Weekend Adventure: Backcountry Snowmobiling

Professional Snowmobiler Heath Frisby leans into a turn on the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail System. Located in the Bridger-Teton National Forest in northwest Wyoming, the trail system is accessible from Togwotee Mountain Lodge in Moran, Wyo.

Forty miles outside Jackson, Wyo., the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail System, provides stunning views of the winter landscape of the Wyoming backcountry.

"You look around here and it's just endless hills and mountains," said Levi LaVallee, professional freestyle snowmobiler and SnoCross racer.

With annual snowfall measuring upwards of 600 inches, the trail system provides full access to the powder of the far reaches of the Bridger-Teton National Forest that are only reachable by snowmobile.

"A snowmobile's got tons of traction out here. It just stays up on the snow with the wide skis and the big track," said LaVallee. "All this amazing terrain and you can really only see this by way of a snowmobile. It would take you years to do it on foot,"

Togwotee Mountain Lodge, one of the premier snowmobiling destinations in the U.S., is the main access point to the over 600 miles of trails that make up the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail System. Along with a variety of rugged terrain, the trail system provides scenic views of the Grand Teton Mountain Range.

"The thing you get at Togwotee is you can go out and ride powder, have a leisurely ride and enjoy the scenery or you can find jumps and have a very challenging ride," said Tyler Tobin, a Jackson, Wyo., native and marketing director for SCS Unlimited, a snowmobiling and motorsports marketing company.

"And then, at the end of the day, you can just get off your sled and you're right at the lodge."

Freestylin' in the Backcountry

For "Good Morning America Weekend's" Weekend Adventure series, LaVallee, 26, and freestyle snowmobiler Heath Frisby, 25, took a break from their usual regimen of practicing acrobatic freestyle tricks to let loose in the backcountry of northwest Wyoming.

"This is really where it all started, is in the backcountry," said Frisby, the 2010 Winter X-Games gold medalist in the snowmobile best trick competition. "This is where the first guys were really documenting backcountry stuff on film, which inspired me and other freestyle guys to start their careers."

Gliding through the fresh powder, LaVallee and Frisby took in the spectacular scenery and caught some air.

For Frisby, a native of Caldwell, Idaho, and LaVallee, of Longville, Minn., this was a relaxing outing compared to their usual array of daredevil maneuvers.

"I'm usually just practicing on my SnoCross track, pounding laps, but we are out in the mountains. This is playland," said LaVallee.

Levi LaVallee's Double-Back Flip on a Snowmobile

At the 2009 Winter X-Games, LaVallee nearly completed the first ever double-back flip on a snowmobile. LaValle easily completed the two full rotations but overshot his landing.

"I got so close to making it. When I landed, I got up. Holy cow! I did two flips and I'm still in one piece. I ran to the top and started celebrating," said LaVallee.

LaVallee will compete in the Amsoil Championship SnoCross Series for the rest of the season and Frisby will be part of the Gravity Slashers Freestyle Tour.

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