Weather Forecast


Early snow leads to best start to winter recreation season since 2010

Anyone eager to get out cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobiling will find an abundance of opportunities at many Minnesota state parks and trails, thanks to this year’s early snowfall.

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“The recent heavy snowfall and the forecast for sustained cold temperatures offers prospects of substantial, enduring snow cover deep into the month,” said Greg Spoden, state climatologist at the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). “It will be the best start to the winter recreation season since 2010.”

Staff from the DNR’s Parks and Trails Division and local clubs will be busy grooming trails, but the DNR advises prospective park and trail visitors to check the website for trip planning tips before heading out to a winter recreation destination.

As always, the DNR urges outdoor enthusiasts to exercise caution around lakes and wetlands, because the early snow might act as a blanket over thin ice. Snowmobilers, in particular, should exercise caution and be alert to conditions.

FOR INFORMATION Snow depth and trail conditions for Minnesota state parks and trails are updated every Thursday after 2 p.m. throughout the winter months at

Many state parks rent snowshoes, and several rent cross-country skis. For rental locations and prices, check out the winter activities guide at

For a schedule of upcoming programs and special events at state parks and trails, including candlelight ski and snowshoe events, visit the online calendar at or pick up one of the new Programs and Special Events brochures at park offices.

For more information, contact the DNR Information Center at  or 1-888-646-6367  8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.