: Hand signals
01-15-2002, 08:31 AM
Away at Old Forge this weekend with the family and I noticed some things that really ticked me off. Hand Signals I believe are a vital part of the sport. They let us know to be cautious of other riders that are coming, they also can inform us of cops and possible dangers. Several times I passed groups of snowmobilers who when I raised my fist indicating I was the last person in line they would wave violently thinking I was greeting them. I wonder how long this people pass groups until they realize that were informing them of the amount of people. I think that if your going to buy a snowmobile, the gear, drive 4 hours hauling a $2k trailer and rent a hotel, the least thing you can do is learn your hand signals. I dont know why this makes me angry but it does. Its kinda like the guy driving down the road in front of you and he doesnt use his turn signal or he fails to put his hazards on when hes driving 5 in a 35mph speed limit. Anyways safe riding and learn those hand signals
01-15-2002, 09:57 AM
The people you are referring to ARE the same ones that drive their cars 25 mph in the residential zone they live in, but 40 mph in other residential zones. They make left turns from the right lane, pass on the right and try to cut you off at the merge where the construction starts even though a sign says "right lane closed 2 miles ahead", 2 miles ahead, and almost never use turn signals. Why should someone that drives like a fu#@ing as&^ole in his car give a rats a$s about you or anyone else. These types of people need to be put in their place. A couple of weeks ago, I was in a line at the gas station (on my sled) with 3 sleds in front of me and about 10 behind me, when some jerk on a Polaris (just in case you are on this forum, you will know who you are) decided to pass everyone and start a new line to access the pumps from the other side. Any complete imbecile could have seen the line. I spoke up and told him where the line forms for fuel, and do you think ANYONE in line stepped up and said "yeah, get in line"? Not a chance. As long as we allow people to act like idiots and walk all over us, they will continue to do so, because they know they can get away with it. Everyone at that pump at that time was as wrong as the guy that "took cuts". There is no need to be rude or get violent, but Jesus H Christ, explain life to these types of people. If not for yourselves, do it for the rest of us and mankind. Oops, womankind, too.
01-15-2002, 09:58 AM
I know what you mean. *That is a pet peave of mine as well. *I hate it when you are trying to signal and the morons wave at you, all 10 of them in a row! *It seems to either be ignorance, or laziness. *What realy gets me is when you are coming around a corner and there is a guy heading your way going way to fast. *It is, how should I word this, "interesting", or "agravating" to watch them try and turn, brake, and signal at the same time, SAFELY! *Just takes a little common sense........
I share you agravation man.
01-15-2002, 10:16 AM
I think that they just don't know about them. *It is not something that is commonly know, but should be. *I have run across it too and it ticks me off too. *What do you expect, they are the same people that would put a 12 year old on a TCat as their first sled.
01-15-2002, 10:22 AM
here are the hand signals - everyone should check them out and USE THEM!!
with thanks to the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs. *Check out their site while you are there - lots of interesting stuff.
01-15-2002, 10:55 AM
Last year was the first time I rode on trails. *I thought everybody was so friendly! http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif
It took me about 1/2 a day before I realized what was happening, that the riders were signalling how many were in the group. *When I realized it I felt pretty stupid. *http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/confused.gif
Now I'm a willing participant, although because our running order always changes, half the time I still put the wrong number up.
01-15-2002, 10:56 AM
I just looked at that link and must confess that in our area, signals are vastly different. *Out here, we hold up the number of fingers for how many riders are behind us, and the last guy makes a fist.
