Oneida County, NY (WIBX) - Thanks to new state regulations, snowmobilers can now apply for permits from the Canal Corporation to use the Canalway Trail.

Canal Corporation Director, Carmella Mantello said allowing recreational sports on the Canalway makes good economic sense but said the new regulations only apply to lands under the jurisdiction of the Canal Corporation. "Snowmobiling was prohibited on Canal lands and we're very pleased to announce over 280 miles of trails in Canal lands will now be open to snowmobile clubs and the public," she said.

To use the Canalway Trails, snowmobile clubs must  first, "obtain a resolution of support from the municipality where the Canalway Trail is located before applying for a permit from the Canal Corporation. A municipality has the option to continue the prohibition along its stretch of the trail," Mantello said.

The new regulations follow a successful pilot program on some segments of the Canalway Trail that moved the Canal Corporation Board to approve the change in 2009.  According to the report, "A snowmobile club will be required to show proof of the liability insurance that all NYSSA clubs are required to obtain through a blanket insurance policy administered by the New York State Snowmobile Association and funded by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation."

Also, the new regulations stipulates that "the snowmobile club that is issued a permit agrees to assume stewardship responsibilities for that section of the trail. This can include maintaining and improving the trail at no cost to the Canal Corporation." Mantello said, "We have found through our pilot project that the snowmobile clubs take great pride in helping maintain the trails they use, and are great partners in ensuring these trails are well groomed for the year-round activities they support."

For more information contact the New York State Canal System at 1-800-4CANAL4 or visit