ArcitcInsider Forum
Follow ArcticInsider on YouTube Follow ArcticInsider on Facebook       
ArcticInsider Features Articles

TGIF: The Jan. 15, 2016 Edition

(1/15/2016)

Sno-Pony and Sonic Challenger snowmobiles.

I'm thankful for the wild, chest-pounding days of yesteryear, when snowmobile manufactures built over-the-top speed machines to promote cute little consumer sleds that were barely fasters than today's 120s.

I'm thankful that long before there were "SledNecks" decals on every 18-year-old's truck, sled and bedroom mirror, there were "STP" decals on every truck, sled and bedroom mirror.

Seriously, I'm thankful when ANYONE builds a sled that looks like a rocketship.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Jan. 15, 2016.

continue reading ...

Looks Like Winter. Hoping the Same for You.

(1/5/2016)

Arctic Cat Crosstrek graced by snow and frost.

There's an old saying that I often hear describing snowmobilers:

"We need snow in our back yard to believe that it's truly winter out there."

In the last week I been from the southeast corner of Minnesota all the way to the Northwest, and I can tell you the ground is white everywhere in between. And lots of snowmobilers are out enjoying it.

If that's not the case where you live, then I sincerely hope that it soon will be.

continue reading ...

Goodbye-to-2015 Ride in Minnesota’s Bluff Country

(12/31/2015)

December snow storm ride in Minn. Bluff Country. Pix by Pat Bourgeois & ArcticInsider.com

A good ol' snowstorm dumped 9 inches of snow on southern Minnesota this last week of 2015.

A handful of us celebrated the occasion with a great ride through part the state's famed Bluff Country.

Click for a few pix.

continue reading ...

Such Great Gifts (Merry Christmas)

(12/24/2015)

Beautiful snowmobile photo by Richard Wulk.

Some gifts last a lifetime.

Here's the story of such gifts.

Merry Christmas everyone. Peace to you and your loved ones.

continue reading ...

First Ride of the Season (aka: If There's Snow, Then Go)

(12/21/2015)

First snowmobile ride of the 2015-2016 season. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

Winter arrived in parts of Minnesota last week, delivering enough snow to make tracks in the northern part of the state.

Which is exactly what I did last Friday with my friends Tom Rowland and Paul Hein. Which in turn erased all frustration and gloom that h continue reading ...


The (Amazing) Ische Collection: Q&A with Tom Ische, Arctic Cat Collector

(12/17/2015)

The Ische Collection of vintage Arctic Cat. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

In the world of Arctic Cat collecting, Tom Ische and his wife Nancy and daughter Brianna have amassed a mind-boggling array of racing and performance snowmobiles from the Arctic Enterprises era.

If Arctic Cat built a performance or racing sled between 1968 to 1981, the Isches have it. King Cats, EXTs, Puma mods, Sno Pros...they’re all here at their shop in Glencoe, Minn., most in either original unrestored or perfectly-restored condition.

I caught up with the 49-year old Cat fanatic recently at his shop, where we stared at beautiful machines and discussed how this collection came to be.

Click to see amazing passion, the most iconic musclesleds in Arctic Cat history and the story of Tom's fascination with this stuff.

continue reading ...

Waiting on Winter: Pretty Pictures

(12/9/2015)

Arctic Cat snowmobiles ad daybreak, freshly coated. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

While I'm waiting for Ma Nature to get with the program and deliver us winter, I find myself looking at pictures that capture the magic of snowmobile season.

Here are a few that work magic for me. Hope they do the same for you.

continue reading ...

TGIF: The Dec. 4, 2015 "Screamin' Scott" Edition

(12/4/2015)

Arctic Cat's Screamin' Scott Eilertson jumps for the crowd in Union Grove, WI, 1975

I'm thankful for the wild and crazy riders who emerge from every generation and do more than just push the boundaries: they completely and literally launch over and/or blow right through them.

I'm thankful for the human spirit that yearns to fly higher, farther and faster.

