Central Minnesota Ski Trails
The state parks, forests, wetlands and private resorts in the heart of the state offer a ski experience ranging from remote to all-inclusive.
Lake Brophy County Park: 5km
Intermediate, groomed skate ski trails (no classic tracks) that climb and descend through the hills of the park. Catch great views of Alexandria and the surrounding chain of lakes. Be aware that the park terrain consists of open prairie hills, so wind chill can be a factor. Expect lots of traffic on the trails in this very popular park.
Map Note: Ski trails follow the black dotted line on this linked map.
Beginner to intermediate, classic trails on rolling hills over prairie and northern hardwoods that pass several lakes. Weekend shelter with fireplace, camper cabins. Ski and snowshoe rentals. MN Ski Pass required. More about the park
French Rapids: 9.5km
Expert only. Well-groomed and challenging trails in glaciated area with great views of Mississippi River Valley. MN Ski Pass required.
Northland Arboretum: 20km
Beginner to intermediate, classic and skate ski with nearly 5 km lighted trail. A trail fee applies.
Pine Beach Trails: 30km
Mostly beginner to intermediate with some advanced loops. Varied terrain through pine and hardwood forest around several scenic lakes. Trail links Kavanaugh’s, Madden’s and Cragun’s resorts. Ski rentals at Cragun’s. MN ski pass required.
Chippewa County Park: 1.6km
Warner Lake Park: 6km
Beginner to intermediate, groomed classic through woods with some challenging hills. 41-acre site surrounding Warner Lake.
Saint John’s Arboretum: 19km
Beginner to advanced classic and skate loops through the wooded hills of the Saint John’s University campus. Stone Gate Loop (4.6km) and the Old Saint Joe Road (1.5km out and back) are classic only. Langlauf (0.7km) and Zicke-Zacke (1.8km) are skate only. The rest of the system is both side by side. One notable feature is one hill on the Pine Knob Loop. Nicknamed “Misere Nobis” (Latin for “Have mercy on us”) it presents a 100-foot climb over a short distance. Trails are free and open to the public. Donations can be made here.
Easy to advanced series of interconnected loops starting at the Crosslake Community Center.
Intermediate to advanced skate and classic in varied terrain with a mix of hardwood and mature pines. Passes by Larson Lake.
Woodland Trails Regional Park: 15km
Beginner to advanced, groomed skate and classic ski trails with many loops. Maintained by Elk River Nordic Ski Club. MN Ski Pass required.
All levels. Groomed classic and skate through 340 acres of hardwoods and prairie near Maplewood State Park. Privately owned. Fee applies. Ski and snowshoe rentals.
Beginner to advanced, groomed classic with challenging hills through hardwood forest and mature pine. Shelter along trail, maps at intersections.
Andes Tower Hills Ski Area: 15km
All levels of classic and skate through forest and around lakes.
Adjacent to downhill ski area with 1.5km lit trail. Ski rentals available. A fee applies.
Rune Stone Park: 12km
Beginner trail, groomed with two parallel tracks, with gentle hills. Trail follows Platte River, skirts around several wetlands, winds through mixed hardwoods, crosses fields restored with prairie grasses. Waterfowl observation deck along trail overlooking Skunk Lake.
This series of interconnecting loops over easy, wooded terrain is on private property, but open to the public. Depending on conditions it’s groomed flat for skate skiing, single or double tracked. From Long Prairie go south on HWY 71, then west on County Rd 10. Turn north on Ginseng Road and the parking area will be on the left after about 1/4 of a mile.
Savanna Portage State Park: 16km
Beginner to intermediate groomed classic tracks on rolling hills throughout the park. Connects with Remote Lake Trail near Loon Lake. This connector trail has some steep sections. MN Ski Pass required.
City of Milaca trails are groomed single track. Park at Recreation Park and take the pedestrian bridge over the Rum River to access the trails. Trails are used for mountain biking in the warmer months.
97-acre park with gentle wooded hills through tamarack.
MN Ski Pass required.
Intermediate to advanced with hills and curves. Ski to the top of Mt. Tom for the best view of the countryside. 4km skate ski trails. MN Ski Pass required.
All levels over three loops, groomed for classic. through 360 acres of pines, prairie and wetland at The Pines golf course.
Beginner to advanced, several loops through wooded terrain.
Ski rentals available. MN Ski Pass required.
Beginner to intermediate, groomed classic ski trails through rustic forest.The conservation center building is open weekdays during business hours. MN Ski Pass required.
Intermediate to advanced, four loops of classic ski through hardwood forest, over hills and around many lakes. Additional 8km backcountry trail. MN Ski Pass required.
Golf Course Trail: 4km
Two easy loops on the grounds of the municipal golf course.
Mississippi River County Park: 6km
All beginner trails, groomed for classic skiing right along the Mississippi River.
Beginner to intermediate with a few challenging hills. Many loops through scenic woods, pastures and apple orchards. Maintained by the Nordic Ski Club of Central Minnesota. MN Ski Pass required.
Beginner to intermediate trails with flat to rolling hills along the Mississippi River near downtown St. Cloud.
Kramer Lake-Wildwood County Park: 6km
Beginner to advanced. Six classic ski loops that wind through a wooded setting. MN Ski Pass required.
Groomed classic and skate ski trails next to the Sauk River. Rated easy to moderate with cut-offs to avoid the few hills.
Beginner to advanced, groomed classic and skate. Trails within 500 acre environmental learning center campus with woodland and prairie scenery and abundant wildlife. Rentals available. MN Ski Pass required.
Beginner to intermediate with a skating loop and classic loops. Ski past granite quarries and rock piles on lighted trails. Well-marked trail system has separate trails for skiing, hiking and fat biking. A 323-acre State Scientific and Natural Area within park offers an additional 5km of ungroomed, rustic trail. Quarry Park parking pass required. Trails are open to mountain biking during the warmer months.
Groomed, classic and skate trails for beginners on Eagle Creek Golf Course. Restaurant and bathrooms available during business hours. MN ski pass required.
Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge: 5km
Mahnomen Trail inside the refuge consists of several easy loops and is groomed when conditions allow. Trails are shared with hikers and snowshoers. Parking lot with vault toilet Located off of Sherburne County Road 9, about 1.5 miles west of County Road 42.