01-15-2002, 10:56 AM
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (HOTZRT @ Jan. 15 2002, 11:16am)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I think that they just don't know about them. *It is not something that is commonly know, but should be. *I have run across it too and it ticks me off too. *What do you expect, they are the same people that would put a 12 year old on a TCat as their first sled.[/b][/quote]
I agree. *I would say most just don't know. *Last year while passing a group i looked back at my buddy who was last. *He put his hand up and waived. *When we stopped i told him about the hand signals. * He wasn't being a jerk he just didn't know. *Most people in my area also put up the number of fingers of riders to follow. *We ride very tight trails so knowing about an on-coming sled is important. *eric
01-15-2002, 10:58 AM
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (EGXCR @ Jan. 15 2002, 11:56am)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE"></span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (HOTZRT @ Jan. 15 2002, 11:16am)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I think that they just don't know about them. *It is not something that is commonly know, but should be. *I have run across it too and it ticks me off too. *What do you expect, they are the same people that would put a 12 year old on a TCat as their first sled.[/b][/quote]
I agree. *I would say most just don't know. *Last year while passing a group i looked back at my buddy who was last. *He put his hand up and waived. *When we stopped i told him about the hand signals. * He wasn't being a jerk he just didn't know. *Most people in my area also put up the number of fingers of riders to follow. *We ride very tight trails so knowing about an on-coming sled is important. *eric[/b][/quote]
Eric, we basically just said the same thing, but I guess since we ride in the same general area, it makes sense. *If you see some bozo on an orange sled wave at you... it's probably me. http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif
01-15-2002, 11:16 AM
i just looked at the link too, wow, they are a little different but still good. I don't think I would start using them though or too many people would get confused. I just had a new rider start with us this yr and luckily I did remember to tell him about the signals. I think it is actually up to us to inform new riders of this. Some people, myselft included, just don't know when they first start riding because no one informed them of it. I think we all need to hand off this info to the newbies. Keep it safe. And Ride it like you stole it.
01-15-2002, 12:07 PM
we just signal that there is a rider behind us, unless it is the last in the group, who signals such.
Holding fingers to indicate how many just isn't practical, in my opinion. *First of all, I wear mitts. *Secondly, I am more concerned with staying to my side of the trail than counting fingers.
If each rider in the group indicates some one following, that is good enough for me.
do you guys know a site that shows the hand signals used in your areas? *i am curious to see what is different.
01-15-2002, 12:08 PM
The people I ride with tend to put the fingers up of the riders remaining and the last guys closed his fist. *I used to do that until I started riding with mittens. *I couldn't figure out how to let them know there were more riders behind me. *Now that I looked at the site, I will use the signal that they suggest. *That signal is probably used because people do ride with mittens and it may be difficult for some people to tell how many fingers others are holding up. *The problem with riding locally is that many don't ride that much around here and they don't even know that there are signals. *Thanks for the link to OFSC. *It is helpful. *Anything to make the trails safer is time well spent. http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif
01-15-2002, 12:16 PM
My opinion, is that if you can, and its safe to do so, and you don't have mitts on, then it doesn't hurt to hold up fingers. *I find it nice, to know that there are 3 more coming. *But either the number, or sleds following is fine. *As long as the last in line, signals so, I'm happy.
P.S. My hand signals are getting rusty, due to lack of utilization. *I find this a safety hazard, so would someone please turn up the snow. *Just for safety sake.
01-15-2002, 12:38 PM
I have to admit that I didn't know about some of the signals on Ontario's website until a couple of years ago. My 60 year old uncle just learned about them last year. I don't recall seeing these signals listed in Wisconsin's snowmobile laws booklet. I realize it's not law that you have to use hand signals (and I don't think it should be - safety should outweigh using hand signals), but it wouldn't hurt for the states to put these in their booklets as courtesy guidelines or something like that (along with a comment on the front cover about learning the signals - since most people don't read the booklets unless they have something specific they're looking for). It would also be nice if the snowmobile manufacturers/dealers gave out a hand signal card with their products! I think I've seen these included with some bicycles.
Do the Doo
01-15-2002, 12:53 PM
In Maine we use fingers to represent the number of riders behind us but the mitt signal I was unaware of, I'll have to pass that on to a friend who wears them. In Maine last week we came across just a few with no hand signals and looked at us like we were idiots. They will be the first to hit a on coming sled in a corner not knowing the rules of the trail.
01-15-2002, 03:23 PM
Yeah, where we ride in wisconscon we signal how many are behind. *whenever i ride with mits on, i just dont bother signaling, as there was just 2 or more people in front of me that signaled how many are remaining.
the thing that REALLY gets me going is when the a$$ holes comming the other way dont turn their brights off.. GERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR. *its especially bothersome on a narow trail in a turn. morons.
01-15-2002, 03:27 PM
So, do you same guys hand signal while driving down two lane roads in your truck? Why not? The vehicle passing you at 60 mph is only four feet away.
I personally dont care how many people are in a group!
Who cares! Just do your thing and stay on YOUR side of the trail. A snowmobile has a place for two hands and that is what it is meant for. I have had some close calls because some idiot had to drive one handed to start the stupid a$$ countdown act then hit a rut.