I'm thankful for Screamin' Scott Eilertson, Arctic Cat District Sales Manager, former racer and jumping record holder, who thrilled the 40,000 spectators at Great Lakes Raceway in Union Grove, Wis., on Labor Day weekend 1975 by launching his 1973 EXT 98 feet (and collapsing the running boards and spraining both ankles in the process).

I'm thankful the power cable didn’t clothesline him.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Dec. 4, 2015 (and that Scott is STILL a wild/crazy Arctic Cat guy)!

continue reading ...

Q&A with Brad Darling: VP-GM of Arctic Cat Snowmobiles & PG&A

(12/3/2015)

Brad Darling, Arctic Cat VP-GM of Snowmobiles. Photo by ArcticInsider.com

As the Vice President-General Manager of Arctic Cat Snowmobiles and PG&A, Brad Darling exerts enormous influence on the machines and gear we ride today, and will ride in the coming years. 

Click to read what the lifelong Arctic Cat man has to say about the company, its machines, the relationship with Yamaha and more.

continue reading ...

TGIF: The Snocross Kick-Off Edition on Nov. 27, 2015

(11/27/2015)

Jetstar Snocross Cross-Country snowmobile racer

I'm thankful that the 2015-2016 Snocross season kicks-off this weekend in Duluth, Minn.

I'm thankful that racers will come from all over the world to take a green flag and, hopefully, a checkered flag too.

I'm thankful their bearded ancestors, who raced long ago on iron dogs, were able to stand up and forge a path that would eventually lead to the rock stars and high flyers we enjoy today.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Nov. 27, 2015.

continue reading ...

You're all Turkeys (and I'm thankful for that)!

(11/26/2015)

ArcticInsider decal.

If you come to this site, then you're definitely a turkey.

And I sincerely thank you for that.

Grace and gratitude to you and yours on this fine Thanksgiving Day.

-John

continue reading ...

Winter Blows into Thief River Falls and Arctic Cat

(11/20/2015)

Snow on Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls, Nov. 19, 2015. Photo by Mandi Hibbert.

Snow on Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls, Nov. 19, 2015. Photo by Mandi Hibbert.

Winter announced itself at Arctic Cat in Thief River Falls, yesterday, blowing in with forceful winds that brought plunging temperatures and the greatest of all dessert toppings: SNOW!

The scene in TRF complements the images and reports of accumulating snow in the Rockies and Alaska that have dumped into my inbox and social media news feeds the past weeks to trigger excitement (and envy) in the Sandberg Command Center.

Seeing Arctic Cat covered in snow is ALMOST as good as it gets (the best snow is the stuff that dumps on my house and where I live).

Winter is coming to the rest of us. I can feel it.

(Special thanks to Mandi "Photographer to the Stars" Hibbert for taking and sending these shots.)

continue reading ...

Handling Upgrade: Convert your ProCross Skidframe to 2016 Specs

(11/16/2015)

New dual-rate front track shock springs for Arctic Cat snowmobiles.

Sometimes it’s the little things that produce big results.

Arctic Cat suspension engineers proved this old axiom with changes on the rear suspension of 2016 129- and 137-in. trail sleds that delivers improved cornering precision and suppler comfort over trail chop.

The upshot: it’s change(s) anyone can make on their previous model year ProCross sleds.

End the suspense by clicking for the shocking details.

continue reading ...

Happy Birthday C.J. (and thanks again for your amazing writing)!

(11/12/2015)

C.J. Ramstad drawing as it appeared in Snowmobile Magazine circa 1983.

This coming Saturday, Nov. 14, would have been C.J. Ramstad's 70th birthday, had he not died in a tragic automobile crash with his son, J.J., in May 2007.

C.J. was an outstanding writer because of his ability to capture the essence of whatever he was writing about.

This column from the Dec. 1983 issue of Snowmobile Magazine is a prime example, as he describes a snowmobile association gathering AND a snowmobiler's excitement this time of year in rich detail.

I'm leaving now with my son to go deer hunting for the weekend. I'll be thinking about life, good friends, snowmobiling and C.J.

