Voyageurs National Park Winter Ice and Trail Conditions Report, December 31, 2013
Contact: Tawnya Schoewe, 218-283-6670
International Falls, MN: The purple trail to Kettle Falls on the Rainy Lake is open and staked, and the green trail from Rainy Lake/Black Bay to Kabetogama Lake to Ash River is open and staked. All other snowmobile trails are not open at this time, but ice checking continues throughout the park.Snowshoe trails are open, and most ski trails are open, packed, with one tracked.
Slush conditions are improving, but please use caution when travelling along staked trails and off the trails on the lake surface because there are still pockets of slush spread throughout the lake surface. The slush has frozen up in many places, making the trails rough in spots. Always use caution when traveling along the lake surface.
To reduce hazards to snowmobile users, all ice blocks are to be immediately chopped up, submerged, or hauled to land. Placement of equipment or any type of structure must be greater than 50 feet off the center of all ice roads and snowmobile trails.
Snowshoe trails are in great shape, with many packed by lots of use. Be cautious when snowshoeing on the lake surface, as pockets of slush have been found. Ski trails are in need of a little more snow. Echo Bay's front loop is good, but there are still visible rocks on the back two loops. Tilson Connector is tracked, but vegetation is still visible through the snow. The Birch loop of Black Bay has not been tracked and has visible vegetation, while the Pine loop still has exposed rocks.
Please remember the snowmobile speed limit within Voyageurs National Park is 45 mph on frozen lake surfaces and 25 mph on all overland portages. Speed limit signs are posted at trailheads and overland portages.
The Rainy Lake Visitor Center is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 am to 4:30 pm. The visitor center offers maps and information, hot cocoa, snowshoe loans and cross-country ski rentals during business hours.
Weekly winter trail conditions reports are available on our website at www.nps.gov/voya.
International Falls to Kettle Falls (Purple Trail) – Open and staked
Rainy Lake/Black Bay to Kabetogama Lake to Ash River (Green Trail) – Open and staked
Ash River to Crane Lake (Green Trail) – Not open
Chain of Lakes (Dashed Black Trail) – Not open
Ash River to Kettle Falls (Yellow Trail) – Not open
East Namakan Lake to Sand Point Lake (Blue Trail) – Not open
Rainy Lake Ice Road– Closed
Kabetogama Lake Ice Road- Closed
Echo Bay Ski Trail – Open, packed, and first loop tracked
Black Bay Ski Trail – Open, packed
Tilson Connector Trail – – Open, packed, and tracked
KabAsh Trail – Open
Black Bay Beaver Pond Trail – Open
Blind Ash Bay Trail – Open
Oberholtzer Trail – Open and packed
Sullivan Bay Trail – Open and packed
"STAKED TRAILS MAKE SAFETY SENSE"
ORANGE IDENTIFIES HAZARDS
Did You Know?
Voyageurs National Park experienced a large, lightning-ignited fire on the Kabetogama Peninsula in 2004. This young eagle survived the fire and returned to its former nesting tree in time for park researchers to take this photo!