I will admit I use them if I see a dangerous situation like a bunch of rebels taking a corner to fast or cresting a hill.
I know many of you are thinking I"am a real a$$ for saying this, but at least I got the balls to voice MY opinion. Aint america great!
01-15-2002, 10:49 PM
I ride in northern WI and the UP, most of the signals I see Are the # of fingers and a closed fist, but the official signals I believe are arm motions : arm straight out for left turn, bent at the elbow with fore arm straight up for right turn, throw left arm up in the air for danger ahead or aproaching sleds,arm lowered and downward motion for slowing down, and for you guys with mittens point your thumb back over your shoulder (several times)for sleds following
01-16-2002, 12:25 AM
I have worn mittens for the last four years, and when I pass sleds, I just hold up five to indicate that there are more sleds coming, and leave it up to the last rider to notify that the goup is finished. *One amusing thing I have seen with the coundown is when the group is riding somewhat slow and another group has caught up, and the last guy is signalling last sled, when in fact there are like 6 sleds behind him. *I always laugh to myself inside my helmet when I see a guy (or gal http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif ) put up the closed fist when there are a bunch of sleds behind them.
it really doesn't matter to me if you tell me how many sleds are behind you because I only care about when the last one goes by.
01-16-2002, 07:38 AM
The group I ride with is pretty good with hand signals, I'm not sure if they are the correct ones but it gets the point across, I think the lack of hand signals from most riders is not knowing any of them.
01-16-2002, 10:09 PM
I'm with mikadoo, it's YOUR responsibility to ride like there are always people coming, to rely on hand signals is not good. *Sometimes there are groups following other groups and stuff like that, what if you didn't see the right number of fingers, and you started givin' er and killed someone? *Would it be that other guys fault? *No. *It would be your fault, your responsibility. *I would feel terrible if I waved someone through a crossing and they got killed by something I didn't see coming. *Ride for yourself, it's your life you're protecting. *I keep my hands on the bars when I approach an oncoming rider - you never know what your ski could snag on the edge of the trail.
01-16-2002, 10:26 PM
I'll post my two cent worth. Back when I started riding we all used to wave to each other. No sense in finding out how many people were behind you. If you crashed at ten mph, you weren't looking and usually nobody got hurt. Now with the newer sleds and faster speeds everyone rides at we need somebody to tell us to slow down. I for one will not lose control when passing somebody and hitting a rut, I slow down and keep the engine speed just enough to keep moving, I am talking about 5mph here guys. The thing that cheeses me off is the guy comcing the other way like he is on a fire run. I ride fast in the woods but when I see other people coming I slow down, get the hint. I hate it when people don't even have the common courtesy to slow down when coming at you, save the rcing for the track if your so good. Not talking to anyone in particular here just running my piehole, Kevin
01-17-2002, 09:20 AM
Also why do sleds with mirrors not use them. *I am an aggressive but curtious trail rider. *I move right along and come up on many packs of which have mirrors. *I will wait for a few minutes behind a sled to see me so I can pass but lately it is like they don't see me. *20 mph on some trails is unreasonable for me. *I instruct my slower groups to pull over if someone wants to pass but lately people just leave you hanging. *After miles of idling I open the zr 800 up and make the move. *the pack usually gets pissed but I did allow time for them to notice me in their mirrors. *I figure if you took the time to put them on you should use them. *The moral of the story is check behind you if you are a slow rider. *Thanks
01-17-2002, 09:41 AM
Mikadoo..at first I didn't agree with your logic, but the more I thought about it the more it made sense. You should always be prepared for oncoming sleds. There are too many variables to use hand signals as a false sense of security. Like some of the others have mentioned, what's to stop one group from following another? You can't rely on hand signals to be safe. You have to -- wait for it --- drive defensively! Just like the old driving school teacher always said.
* * * Stay on your side of the trail and ride within your ability. Happy Trails!
*( I don't know what you are all complaining about...most of yoru trails are highways compared to ours...on some of ours...if two sleds ever met...well...lets hope somebody's got reverse... http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/tounge.gif )
01-17-2002, 05:34 PM
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (thundercatzr @ Jan. 15 2002, 1:07pm)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Holding fingers to indicate how many just isn't practical, in my opinion. *First of all, I wear mitts. *Secondly, I am more concerned with staying to my side of the trail than counting fingers.[/b][/quote]
Keep in mind that we ride on tight trails. *If one group encounters another we don't pass each other. *One group stops while the other goes bye. *So if my group is going on bye and i hold up 2 fingers they know that once 2 more peopel go bye their all set. *The last will hold up a fist to make it a definate. *
Hey jim, what are the chance we both post at the same exact time.