Happy Birthday C.J.

(Click for his column.)

continue reading ...

TGIF: The Nov. 6, 2015 Edition

(11/6/2015)

Harley-Davidson converted snowmobiles.

I'm thankful that someday, far in the future, motorcycles and snowmobiles will consummate their marriage and produce the perfect hybrid.

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

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Nov. 6, 2015.

continue reading ...

Fresh Tracks: Arctic Cat Mountain R&D Test Team is Riding!

(11/5/2015)

2016 Arctic Cat M sleds on Two Top mountain on Nov. 4, 2015.

Snow has fallen and tracks are gracing the slopes of mountains in North American, signaling the start of the 2015-2016 snowmobile-riding season!

Arctic Cat R&D Mountain Test Team riders Shay Smith and Todd Tupper took this much-appreciated photo of 2016 M Series machines yesterday on Two Top Mountain, just outside of West Yellowstone, Montana.

Upwards of 24 inches of fresh provided plenty of float for decent early season riding, according to Smith and Tupper. In fact, the pair are out riding again today.

Great to see that snow is falling and people are riding. Let's cross our fingers the rest of us get a taste of winter sooner rather than later.

continue reading ...

Relaunch: Nate Ewing Preps the '95 EXT For Another Duluth Snocross

(11/2/2015)

Fan-favorite Nate Ewing and his 1995 Arctic Cat EXT snocrosser.

With just three weeks to go before the Duluth National Snocross of the season, racers and teams are busy prepping the trickest, coolest snowmobiles ever built. Once there, they’ll deliver thrilling feats of courage and talent while taming a beastly racetrack.

One racer who will be at Duluth with some SERIOUS chutzpah, is Nathan Ewing out of Big Lake, Minn.

Nate’s courage will be other-worldly, as he’ll launch with reckless abandon aboard his 1995 Arctic Cat EXT 580.

Nate’s been busy prepping his steed for the upcoming race. Jump on over to see the progress.

continue reading ...

An Arctic Cat Halloween with Optimus...Skime!?!

(10/30/2015)

Arctic Cat's Corey Friesen is now Optimus Skime.

Arctic Cat employees in Thief River Falls are celebrating Halloween today. This annual tradition always produces some excellent costumes.

And once again, senior stylist Corey Friesen avenges any evil attempts to out-do his excellent creativity by transforming himself into Optimus Prime, er, SKIME!

Yes, like the great Roger Skime, Friesen can now BE the snowmobile.

Great job, Corey!

Happy Halloween everyone.

continue reading ...

A Swedish Arctic Cat Open House Event

(10/26/2015)

Arctic Cat open house in Sweden.

The Arctic Cat Open House season is alive and well in Scandinavia!

Click to check out some sweet pix of Arctic Cat dealer NAVis and their open house in Luleå, Sweden, submitted by ArcticInsider reader (and former CatMaster technician) Erik Jönsson from

continue reading ...

TGIF: The Oct. 23, 2015 Edition

(10/23/2015)

TGIF and the ArcticInsiders are taking pot-shots at snowmobile inventors.

I'm thankful for the improved backcountry flickability offered by a vertical steering post and narrow ski stance.

I'm thankful that both the chain and studded rear wheel are mounted a long way away from any vital body parts.

I'm thankful the jackass at ArcticInsider thinks he's so funny, but has never come close to inventing his own snowmobile.

And I'm thankful it's Friday, Oct. 23, 2015.

continue reading ...
SpeedWerx Dempsey Off Road Adventures

ArcticCat

Grip N Rip Racing

Royal Sports

Blown Concepts Custom Vinyl Graphics

on Snow Magazine

US X-Country Snowmobile Racing

American Snowmobiler Magazine

Route 12 Arctic Cat

Waconia Power Sports

Thomas SnoSports

SLEDHEAD 24/7
 International Series of Champions

Road Track and Trail

SnoX365

TA Motorsports
Country Cat
SUPERTRAX International

D & D power Sports
Carver Performance Snowtech Magazine
Action Graphics