Paying the piper: Skiers fork over bucks for groomed trails

  • Updated: January 7, 2014 - 7:53 PM

navigating the trails

There is no such thing as a free lunch, and these days there’s no such thing as a free cross-country trail, either.

Nearly all trail systems charge for a pass, and the funds are used for trail grooming. But the system can be confusing. If you live in Minneapolis, for example, and want to ski at Theodore Wirth Park, plus a Three Rivers Park District park such as Hyland Lake in Bloomington, and perhaps occasionally a state park such as William O’Brien, you’ll need to buy three different passes totaling $115.

The Three Rivers Park District yearly pass is $50; the Minneapolis season pass is $45; and a seasonal state trail pass to access 135 ski trails, including all those in state parks, costs $20. Other trails around the state also charge fees. (Dakota County charges $20 for a seasonal cross-country ski pass.)

Last year, the DNR sold about 15,000 ski passes, Minneapolis sold around 8,000, and Three Rivers Park District sold about 6,500 seasonal passes. Pass sales rise in snowy winters.

No one is sure how many Minnesotans ski cross-country, but a 2004 DNR survey estimated the number at 227,000.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

Click here to send us your hunting or fishing photos – and to see what others are showing off from around the region.


Toronto - LP: A. Loup 4 FINAL
Cleveland - WP: J. Outman 6
LA Angels - LP: H. Santiago 1 FINAL
Detroit - WP: R. Porcello 2
Atlanta - LP: G. Schlosser 3 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: J. Valverde 4
Seattle - LP: T. Wilhelmsen 2 FINAL
Miami - WP: M. Dunn 3
St. Louis - LP: S. Maness 2 FINAL
Washington - WP: R. Soriano 3
Milwaukee - WP: Z. Duke 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh - LP: J. Gomez 2
NY Yankees - WP: P. Claiborne 5 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: H. Bell 1
Minnesota - WP: P. Hughes 8 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: Y. Ventura 3
Cincinnati - WP: H. Bailey 8 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: C. Villanueva 2
Chicago WSox - WP: E. Johnson 16 FINAL
Texas - LP: R. Ross Jr. 2
Houston - LP: B. Peacock 1 FINAL
Oakland - WP: J. Chavez 4
Philadelphia - WP: J. Diekman 10 FINAL
Colorado - LP: M. Belisle 9
San Francisco - WP: T. Lincecum 4 FINAL
San Diego - LP: R. Erlin 3
Arizona - LP: J. Collmenter 1 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: J. Wright 4
Baltimore 5 Bottom 6th Inning
Boston 3
Dallas 85 FINAL
San Antonio 90
Charlotte 88 FINAL
Miami 99
Washington 78 4th Qtr 7:25
Chicago 81
Portland 8:30 PM
Philadelphia 4 FINAL
NY Rangers 2
Detroit 1 FINAL
Boston 4
Tampa Bay 1 3rd Prd
Montreal 2
Los Angeles 9:00 PM
San Jose
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Should the lake where the albino muskie was caught remain a mystery?

Weekly Question