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]
March 23rd update  :: 1″ of new snow today

What remains :: great downhill skiing and snowboarding at Lutsen Mountains, cross country skiing inland from Tofte, Grand Marais and up the Gunflint; and some rough snowmobile riding.

–> Bummed out because your trail isn’t looking good? Buy a pair of cleats and hike any of the river trails; the rivers are gorgeous right now with thick ice collapsing into running water. Wear snow pants, there is still deep snow out there, too!

Lutsen Mountains Open daily, very good

Cross-Country Skiing Poor/fair inland from Tofte to the Gunflint Trail

Snowmobiling Trails will last through March inland from Lutsen and up the Gunflint

Fat Bike Trails Closed at Split Rock and poor at Pincushion near Grand Marais

summit chalet lutsen mountains
Summit Chalet at Lutsen Mountains

Last Updated: 03-23-2017
Lutsen Mountains
Lutsen Mountains: Open Last Updated: March 23

Snow Depth: 30-55" base, machine groomed

Conditions: Ullr, Eagle, Mystery & Moose Mountains open with 6-8 lifts
60 of 62 primary runs open and machine groomed
15 of 33 side-country runs open with variable conditions

Open daily through April 9 + Easter Weekend + extended weekends

Gooseberry Falls State Park: Closed Last Updated: March 23

Snow Depth: Trails are open to hiking due to the lack of snow. On the brighter side - the falls are open and the river is running!! Come on up and enjoy an early taste of spring!

Split Rock Lighthouse State Park [FAT BIKE TRAILS]: Closed Last Updated: March 23

Snow Depth: FAT BIKE TRAILS have deteriorated due to warm temperatures and lack of snow. Folks are out hiking, but know that there are areas where ice is forming in sheets over sections of the trail. Please use caution when navigating around these areas.

Tettegouche State Park: Closed Last Updated: March 23
Flathorn Gegoka Trail System
Flathorn Gegoka Trail System: Open Last Updated: March 21
Conditions: Concluding our 2017 trail reports. See you next season. Trails will continue to be groomed as feasible for the remainder of snow season.
Sugarbush Trails
Sugarbush Trails: Open Last Updated: March 22

Snow Depth: 4-10", frozen granular base

Conditions: Skate lanes were renovated yesterday and today. Classic tracks in place but are icy. Expect spring conditions - icy in the morning and soft in the afternoon.

Caution should be used on any of the steeper terrain since heavy rain that occurred since the last significant snowfall has washed out some of the snow pack on creek crossings and water bars.
Norpine Cross Country Ski Trails
Norpine Cross Country Ski Trails: Open Last Updated: March 23
Conditions: no current report
Cascade River State Park: Open Last Updated: March 17

Snow Depth: 2-4" base, fair

Conditions: Up to 3" of new snow has arrived to cover the existing frozen base. The trails will remain skiable until this snow melts away The base is now frozen and will soften each day if it nears 32 degrees. The hard packed, granular, frozen base is fast. Any additional new snow should improve conditions quickly. The trails improve as you ski up and away from the trailhead. The trails offer classic travel through a rolling and heavily wooded forest above Lake Superior.

Snowshoes are available for rent at the park office for $6.00/day. There are trails for all ability levels. The trails are classic style with some scenic and challenging runs through dense north woods forests. There is a Trail Center building at the trailhead with a soda machine , tables and a woodstove. Hikers can check out the frozen waterfalls of the Cascade River or snowshoe the Superior Hiking Trail along both sides of the Cascade River.
Pincushion Trails near Grand Marais
Pincushion Trails near Grand Marais: Open Last Updated: March 21

Snow Depth: good spring conditions

Conditions: Classic Tracks are still holding up, but icy and very fast. Skating lanes have been re-groomed and we can still get a few more days of skiing in. Enjoy your ski.

See you on the trails,
Banadad Trails
Banadad Trails: Open Last Updated: March 25

Snow Depth: variable

Conditions: Skiing is excellent. Groomed today (Saturday) more snow is expected the next two or three days.
3" of new snow in the past day and more on the way!
Central Gunflint Trail System
Central Gunflint Trail System: Open Last Updated: March 24

Snow Depth: varies

Conditions: There is still skiing on the Central Gunflint Ski Trail System! The snow is slowly melting and we are nearing the end of the season, but several trails still have enough snow for skiing and another couple rounds of grooming. Expect softer conditions due to the warmer temperatures.

Beaver Dam Trail, Moose Pasture, Summer Home Road, Campground Loop, Ox Cart, and Bear Cub Trail were most recently groomed on 3-24. The remaining trails have about 1.5 inches of snow on them from the night of 3-23. Moose Ridge Trail, Cross Fox Trail, and re-route section of Logging Camp Trail are closed for the season due to low snow and exposed rocks caused from high sun exposure.

All trails on the north side of Flour Lake will no longer be groomed until next ski season. We recommend skiers access trails through Bearskin Lodge to find more recently groomed trails.

For the most up to date grooming information, as well specific trail conditions, please contact Bearskin Lodge (1-800-338-4170) or Golden Eagle Lodge (1-800-346-2203). Central Gunflint Ski Pass required.
Upper Gunflint Trail System: Open Last Updated: March 23

Snow Depth: 4-5+", good conditions

Conditions: no current report

We require an Upper Gunflint Trail Ski Pass to use our trails. Fees from these passes pay for the land leases, and grooming expenses. Please stop at Gunflint Lodge (218-388-2294), Gunflint Pines (218-388-4454), or Heston's Lodge (218-388-2243) to purchase passes, and pick up maps. All three resorts are on the South Gunflint Lake road.
CJ Ramstad - North Shore State Trail
CJ Ramstad - North Shore State Trail : Closed Last Updated: March 23
Two Harbors Snowmobile Trail System
Two Harbors Snowmobile Trail System: Closed Last Updated: March 23
Lutsen / Tofte Snowmobile Trail Systems: Open Last Updated: March 23

Snow Depth: thin to variable

Conditions: With trails already packed hard and a small amount of snow, we haven't groomed. BUT don't let that stop you if you want to ride! With bright sun and one day last weekend of temps in the high 30s some spots might be bare. Some spots are also icy; yet you can enjoy our upper trails [refer to map]; all trails away from the lake have been ridden and enjoyed this week. If you park at the snowmobile parking area - 2 miles up County Road 4 [Caribou Trail], you can access these upper trails. Maps in the box there too.

Winter hasn't given up yet. Trails close April 1 so you might take this chance for a riding adventure . Ride safely - as always.
Gunflint Snowmobile Trail System
Gunflint Snowmobile Trail System: Open Last Updated: March 16

Snow Depth: variable base and poor to fair conditions

Conditions: Good Morning Folks! I went out for check ride this morning to see what the trail conditions are please see my videos.

Overall conditions are very icy, ice scratchers are almost a must at this point. We are expecting some snow in the next 24-36 hours so stay tuned and keep your fingers crossed. If we even get just a couple inches it would be a game changer.

Overall Conditions still rideable but please use caution with all the ice on certain areas of the trail.

Q: Would I personally still ride?
A: Yes
Grand Portage Snowmobile Trail System: Closed Last Updated: March 23

Snow Depth: variable