Giants Ridge is Perfect Family Getaway
We have 15 ski areas in Minnesota. As an avid ski family, we've been to six of those destinations, but—until last weekend—had never been to Giants Ridge in Biwabik, located in the northeastern part of the state. I wasn't really sure what to expect, other than a much-needed escape from our busy daily routines.
After a three hour drive, we arrived at the Lodge, perfectly situated near both the indoor amenities (the game room and heated swimming pool) and the outdoor activities (skiing and tubing). The slopes of Giants Ridge are right out the back door for a ski-in/ski-out experience—the closest ski lift is only 100 yards away. And the scenery is pretty spectacular, set within Minnesota's Superior National Forest.
After we got situated in our room, we dined at the on-site Lodge Restaurant & Lounge (steak bites, pretzel sticks, prime rib, and the blue cheese burger), and enjoyed our food and the ambiance (complete with live music and a nice fireplace). That night, my girls tested out the large heated indoor swimming pool, hot tub, and arcade. No complaints there.
The next morning—on our first day skiing—we were greeted by "hill hosts" in the main chalet, welcoming us with snacks and letting us know they were more than happy to answer any questions we might have. This was an unexpected treat and made us feel really valued as guests. Once we were out on the slopes, we found that the hills were well maintained and groomed, providing hours of family fun. There was plenty of variety on runs, too—from easy obstacles on the bunny hill to more challenging black diamonds—to keep us busy and on the move. It was obvious that more than just downhill skiers were taken into consideration when planning the resort: there were benches at the top of the hills so that snowboarders could sit comfortably and strap into their boards, and cross-country and snowshoeing trails, too.
We also enjoyed a morning of snowtubing, which my youngest absolutely loved. Given the record-breaking weather (nearly 60 degrees! On March 12!) we didn’t have to get bundled up and were able to get a crazy amount of tubing runs in thanks to late-season nearly nonexistent lines.
Giants Ridge is also home to miles of bike trails, as well as two highly-rated golf courses, Legend and the Quarry. I'm pretty sure the 60-degree weather triggered "summery" thoughts—we're already talking about when we can get back to Giants Ridge once the golf courses open for the season. We can't wait to return.