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ArcticInsider Features Articles

TGIF: The April 8, 2016 Edition

(4/8/2016)

TGIF and were snowmobiking into spring

I'm thankful there's a way to extend the snowmobile season into spring (and even summer).

I'm thankful for this whole, new snow bike craze that has everyone fired up.

I'm thankful that if you have to ask, you wouldn't understand anyway.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, April 8, 2016.

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What OSM Magazine Has to Say About Arctic Cat's 2017 Sleds

(4/5/2016)

OSM Magazine on the 2017 Arctic Cat Thundercat

What can sometimes get lost in our insatiable desire for all-new stuff, is the top-level performance and calibration that occurs on machines that have been around the block once or twice.

To wit, from the editors at OSM Magazine:

"In fact, after our second go around with the sleds during the annual spring Snow Shoot evaluations and photography session in West Yellowstone, Montana, it was Arctic Cat who delivered the most consistent ride quality and handling characteristics over any other brand when viewed from top to bottom. No matter the sled grouping or category, our riders pointed to Arctic Cat as the one sled to consistently perform with predictability and comfort…a bold statement and no small feat given today’s broad swath of models."

CLICK HERE for their full story about the 2017 Arctic Cat snowmobiles.

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No More Mr. Fool

(4/1/2016)

ArcticFool

Six years of April Fool's prank attempts here have finally cast a light on who the real fool is: Me!

Well...no more Fool's pranks!

Click to read some background, and my plan to bank some credibility for myself and this site.

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Just Released: 2017 NxTLvL 860

(4/1/2016)

Is this the NxTLvL 860 snowmobile?

Just announced: the limited production 2017 NxTLvL 860 in the GameChanger 2.0 chassis!

As anticipated, this all-new machine delivers the next level of riding performance.

Click to read all the juicy details.

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Winter in Spring: A Snow Storm with Perfect Timing

(3/23/2016)

Snowmobile spring break snow storm in Minnesota. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

It wasn't looking good for my family's planned spring break snowmobile trip to Lutsen, Minn., last week. Warm temps and a lack of recent snow suggested that we were going to go sightseeing rather than snowmobiling.

And then Ma Nature dumped 18 inches of snow, and we were treated to some of the most stunning winter visuals (in my) recent memory.

It was so beautiful that my wife even stopped wishing she was in some warm weather beach location.

Click for some pretty pictures of what snowmobile sometimes looks like.

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Swedish Arctic Cat Party

(3/21/2016)

Arctic Cat show in Sweden.

Recently Swedish Luleås Arctic Cat dealer Navis (Ronny Rönnberg) and SMP Performance shop (Patrik Löfdahl) put together a party at the local Måttsund ski hill that included 2017 model Arctic Cat sleds, Wildcats, hill-drag races (under the lights!) and more.

Erik Jönsson attended and sent the following pix. He reports that it was a fantastic event, with great people and excellent racing.

Click to see a few pix.

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Marching Forward: Two Days with Arctic Cat in TRF (and nearby)

(3/21/2016)

A trip to Arctic Cat. pix by ArcticInsider.com

Recently I was fortunate to spend a couple days at Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls (and the surrounding area), where I checked in on some of the people who make our snowmobiles, ATVs and side-by-sides.

There was the usual buzz of production, engineers testing snowmobiles, interesting creativity and Team Arctic snocrossers pounding out laps in nearby Fertile, MN.

Click to see some of the action.

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Season Finale? North Shore Ride with the Chumps

(3/14/2016)

2016 North Shore Ride with the Chumps

Last week eight friends and I gathered for day of snowmobiling on the CJ Ramstad North Shore Trail.

There were World Champs, I-500 champs and one media guy who has no credibility. In other words, we were a bunch of chumps.

As per usual, shenanigans ensued, hamburgers were consumed, animals were harmed in the making of the show and we somehow managed to log 120 miles without catastrophic failure (I think).

Click to read about our Ride with the Chumps.

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Newsbits: Off-Road News That's Weird to Print

(3/8/2016)

Smart snowmobile?

Seriously impressive job by this guy who turned his Smart car into an enclosed sit-in snowmobile.

Guy walks into a store with an axe. Clerc asks, "Why the FXR gear?"

Click for more newsbits.

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Does Being the Fastest Matter?

(3/8/2016)

Arctic Cat drag race.

For the better part of 50 years, snowmobile one-upmanship has been predicated on who's fastest across the lake.

I asking you now: Does it matter?

Click to read and answer the question.

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Ode to the Legend: 2017 Arctic Cat ZR 6000 Roger Skime-Edition

(3/2/2016)

2017 Arctic Cat Roger Skime Edition ZR 6000

There's no way to fully honor a man who has so singlehandedly shaped both Arctic Cat and the snowmobile industry.

But there IS this stunning, cool and commemorative Roger Skime-Edition 2017 Arctic Cat ZR 6000!

It's (very) limited, it's in the new body plastic and it's just the kind of lightweight, premium-performance snowmobile that the legend himself has pursued for 55 years.

