Ski and Snowshoe TrailsCross-Country Ski and Snowshoe Trails

Enjoy eight miles of cross-country ski and 11 miles of snowshoe trails that meander along 1,200-plus acres of woodland, prairie and open fields. The Arboretum offers a variety of trails to accommodate a range of skill levels. The trails are groomed when there is an adequate base of snow. Ski trails begin and end at the east end of the Snyder Building in the staff parking lot. For current trail conditions, please see the Seasonal Alerts section on our home page, or call 612-625-9793.


Green Heron Trail Loop (2.0K)
Positioned at the entry/exit point, Green Heron Trail provides access to all other trails.

North Ridge Trail Loop (1.7K)
One climb and one downhill. Ski through open fields, tree collections and maple woods.

South Ridge Trail Loop (1.7K)
Two hills to climb and one long downhill through fields, wetlands, oak collection and rhododendrom garden.

Ridge Trail (1.6K)
More difficult trail through a mature woods with large oak and basswood trees and a few challenging hills.

Prairie Trail (4.5K)
Gently rolling trail through tree collection to the prairie and return.

Lost Pond Trail (1.0K)
Level trail through maple and basswood forest.

To download a map of the ski and snowshoe trails, click here.


The Arboretum does not have a ski patrol or staff available to ski to an emergency on the trails. We strongly recommend that you do not ski alone.

In case of emergency, call 911 or if able able, go to the Oswald Visitor Center Information Desk. The Arboretum requires that you ski during times that the Visitor Center is open.

Special Cross-Country Ski Event:

Especially for women skiers! Go cross-country skiing on Arboretum trails with Hoigaard's Outdoor Women Club, Saturday, January 16 (pending snow conditions), 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Meet in Snyder Bldg. lobby to checkin. Bring your own skis or get a discount on ski rental at Hoigaard's (depending on availability) when you reserve/pay in advance-- contact


The Oswald Visitor Center, Snyder Building and Gift & Garden Store are open every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas. The Arboretum Cafe serves hot beverages and lunch daily.

Oswald Visitor Center and Snyder Building winter hours:
Monday-Saturday 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Gift & Garden Store winter hours:
Monday-Saturday 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Sunday 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Cafe Winter hours:
Monday-Saturday 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Ski and Snowshoe Box


Ski trails now start at Ordway Picnic Shelter. Parking available at Ordway Parking lot, please follow signs; Three Mile Drive is closed for the season except to access Ordway parking.


$6.50 for 1st hour
$4.50 for each additional hour

Monday-Saturday 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Snowshoes must be returned by 4 p.m.


  • Please do not hike, snowshoe or bring sleds or dogs on ski trails as damage to the trail will result.
  • There are separate routes for snowshoeing/hiking.
  • Please stay on the groomed trails and follow directional signs.
  • Arboretum trails a designed and groomed for traditional skiing only--no skate-skiing.
  • The Arboretum is a research facility, so plants must remain undisturbed. The trail of even one skier can damage plants.