FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What is S.A.M.?

A: S.A.M. stands for the Snowmobile Association of Massachusetts whose charter is “Committed to Enhancing Safe Snowmobiling in Massachusetts. An overview of S.A.M.


Q: Snowmobiling in Massachusetts: A Beginners Guide

A: Snowmobiling in Massachusetts: A Beginners Guide
Are you new to snowmobiling? The beginners guide outlines what you need to know in order to snowmobile in Massachusetts.


Q: What is required to ride in Massachusetts?

A: To ride in Massachusetts, you must have a registered snowmobile in Massachusetts, and obtain a Trail Pass from a club. It has been a law since 1998. See below for age requirements.


Q: What are the age requirements to ride a snowmobile?

A: Excerpt from 323 CMR 3.00: THE USE OF RECREATION VEHICLES AND SNOW VEHICLES

(e) A person, between the ages of 10 and 14, may operate while directly supervised a snow vehicle in preparation for, or while a participant in, a sanctioned race, rally or organized event which is supervised by a person aged 18 or older and which has been authorized or approved by a municipal permitting authority.

(ii) a person under 10 years of age may operate an age and size appropriate snow vehicle while directly supervised on land on which the operator is domiciled, but in no circumstance with a stock engine capacity greater than 150 cubic centimeters,

Go to http://www.mass.gov/eea/docs/eea/ohv/materials/ohv-pamphlet.pdf to view the complete, unedited document.


Q: How do I register in Massachusetts?

A: Please refer to the Mass. State Registration website.


Q: I have a MA registration, why do I need a trail pass?

A: Snowmobilers that ride SAM club trails on private property, other than their own, must display a SAM membership decal (aka: trail pass). Memberships and trail pass decals are available through local SAM clubs. Membership and Trail Pass locations. SAM club listing.

You may ride on your own property or property that you have written permission to travel on, such as a friend’s property. However, you must carry that written permission with you at all times. The easiest way to ride the trails is to join a club and display a SAM trail pass. Support the volunteers who maintain the trails and make snowmobiling possible.


Q: What if I do not purchase a trail permit?

A: Massachusetts Environmental Police can issue you a ticket for trespassing and have the right to tow your vehicle. If you do not have a Massachusetts registration, the fines will be significantly more.


Q: Where do I get a trail pass?

A: You can purchase membership trail permits through your local club or directly on the SAM website. Membership in a SAM affiliated club is necessary to purchase a membership trail pass. A list of Trail Pass purchase locations can be found HERE.


Q: Can I get a replacement trail pass?

A: There are cases where you can get a replacement trail pass if a decal falls off or you purchase a different snowmobile. You can read the policy and procedure here.


Q: Where can I get Massachusetts Trail Map?

A: You may purchase a paper Massachusetts trail map through your local club. Many stores that sell trail passes also have maps. Please do NOT contact the SAM office for maps. Click here for links to the map app for iPhone and Android.


Q: Why don't you post local and MA trail maps?

A: Trails do not magically appear when it snows. Local clubs spend countless hours and a large sum of money on the trail systems each year and depend on private funding to survive (your membership). The State of Massachusetts returns zero ($0.00) dollars to SAM. Join a club, support local snowmobiling and then ask the club for a map.


Q: Can I rent a sled in MA?

A: There are no known rental companies in Massachusetts.


Q: Can you share the registration requirements as they relate to sales tax?

A: Our understanding is as follows:

  • MA resident/MA sales tax
  • MA resident/proof you paid sales tax to another state
  • Resident will be required to pay any differential if initial tax paid is less than 6.25%.

Q: What if I have out of state resident/proof of paid sales tax to another state?

A: If the snowmobile is brought into the state within six months of purchase, non-resident will be required to pay any differential if initial tax paid is less than 6.25%.

GRAY area: MA resident/property owner in NH (where sleds reside); do not pay sales tax when registering in MA provided the sleds have been registered for at least 6 months or more in that state. This is correct unless the snowmobile was originally acquired from a MA dealer or resident.


Q: Can you clarify this as well as any other gray areas relating to state sales tax and our neighboring states?

A: More detailed questions may be directed to DOR customer service at 617-887-6367 or 800-392-6089.


Other links

A general overview regarding sales tax and registering can be found on the DOR website: (featured topics) sales & use tax for individuals, (what you need to know) sales and use tax on boats, recreational off-highway vehicles, and snowmobiles.

Massachusetts Vintage Snowmobile Registration

Q&A: Snowmobile Association of Massachusetts

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