Ag Agency: Love snowmobiling on VAST trails? Thank a farmer!

-A A +A

Ag Agency: Love snowmobiling on VAST trails? Thank a farmer!

Thu, 03/16/2017 - 11:33am -- tim

Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets Winter is back, and Vermonters are ready to play in the snow once more! It’s no secret that Vermonters love snowmobiling, but did you know that more than 2400 miles of VAST (Vermont Association of Snow Travelers) Trails cross Vermont farmland? That’s more than half of all the VAST trails, statewide.

“Without farmers, the VAST trail system as we know it would not exist,” according to Matt Tetreault, VAST’s Trails Administrator, who oversees VAST’s statewide network of 4700 miles of trails. “VAST relies on the generosity of private landowners who allow the trail system to cross their property. We are especially grateful to the farmers who make their land available in wintertime, for our club members to enjoy.”

Snowmobile photos hoto by Dennis Curran for the State of Vermont.

In fact, 64 percent of all the private land in the VAST trail network is farmland. (Private land accounts for about 80% of the total VAST trail network.)

According to the USDA Census of Agriculture, there are more than 7300 farms in Vermont, encompassing over 1.25 million acres.

“Farms add to the beauty and character of Vermont’s landscape, and many provide fun recreational opportunities for Vermonters, too” according to Ag Secretary Anson Tebbetts. “Thanks farmers, for all you do!”

“Be safe, enjoy the snow, and have some fun,” he added.

About VAST: Founded almost 50 years ago, VAST is responsible for the organization of the sport of snowmobiling, maintaining and grooming over 4,700 miles of trails. One of the oldest snowmobiling organizations in the U.S., VAST is a non-profit 501-c-3 orginization that includes 127 clubs statewide, with over 24,000 members combined. The clubs and their steadfast volunteers, and the landowners that allow riders to cross their land are the backbone of the organization. http://vtvast.org/

About the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets: VAAFM facilitates, supports and encourages the growth and viability of agriculture in Vermont while protecting the working landscape, human health, animal health, plant health, consumers and the environment.  www.Agriculture.Vermont.Gov