Winter Recreation Equipment Rentals

Two people gliding across a frozen lake on cross country skis
Cross country skiers glide across a section of frozen lake on a winter trail in Voyageurs National Park.

NPS Photo

Whether your sense of adventure has you sticking to groomed trails or striking out across vast open stretches of fresh snow on frozen lakes, you can now make advanced online reservations for snowshoes and skis to help you experience the winter wonders of Voyageurs National Park!

Visitor Center Hours of Operation

The Rainy Lake Visitor Center will be open for winter hours of operation every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., beginning January 5, 2024. Winter equipment rentals are available during these times only.


Winter Equipment Rental Options

Traditional Wooden Snowshoes

Snowshoe styles at VNP

Snowshoe Types

Traditional snowshoes come in several different styles. We provide three unique types at the Rainy Lake Visitor Center that are each ideal for trekking in certain environments. Try out each type on a different kind of winter adventure! Learn about their differences below:

  • Ojibwe: Their long and thin shape allow for a normal walking gate. A pointed front tip is curled upward to help keep your shoe from digging into the snow, and a thin tail glides as you drag your heel. They are especially good for wide open areas such as frozen lakes or fields (upper left in photo).
  • Bear Paw: These are best in heavily forested areas, as their short oval shape makes tight turns and climbing hills easier. They are wide and require bow-legged walking (bottom image in photo).
  • Huron: These are a cross between the Ojibwe and bear paw styles. They have an Ojibwe-style tail for an easier glide, but a rounded front like bear paw. They are designed for a mixed-terrain environment (upper right in photo).
Ski equipment at the RLVC

Cross Country Skis

  • Skis, boots, and poles available
  • Varied sizes to fit small child through adult
  • Not sure what sizes you need? Visitor center staff can help you find a combination of boots, skis, and poles that work for you!

Important Note on Sizing

Due to the wide range of sizes in ski equipment, and overlap of youth/adult sizes in both skis and snowshoes, inventory of certain sizes may be limited and is not guaranteed. Modifications for a different date can be made free of charge in the event that your size is unavailable.
Please feel free to call the Rainy Lake Visitor Center at (218) 286-5258 on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the winter to inquire about the on-site availability of specific sizes.

Taking a break from skiing at a trailside warming hut

Equipment Rental Fees

Daily Rates

  • $10 per daily rental for adults
  • $5 per daily rental for children 16 & under

Your Fee Dollars at Work

The revenue from this service allows Voyageurs National Park's winter equipment rentals to be a self-sustaining program by going directly toward the maintenance, repair, and replacement of winter recreation equipment as aging inventory becomes damaged and unusable.

Your payment of Winter Equipment Rental fees supports this unique visitor experience and is greatly appreciated!


How to Reserve Rentals Online

  1. Go to theVoyageurs National Park Winter Equipment Rentals page on
  2. In the upper right, Log In to your account or Sign Up to create an account.
  3. Select the date you wish to rent winter quipment
  4. Select the ticket type you need (Snowshoe or Ski / Adult or Youth)
  5. Select the ticket quantity and start time of the chosen rental type. Please note that all rentals are for the full day (10am - 4pm), regardless of when they are picked up or dropped off within the 10 to 4 window.
  6. Click on Request Tickets.
  7. Verify information on the Order Details page, read the Need-to-Know information, and check the box to agree.
  8. Click on Proceed to Cart if done, or click on Continue Shopping and repeat above steps to add more rentals.
  9. Enter payment information and complete transaction.
  10. Be prepared to check out your rental(s) at the Rainy Lake Visitor Center by printing your ticket, saving a screenshot, or having your confirmation email handy.

Visitors snowshoeing near an island on Rainy Lake
Visitors snowshoeing near an island on Rainy Lake


Rental Check-Out & Check-In

  1. At the Rainy Lake Visitor Center, provide your rental order information to front desk staff.
  2. Select a pair of skis or snowshoes for each person in your party with a rental reservation; front desk staff can assist you in finding the right fit.
  3. Winter visitor center hours are from 10 am to 4 pm; the earliest rentals can be checked out is 10 am.
  4. Hit the trails or explore islands on the frozen lakes!
  5. All rentals must be returned by 4 pm, regardless of the time of day they were checked out.
Sun shining through pine tree on the shore of a frozen lake

NPS photo

Hit the Trails!

Many of the park's summer hiking trails transform into scenic winter trails that are maintained for snowshoeing and/or cross country skiing. Visit our trails page to learn which are accessible for winter use.
Like to veer off the beaten path? The wide open stretches of frozen lake surfaces and islands throughout the park offer limitless opportunities for winter exploration!
Regardless of where your adventure takes you, please be sure to read the most recent winter trails report to be prepared for current conditions.

Last updated: January 19, 2024

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Voyageurs National Park Headquarters
360 Hwy 11 East

International Falls, MN 56649



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