Excerpt from an interview with Jason Smith of Scenic Safaris.
Tell me about the type of snowmobiles you have for rent?
They are all Bombardier, a skidoo brand, and we have models that range from grand touring machines all the way up to a high performance powder machine. The easiest way to relate those is from a comfortable sedan going down the road to a super car. We have three different models. One model has the capacity of riding double and the other two versions that we have are performance machines that are for single drivers. We have 302 snowmobiles in total.
Does Scenic Safaris rent out snowmobiles that you can just take out yourselves?
Yes, we have a grand touring option that is built for two people, although we can just have one person that’s on it and they can rent that snowmobile and drive as a solo driver or they can have a passenger with them. There are handlebars, a back seat and hand warmers on all of our snowmobile machines and a thumb warmer for the throttle.
The next snowmobile option is a performance machine and middle of the road, high performance, it’s relative to a Porsche, super fast, very nimble, built for speed, built for power, built for agility. That’s the first performance machine and that one’s a 600.
Then we also have an 850, which is the creme de la creme. It’s the most power on the mountain. It’s the fastest machine. It’s like strapping yourself to a rocket and hitting the booster button. It’s super-fast. It’s extremely agile. You just think about where you want to go and it almost turns that way. It’s the most impressive machine I’ve ever seen from stock out of the box and we’ve got 50 of those performance machines for rent every single day.
Of the three machines, there’s one that’s for touring, for comfort, for driving down the trails and just getting out there in the snow. We’ve got 252 of those in our operation. Those machines are four strokes and the performance machines are two strokes so it’s a rental component. The four strokes just get returned full of fuel from a gas station and then the two strokes exactly the same they come back full from the rental. They go out full and they come back full to us.
We do a damage check to make sure that there’s no damage on the machine and we cover the oil in the machine with the rental that day so all they have to do is make sure they bring the machine back full. With a rental we give them a map. They have options for things to borrow from us, whatever that may be, boots and helmets or gloves. With the map we will figure out from the guest, what their idea of ideal rental is that day and point them in the best directions that we see fit. The rentals can start at 8:00 AM and they come back by 5:00 PM.
Are there any requirements you have to meet to be able to rent one?
18 years old and a credit card on file that we made sure is a valid credit card. They fill out the participation or the rental agreement acknowledging the do’s and don’ts of the machine in the area. Those are the big qualifications.
Do you have to have a driver’s license?
Yes. We ask that they have a driver’s license in anything they’re driving from us. Whether it’s summer or winter time, having a driver’s license from their place of origin is a must. We don’t necessarily tell them they have to pull it out and show us but sometimes we will take a photo copy for the rental component. We will take a picture of those driver’s licenses to keep on file and attached to the rental sheet.
Where can you take the snowmobiles out that you’ve rented?
I’ll start with the easy ones. If they don’t want to trailer the machine, they can rent from us in Alpine, Wyoming, at Pioneer Anglers or they can rent from us and start out a Turpin Meadow Ranch. They call our main office number for the rental reservation however far in advance, make the reservation and then they just simply come by to grab any equipment they want to borrow from us and fill out their participation agreements.
They can do that the day before and then they go up to the that location and can start from there. They can even leave and have devices that if they don’t have the opportunity to come to our office, they can fill out that same information on location with our staff. They can also borrow equipment there if they don’t want to come to our home base where everything is housed, they can do that in those locations.
The other option is if they want to rent a two place, four place or even a six place trailer from us and tow their machines wherever they want to go in the area or for multiple days they can rent those machines from our main office in town and go wherever they like as long as they have a vehicle that’s capable of towing that size trailer. They need to have a two and five sixteenths ball if they don’t have a hitch for towing we can let them borrow one.