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Ski the Legend - The Minnesota Finlandia, Feb 17, 2018

Trail Reports

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Bearskin Lodge

Bearskin Lodge is located 26 miles up the Gunflint Trail on the edge of East Bearskin Lake amongst the pristine wilderness of the Minnesota's Northwoods. Cabins and lodge suites available, with direct access to the Central Gunflint trail system.

Reports: 95  
Seeking New Trail Reports for: Pine Valley, Giants Ridge, Hidden Valley.

Minnesota Northeast


      Duluth area [ forecast/conditions ]
    • Jan 16 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      First time out this season at Lester Park ski trails. Sunny skies, 12F and classic trails groomed to perfection this morning. Best snow conditions in my 30 years skiing these trails; no ice covered sections! Solid pole plant, nice corduroy in the skating lane. Thanks to the groomer for making this an exceptional ski afternoon!
      (Johan Bakken)
    • Jan 16 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Good skis ]

      Freshly groomed. I didn't ski to the pavilion (started at the first bridge on 7 Bridges Road), so I can't vouch for that bit of trail, but the rest of the system has good coverage throughout. Skate lane still a bit soft.
      (Catherine Winter)
    • Jan 16 - Snowflake Nordic Ski Center (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Skied Snowflake just after noon today, not a cloud in the sky, just a bit of wind. Groomers were out while I was there, they were setting track on the 10 K, the skate lanes on the 10 had been groomed already. The 5 K had perfect skate lanes and classic track. The 2 inches of snow in the last 2 days was still a little slow and soft at 5 F, but quite a bit faster than last week's wind-blown stuff at 10 below. I saw nothing to prevent the use of best skis. Fast Wax teal paste gave decent glide and a very old hunk of Swix special green gave plenty of kick.
      Photos:  
      (Tim Holst)
    • Jan 16 - Bagley Nature Area (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Solid and consistent track! Classic only as usual. Should have some nice glide! I saw a big snowy owl in the middle of the trail this morning, she was munching on a vole. Maybe take a ski at dusk and be on the watch!
      (Max Lemp)
    • Jan 15 - Magney-Snively Trail (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      The trails at Magney got groomed a few days ago. Since then, the trails have received 3 inches of new snow. So the tracks were skied in alright, but there was still a lot of powder out there today. Most of the dirt spots got covered with the new powder. I think you should still take the B skis, because the few dirt spots and rocks that were exposed a few days ago are barely covered now. But only a handful of small spots.
      (Joe Gerard)
    • Jan 15 - Boulder Lake Management Area Ski Trails (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ B skis ]

      Classic tracks set and groomed today about 1 pm. Nine Pine in good condition with some grass and small sticks in places. Skate lane in better condition. Lonesome Grouse real nice. A great day to be outside!
      (Wendy Johnson)
    • Jan 15 - Erkki Harju Ski Trail (Two Harbors): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Skied after recent snow. Trails recently groomed. Groomed for classic and skate. Good condition and nice.
      (Jim Brych)
    • Jan 15 - Korkki Nordic (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]

      I always hate turning in reports on Korkki. The place is so awesome I'd like to keep it a secret. The new snow was not groomed but the skied in track was just fine even with narrow race skis. No debris in the trail which was impressive given the wind. Also , the 2 "hard" bypasses were closed. A sign posted says they are closed for a race Tuesday. Skip out of work early on Wednesday and go for a ski!
      Photos:  
      (Ben Fornear)
    • Jan 14 - Jay Cooke State Park (Carlton): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      The trails south of the Swinging Bridge had good cover, but were not groomed. The snow was crust with some drifting by the Leimer Road gate.
      Photos:  
      (Tyler Henkels)
    • Jan 14 - Korkki Nordic (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]

