The Northland Arboretum (Arb) in Brainerd features well-maintained, groomed cross-country skiing trails and snowshoeing trails for all ages and skill levels—and it’s only 16.9 miles from Crosby Lofts.
Skiers will enjoy nearly 20km of cross-country ski trails groomed for both classic and skate styles by the Brainerd Nordic Ski Club. Flat areas and small hills are great for beginners and moderate skiers who want to practice and hone their skills. More advanced skiers will enjoy larger hills and backcountry-style trails that go deeper into the forest, farther away from the main trail system. And if you like evening skiing, there are 4.5km of groomed trails that are lit daily from 4:30–10p.
Snowshoers! There’s plenty for you to explore, too. The Arb contains over 4km of snowshoe trails that follow hiking and game trails, meandering through the Arb’s prairie restoration area and Jack Pine Savannah. At times, snowshoe trails will intersect with ski trails (be sure to follow the signs to stay on the snowshoe trail). Off-trail snowshoeing is allowed as well, but be sure to be aware of your location and bring a map (available at the trailhead). Feel free to bring your leashed pets along for the adventure (though you must keep them off of the groomed ski trails)!
Know before you go:
Photo Credit: Northland Arboretum