Snowshoeing is the perfect way to explore the sights and sounds of the Keweenaw’s great outdoors. Whether you’re seeking solitude, craving adventure, or just looking to get in a good workout, the Keweenaw’s diverse terrain and miles of picturesque trails will challenge and satisfy your mind, body, and soul.
A challenging trek, Mount Baldy is in Eagle Harbor, Michigan, off US-41. There is a designated parking area, near the Helmut & Candis Stern Preserve sign. The trailhead is directly north of the parking area. It’s a strenuous, mostly uphill hike to the top of Mount Baldy. But, the jaw-dropping views when you reach the summit, 730-feet above Lake Superior, is so worth it.
The Michigan Tech and Nara Trail System easily accommodates all skill and ability levels. Snowshoe trails include Isle Royale, Superior Loop, Tolkien Trails, and River Loop. Trail maps available here. Enrolled Michigan Tech students use the trails at no charge. A trail membership or day pass for those ages 12+ is needed for all other users, more info here.
Swedetown Trails has three marked snowshoe trails. Bearpaw Loop starts at Swedetown Chalet with a vista of the Village of Calumet with its many church spires. The Chalet, open daily, has plowed parking, trail maps, a water bottle filling fountain, and restrooms. Creek Trail is more remote and starts at trail at 22500 Highway M203. Descending to a creek, it passes some unusually large specimens of pine. Lastly, Swedetown’s Multi-use Trails are where dogs are allowed. These trails are packed by snowmobiles for easy hiking. The trailhead with plowed parking is at 24984 Woodland Rd. There is lots of wildlife sign and hikers are rewarded with a winter view of a large bog. Trail Maps are located here.
The Chassell Trails can be found on the corner of 2nd and Hancock Street. Parking is available one block west of US-41 in Chassell on Hancock Street at the Chassell Heritage Center, and on Archambeau Road. Around 7 beautiful miles of even terrain make this an ideal spot for beginners. Looking for a little extra workout? Tryout the trailside fitness equipment as you make your way to really get that heart rate up!
About 2-miles north of the Marsin Nature Center is North Houghton Canal Park. You can park at the end, off to the side, of Houghton Canal Road or at the end of the turn-off road. It’s about ¼ mile-1/2 mile hike to get to where you have views of Lake Superior and the North Entry Lighthouse. Explore over 177 acres. Relax and enjoy the sounds of ice crackling and waves gently hitting the breakwater.
This off-the-beaten path destination is located off Houghton Canal Road. The Marsin Nature Area has beautiful hardwoods and various fauna and flora. There are several short trails that lead across a small brook and along the outskirts of the property. It’s a great place for the entire family to enjoy snowshoeing.
The Maasto Hiihto & Churning Rapids trails, located in Hancock, are the area’s only 100% dog-friendly trails. There are two trailheads, one located on Tomasi Road and the other at the Houghton County Fairgrounds. The Swedetown Creek Gorge is the highlight of these trails.
Located on Lakeshore Drive in Calumet, Calumet Waterworks is a beautiful, quiet park with a stunning shoreline. The park offers magnificent views of Lake Superior with frequent freighter sightings. Snowshoeing along the shore, you’ll hear the crunching of snow beneath your feet and the relaxing sounds of Superior washing against the rocks.
The Keweenaw Mountain Lodge offers 10 km of groomed trails perfect for beginners on the site of the historic resort at the tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula. For those looking for a more backcountry experience, try out their hok ski’s (a combination of ski and snowshoe) and enjoy the ungroomed trails that explore forested acres that feature Brockway Mountain as a scenic backdrop.
The Copper Harbor Pathway offers over 9 scenic miles of trails that wind through the Keweenaw’s old-growth boreal forests. A beautiful, well-loved trail system that offers unique vantage points of the dense woodland and Lake Superior. The trailhead is located at the Copper Harbor Welcome Center.
Mount Bohemia is an all-season resort with lodging facilities, restaurant/bar, and over 12 miles of trails to explore. Snowshoe rentals are $15 a day.
During the winter months, McLain State Park transforms into a magical winter wonderland. Snowshoe through the woods or along the two miles of Lake Superior’s rocky shoreline where you will see stunning ice formations and “ice volcanoes”! What are ice volcanoes? “An unusual feature of Lake Superior are ice volcanoes. They form above sand bars and reefs near the lakeshore as ice shelves build during cold periods.” (Keweenaw Geoheritage)
You can buy or rent snowshoes at the following locations:
Down Wind Sports located in downtown Houghton offers everything from popular brand name apparel and footwear (e.g. Keen, Patagonia, Prana, Salomon) to Hydro Flask water bottles, first aid kids, snowshoes, and more.
Keweenaw Mountain Lodge is located in scenic Copper Harbor. The lodge offers snowshoe rentals, in addition to cross country skis and hok skis (a snowshoe/ski combination great for backcountry adventures).
Leave no trace
Bring out whatever you brought in.
Stay on designated trails.
Vast wilderness combined with epic snow. Strap on some snowshoes and explore these nature areas and trail systems.