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About Gullyrider

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    Hill and Gully Riders (Québec Version"

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  • Location
    Mayo, Québec
  • Snowmobile
    2012 Ski-Doo MX-Z 800
  1. Actually, it was I who had mailed it out, as I was managing the online trail pass sales for our club. I would consistently track all of our mail-outs, but was told by our post office (Buckingham, QC) that they couldn't track it past the U.S./Canada border. I only knew there was a problem when I saw his complaint on hardcoresledder. I contacted him immediately, and he went round to his post office where the pass had been waiting for a couple of weeks. Apparently, they didn't notify him that it had arrived. Anyway, like I said, we got it all sorted out. On another occasion, a fellow's pass got held up at U.S. customs, which was weird. I have to say, it's a great relief to be done with that part of the job. While I miss being in contact with so many of our members from nearby provinces and states, I don't miss the completing, mailing and tracking of trail permits. Once you get past the hundred mark, it gets a bit daunting!
  2. The funny thing was, instead of the fellow contacting us, he went on Hardcore sledder and warned everyone about the Hill & Gully taking his money and never sending him his trail permit. Trouble was ... he didn't realize that there are several clubs so named, and he blamed it on the Ontario Hill & Gully Riders! (Phew .... dodged a bullet on that one!).
  3. Rt 3 Quebec City north

    The FCMQ is transitioning from one GPS tracker company (Sentinel FM) to another (Geolocalisation). All grooming machines should be equipped with one company's unit or the other. However, during this transition, a host of problems seems to have arisen, and a lot of grooming data is simply not making its way on the FCMQ Interactive map or the phone app iMotoneige. Yesterday, we received an email from the FCMQ Director-General acknowledging these problems, and assuring us that they're working on them. Our club, the Hill and Gully Riders, was sent a new unit for our Pisten Bully and, unfortunately, its working only intermittently. We've been advised to re position the transmitter and, if that doesn't work, to return the unit and obtain a replacement. Curiously, the older transmitter in our John Deere doesn't seem to be working at all. Encouragingly, emails to the FCMQ staff member responsible are quickly returned, and I'm confident we'll get this issued shortly. In the meantime, I would encourage folks to check out clubs' websites or facebook pages.
  4. Best weather forecast

    The facebook page "Mark Sirois - Southern Québec Severe Weather Network" has been nailing it pretty good the past couple of years. He's a part-time amateur meteorologist who's become a bit of a media star because of his success rates. You can "friend" his page and judge for yourself, but I always have a gander when I light up the laptop in the morning. In our area, north of Buckingham and Thurso, the snow from a couple of days ago finally had some substance to it. My buddy on our John Deere/Gilbert even had to keep the knives up, as the snow was a bit too sticky to flow through the drag (too bad he sprung a hydraulic leak. I had to rush in by sled with a five gallon pail in order to get him back to the clubhouse). Still, a couple of days of warmth, and maybe even a bit of rain, will definitely do some good when it comes to solidifying the base. Follow that up with Saturday's announced storm, and we'll be good to go for the rest of the winter.
  5. I wouldn't stress over it. Trail patrollers are just sledders like the rest of us, and it would be unusual to find one who was such a stickler for detail that he or she wouldn't accept your temporary pass, along with an FCMQ email explaining what was happening. No one wants to see you pay twice for a trail permit ... we're just happy that people pay once! When individual clubs mailed out trail passes, I once had an American fellow whose trail pass didn't show up, even though I had mailed it within hours of having received his request. Turns out it was being held up by the U.S. Postal service, and was sitting in a post office right around the corner from his home for weeks.
  6. There is usually a "gentleman's agreement" amongst clubs that, within the Province, we restrict our club's pass sales to vendors within our jurisdictions. We also generally agree that all "out of Province" sales points are fair game. Obviously, this could sometimes lead to issues in "border" areas. Ideally, these are resolved through discussion between clubs. Furthermore, some clubs are attempting to groom extensive trail networks despite having limited access to points of sale. For instance, Les Marauders of Duhamel, whose trails our club members use extensively, have very little access to points of sale. Consequently, our two Boards of Directors have worked together to agree that at least one vendor in our "area", Laperrière Motosports, should feel free to sell trail pass/memberships (it's regrettable that people no longer refer to them as membership cards, but that's another story) for both clubs, and we don't begrudge any such sales supporting our neighbours a couple of clubs over. That the new centralized trail pass system, hopefully fully implemented next season, should alleviate a lot of these problems. The paperwork, effort and running around that this system will save already overburdened volunteers has been covered extensively elsewhere, and needs no repeating here. Ditto the $7.00 processing fee to cover off the cost of the contractors engaged to process pass sales (when we did it ourselves - or more accurately, myself - the cost to the club, including registered mailing and PayPal fees, was roughly $20.00 per pass). The new system worked splendidly for us so far this season, and will work even better next year. Ontario, which shares a similar land mass and trail network (though not a revenue distribution model) has been usually this system exclusively for four years now and, excepting a hiccup this past fall when it became overloaded as their deadline approached, it has worked out very well. It minimizes conflict, and eliminates the sale of trail passes at "illegal" discounts which is still rampant. As president of a club that has always scrupulously abided by the FCMQ regulations agreed upon by everyone at annual AGM's, I can't wait!
  7. Quebec Tries to Say Au Revoir to ‘Hi,’ and Hello to ‘Bonjour’

