Tug Hill region attracts over 35K snowmobile users annually, local study finds

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LEWIS COUNTY, N.Y. (WWTI) — As snowmobiling is known to be one of the most popular winter sports in the North Country due to the plentiful snow, it also have been proven to attract visitors to the region each season.

A partnership of local entities and organizations in the Tug Hill region have released the results of its Snowmobile Economic Impact Study.

These groups contracted with the Center for Community Studies at Jefferson Community College and Camoin 310 to undertake an economic impact study of snowmobiling.

This study gathered information related to snowmobile users in the region, including the number of visits, spending habits, location of origin and trail network feedback.

To find this data, a survey was conducted to evaluate the impact of snowmobile user spending on the Tug Hill. In total 2,416 surveys were completed.

“The snowmobile industry has been steadily growing in the Tug Hill region due to the hard work of our local snowmobile clubs, as well as the generosity of landowners who open their land to our expansive trail system,” said Lewis County Economic Development Director Brittany Davis. “Results from the economic impact study will allow the region to prioritize strategies to continue to support and expand the industry that continues to contribute so much to our local economy.” 

Highlights from the study include the following:

  • 35,254 unique snowmobile trail users each year
  • 52% of snowmobile users are from outside the Tug Hill region
  • On average, there are 347,337 days spent in total by non-local users in the Tug Hill region annually
  • Non-local snowmobile users spend and average of $192 per day
  • Snowmobiling activity adds 866 jobs and $28.8 million in earnings
  • Total tax revenue that results from snowmobile activity is estimated to be nearly $445,000 in Lewis County each year 

Additionally all snowmobile trails in the Tug Hill region and throughout Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida and Oswego counties are maintained by volunteers.

The study was lead by Lewis County in partnership with Jefferson County Economic Development, the Lewis County Chamber of Commerce, Oneida County Tourism, Oswego County Community Development, Tourism and Planning, Operation Oswego County, the Tug Hill Commission and several area snowmobile clubs.

The full economic impact study can be found on the Lewis County Economic Development website.

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