The Rapidian

Snowy Doings Within Grand Rapids Bounds

Enjoy our wondrous snowflake covered earth to the fullest this year!
Choose to love the snow!

Choose to love the snow! /Tonia Hauser

Helpful links

Check out a list of Kent County Trails.

Check out snowshoe & ski rentals at Bill and Paul's.

To those who find contentment in deeply breathing Michigan’s fresh, icy air, happy to frolic outside over these winterous months — trust that you’re not alone in your bliss! Grab a friend and slide on over to one of these great locations to appreciate some good ‘ol fashion wintertime delight. 

 

Snowshoeing. Experience Michigan’s trails in a new way, appreciating their freshly snow-covered and ice-lined glories. 

  • North Country Trail provides 70 miles miles of trekking from Southern Kent County to Newaygo. However, the trail itself totals 4,600 miles in length, stretching across seven states. This local hike could easily expand into something far greater, if planned right. Free access.
  • Blandford Nature Center, an acclaimed outdoor enthusiast's favorite, has 8 scenic trails totaling four miles. Admission is free for members and $3 for non-members. For the month of January, the Grand Rapids Children's Museum and Blandford are participating in a "membership exchange". This means GRCM members get into Blandford for free, and vise versa. When there is at least 6 inches of snow cover, snowshoe rentals are available at $5 for members and $6 for nonmembers.
  • Robinette's provides 4.5 miles of trails wandering throughout their orchard. Access is free, but they do have a waiver which they expect guests to sign before using the trails on their property. The waiver is located inside their apple haus, whose winter hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. And, just throwing it out there - Robinette's Winery is open Tuesday-Saturday from 10 a.m. -5 p.m.! Whether you're popping in before the trek or taking a break, there's something I remember hearing about a little wine keeping you warm... (: Tastings of 6 Robinette's originals is just $3 per person, $5 per couple, and free if you bring the tasting glasses back from a previous visit!

**Snowshoe rentals are also available at Bill and Paul’s on East Paris for $17/day.**

 

Cross-Country Skiing. An appreciation for our earth’s topography and its varying landscape is sure to be found within this snowy activity.

  • Provin Trails Park offers two miles of hilly trails through West Michigan’s woodlands. The hills' steepness vary greatly and provide terrain for the beginner to the advanced. Located on the Northeast side of town, off of 4 Mile Rd.
  • Donald Lamoreaux Park is also located in Northeast Grand Rapids, providing five miles of fairly flat trails that meander through the woods along the Grand River. When conditions are right for you, don’t hesitate! This park provides great cross-country skiing for both beginner and intermediate skill levels.
  • Palmer Park provides five miles of groomed trail for skiers. The golf course’s fairways offer both open and wooded trails with a flatter terrain accompanied by modestly rolling hills and a couple short-but-steep inclines. Warm up in the clubhouse while you reenergize with hot drinks and snacks, available for purchase. Located on the Southwest side, the park offers ski rentals on site. Access to these scenic and well-kept trails is just $2 per person.

For a full list of Kent County trails, visit the Kent County website.

 

Sledding. Whether you’re taking the kids or rediscovering your inner youth, bring a thermos of hot cocoa. You’ll thank me later.

  • Richmond Hills Park is located in Northwest Grand Rapids and is typically known for its grand sledding hills this time of year. Richmond Hills is also the host of the annual, two-week WinterWest festival. In years past, the festival has offered a temporary ice rink for both a hockey tournament and leisurely skating. Free access.
  • Johnson Park is located on the Southwest side of town in Walker, offering a sledding hill that'll evoke screams and bring smiles to everyone's rosy faces. Free access.
  • Highland Park. Located in Northeast Grand Rapids, this “unofficial” sledding hill is a lesser known local’s favorite that surely won't disappoint. Free access.

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