      Well set, fast classic tracks through the forest. Couldn't ask for better conditions. Skied the 7K loop and found the single track an absolute delight of short down and up on an undulating course through the backcountry.
      (Patrick Bryan)
    • Jan 14 - Gooseberry Falls State Park (Two Harbors): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Beautiful trail groomed nicely and fresh snow. Can't get any better! Skied the Eastern Hills and stopped at the shelter briefly. Wonderful view of the hills to the north. My ski tracks were already filled in on the way back. This trail is a gem!
      Photos:  
      (Peggy Stone)
    • Jan 13 - Magney-Snively Trail (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Best terrain in Duluth. Classic tracks excellent. Go get your long ski in at Spirit and Magney. Hard track set up nice.
      (Peder Morse)
    • Jan 13 - Spirit Mountain (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Sweet classic track Tar 5. Get your long ski in out there! Connect to Magney open and again sweet tracks.
      (Peder Morse)
    • Jan 13 - Korkki Nordic (Duluth): 
      Firsthand Secondhand Scheduling 
      [ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]

      The Marshall Nordic Team had practice at Korkki today. Mark had groomed the biathlon loop and the classic trail out to the 6k cutoff and back, The skiing was very good thanks to all of the shoveling that Mark did before the snow on Saturday. There are a couple of thin spots but overall it is great. After skiing, the team enjoyed two different crockpots of chili, one of beef stew and on of beet soup. It was the perfect way to end a great practice. Also Mark would like the skiing world to know that the course will be open on Sunday and Monday. He will groom for the high school race Monday evening, so that the skiers will have the best course possible on Tuesday.
      (Dave Johnson)
    • Jan 13 - Erkki Harju Ski Trail (Two Harbors): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Good skis ]

      Conditions much improved secondary to 4" new snow. No bare spots or debris. Course is soft and with the cold the course skied slow. Classic tracks set but propensity for classic skiers to ski in middle of skate trails created numerous ruts in the soft base which makes skating the course challenging at times as the skate course is narrow in many areas and impedes gliding.
      (Tom Berscheid)
    • Jan 13 - Boulder Lake Management Area Ski Trails (Duluth): 
      Firsthand Grooming 
      [ B skis ]

      Second course update: After scoping the course earlier today we headed out for some productive shoveling. Added quite a bit to the thin areas which were mostly on the first 2km, and the S curve of Nine Pine. This will make the course much better with basically a handful of spots to watch for instead now. Groomer heading out tonight to do some light grooming. Expecting pretty decent conditions for the race at 11:00 tomorrow.
      Photos:  
      (Clayton Keim, RollerSkiShop.com)
    • Jan 13 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      The entire Lester system is open and groomed. It was in great shape, with just two notable thin spots, one on the uphill leading out of the park at the bottom and one on in the tracks on the downhill near the bottom. Both are easily avoided. There was plenty of snow on the rest of the trails and the grooming was done well, with good tracks and corduroy.
      (Adam Schwartz-Lowe)
    • Jan 13 - Boulder Lake Management Area Ski Trails (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ B skis ]

