LEAVENWORTH - Youngsters who want to learn how to safely operate a snowmobile will have the opportunity to do so for free next month.

The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office has partnered with the Washington State Parks & Recreation Commission and the Lake Wenatchee Recreation Club to offer a no-cost snowmobile safety certification course on Saturday, Dec. 8.

The class is geared toward new riders from ages 12 to 16, but is open to all fledgling snowmobilers.

The course will take place at the Lake Wenatchee Recreation Club, 14400 Chiwawa Loop Rd., in Leavenworth from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., with lunch provided by its organizers.

According to a release from the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office, the key to a safe snowmobiling experience is centered around the operator’s knowledge, capabilities, limitations and understanding of the machine.

The statement also indicated that all snowmobile riders should be aware of the weather forecast and current trail conditions and always respect the safety of other winter sports enthusiasts, as well as local wildlife and the environment.

The snowmobile safety course training includes:

  • Basic snowmobile maintenance.
  • Survival skills and dealing with emergencies, including avalanche awareness.
  • The proper clothing and equipment for winter weather.
  • Hand signals while riding and other basic skills.
  • Properly preparing for a ride.
  • Riding skills test. 

Anyone interested in participating must sign up by the Dec. 6 deadline, and the signature of a parent or guardian is required for anyone under the age of 18 who will be taking the class.

For more information or to register, contact Deputy Rich Magnussen with the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office at 509-667-6508 or email .

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