To say it’s been a little chilly ‘up here’ is a bit of an understatement. We’ve had some brutally cold temps in the past two months and frankly, just in the last few days. Get ready, a heat wave is a-comin‘. With the temps set to warm up this week and through the rest of the month, there is no time like the present to venture up or over to the North Shore for some outdoor winter fun! Here’s a list of our staff’s top 5 favorite winter activities.
The North Shore has the best cross-country ski trail systems in the state. We’d like to think so. With hundreds of kilometers of well-maintained trails, coupled with the plethora of terrain and beauty of the Northwoods, you just can’t have a bad day skiing. We have trails for all experience levels, trails that connect resorts and lodges where you can plan a stop for a cup of joe or to warm up midway through your ski and of course, trails with breathtaking views of this place we call home. Check out maps of various systems here.
Did you know? If you are a guest of Lutsen Resort, you can join one of our guided cross-country ski tours or borrow ski gear (skis, boots and poles) for free. If you ski on a state trail, you will need to purchase a ski pass.
Not everyone is up for a go on the skinny skis and that’s ok. Heading out for a snowshoe hike can be just as rewarding. Hiking the Superior Hiking Trail is a popular option, but snowshoes also give you the flexibility to go “off trail” and explore the uncharted areas. Lutsen Resort guests can also borrow snowshoes or join a snowshoe hike, all complimentary.
**Candlelight XC Ski & Snowshoe**
Sugarbush Trail Association will be holding their annual candlelight cross-country ski and snowshoe this coming Saturday evening, February 17th beginning at 6 pm. Meet in the Oberg parking lot and hit the trails lit by candlelight. When you’re done with your hike or ski, meet back at the bonfire and warm up with a cup of cocoa.
Alpine skiing or snowboarding at Lutsen Mountains
When talking about things to do on the North Shore in the winter, Lutsen Mountains inevitably comes up in the conversation. Lutsen Mountains is the Midwest’s largest alpine and snowboard park and they are only a couple miles up the road from us. The park boasts four mountains, 95 runs, a 825′ vertical rise, new eight-passenger gondola and ample amounts of snow that make for the ultimate ski and snowboard experience.
We offer ski and stay packages and we have a shuttle that runs to and from the ski hill. We’ll pick you up at your room (lodge lobby if you are staying in the main lodge) and take you to the ski hill and back. Please make sure to schedule a time with us in advance.
Songwriter series at Papa Charlie’s
If you are looking for something with a little less snow or you want to wind down after a long day of outdoor adventure, then you need to check out Papa Charlie’s Songwriter series. During the winter months, you can find live music every night of the week somewhere in Cook County. We are fortunate to have an abundance of talented, local musicians that play at various establishments and venues – however, the Songwriter series is a staff favorite. The series features the Midwest’s most talented songwriters in a theater-like setting. These are free to the public and run every Monday and Wednesday night during the winter. For a complete schedule, visit Papa Charlie’s event calendar.
After an eventful day in the great outdoors, you’re going to need to refuel. The area offers a number of great eateries, pubs and tap rooms. Whether you are looking for fine dining or a casual, sit-back and watch the game experience, there is something for everyone. We have two restaurants on site; our Lakeside Dining Room and our Poplar River Pub. The dining room provides a spectacular view of Lake Superior and the Poplar River Pub features Minnesota-made brews and spirits.