      Skied 1/2 of Blue Ox before calling it quits. Clearcutting has created wind blown spots on trail. Didn't notice any rocks. Bare spots easy to avoid.
      (Steven Pitschka)
    • Jan 13 - Boulder Lake Management Area Ski Trails (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      Course update for Boulder Lake Ski Races: Skied the 11km race loop, and counted about 2 dozen thin spots. Most are in first 2 km. Some of the pics are showing the bad ones. Heading out to shovel today and groomer will do light grooming tonight. Some snow forecasted to start at 10:00 am tomorrow. With the bad spots, you could probably avoid them if paying attention, but to be safe we suggest B skis unless we get an inch of new snow before race start. Measured about 8" in the woods. No classic track set.
      Photos:  
      (Clayton Keim, RollerSkiShop.com)
    • Jan 12 - Pine Valley (Cloquet): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Skied the lighted loop after dark. First time on these trails so I cautiously used my b skis, but could have easily gone good skis. Awesome trails and good grooming. Fairly close to the freeway too if you are looking for a quick pit stop on your way north.
      (John Leaf)
    • Jan 12 - Bagley Nature Area (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Bagley was in great condition Friday. The tracks were set in the morning and had only been skied on a couple times by evening (when I got on them). There were no bare spots and the tracks were immaculately cut. The practice loop itself wasn't groomed yet, but there are 1.7 miles total in good shape.
      (Adam Schwartz-Lowe)
    • Jan 12 - Hartley Park (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      The trails were great. We started skiing at 4:15 pm. The sunset was pretty on the trees and we could see Hartley Knob. There was one part where there were some pine needles and dirt in the snow. We started from the Hartley Rd. trailhead. The tracks were good, too.
      (Ava Schapman)
    • Jan 12 - Korkki Nordic (Duluth): 
      Grooming Scheduling 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      I am relieved to say we are a go for the High School race and better yet we are now open. Please get the word out that we now have 6 KM tracked and Dorothy's loop and the Biathlon skate loop are groomed as well. I have opened the trail to the public for the weekend. However, it will be closed Monday / Tuesday for preparations and for race day. I should have the back 3 KM open by the following weekend. I used the new light track setter....money well spent. The parking lots are plowed, two Biffie's have arrived, and I have three volunteers to help park buses. There is a chance for moderate snow on Sunday. If that happens it will only make things better.
      (Mark Helmer)
    • Jan 12 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Trails freshly groomed. It was nice to finally have intact classic tracks. Trails were soft, but as excepted. I suspect that overnight the trails will set nicely. Some portions of the skate deck are uneven, but generally well covered. Unfortunately, fat bikes had been on the ski trails and left some ruts in the skate deck.
      Photos:  
      (Tera Hasbargen)
    • Jan 12 - Snowflake Nordic Ski Center (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      All trails groomed for skating, and classic track set. This will be a busy weekend, with us hosting the Winter Trails ski demo on Saturday, a Biathlon meet on Sunday morning, and Kidski in the afternoon, but the trails are nice, and once you get away from the trailheads there is plenty of room. Bundle-up and enjoy the new snow.
      (John Graham, Snowflake Nordic Center)
    • Jan 12 - Mother Bear Ski Trail (Brimson): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Trail is in mostly good condition, with the exception of a few areas where there is some grass and debris sticking up. We only have about 7" of snow on the ground, less under the heavier tree cover. Trail is groomed.
      Photos:  
      (Al Ringer)
    • Jan 12 - Chester Bowl (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Chester groomed, no tracks set. All trails are in good shape. Use caution as some areas have an icy layer under this new snow.
      (Andy Holak)
    • Jan 12 - Magney-Snively Trail (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Magney groomed, tracks set. All trails are in good shape. Use caution as some areas have an icy layer under this new snow.
      (Andy Holak)
    • Jan 12 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Lester groomed, tracks set. All trails are in good shape. Use caution as some areas have an icy layer under this new snow. Five lights are out at Lester. We are working to get them fixed. In the meantime there may be a few dark spots.
      (Andy Holak)
    • Jan 12 - Piedmont Trail (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Piedmont groomed, tracks set. All trails are in good shape. Use caution as some areas have an icy layer under this new snow.
      (Andy Holak)
    • Jan 12 - Erkki Harju Ski Trail (Two Harbors): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      The trails are freshly groomed after the recent snowfall - trails appear to be in great shape. All trails groomed for skating and classic. The lights are not working, hoping to have them fixed soon.
      (John Cron)
    • Jan 12 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Secondhand 

      The City rolled/tracked Lester early this morning!
      (Annalisa Peterson)
    • Jan 12 - Bagley Nature Area (Duluth): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      It's looking good out there today folks! Both loops groomed this morning have solid classic track laid, with thin spots popping up in a couple places. The tracks should be set up nicely with the low temps, so get out and enjoy them!
      (Donavon Catton)
    • Jan 11 - Boulder Lake Management Area Ski Trails (Duluth): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: Most ]

      Groomer out on ski course with the Sherpa pulling the compaction drag and Tidd-Tech behind. Getting ready for the race on Sunday. 1/2" of new snow as of 8:00 am with several more inches forecast to fall today. Registration closes online Saturday evening with morning of registration also an option at a higher price.
      Photos:  
      (Clayton Keim, RollerSkiShop.com)
    • Jan 10 - Lester Park (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      Skied 5k lighted loop (A, -E + down through lowest loop). Bare spots periodically, especially the steep climb out of the park. Trail is packed and a bit slick... hoping for fresh snow today before cold returns!
      (Aaron Miatke)
    • Jan 9 - Boulder Lake Management Area Ski Trails (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      Skied the trails for Sunday's skate race picking sticks off and shoveling the usual problem areas. Not groomed yet, but talking to the groomer this morning he's waiting for the snow to fall before heading out to groom, so stay tuned for grooming updates. Measured 6" on the trails and the lake crossing. Bear Paw was skated in, and the Blue Ox and Nine Pine had a track skied in.
      Photos:  
      (Clayton Keim, RollerSkiShop.com)
    • Jan 8 - Snowflake Nordic Ski Center (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Good skis ]