    Actually, although Québec is officially unilingual, the official language is French. Constitutionally, the proceedings of the legislature (known as the National Assembly) are required by law to be translated into English, as are court proceedings. However, government departments are under no such obligation. As to be expected, when they're looking for money, whether it be Revenue Québec, or the automobile licencing people, they're more than happy to provide English documentation. Health care ... not so much. Anyway, I'm a fifth generation English speaking Quebecer and, in 61 years, have never had a language problem. My bride of three years, having moved to Mayo from Ottawa, Ontario, is also pleasantly surprised at how her being a unilingual Anglophone does not present a problem whatsoever. It should be noted, however, that West Québec was initially settled by the Irish, Scots, and a smattering of Germans. Still, I've never encountered a problem no where I travelled in the Province, though many of my buddies, and myself, have a reasonable command of spoken French (you don't want to read my written stuff, though, ... Yikes!).
  8. On line trail permits

    In other news, I just received the first notification from the FCMQ regarding a direct deposit in our bank account from the sale of two trail passes. My wife (our treasurer) is ecstatic because the provincial and federal taxes have already been calculated and deducted (we eventually get them back). If it continues like this, it will save her a world of pain and misery (huge cash deposits at the bank, hours doing bookwork, etc.). There are still some teething problems, but we're really happy with this system so far ....
  9. is the trail network in jeopardy??

    Really? Well, I guess I should be using Google Translate a bit more rather than pestering our club director who also happens to be a government translator. I had heard from a few folks that Google had drastically improved that app.
  10. is the trail network in jeopardy??

    Mid Range, if that's your translation of the article, Bravo! It's very lucid and corresponds exactly to what I read in French.
  11. On line trail permits

    I know! On a few other forums, they're squealing like stuck pigs over the $7.00 shipping and handling charge (less than the cost of a large beer at my local watering hole!), but none of those whiners seemed to mind when I had to jump in the truck and drive seven miles (one way)to my local post office to ensure that they got their cards in the mail within our club's delivery target of three days. It's great not seeing any of that griping on this forum where folks value the efforts of volunteers!
  12. On line trail permits

    Actually, we come out ahead. Before, online requests through our Club's (No. 766) website (currently under re-construction) were directed to my email. I would fill out the trail pass and rush it off to the Post Office where I would pay roughly $12.00 (more if it went to the U.S.) to send it registered mail so that it could be tracked. Add to that, the roughly $7.00 that PayPal dinged us for the pre-season sale price of $315, and you're looking at a $20.00 cost, more of less, per trail pass. That $20 came out of the $180 that we got to keep per pass sold (The remaining $135 went to cover off the cost of the liability insurance and the amount retained by the federation to finance its operations). Under the new regime, we get to keep all $180 and don't have to do any of the paperwork or the running around distributing passes, gathering up passes, counting cash, trips to the bank, etc. etc.. It definitely takes a massive load of the shoulders of our beleaguered volunteers, and we're $20 to the good!
  13. Ontario to Quebec crossing via THURSO

    The magic word is "Reserve". Papineau-Labelle was considered a park at its creation in the early seventies, but was "downgraded" to reserve status to allow more varied use. I think it's only relatively recently that snowmobiling has become prohibited in actual parks. Hence the re-routing of the trails out of Parc Mont-Tremblant and into the adjacent Rouge-Mattawin Reserve. As far as the Thurso crossing goes, I happened to be at our clubhouse today when a group of Cornwall snowmobilers came through the yard, and they had all found their way across near Thurso. There was about a dozen of them so I expect they left lots of tracks!
  14. Ontario to Quebec crossing via THURSO

    I spoke with him yesterday (Thursday) and he mentioned that he had seen tracks the day before. Anyway, we're far from the only ones suffering from government intransigence ... .
  15. Ontario to Quebec crossing via THURSO

    The AMVN, who used to groom the section between Thurso and Plaisance, probably want to keep their dozer away from water crossings as much as possible. Finding someone to continually check the ice conditions is not easy either (I know ... I used to monitor the ice on the Lièvre River in Buckingham when we had one back in the day. A lot of lonely nighttime walks across the river with my chainsaw). They were working on a land route roughly following Autoroute 50, but the costs were prohibitive, and there were the usual right-of-way issues.