UNDATED (WJON News) -- The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is urging snowmobile riders to make safety a priority ahead of a long weekend.

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There is ample snow for riding this season and with moderate temperatures, the DNR says more people will be out riding.

It's been a deadly start to the riding season with six riders having died in crashes already. That matches the total number of fatalities from last year and there are still about 2 1/2 months to go before it ends.

The DNR says drinking and riding is involved in about 60% of fatal crashes, so don't ride impaired. Also, watch your speed and stay to the right when riding on trails. Use caution when riding on the ice and stay on marked trails.

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