      Fast skate deck today. Stayed on the 5k loop which has 99.9% full coverage. Don't hesitate to pull out the fast skis!
      (Paul Haberle)
    • Jan 7 - Spirit Mountain (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      As usual, the campground loop is in great shape, no rocks, solid classic track. Once you venture out further expect to find very twiggy and bumpy trails with an occasional rock popping through. I skied the 3k and most of the 10k, and the 3k was generally much more even with less obstacles poking through. I would say most of the trail system is on the edge of B skis and rock skis. Unless you want to do endless loops of the campground, I would venture elsewhere.
      (Erik Haaversen)
    • Jan 7 - Piedmont Trail (Duluth): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      The trails were very nice. A lot of people were out. The weather was nice and warm. The tracks were pretty good, but you could tell a lot of people had been using them. The signs they have are fun to read.
      (Ava Schapman)
    • Jan 7 - Jay Cooke State Park (Carlton): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      We skied the ccc loops and enjoyed a decent track for most of the trail. A few spots under the pines with a tiny amount of dirt or a root poking through. Very avoidable and shouldn't keep you away.
      Photos:  
      (Ben Fornear)
    • Jan 6 - Pine Valley (Cloquet): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Cold crisp morning with trails to myself. Base is good throughout. Lots of debris on trail near start but better as you get out on the trails. A few thin spots easily avoided. No tracks.
      (John Jereczek)
      Northshore/Gunflint area [ forecast/conditions ]
    • Jan 16 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Beautiful classic skiing today! 8" of new snow was groomed with the PB and conditions are excellent - best classic ski of the year so far! All trails are open and groomed for skate and classic. Should be great skiing this week with warming temps.
      (Timothy Lederle)
    • Jan 16 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Base 6-10 inches, new snow 6-8 inches. Full-system groom done Monday night with PB compacting and combing. New track set after right-edge snomo-compact to correct for soft pole-plants reported last week. NW winds today may cause drifting in exposed areas. Conditions are very good.
      Photos:  
      (Bob Nesheim, Pincushion Trails Inn)
    • Jan 15 - Northwoods Ski Trail (Silver Bay): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Good skis ]

      Winter wonderland in the fresh snow. Last grooming probably Friday or Saturday (after the previous snowfall), but two other skiers had been out before me. On the trails they had been on, the tracks were excellent. On the other trails, the new powder over the old base and track was beautiful and made for a bit more work (but still excellent). Back at the trail head, at least two more vehicles, so things should be quite nice. Also, the Bean Lake trail was groomed as part of the most recent grooming. The trail is much improved although one will encounter a few bumps and trail stubble (worth it for the view).
      (Erik Larson)
    • Jan 15 - Sugarbush Trail System (Tofte): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Skied the length of the onion river road along with part of the picnic loop from l to m. Lots of fresh powder that had already been groomed at some point during the snow fall. Easily good skis on all the trails we skied and likely all others after the new snow. More snow was beginning to fall as we drove back down the shore. Worth the trip.
      Photos:  
      (John Leaf)
    • Jan 15 - Sugarbush Trail System (Tofte): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]

