Voyageurs National Park

Voyageurs National Park

Winter Activities

Winter visitors enjoy the beauty of Voyageurs National Park by snowmobile, on cross-country skis, in an auto on the ice road, on snowshoes or in ice-fishing houses. Voyageurs invites visitors who want to get out of the cold to come to the Rainy Lake Visitor Center.

Rainy Lake Visitor Center
Winter Hours and Services
Open Wednesday - Sunday
10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Call (218) 286-5258 or (888) 381-2873

The visitor center offers:
* Voyageurs National Park information
* Convenient snowmobile parking
* Winter Ice and Trail Conditions Report
* A cozy fire and hot cocoa
* A children’s corner
* Maps of ski, snowshoe and snowmobile trails
* Winter Programs, Sundays 2 – 4 p.m.
* Bookstore
* Life-size bull moose
* Exhibits and films
* Snowshoes for loan
* Cross-country ski rentals for adults and free loan program for kids

Snowshoe Trails and Rentals
Snowshoes are available to borrow for free from the Rainy Lake Visitor Center during visitor hours. Explore the winter landscape on one of the park's three packed snowshoe trails. Voyageurs National Park has many snowshoe sizes and shapes available free-of-charge during regular visitor center hours. Call the Rainy Lake Visitor Center at (218) 286-5258 or (888) 381-2873 for availability.

Cross-Country Ski Trails and Rentals
Enjoy the tranquility of cross-country skiing in Voyageurs National Park. Voyageurs National Park, the International Falls Community Education Department and the Friends of Voyageurs National Park have partnered to offer cross-country ski rentals at the Rainy Lake Visitor Center. There are a large number of adult-sized skis, poles and boots available during regular visitor center hours for $5 a day. Children's skis, boots and poles are available free-of-charge during regular visitor center hours. Call the Rainy Lake Visitor Center at (218) 286-5258 or (888) 381-2873 for availability.

Rainy Lake Ice Road

The 7-mile Rainy Lake Ice Road extends from the boat launch ramp at Rainy Lake Visitor Center to the mouth of Cranberry Bay.
* The ice road is open to cars and trucks of less than 7,000 lbs. gross vehicle weight. SNOWMOBILES are NOT permitted on the ice road
* The speed limit is 30 MPH
* When heavy snow, slush, or thin ice exists, the ice road may be closed or shortened for safety. Travel beyond the plowed section is unsafe.

Ice Fishing
Ghostly winter quiet, rugged piney shorelines, and outstanding angling make Voyageurs National Park an ice angler’s dream. Place icehouses at least 50 feet from the center of snowmobile trails and the ice road. Check ice conditions before going out. Fishing license and icehouse registration is required.

Snowmobiling
Snowmobiling is allowed on frozen lake surfaces and designated safety portages in Voyageurs National Park. The park provides 110 miles of staked and groomed trails for snowmobiling.

All land areas, including rock faces, are closed to snowmobiles with the exception of designated safety portages. Hill climbing is prohibited.

Obey all closure signs. Areas are closed to protect your safety and to protect sensitive resources.

Be Safe!
* Carry a trail map with you
* Keep to the right on trails
* Leave a route plan with someone

Watch For:
* Pressure ridges – they change the surface of the lake. Always stop and inspect ridge areas before crossing. Pressure ridges are marked with two crossed orange caution stakes on each side.
* Slush and open water – avoid them by staying on staked and groomed trails.

Trail Conditions
Read the latest Winter Ice and Trail Conditions Report for the most updated ice and trail conditions. For additional trail condition information, please call:
* International Falls, 1-800-FALLS MN
* Kabetogama Lake, 1-800-524-9085
* Ash River, 1-800-950-2061
* Crane Lake, 1-877-466-7669 (466-SNOW)

Winter Trails

Cross-Country Ski Trails
Enjoy the tranquility of cross-country skiing in Voyageurs National Park. Area ski trails (groomed and tracked unless noted) include:

Black Bay Trail
Located one mile north of the Rainy Lake Visitor Center on the Rainy Lake Ice Road and offers 6 miles of trail.

Voyageurs’ Tilson Connector Trail
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources manages this 10-mile network of interconnected ski trails. Several routes are possible, ranging from short loops to longer excursions. You can access this system from the Rainy Lake Visitor Center area on the park’s Tilson Connector Trail.

Echo Bay Trail
This 3.5-mile loop trail is located a few miles from the Kabetogama Lake Visitor Center (closed winter). Follow County Road 122 north toward the Woodenfrog State Forest campground to access the trailhead.

Kab-Ash Trail
This challenging backcountry trail system is 27.87 miles of ungroomed trail and is for the experienced skier. Bring a map and be prepared for winter travel in a remote area if exploring the Kab-Ash trail in winter.

Snowshoeing on the Oberholtzer Trail
Visitors snowshoe on the Oberholtzer trail near the Rainy Lake Visitor Center.

Snowshoe Trails
Explore the winter landscape on one of the park’s three tracked snowshoe trails.

Blind Ash Bay Trail
(2.5 miles round trip)
The trailhead is at the Kabetogama Lake Overlook parking lot along the road to the Ash River Visitor Center.

Sullivan Bay Trail
(1.5 miles round trip)
Follow signs to the Ash River Visitor Center. The trailhead is just past the Beaver Pond Overlook on the north side of Sullivan Bay.

Oberholtzer Trail
(2 miles round trip)
The trailhead is just outside the Rainy Lake Visitor Center.