is the groomer's job to keep the trails nice and smooth so snowmobilers can gain better traction and move quickly throughout the trails.
"We groom the trail everyday. Our club has 130 miles of trails that we take care of, and we groom out and back everyday each trail. So we're going roughly 250 miles a day," said Superior Snowmobile Club President Michael Sabo.
Grooming is traditionally done at night because there is less traffic, it is easier for the groomers to see the snowmobilers, and it is a lot safer.
Last year, 15,000 miles of trail were groomed, and the average speed was 6.8 miles an hour.
When snowmobilers ride the trails, they become "U" shaped, and the blade on the front of the groomer brings the snow from the edge of the trail back into the center.
After a quick look at the brand new machine, I hopped on board to see what it was like to be a groomer for the day. Once we were on our way, it was a rather bumpy ride. Mike showed me the two brake pedals that manage each side of the tractor as well as the controls that change the speed, wheels, and height of the drag.
"The drag behind the groomer cuts the bumps out and levels the snow and packs it down, and if we groom late in the evening, when there's no snowmobilers and it's nice and cold and it kind of freezes, it sets up and makes it real nice for the next day," Sabo said.
Mike says it can take up to seven hours to complete a trail. So what does he do during that length of time?
"Well, you're riding along thinking about what you're doing and try to keep the trails smooth. I, myself, am a snowmobiler so I appreciate a smooth trail," Sabo said.
Superior Snowmobile Club is made up completely of volunteers, and they have been providing smooth trails for the past 11 years.