      Skied from Oberg lot out Picnic trail, but followed the fresh rolled powder on the connector from N to P, then return to the full Onion River back. Groomer was out rolling the ~3" of powder that fell yesterday (thanks sir!). The deck was soft, slow, and smoother than velvet! So much nicer than over near Britton Peak area. I'll be back, should set up super well tomorrow.
      Photos:  
      (Michael Kosloski)
    • Jan 14 - Sugarbush Trail System (Tofte): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      Skied from Britton Peak to Oberg via Picnic and back on connector and lower Homestead. Picnic and connector (L to J) were good corduroy and just a bit of debris and stubble. Hogback, lower Homestead, and the trails near Britton had an inch or two of powder and were quite bumpy/unlevel with some annoying stubble. It was difficult to skate naturally on those sections. Snow was very slow everywhere. Recommend starting at Oberg lot for best trail conditions.
      (Michael Kosloski)
    • Jan 14 - Northwoods Ski Trail (Silver Bay): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      We had a beautiful ski on this terrific trail just minutes from Silver Bay. The narrow classic only track was nicely set, and it was snowing, which made it just lovely. We skied the outside loop up the big hill. The downside is that the trail managers have chosen not to adequately sign this trail. Be sure to pick up a map before you start at the trail start and be attentive. Even as a local who skis this trail often, it can be confusing.
      (Alice Tibbetts)
    • Jan 14 - Central Gunflint Trail System (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Skied beaver dam and summer road. Snow starting to fill in tracks at around 2pm but beautiful scenery and great control on the downhills.
      Photos:  
      (Matt Sargent)
    • Jan 14 - Norpine (Deeryard/Lutsen) (Lutsen): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Rock skis ]

      Skied from cascade to the solbakken trails, looped the hall loop and back. Cascade connected had not been groomed in since the last snow, hall loop had. Generally good coverage, but plenty of thin spots to navigate. The snow currently falling and a fresh groom will likely solve most of the coverage issues. In terms of scenery, these trails are fantastic. Awesome to be skiing through the spruce and cedar stands.
      (John Leaf)
    • Jan 14 - Banadad Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]

      Snow on the Ground: 19", Compacted Base on the Trail: 15", New Snow Past 24 Hours: 4", New Snow Past 7 Days: 8". Tracked Trail: 29.2 kilometers- Banadad Tracked east end to mid trail; Lace Lake, Tall Pines and Knapp trail tracked.
      (Ted Young, Poplar Creek B&B, Cabins and Yurts)
    • Jan 13 - Northwoods Ski Trail (Silver Bay): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      The full connector trail from Northwoods to Tettegouche is groomed for classic. The snow and grooming on the connector is very good, but it had not been well mowed prior to the snow.
      (Brad Anderson)
    • Jan 13 - Central Gunflint Trail System (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Great conditions on the trails near Bearskin! Skied Summer Home Rd and Poplar Ck. Tracks deep and firm. Great kick with rex green.
      Photos:  
      (Matt Sargent)
    • Jan 13 - Central Gunflint Trail System (Grand Marais): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Received 5 inches of new snow on the 11th of January. Everything was re-groomed the following day (70km of trails open). Ski trails are in excellent shape. Trail base is averaging 5 to 8 inches in depth. Awesome conditions and skiing.
      (Zach Baumann)
    • Jan 12 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Base 6-7 inches, new snow 3 inches. Cap'n Charlie braved the bitter Friday night with the PB, all trails compacted and combed and new classic track set. Classic and skating deck set-up nicely in the cold with thin areas improved. Conditions are good, with more new snow anticipated on Sunday.
      Photos:  
      (Bob Nesheim, Pincushion Trails Inn)
    • Jan 9 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      I skied most of the trails in the eastern two thirds of the system. Overall, conditions were great. Good coverage throughout the system. There were some segments in which the classic track was groomed a bit far to the outside, leading to segments with soft outer (right) pole plants and a few really short segments with the right track lower than the left track.
      (Erik Larson)
    • Jan 8 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Skied the entire system and coverage was excellent, skate deck was a little soft from drifting that recent high winds caused last night. Only problem was fat bike ruts on the Pincushion loop which made the skate lane difficult to skate smoothly. I sure wish these bikers would stay off the ski trails and use their own trails in the Pincushion system. This is the second day in row and the second trail system on the north shore where a portion of my ski has been made more difficult by fat bike tracks down the middle of the skate lane.
      (Tim Nelson)
    • Jan 8 - Sugarbush Trail System (Tofte): 
      Firsthand 
      [ B skis ]

      Skied from Oberg trailhead. Onion River Road and all of the western part of Oberg loop other than the hill from M to X had been freshly groomed. Other trails that had not been re-groomed were still nice--a light coating of snow on top of the well-groomed base. The classic tracks are in great shape with the except of a few short segments with some dirt poking through, which are easy enough to stride around. The skate lane looked great. I did notice that the gate at X for the eastern part of the Oberg loop was closed.
      (Erik Larson)
    • Jan 7 - Northwoods Ski Trail (Silver Bay): 
      Firsthand 
      [ B skis ]

