If you aren’t on the Facepage, or are, and don’t follow Team Arctic Legend, Jim Dimmerman, you should smash that Like button today! (You can thank me later)
Jim always shares his fun adventures, which often times include photos/videos of a triple-piped Sno Pro he’s fabbing, or an impeccable snowmobile restoration at Nielsen Enterprises, reunions with other snowmobile legends, and most recently, an adventure with everyone’s hero…Roger Skime.
Jim spent a few days with Roger in Skime, MN, and as he points out in his posts, we all know Roger Skime and his tie to Arctic Cat and passion for snowmobiles, but some have never seen the “Cowboy” side of him and his passion for cattle. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did! The following are Jim’s words and photos from his Facebook posts… – Kale
Stay tuned for another interesting road trip. you’ll never guess…
Most of you know Roger Skime as the chief of engineering at Arctic Cat. He has another serious passion in the form of ranching cattle! I told him during our last reunion I wanted to help him during calving season. He called me yesterday and said it was time. I’m going to spend a week with my friend and learn and help as much as I can. By the way the Legend is turning 80 in June…
I’ll be posting a few pics during my stay. I’m also working on a story about this incredible man that I’ll share at the end. I’m a lucky guy!
Here’s a few fun facts about Skime’s ranch:
He had 525 head on premises at the beginning of April. That includes 20 bulls. 219 were shipped to Iowa for finish feeding first week of April. That leaves 286 calving cows! Approximately 150 have calved now. These little guys are running around all over the place!!
This is the contraption that catches the calf and gives a safe place to give shots and tag them. I don’t have to tell you the mother is not happy about this! She’s on the outside just hollering…
Roger says, “Do you want to drive the loader today?” Hell YES! Then he asks me tonight if I want to wash it? I said, “Roger, I’m a race driver!” He says, “You WERE a driver!…The pressure washer is in the shop.”
Roger and Bernice went to Thief River for a graduation today. I’ve got Skime Ranch all to myself. I thought I’d do him a solid and wash some tractors today!
Yesterday’s accomplishments. The boss had a big smile for me when he came home last night. All clean and shiny…
Just when you think you’re out in the middle of nowhere, out pops Wes Selby to say hello! Of course, we gave him a hard time about driving Bombers. Great to see you Wes.
So, today’s adventure is starting out at a familiar place!
Our travels today brought us to Roseau, Mn and Earl’s Drive-In. Unfortunately, they didn’t open until 4 pm so I missed out on the famous Hiboy hamburger, and of course, an order of gizzards! Damn, I was really looking forward to it…this place is as famous as Polaris!! (enlarge the menu)
A couple trivia questions I asked Roger:
Why were there so many different brand snowmobile engines being used in production in the early 70’s? His answer was availability! We built 112,000 sleds in 1972. We simply couldn’t get enough engines from any single manufacture to supply our needs. We looked at just about every motor company out there, and of course Polaris was doing the same thing, so it made the problem even worse. That’s the major reason we went to Kawasaki as a supplier. They could build all the engines we wanted…
As I was traveling thru the town of Clearbrook Mn, I recalled this is where Arctic Cat had their cleated tracks produced. I remembered coming here to build cleated Sno Pro tracks for the upcoming 1978 race season.
Clearbrook is 60 miles away from Thief River Falls and it dawned on me, Why were these tracks made so far away from the plant?
I asked Roger the question, he looked at me and said “I don’t know.” I looked at him and said, “You can’t say, I don’t know.”
He grabbed his phone and called Bill Ness. (Bill was the former CEO & president of AC).
Bill answered, and on speaker phone, Roger asked him my question. Bill pondered a moment and said “Man Power.” We needed 112,000 cleated snowmobile tracks all made in one year (1972). There simply wasn’t enough available workers left in Thief River to build the tracks here. Arctic and Polaris were building sleds around the clock and consumed all the local workers. Clearbrook was the closest town with the facility and manpower to get the job done…