North Shore Snow Conditions and Trail Report
From Thanksgiving until Easter [or later] you can find weekly snow conditions and trail reports. Find out about recent snowfall, trail conditions and suggestions for where to ski, snowshoe, snowmobile plus links to the weather and forecasts. Snow varies from less near Lake Superior, where the big lake keeps temps slightly milder to more as climb the ridgeline to most when you go over the ridge.
How Long is Winter?
Snowfall begins in November, coming and going and usually beginning to stick late in the month. Lutsen Mountains typically is open Thanksgiving weekend with a few runs and cross country skiers get their first runs in on the Onion River Road in Lutsen and along the Central Trail system up the Gunflint.
Trail / Snow Reports are listed below in this order;
scroll to see conditions – click on a link to learn more about trails
Winter Settles In
We’ve had light dustings of snow over the past few days and expect 1-3″ on Saturday. Trails are in good to great conditions overall. Snowmobile trail groomers have been able to get out and finish grooming now that swamps and sloughs have frozen over.
Cross-country ski from Gooseberry Falls pictured here, to Grand Marais, and all along the Gunflint Trail. Did you know you need a license to ski state trails? Buying lets the state know people use the trails and they allocate money towards grooming; details here.
Fat bike at Split Rock Lighthouse, Flathorn Gegoka, Norpine and Pincushion Trails!
Last Updated: 01-15-2020
Ski & Snowmobile Trails-Gooseberry Falls State Park: Open
Last Updated: January 8
Snow Depth: 6+" base & 20-22" snow depth
CROSS COUNTRY SKI TRAILS
conditions: very good
All ski trails were groomed on 12/31 and many areas have been touched up since then. We've not had much in the way of new snow, but trail conditions remain good. There may be debris on the trail as a result of strong winds. When the weather was warm there were a few issues with water across the trail, but these spots are passable. Watch for wildlife tracks and sightings, especially north of the highway! As a reminder hiking, snowshoes, and fat bikes and pets are not permitted on groomed ski trails.
As of 12/31 the snowmobile groomer had not came through. It is unknown what the trail condition is like.
Ski & Snowmobile Trails-Tettegouche State Park: Open
Last Updated: January 12
Snow Depth: 10" base and 25" snow depth
CROSS COUNTRY SKI TRAILS
The following trails at Tettegouche State Park are tracked and groomed. The Cart-In loop, the main ski loop, Papasay Ridge(connector trail), the Valley, Mt. Baldy, and the trail into camp.
Most snowmobile trails in the park are in very good condition with the exception of the Lax Lake Trail which has not been groomed.
Ski Trails-Central Gunflint Trail System: Open
Last Updated: January 2
Snow Depth: 13" base and 22-24" in the woods
Snow in the last 7days: 14.75"
Total season snowfall: 53.875"
Wow did we get snow! We received just shy of 14 inches of snow in the end-of-the-year snowstorm! The groomers have been busy staying on top of all the new accumulation. All ski trails are open and groomed. Lakes are, not surprisingly, a bit slushy after all the new snow so if you are looking to cross them on your desired ski route, be prepared for a little slop – there is still plenty of ice to cross safely. With another inch of snow this morning, things are getting freshened up again today. Weekend weather is predicted to be in the 20’s – great conditions all around!
Note: Grooming frequently occurs between the release of weekly trail reports. Expect trail grooming after every significant snowfall.
Ski Trails-Upper Gunflint Trail System: Open
Last Updated: January 15
Snow Depth: 10-12" base
The Upper Gunflint Nordic Ski Trail System is in breathtaking shape. We have had 53.75 inches of snow this season, with more coming down as I write this email. There is a 10 - 12 inch trail base, and 21 - 24 inches of snow off trail. The trails were last groomed on January 10, 2020, and should be groomed again soon.
An Upper Gunflint Nordic Ski Trail Pass is required for use of our trails. It can be purchased at Gunflint Lodge, Gunflint Pines Resort, or Heston's Lodge.
Snowmobile Trails-CJ Ramstad / North Shore State Trail : Open
Last Updated: January 9
Snow Depth: 4-5" base and 18 -28" snow depth
BASE, SNOW DEPTH & CONDITIONS BY AREA
Duluth :: 5" base and 24" snow depth with GOOD conditions
Two Harbors :: 5" base and 24" snow depth with GOOD conditions
Silver Bay :: 5" base and 24" snow depth with GOOD conditions
Tofte/Lutsen :: 5" base with 26" snow depth with GOOD conditions
Grand Marais/Gunflint Trail :: 4" base and 22" snow depth with GOOD conditions
Parts of the trail will be groomed Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night. Please be aware of icy areas along the trail and use caution while riding.
Snowmobile Trails-Two Harbors Voyageur : Open
Last Updated: January 7
Snow Depth: 6" base and 23" snow depth
Groomed from the World Headquarters last night, down to the County Road 3 parking lot, and then up to the Yukon / Gooseberry Spur trail and back. Everything was in good shape with the exception of the hills and curves around the JAB shelter which were covered well.
Thanks to Karl, the JAB shelter stove pipe has been replaced.
Snowmobile Trails-Lutsen / Tofte: Open
Last Updated: January 9
Snow Depth: 5-15" base and 12-30" snow depth
New snow is falling on our freshly groomed Trail system. The past 24 hours have delivered an additional 4 inches of snow. Past 72 Hours has produced a total of 5 inches. Our groomer continues to work the entire system on a weekly basis. Look to mid-week for the best riding. Base depths continue to grow. Average Base Depth at the lake is 5", BUT just 1 mile back it doubles to 10", Then increases again to about 15" of good compressed base snow. There is about 12" of powder snow at the lake off-trail, with 30" plus in some spots inland. Look to the Pike Lake area for the best boondocking at this time. I have not encountered any water on the Trails as I have been out. The cold weather did it's thing and even the lakes are improving. Remember Shiny side up, rubber side down!