      The trail system is groomed for classic only and the tracks are well defined. Only a few short segments where the snow is thin, but there's typically enough base to ski around. The 1.4 km segment to Bean Lake doesn't look to have been machine groomed, but skiers have tracked the trail down to the lake. The tracks on the Bean Lake trail were well defined, although the snow was a bit uneven. All other parts of the system had a nice base--and was fortunate enough to have an owl fly overhead as I was coasting down one of the scenic hills.
      Photos:  
      (Erik Larson)
    • Jan 7 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Grooming Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Rock skis ]

      Base: 6 inches, new snow 2-4 inches -- less on Pincushion Mountain, higher amounts on North Advanced and Lynn's Loop. Stadium area is windblown and scoured with minimal snow. All trails in the system were Pisten Bully and then Ginzu groomed by sunrise today, compacted and with new classic tracks. Trail conditions overall are very good, although not enough snow for more serious conditioning by grading and tilling. Some new snow came later today. Reports from both recreational and in-training skiers were favorable through mid-afternoon.
      (Bob Nesheim, Pincushion Trails Inn)
    • Jan 7 - Sugarbush Trail System (Tofte): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      Skied from Oberg trailhead up the road, over to the Picnic ridge and back on Hogback, Homestead, and the connector. New snow from Saturday night of 1.5 to 2" blanketed the trail and made for smooth skating. Only one other skater was out made it to the high point and turned around so I had virgin snow for the second half of the picnic trail. It was sweet. No dirt, no scary undulations, no stubble on the ridge. Hogback was a bit rolly and the downhill was exciting. Homestead was a bit torn up by a fat bike or two which was quite disappointing to see as this is supposed to be ski only trail and is signed that way. But coverage was good and the trail was smoother than I expected. The connector new snow was less and there was stubble and debris but no dirt. When I got back to Oberg there was evidence that the groomer was out working his magic.
      (Tim Nelson)
    • Jan 7 - Pincushion Mountain Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Beautiful conditions at Pincushion today! Kudos to the groomers! Comfy temps. Skied Ole's, Hilfiker, Outer Advanced Loop.
      Photos:  
      (Tully Hall)
    • Jan 6 - Central Gunflint Trail System (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Warmed up to zero and above, great conditions on the trails near Bearskin Lodge. We did Bearcup Loop, Red pine, a few others.
      (Tully Hall)
    • Jan 6 - Banadad Trail (Grand Marais): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      Skied from the east end (Ollie) trailhead to the west end (Upper Gunflint). The entire trail is groomed and tracked for classic. It has not been seeing much (human) use: since the last grooming (about a week ago?), there were few signs of any skier activity after the first 3km. There were, however, ample animal tracks (and the moose seemed to enjoy walking along the trail to find a tree for rubbing). Over the distance of the trail, I saw only one rock visible in the trail--on the west side of Beaver Dam Gully if I have the bearings correct. (Easily avoided for those travelling west, as it was on an uphill. Perhaps a bit more of a problem for eastbound traffic.) The only other real difficulty was an icy section after Dawkins Creek--again, for those heading west, it was perhaps less of an issue (as it was on an uphill). Those who are cautious could get by with their best skis.
      Tracks were well-formed and easy to follow. In more open areas, there was some drifting from the wind.
      (Erik Larson)
    • Jan 6 - Norpine (Deeryard/Lutsen) (Lutsen): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      Skied the Deeryard loop including Fire Tower and Short Loop. Tall raspberry stems that weren't mowed this fall continue to be a hindrance on the lakeside of the loop and are really bad on the Short loop. The tracks are on the shallow side, but are quite functional with a dusty of new snow this afternoon. Fire tower was in the best condition as was rest of the loop away from the lake. The Short loop was bumpy and full of tall stubble that made the downhills a bit scary. I would avoid it unless you are skilled downhiller and can hang in the tracks to go over and thru the stubble. Snowplowing would not work! Was an exciting run!
      (Tim Nelson)
      Iron Range area [ forecast/conditions ]
    • Jan 16 - Sugar Hills (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Packed and combed skate lane on all trails, set new classic track on Thunders, East loop and most of Rajala trails. Classic tracks in remaining portion of system in pretty good shape from last grooming.
      (Tony Carter)
    • Jan 15 - Mount Itasca (Coleraine): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Trails are in great shape after 8" new snow during the past week and two rounds of grooming, the most recent of which was January 14. Users are requested to pay the daily fee of $6 or a season fee of $60 to support early season snowmaking and Pistenbully grooming on the biathlon portion of the trails. The rest are Grant-in-Aid trails, which require a Minnesota ski pass.
      Photos:  
      (Bob Conzemius)
    • Jan 13 - River Road Unit Trails (Grand Rapids): 
      Observation 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Again disappointing that parking lot not plowed and no grooming done by DNR on this scenic trail just south of GR. No skiers had broken trail although many were out on the other non-groomed trails at Cowhorn on this sunny above zero afternoon.
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 13 - Cowhorn Lake (Grand Rapids): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Beautiful snow, but not groomed. Parking lot not plowed. Nevertheless, skiers were skiing in tracks and enjoying the above zero (barely) temps mid-afternoon.
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 13 - Amen Lake (Grand Rapids): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      What a gem! Trails were freshly groomed and snow was hanging from all the trees. Cold and slower glide, but ran all the trails at Amen Lake system and connected into the lower portion of Suomi system, which was also spectacular.
      (Steve Kramer)
    • Jan 13 - Trout Lake Recreation Area (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Trail packed yesterday and track set today. The trail is in good shape and should set up great tonight for excellent skiing.
      (Greg Moritko)
    • Jan 12 - Blueberry Hills (Deer River): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Packed, groomed and set classic track on Lake Loop, Tower and prelude trails, they are in good shape! All trails open, A skis will be fine.
      Photos:  
      (Ryan Gunderson)
    • Jan 12 - Big Aspen Recreation Area (Virginia): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: Most, Good skis ]

