The 54th annual Hay Days Grass Drags and Swap Meet has come and gone. It featured a huge crowd, record speeds, a monstrous swap meet and great times for all. As much as anything, it allowed snowmobilers to get together and celebrate the run-up to another winter of riding. No one pictorial can possibly reflect all of the fun and interesting things that happened, but here are a few of the images we captured at the September 11-12 event held just east of North Branch, Minnesota.
Hay Days is a great place to see the new sleds, and get your questions answers by the people who helped develop them.
It’s also a great place to get your questions answered about old sleds, and old helmets… kind of.
Exotic drag sleds are a big draw at Hay Days, including this Pro Xtreme 55 winning mod driven by Scott Kostman. The top speed of the weekend (and, top speed ever on grass!) went to Chris Baynes, who went from 0 to 158.53 seconds in 500 feet in 3.46595 seconds!!
That just isn’t any girl in a bikini who’s about to hit the cold water: That’s Ski-Doo Ambassador Stephanie Dean. She and other ambassadors were good enough sports to spend time in the dunk tank at the Ski-Doo booth.
The Arctic Cat booth always has big news and draws a crowd at Haydays.
Notice the sled under the cover on the right? It’s covered for a reason: This was about an hour or so before it was officially announced that snocross champion Elias Ishoel would be part of the Thene Racing team for 2022, so his sled was still being kept under wraps.
Many folks come to Hay Days looking for riding gear, and plenty was sold on the grounds, but it was in shorter supply this year due to shipping issues that made 2022 gear rather scarce.
Normally a dusty hood from a touring sled wouldn’t drawn our attention, but that Y57 has us thinking it was once on an engineering development snowmobile?
As much as anything, Hay Days is always a reunion among snowmobilers. These guys didn’t make it 20 feet inside the gate before they ran into an old friend.
Performance parts are always an attraction for hard-core sledheads.
One of the most inspirational moments we saw at Haydays is when Raycer Frank (seated here) took a few steps on the stage. He sufered a very serious spinal cord injury 17 months ago but he’s getting stronger every day.
A new oil, believe it or not, made a buzz at Hay Days. The Polaris Vintage 2-Stroke Snowmobile Oil is specifically aimed at pre-exhaust-valve sleds, but the cool, retro packaging probably attracted as many folks as what was inside the bottle.
This Ladies Of The 80s performer was doing an excellent impersonation of Stevie Nicks while kicking out some Fleetwood Mac tunes to entertain the crowd.
Bob Menne (right), the new executive director of the Iron Dog, presented a certificate to Steve and Char Houle for one entry to the Iron Dog race in 2023. It will be auctioned off to benefit the Hunter Houle Foundation.
We don’t know how many Lynx snowmobiles are out in the market in North America right now, but it seems every one that is over here was at Hay Days somewhere!
UTV racing was back at Hay Days and had an impressive crowd late on Sunday afternoon.
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