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 snow fall, 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 ridge line to most when you go over the ridge.

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

  • downhill skiing/snowboarding at Lutsen Mountains
  • cross -country ski trails [southwest to northeast]
  • Fat Bike Trails can be found at Split Rock State Park and Pincushion Mountain near Grand Marais
  • snowmobile trails [southwest to northeast]

oberg warming houseLutsen Mountains all mountains are open …  Updated conditions here

Cross-Country Skiing Ski most of the shore; best conditions up the Gunflint Trail and inland. – photo at left is the warming house at Oberg in Lutsen [Onion River Rd trail is open]

Snowmobiling Poor snow conditions on the southwest end of the shore; best riding is inland from Tofte/Lutsen and up the Gunflint Trail

Fat Bike Trails Patchy trails along the shore; better conditions at Pincushion near Grand Marais

 UP to 13″ of snow on Sunday followed by another 3-5″ on Tuesday = excellent snow!
Last Updated: 02-18-2018
Lutsen Mountains
Lutsen Mountains: Open Last Updated: February 14

Snow Depth: 30-60" machine groomed base

Conditions: We wrapped up snow making for the season this past week. Each year we start early in November and run 24/7 to get as much terrain open as possible for the holidays. Then in January, we return to those runs and stockpile snow to allow skiing through April. This was our first full season on the new Lake Superior pipeline, and the crystal clear water along with the cold temperatures of January produced more snow than we have ever put on the mountain. The texture is light and dry and grooms up to a perfect ski surface day after day.

51" of snow for the season, none in the past week
Ullr, Eagle, Moose & Mystery Mountains are open
61 primary runs open with a 30-60" base
31 side country runs open with a 3-12" base of packed powder

Gooseberry Falls State Park
Gooseberry Falls State Park: Open Last Updated: February 11

Snow Depth: 3-4" base; Good conditions

Conditions: The trails have good coverage overall, but there are a few spots where the base is still thin. Hikers, snowshoes, and dogs are not aloud on groomed ski trails.
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park [FAT BIKE TRAILS]
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park [FAT BIKE TRAILS]: Open Last Updated: February 15

Snow Depth: 4" of snow on the ground; Fair conditions

Conditions: The eight mile trail is decent for fat biking and snowshoeing and hiking. Come on out and enjoy winter!
Tettegouche State Park
Tettegouche State Park: Open Last Updated: February 8

Snow Depth: 6" base; Fair conditions

Conditions: Near Lake Superior we have about 6" of snow on the ground and on the back side of the park near Tettegouche Camp we have 10-12". All of the ski trails were groomed again this week. Conditions are pretty good but you may encounter a few rocks and sketchy areas until we get more snow.

Snowmobile trails in the park are open and have been groomed but are in poor-fair condition due to lack of good snow cover in all areas.
Flathorn Gegoka Trail System
Flathorn Gegoka Trail System: Open Last Updated: February 14

Snow Depth: 7-10" base; Good conditions

Conditions: No significant snow in the past 10 days and no grooming has taken place. Still a great base and good skiing. Still a small section between 13 and 21 blocked with downed trees.

New snow in the past 24 hours :: 0"
New snow in the past 7 days :: 0"
Snow on the ground :: 9-14"
Sugarbush Trails
Sugarbush Trails: Open Last Updated: February 16

Snow Depth: 2-6" base; Fair to good conditions

Conditions: Trails are improving after the last snowfall, although the base is still relatively shallow in some areas. Ski with caution. The best skiing is on the Onion River Road, Picnic Loop ridge and Moose Fence.

Most tracks are well-set and have packed powder bottoms. With the slight warm-up in temperatures in the near future, skiing should be great!

New snow in the past 24 hours :: 0"
New snow in the past 7 days :: 0"
Total snowfall for the season :: 36"
Norpine Cross Country Ski Trails
Norpine Cross Country Ski Trails: Open Last Updated: February 16

Snow Depth: 1-10" packed base; Fair to great conditions

Conditions: Packed powder conditions - Expect some drifting on trails. The west end trails were groomed with Pisten Bully and in good condition. The east end trails are in excellent condition.