      Rolled, groomed and tracked on Friday. Covered from intersections 1 thru 22. Good base from earlier snows (4") and now 6 to 8" of new snow. Grooming plans: Intersections 22 thru 28 not groomed, but plan to week of Jan. 16th.
      (Mark Toot)
    • Jan 12 - Sugar Hills (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      Packed and tracked all trails except for Long Lake and Snag loops. We will hit those tomorrow afternoon when the temps rise a little.
      (Tony Carter)
    • Jan 12 - Legion Trails (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      All groomed and set track this morning. The track looks great. There were a few spots where I pulled a little debris up with the cutters. Nothing so much as to jeopardize your good skis.
      (Rick McDonald)
    • Jan 12 - Bird Lake Trail (Hoyt Lakes): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      All of Bird Lake has been packed except the black diamond loop. No tracks were set. Most areas have a good base. There are still a few places where grass/brush are poking through the snow.
      (Ashley May-Klick)
    • Jan 11 - Suomi Hills (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Groomed Thursday. Good shape, all dirt and rocks covered. The snow is white and the sky is blue.
      (Randy Zupan)
    • Jan 11 - Amen Lake (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Groomed Thursday. Good shape, all dirt and rocks covered. The snow is white and the sky is blue.
      (Randy Zupan)
    • Jan 11 - Mount Itasca (Coleraine): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      6" new snow Wednesday night and Thursday. Groomed both the biathlon course and the Grant-In-Aid trails and set tracks. Trails should now be in excellent shape! A good 10" on the ground and 4-5" trail base now.
      (Bob Conzemius)
    • Jan 11 - Cowhorn Lake (Grand Rapids): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Grooming plans: Groomer Tracy Foix plans to groom Saturday morning both Boomer Blue and Cowhorn loops. Reminder: No dogs or snowshoeing on Cowhorn single track ski loop.
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 11 - River Road Unit Trails (Grand Rapids): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Grooming plans: Groomer Tracy Foix plans to groom Saturday morning so trails may be good for skiing Saturday afternoon. 6" new snow.
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 11 - Big Ridge (Grand Rapids): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Grooming plans: County groomers will not pack and track until next week, Jan. 15 or so.
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 11 - Wabana Trails (Grand Rapids): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Groomer Micah Kral and Park System Manager Roger Clark plan to pack and track Friday morning so the 6" of new snow is perfect for weekend skiing!
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 11 - Blackwater Environmental Area (Cohasset): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Groomer Dave O'Fallon plans to pack and set track on Friday so the 6" of new snow is perfect for weekend skiing. Lighted trails and warm trail head building.
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 11 - Forest History Center (Grand Rapids): 
      Secondhand 
      [ Trails Open: All ]