01-17-2002, 05:42 PM
BTW, how do guys ride w/ mittens and large gloves. *My hands slip all over the place w/ normal gloves because i don't like to clamp down on the grips. *I cannot ride w/ anything but thin, tight moto-x gloves. *My hand warmers work super so i only get cold hands for the first couple miutes. *I do keep a pair of normal gloves in my windshield bag though.
Also i understand some of you not using signals. *On open road/trail riding you can safely zoom by. *If you tried that same style where i ride you'll either A) hit a tree or B) hit me. *
01-17-2002, 05:58 PM
I use hand signals in tight areas with blind corners. *But most of the time i got my hands on the bars trying to drive. *Some of my closest calls were when i was driving single handedly. *Think about it. *For the most part your driving with both hands and then when someone is pasing you going the oposite direction you go one handed when infact thats when you need to drive your best.
What i really hate are the people that are pasing you and wont give an inch. *Here i am on the grass and there still in the middle of the trail becasue there machine sucks or they cant drive. *A$$holes.
02-14-2002, 12:37 AM
I was riding in a group near the end, one person behind me. I hold up one finger, look back to see 4 more behind me.
They had to see my lead rider without any signals.
If you are on the trails you best be watching for other riders. Hand signals are NOT always truthful.
Besides, I want to keep my hands on the bars.
I have used hand signals because it is expected of me and is supposed to be safer but, when half of the group is 10 minutes behind you, your signal gets confused anyway.
02-17-2002, 09:32 AM
Had to bring this back up since I finally got to go up north where there was snow to ride.
We rode friday and saturday in Jefferson,Twin Mountain Gorham,Lancaster and Whitefield N.H
The majority of people we met used some sort of hand signal to let us know how many in there group.
95 percent of the people we met were courteous and kept to their side of the trail.
there were some A-holes who thought they were racing on a closed track especially on the Jefferson nocth trail.One almost took me out riding around a corner on the left side of a 15 foot wide trail,good thing I was paying attention.
One thing that surprised me was we met 2 fish and game officers on a tight section of trail and they DID NOT acknowledge my signal that there was 2 machines behind me
or let us know that there were 2 of them with the second one behind the first aways back.
You would think they would try to set a good example .
But by and large most people were being courteous and safe.
02-17-2002, 02:48 PM
the whole reason for hand signals is too slow down when you are using them, you have to slow down too a safe speed for oncoming traffic. is it wise to pass oncoming traffic both directions doing 60 miles per hour on a 10 foot wide trail ? some do.
02-17-2002, 04:55 PM
I just throw up the number of riders behind me in my group. *I don't get any more fancy than that. *Whats bad is when your trying to signal 3 and all of your fingers don't bend!.... http://www.snowmobileworld.com/forums/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wow.gif oops!
02-17-2002, 05:07 PM
The one thing that I noticed on my Yellowstone trip was the futility of the effort, especially by afternoon. *The levels of experience range from those who have been sledding forever, to those who are sledding for their first time. *The experienced ones always signaled, especially in the mornings when there were few people riding. *By later in the afternoon, people were spread out everywhere and hand signals were little more than a marker to the number of people riding together. *All but a few had stopped signalling riders by then. *Trail conditions also deteriorated enough to require two handed operation by then as well due to moguls.
02-17-2002, 08:33 PM
Hand signals are good, BUT, when the person has control and it is safe to do so. *I'd rather see 2 hands on the handlebar and see a person not give signals than to take the chance and try only to lose control.
I ride with my 2 kids, I always lead and my oldest runs backdoor. *We cruise at a reasonable speed, but safe speed.
I use the thumb with the backward motion and son uses the fist. * We ride really close enough together that any on going traffic usually sees all 3 sleds.
The main thing is ride safe and in control. * Hand signals are a bonus when conditions are right
02-17-2002, 08:43 PM
*if you cannot take your hand off the bars to signal around traffic then you are going too fast.
02-17-2002, 10:46 PM
True, but have seen inexperianced riders having problems signing and they were not going that fast.