Fat bike trails :: Open!
1-10" Packed base
Caution :: Ice Flows on Trails.
Cascade River State Park
Cascade River State Park: Open Last Updated: February 16

Snow Depth: 3-4" base; Good conditions

Conditions: We have not received any new snow in the last week. There has been some wind and a couple days hovering slightly at or above freezing. Now we're back to colder weather with snow in the forecast to improve our trail conditions. The trails east of the Cascade River were packed and tracked on Thursday February 1st. Trail conditions improve as you ski up and away from the trailhead The Lakeshore trail was rolled and packed but not tracked due to the limited snow cover. The ice sculptures along the lakeshore and the river are quite colorful and interesting, take a look while you're here.The trail Center building, adjacent to the trailhead provides picnic tables, a soft drink machine and a wood stove.
Pincushion Trails near Grand Marais
Pincushion Trails near Grand Marais: Open Last Updated: February 9

Snow Depth: 10" base; Excellent conditions

Conditions: New Snow: 0"

All of the trails in the Pincushion System have been Pisten Bully groomed over the past couple of days. We will do a final clean-up of a few spots today. All classic tracks have been reset and the skate deck is as smooth as it has been all winter. Temperatures are moderating just a bit so this should be one of the best ski weekends of the winter.
Banadad Trails
Banadad Trails: Open Last Updated: February 1

Snow Depth: 15" base; Excellent conditions

Conditions: Tracked Trail :: 41 km
Snow on the ground :: 19"
New snow today :: 3"
New snow this week :: 4"

Tracked Trail :: Entire 41 kilometers of the Banadad Ski Trail System was tracked January 31 and skiing is excellent
Central Gunflint Trail System
Central Gunflint Trail System: Open Last Updated: February 9

Snow Depth: 8-10" base; Excellent conditions

Conditions: Temps have been cold this last week, but we are expecting things to warm up through the weekend and into next week with daytime ski temps in the teens starting Sunday. All trails are open, groomed, and in awesome shape - don’t miss out on some excellent February skiing!!

New Snow Last 24 hours :: 0”
New Snow Last 7 days :: 4”
Groomed with classic track :: 70 km
Groomed with skate lane :: 64 km
Last grooming day :: 2-4-18
Total snowfall since snow stayed :: 50.25”

For the most up to date grooming information, as well specific trail conditions, please contact Golden Eagle Lodge (1-800-346-2203) or Bearskin Lodge (1-800-338-4170). Central Gunflint Ski Pass required.
Upper Gunflint Trail System
Upper Gunflint Trail System: Open Last Updated: February 9

Snow Depth: 7-13" base; Good conditions

Conditions: Snow on the ground :: 14-34"
Snowfall since October :: 39.5"

Lonely Lake, Big Pine, Little Pine, Amperage, and part of Overlook were groomed yesterday. The remaining trails should be groomed in the next 48 hours. Upper Gunflint Ski Passes are required, and can be purchased at any business on the South Gunflint Lake Road.

Passes can be purchased at Gunflint Lodge (218-388-2294), Gunflint Pines Resort (218-388-4454), and Hestons Lodge (218-388-2243). All of these resorts are located on the South Gunflint Lake road. Daily, weekend, week, and seasonal passes are available.
CJ Ramstad - North Shore State Trail
CJ Ramstad - North Shore State Trail : Open Last Updated: February 13

Snow Depth: 9-11" base; ; Fair to good conditions

Conditions: People have been riding on the inland portion. Reports stated there is a good base in most places, and the trails are in fair to good shape. With the trails in good shape, the DNR advises that when the extended freeze ends, more machines will out and about in significant numbers, and urges everyone to ride safely.

10-14" of snow on the ground
Two Harbors Snowmobile Trail System
Two Harbors Snowmobile Trail System: Open Last Updated: February 16

Snow Depth: Poor conditions

Conditions: We have been trying to make use of the little snow we have to flatten and mix it up.
Lutsen / Tofte Snowmobile Trail Systems: Open Last Updated: January 30

Snow Depth: 7-15" base; Fair conditions

Conditions: Riders in the area are reporting very good conditions. The farther inland you travel, the better the snow conditions become. Groomers are out on the state trail as well.

Gunflint Snowmobile Trail System
Gunflint Snowmobile Trail System: Open Last Updated: February 2

Snow Depth: 12-21" base; Fair to good conditions

Conditions: Groomers were out preparing for the Fun Run, and the participants reported excellent riding conditions. The state trail is reporting many riders, so do keep an eye out for other users. With the temps this weekend forecast to be in the 20's, the Minnesota winter conditions are perfect for getting out and enjoying your sled.
Grand Portage Snowmobile Trail System: Open Last Updated: February 1

Snow Depth: 8-13" base; Good conditions

Conditions: Riders are reporting great conditions. Stay safe, and look out for other riders.