On a year where we needed to get outside and enjoy the outdoors more than ever, mother nature really hasn't been kind to us. We had a mild start to the winter, with not much snow. We were hopeful that the storm before Christmas was going to be an indication for a good snow season, but so far that's been about it for the Duluth / Superior area. This last weekend we got a couple of inches, but it still hasn't been enough for local snowmobile trails in the Duluth / Superior area.

So with the lack of snow and the amount of money we put into our machines every off season, that left us with a search of where we could drive to and find ridable trails. The Douglas County snowmobile reports said that the trails were in fair condition, especially as you head a little further south in the county away from Lake Superior. That was an option for us. I also did see that there has been some friends of mine riding in certain sections of the U.P.

The closest area we could find with a decent riding report was around Sturgeon Lake, so we risked it and drove about an hour south to see what we would end up with. Fortunately, this last Saturday night they received about 2 inches of fresh snow, and the trails had been groomed previously. I'll have to say that the Northern Pine Riders snowmobile club did a find job on the trails. They posted an update saying the trails were 100% groomed, but there wasn't much of a base.

We rode about 70 miles of the trails, and they were in pretty good shape. There were a few thin spots, but they were in better condition than we had hoped for. The fresh snow help keep the sleds running cool. It was also nice to explore an area that I haven't been riding on before. It's a pretty nice trail system. We rode from Sturgeon Lake to Askov, over to Duxbury and back in a loop.

We have another chance of snow coming this weekend, but it's still too early to make any real predictions. Keep your fingers crossed and lets hope for some snow. The winter is better around here with it!

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