DNR Q & A: What training is required to legally operate a snowmobile?

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources field staff, resource managers and the DNR Information Center staff answer many questions every day about natural resources topics. Here is one of them:

Q. With snow finally in the air, folks are getting ready to ride their snowmobiles. What training is required to legally operate a snowmobile?

A. Minnesota law requires anyone born after Dec. 31, 1976 to take a safety training course before operating a snowmobile on public lands or waters. For those 11 years old and older, there are two options. A classroom course consisting of multiple sessions followed by a hands-on riding course, or an online course that then requires a hands-on ride/review day. For those 16 years old and older, there is an independent study online course where students can complete their certification training at home.

Once they have successfully completed their courses, students are given instructions on how to receive a certificate from the DNR. Both of these courses show students the most common causes of snowmobile accidents in Minnesota, and how to avoid them. Volunteers teach classes across the state. Information regarding snowmobile certification classes can be found on the DNR website at www.mndnr.gov/safety/vehicle/snowmobile.


For more information, call the DNR information line at 296-6157 or go to the DNR Web site at www.dnr.state.mn.us.

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