      Groomer Jeff Johns reported Sylvan Point Trail and Forest History Center trails are packed and tracked now that we have had 6" of new snow!
      (Catherine McLynn)
    • Jan 11 - Legion Trails (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      Packed and combed all loops. It was still snowing when I finished. Did not set track. The trail looked great otherwise. It should set up well and will be groomed later today or tomorrow.
      (Rick Mcdonald)
    • Jan 8 - Sugar Hills (Grand Rapids): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      There is about 100 feet of the Snag loop that is flooded. Ice from the adjacent creek must have dammed up and the creek overflowed. Would recommend not skiing Snag loop until we get more snow. The rest of the trail system is ok.
      (Tony Carter)
    • Jan 7 - Scenic State Park (Bigfork): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: Partial, B skis ]

      Thanks to the numerous volunteer hours by EOWSKI! (Edge of Wilderness Ski! pronounced Yeow-ski!) supporters this past year, ski trails are now officially re-opened at Scenic State Park! Classic track grooming has finally been re-established! Currently approx 5K+. Both the Lodge Campground newly created beginner ski trail area, and Fire Tower trail were rockin' today at the first official EOWSKI! youth/community ski lessons/meetup of the season.
      (Sarah Stone)
    • Jan 7 - Legion Trails (Grand Rapids): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Rock skis ]

      Groomed and set track. The snow cover is light. The track is a bit thin in places. There are a few spots that some debris got pulled up through the trail. It is skiable but I wouldn't use your best skis.
      (Rick Mcdonald)
    • Jan 7 - Sugar Hills (Grand Rapids): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, B skis ]

      +21F, no wind. East Loop and Rajala good while thunder and finnish were uneven with many leaves/twigs. Snow was packed with a light covering of powder, excellent glide, just watch where you put your ski.
      (Dave Rourk)
      Ely area [ forecast/conditions ]
    • Jan 14 - Flathorn-Gegoka Trails (Isabella): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      All the trails are cleared except 13 to 21. Groomed on Thursday and Friday. Good conditions. Snowing now.
      (Andy Fisher, National Forest Lodge)
    • Jan 7 - Flathorn-Gegoka Trails (Isabella): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: Most, B skis ]

      All the trails are cleared except 13 to 21. The lack of additional snow in the past week+ of cold temps means the tracks have deteriorated and many on the west side are packed but not tracked. Our sled is back in action and now we need a few inches to go out and groom again.
      (Andy Fisher, National Forest Lodge)
      Other locations
    • Jan 15 - Tilson Creek Ski Trail (International Falls): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Cold and sunny and windy on Tilson Monday. Too much new snow even after dragging and rolling on Thursday last week to use either Ginzu or Tidd.... We packed and rolled all trails twice. Should be able to set tracks today. Looks like a break in the weather is finally coming!
      Photos:  
      (Burgess Eberhardt)
    • Jan 14 - Manka Trail (International Falls): 
      Firsthand 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      Trail has been rolled for skate skiing and tracked for classical skiing. Hang a left at disc golf basket #8 to make your way to Rainy River Community College. Students interested in hopping on the Manka Trail will see a manmade ski trail across the field from RRCC Door 8. Temps and wind conditions will be perfect mid week for the start of Ice Box Days.
      (Tammy Marie Riley)
    • Jan 7 - Tilson Creek Ski Trail (International Falls): 
      Grooming 
      [ Trails Open: All, Good skis ]

      We groomed all trails last night. Plenty of new snow over the past few days made for good tracks and skate lane refreshing. Finally nice to be able to work in moderate temperatures! There were very few round rocks still showing in the tracks when I skied on Saturday so I would be watchful.
      Photos:  
      (Burgess Eberhardt)

 


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