Minnesota is known for being the land of 10,000 lakes in the warmer months, but what happens when all of them freeze in the winter? Luckily, there are many great places to go snowboarding here, and they all can help you beat the cold.
I’m a lifelong snowboarder with an endless passion for the sport. I like to get out and travel as often as possible, which means I go on at least a few snowboard trips every season. I’ve been to Minnesota several times and know some great spots to ride there.
This post with spotlight some of the best places to snowboard in Minnesota. I’ll tell you why each of these is worth visiting and provide you with some essential information to help you understand what you can expect.
Let’s jump in.
1. Lutsen Mountains
- Official Website: https://www.lutsen.com/
- Opening Day: November 15 (Average)
- Closing Day: April 22 (Average)
- Best Known For: Large size, good snowfall, solid snowmaking
Lutsen Mountains gets on the top of this list because it’s the largest resort in Minnesota. The region isn’t known for having huge mountains, so a larger resort is great for everyone who lives or visits here.
Still, if you are from the west, this isn’t an enormous mountain. You get a decent vertical drop of just over 800 feet. And there are nearly 100 different runs to explore, offering something for riders of all ability levels to explore.
There are two sweet terrain parks here as well, giving freestyle riders plenty of features to try out and work on their skills. Lutsen also has one of the longest runs in the state, and it’s over a mile in total footage.
The mountain has a good lesson program, so it’s an excellent spot to learn how to ride if you are a beginner. But there isn’t a lot of technical terrains if you are an advanced rider, which might leave you wanting more.
2. Giant’s Ridge
- Official Website: https://www.giantsridge.com/
- Opening Day: November 24 (Average)
- Closing Day: April 1 (Average)
- Best Known For: Family-friendly, good snowfall and snowmaking
Giant’s Ridge is one of Minnesota’s most family-friendly snowboarding spots, so it’s a great spot to bring the whole crew for a day trip or weekend getaway. The resort has an inviting atmosphere, and there is plenty of fun to be had by all.
It’s also relatively close to the town of Duluth, which makes it a favorite snowboarding spot for anyone living there or visiting during the winter months. There are 35 different runs to explore here and a little bit of terrain for every type of rider.
You only have access to five chairlifts, so it’s not an extensive mountain. But that means the family can stay close together and not worry about getting too far spread out as they ride. Adequate snowmaking ensures good coverage all season long.
The vertical drop here isn’t much, so if you are looking for long runs or technical terrain, you will probably be disappointed. But there are other activities such as cross country skiing or snow biking to pursue if you want to.
3. Spirit Mountain
- Official Website: https://www.spiritmt.com/
- Opening Day: November 25 (Average)
- Closing Day: March 19 (Average)
- Best Known For: Easy access, good for beginners
If you live in the Duluth area or are visiting here, Spirit Mountain is the most easily accessible snowboarding spot nearby. This hill sits right on the outskirts of town, making it a favorite destination that doesn’t take much effort to get to.
There are seven lifts at Spirit Mountain, giving you access to its 22 runs. Most of the terrain is best suited for beginner and intermediate riders, so it’s another location where advanced boarders might want to skip.
This is also a good spot for park and freestyle riding, as the resort has several areas dedicated to this type of boarding. Being so close to the city, it can get pretty crowded, but easy access is hard to beat, especially if you are itching to get some turns in.
4. Welch Village
- Official Website: https://www.welchvillage.com/
- Opening Day: December 8 (Average)
- Closing Day: March 25 (Average)
- Best Known For: Close to the twin cities, larger resort
Welch Village is the closest snowboard spot to the Twin Cities, so it’s a great option for anyone living there or flying into Minnesota during the winter months. This easy access allows you to get on the slopes in a short drive.
It’s also one of the larger snowboarding destinations in the state, with nearly 200 acres of rideable terrain for you to explore. There are 50 different trails and 11 lifts, giving you access to all the terrain.
Welch Village can get really crowded, so you might want to plan your visit for a slower time of the week if you can.
5. Coffee Mill
- Official Website: http://www.coffeemillski.com/
- Opening Day: December 17 (Average)
- Closing Day: March 12 (Average)
- Best Known For: Uncrowded, not as cold
If you want to beat the crowds and the weather that can make other resorts in Minnesota less than ideal, Coffee Mill is worth checking out.
This is a smaller resort, but it sits in a natural valley that protects the runs from the bone-sucking wind that can make the already cold Minnesota winters seem a whole lot worse. It’s also an affordable spot with fewer crowds than other locations in the state.
Coffee Mill doesn’t always have the greatest snow conditions, but the resort does a pretty good job of blasting artificial snow to provide adequate coverage all season long.
Here are a few short answers to some of the most frequently asked questions relating to snowboarding in Minnesota.
Does Minnesota have good snowboarding?
Minnesota doesn’t have the same quality of snow as some other popular destinations in the west, but there are still good opportunities to snowboard here. There are a number of hills with good snowmaking that help you get out in the snow as often as possible.
What is the longest ski run in Minnesota?
The longest ski run in Minnesota is around 6,580 feet at Lutsen Mountains resort. This is a little over a mile, and it wraps around the mountain, giving you a pretty long ride. There are several other runs in the state with a somewhat similar length.
How many runs Buck Hill?
Buck Hill has 16 different runs spread across the mountain. It has six green runs, six intermediate blue runs, and four blacks. Even though this isn’t a huge number of runs, it’s still a good number for Minnesota.
Snowboarding in Minnesota can be a lot of fun if you know the best spots to visit. All of the destinations on this list are worth checking out if you live here or are just visiting in the winter. It might be cold in Minnesota, but any day on your board is a good day!About Lorraine