14 | Snowmobile VERMONT rider could possibly enjoy maybe two hours of riding time after repairs were completed. Operators were not required to master a safety course before driving back then. Riding in the wide open fields was an exciting time outdoors in the winter for the family. Enjoying the wide open country intrigued children to travel the fields and enjoy a time of outdoor riding. The family encouraged the neighbors to come over and join in on the fun for an afternoon of sledding together in the fields. While drivers were pulling a toboggan with the snowmobile, riders would ride backwards as spotters of the sledders, who enjoyed the large snowfall amounts received back in the 1960s. The oldest siblings, Susie, Donald and Jerry, remembered how they loved driving into the deep snow drifts, which allowed for the machines to get stuck. Then all seven siblings worked together and solved the issue. The machines were so light to lift and getting stuck added to the fun of the outdoor adventure. There were no official groomers back then to lay out trails on various properties. Trails were made by riders driving over the hills and through the woods on other properties. Some adventure rides journeyed from the farm. Riding the backwoods towards the pipeline heading in the direction of Calkins in Coventry, allowed for riders to The Piette family purchased their first snowmobile while living and working on their Irasburg farm. At the age of 7, Denis Piette remembered when his parents purchased snowmobiles for the family to enjoy together back in 1968. The sport was first introduced to them by an uncle who owned a blue Sno-Jet produced in Quebec. Afternoons, before and after chores, they enjoyed pulling children with a toboggan attached to the back end of their snowmobile. This allowed for riders in the plastic sled to enjoy a fast ride and they always tried to flip kids out of the attached sled. This winter adventure grew for the entire family and they decided to purchase not one, but two sleds for the family to enjoy together. Back in the day, sleds were a mere $695. All the snowmachines manufactured during the 1960-70s era required tender loving care while operating in order to avoid a constant replacement from wear and tear to the functioning parts of the machine, which included: clutches, spark plugs, carburetors, fan belts, exhaust pipes, mufflers, bogie wheels, and the track. Marcel Piette remembers when, “the electrical system on my machine broke, while riding across Lake Memphremagog with the guys.” Even after spending six or more hours performing repairs, the machines were not built to be dependable. A Back In The Day By Nancy Piette