If you’re not used to colder temperatures, it isn’t always easy to get outside during the winter. But by staying indoors you miss out on one of the most gorgeous times of year in Northern Minnesota. Getting bundled up and facing the cold is worth every second- especially when you have a chance to see snow-covered forests, rolling hills and amazing views. A quick and fun way to explore the MN “winter wonderland” is by renting a snowmobile and hitting the trails. With just a few minutes of instruction anyone can learn how to ride a snowmobile!
Originally designed as a low-horsepower way to deliver mail in rural areas, snowmobiles have become high-powered modern machines used for both work and recreation in northern climates. There is a snowmobile for every use and experience level. Whether you are looking for an entry-level trail model or a high-performance model you will be able to find one that fits your needs.
When riding, make sure you are properly dressed. It is easy to stay warm if you plan ahead, but with higher speeds the wind can cut right through normal winter clothes. Most experts recommend a wind and waterproof jacket, gloves, bibs (“overalls” designed for snow and cold temperatures), wool socks to keep your feet warm, heavy duty boots, face mask and goggles/eye protection. The most critical piece of gear is the helmet. Always remember to wear a helmet! Not only will they keep you safe, but also help keep you warm. If you are visiting the area and don’t want to pack all of your gear, most snowmobile rental shops also rent out equipment for your ride. They make it easy to have a warm, safe ride out on the trails.
The network of trails in Northern Minnesota is so extensive that snowmobilers in the area can get from Grand Rapids to anywhere else on the Iron Range or beyond. The Grand Rapids “Snowmobile Thru/ Linking Trail System” means that you can get from your hotel door to any of the major state trails like the Taconite State Trail.
Itasca County’s trails are well-taken care of. Not only are most regularly groomed, they are signed at predictable intervals so you will always know where you are. There are hundreds of miles of trails to explore through snowy forest roads and onto nearby lakes. Whether you just want go out for an afternoon or take a multi-day trip you’ll be able to find the perfect trail. Find snowmobile friendly restaurants and lodging right off of the trails.
For more information check out our snowmobiling page. We also have resources to let you find your ideal trail and check out trail conditions:
Want to find out more about things to do in Grand Rapids during the winter? Give us a call or check out our Winter Activities page. Join us for our celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the Taconite Trail the weekend of February 19-21, 2016. For all of the details on this event check out the Facebook Event Page.