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Skiing Minnesota

Making tracks up, down, over, and around the Twin Cities

Skiing Minnesota
Photo by Todd Buchanan

(page 4 of 4)

Elm Creek Winter Recreation Area

There’s plenty of variety—and opportunities for backcountry solitude—at 4,900-acre Elm Creek Park Reserve in Maple Grove, the largest unit of the Three Rivers Park District. The park has more than 11 miles of trails groomed for both skate and classic skiing, three miles of which are lighted for nighttime skiing and 1.5 miles available to get a coating of artificial snow when needed. Loop difficulty ranges from beginner (including most of the lighted area) to expert. On evenings and weekends, hot drinks, burgers, and fries are available for purchase at the Elm Creek Chalet, which also rents ski equipment. Two camper cabins equipped with electricity and heat are available to rent for $50 a night. Skiers need a Three Rivers ski pass.

Address: 12400 James Deane Pkwy., Maple Grove
Website: threeriversparks.org
Phone: 763-694-7894

 

Lake Maria State Park

Lake Maria’s 14 miles of trail are a roller coaster of winding hills. While there’s plenty of action, none of it is particularly difficult. The loops take in oak woods (including some old growth) and lakeshore. Only two miles are groomed for skate skiing, the rest is reserved for classic. If you want to make a weekend adventure of it, reserve a camper cabin and haul in your gear and food by sled. Cabins have wood stoves for heat, but no electricity.

Address: 11411 Clementa Ave. NW, Monticello
Website: dnr.state.mn.us
Phone: 763-878-2325

 

Woodland Trails Park

Woodland Trails Park has more than nine miles of trails. It’s a 330-acre oasis in Elk River, and it’s renowned for its skier-friendly design. The trails take in plenty of hills as well as some flat terrain, weaving in and out of prairies and dense woods. The loops include some steep climbs and descents, and are groomed for both skate and classic skiing.

Address: 20135 Elk Lake Rd., Elk River
Website: elkrivermn.gov
Phone: 763-635-1150

 


Comments may be edited for length, clarity, or appropriateness.

Jan 28, 2013 11:32 am
 Posted by  afrischmon

Dear MN Monthly and Mr. Breining,

I was disappointed after reading your article that you did not mention Wild Mountain in your list of ski areas in MN. Wild Mountain is a great ski area located only 45 - 50 minutes northeast of the Twin Cities. I think that your readership would enjoy skiing and riding at Wild Mountain and will have missed having the opportunity to learn about our area.

We are located right in the St Croix Valley and the drive is beautiful. We are not as busy as say Afton or Buck, but our conditions are typically the best in the Midwest and many of our guests choose to drive past other MN areas to come visit us because of our terrain, customer service and our fabulous conditions.

I hope that in the future you will not forget about us.

Sincerely,

Amy Frischmon

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