When you’ve got a little cabin fever and are looking for a different way to play outside, give snowshoeing a try. Snowshoeing is easy to learn—all you have to do is walk!—so get the family geared up and head out to explore a different side of Thunder Bay.
Did you know Loch Lomond Ski Area also has a 2.5 km loop snowshoe trail? A trail pass is $10 per person, and you can rent snowshoes, including kid sizes, for $11. The trail is only slightly hilly and zigs and zags through tall birch and poplar trees. There are a number of maps en route, and it’s easy to stay on the trail. Stop at “Mountain View” to watch skiers zipping down one of the ski runs, or check out “Lookout Point” to take in a view of the flat-topped mountain range as it starts to make it way into the Slate River Valley.
Kamview Nordic Centre
Kamview has a beautiful snowshoe trail in addition to its awesome cross country ski trails. You can get a day pass for the family for about $30 (kids 5 and under are free), and you can rent snowshoes for $11, including kid sizes, at the chalet. Pick up a trail map while you’re there because there aren’t trail maps en route. The trail, called “Wilderness Wander,” is located on the south side of the centre. (Your first steps will make you wonder if you’re in someone’s back yard, but no worries, you’re on the right track.) Follow the flagging tape markers and snowshoe symbol signs. The 4.4km trail winds through mixed forest and a couple beaver ponds and has several loops so you can make your outing longer or shorter if you want. Then back at the chalet, fuel up with soup, chili or a homemade cookie the size of your head.
Mills Block Forest
If a family snowshoe isn’t complete without the family pooch, Mills Block Forest is a popular dog-walking spot. (Just remember to keep your dog leashed and to scoop the poop.) The 284-hectare conservation area is part of the Lakehead Region Conservation Authority, about a 10-minute drive west of Hwy 11-17. The 4km loop trail takes you through mixed forest, where you can catch sight of Lake Superior in the distance. If your family is doing the Big Boreal Adventure nature scavenger hunt, you can find a marker along this trail too.
Note: You can rent kid and adult snowshoes by the hour, day and weekend at Chaltrek. Check the Outdoor Equipment Depot at Lakehead University and Wilderness Supply for rentals in adult-only sizes.
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