Click for the info.

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16 Things You Need to Know about the 2017 Arctic Cat Snowmobiles

(3/1/2016)

2017 Arctic Cat Snowmobiles

At last, Arctic Cat has launched their 2017 line of snowmobiles!

It will be a year that throws more than one surprise, both for what machines it is offering (new Thundercat!) and for what it isn't (read the story).

There's a lot more to say about the 2017 Cats, and I'll have full-feature stories in the coming days and weeks.

For now, here are the 16 things you must know about the Arctic Cat for 2017.

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TGIF: The Feb. 26, 2016 Edition

(2/26/2016)

TGIF and the streets are safe for snowmobiling.

I'm thankful the roving band of thugs who had been terrorizing innocent neighborhoods have been displaced by men on snow machines.

I'm thankful the streets are (finally) safe.

I'm thankful I'm NOT the guy sitting backwards on the Diablo Rouge that's leading this hit parade.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Feb. 26, 2016.

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Truly Special: Kids, Snowmobiles and Confidence

(2/25/2016)

Confidence Special Olympics snowmobile day. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Last week I had the great pleasure of watching 240-plus kids get to ride passenger on snowmobiles near Baxter, Minn., many for the first time in their life.

The kids, aged 7 through 20, were born with cognitive or developmental disabilities, and they were PUMPED about the day!

The event is called the Region 5 Special Olympics Winter Carnival and organized by Confidence Learning Center in Baxter.

Click to read about it.

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TGIF: The Feb. 19, 2016 Edition

(2/19/2016)

TGIF and ArcticInsider found a photo that speaks to me.

I'm thankful for the close relationship between big engines and big, er, stuff.

I'm thankful for fast sleds and fast women.

I'm thankful that, for as long as men have dreamed up ridiculous photo set-ups for ther machines, there are always one or two women who agree to participate.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Feb. 19, 2016.

TGIF and ArcticInsider found a photo that speaks to me.

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Class in Session: Teacher and Students Ride Snowmobiles to School

(2/18/2016)

Students at Pequot Lakes, MN, High School ride snowmobiles to school.

You gotta LOVE it when high school students ride their snowmobiles to school! And it's even better when they do so with one of their instructors.

That's what happened yesterday when teacher Dave Guenther (second from left) and four students at Pequot Lakes (MN) High School rode to class.

In addition to being the school's art instructor, Guenther has taught snowmobile safety in the Brainerd Lakes area and is the President of the International Snowmobile Hall of Fame in Eagle River, Wis. Oh...and he's a HUGE fan/collector of Arctic Cat snowmobiles. And he's an awesome guy!

Guenther reports that he will retire from teaching this year (his 36th) so he can concentrate on doing more snowmobile-related stuff.

Thanks for being a great teacher and role model, Dave. I'm looking forward to hearing about all your upcoming adventures.

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2016 Snowmobile Hall of Fame Weekend

(2/16/2016)

Snowmobile Hall of Fame weekend. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Last weekend marked the 33rd Annual Snowmobile Hall of Fame Induction ceremony and Ride with the Champs.

This incredible weekend event in St. Germain, Wis., delivers one of the truly great experiences for snowmobilers whose passion tends towards racing. And it just keeps getting better.

Three of this year's four inductees have STRONG Arctic Cat roots, which led to a decidedly Cat-flavored weekend. To see, ride with and hear Brad Pake, Steve Houle and Hubert Fixsen -- as well as fourth inductee Tom Zernia -- was an honor I won't forget.

Click to read the story.

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Newsbits 2-11-16: Jump to These for Infotainment

(2/11/2016)

newsbits stories about wonky snowmobilers

They say art imitates life. Please, don't imitate some of this week's featured stories.

Avalanche videos are becoming almost regular nowadays thanks to the proliferation of GoPro cameras. THIS AVALANCHE VIDEO has a happy ending, but it's still a good warning to all mountain riders.

Snowing snowballs?!? While THIS STORY would be 100X better with a picture, it's interesting to know that nature can produce snowballs.

Please, don't ever be THIS GUY, who trespasses with his 12-year-old son on snowmobiles, then flees to leave his son to handle the police.

On the flipside, here's a great story about Team Arctic's Hubert Fixsen, who will be inducted into the Snowmobile Hall of Fame this weekend.

Click for more...

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TGIF: The Feb. 5, 2016 Edition

(2/5/2016)

ArcticInsider wears a one-piece snowmobile suit. Onlookers barf in response.

I'm thankful for that special feeling of going commando while wearing a one-piece snowmobile suit.

I'm thankful for the endless cycles of fashion, and that what once was cool shall be so again.

I'm thankful for furry feet and snow bunnies.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Jan. 5, 2016.

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Lunch Loop: Snowmobiling in 60 minutes or less

(1/31/2016)

Lunch Loop snowmobile ride by ArcticInsider.com

Once a week or so in the winter, I swap the usual weekday lunch break with an hour of snowmobiling.

I call it my "Lunch Loop."

And dang, is it ever deliciously good!

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