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Trail Report – : Ely, Minnesota – January 31, 2023

Ely, MN Chamber of Commerce

Reporter:Ely Chamber of Commerce/Explore MN Visitor Center
Trail Conditions: Excellent
Snow Cover: 21 Inches
Date of Report: January 31, 2023
Area Report:

Ely Area Trail Conditions

January 31, 2023

Please use caution on the trails and stay to the right. There is active logging happening on a number of spots throughout the Grant-in-Aid and State Trail system. In those areas, slow down and give trucks and logging equipment space. No Motorized Vehicles other than snowmobiles are allowed on State Trails or Grant-in-Aid snowmobile trails. Continue to monitor conditions online at 


Taconite State Trail: The entire Taconite is groomed and in good condition. We were able to groom across the remaining wet/thin ice sections in the Pfeiffer Lake area today.  

Snow: 16-26 inches with a base of 1-4 inches. Groomed: Yes Condition: Good

Arrowhead State Trail: The Arrowhead is groomed and in good condition. There remains a 1-2 mile stretch of ungroomed trail south of the Buyck/VRT GIA trail, this is due to a couple of beaver ponds that have remained too thin for grooming equipment to cross. We anticipate having that segment groomed by this coming weekend. There also remain two spots on the northern end of the trail that has caused some trouble for groomers and are signed and flagged. Any other, especially caution-worthy spots, will be flagged or signed as needed.  

Along with the DNR trail conditions website, continue to monitor these clubs’ websites ( & for the most current Arrowhead State Trail conditions.

Arrowhead Trail Snow: 14-25 inches of snow with a base of 1-4 inches. Groomed: Yes Condition: Good

Putnam/Fishing Lakes Trails: The entire trail is fully groomed as of late last week, and it will be groomed again before this weekend. The Putnam has some brush hanging into the trail in a couple of spots, but the trail has improved dramatically from a week ago and is in fair condition. The Fishing Lakes trail has been groomed a bit more and is in good condition.   

Lake Vermilion Soudan Underground Mine State Park Tails: These trails are groomed and in poor to good condition. The Miner’s loop has quite a bit of brush hanging into the trail. We will be working on knocking that back.

Babbitt Birch Lake Plantation: Babbitt golf course is groomed for skate and classic skiing and is in excellent condition. The Babbitt Birch Lake Plantation is groomed for classic skiing and in excellent condition. 

Bear Head Lake State Park: Cross country ski track set on Friday, January 27th, with excellent results on the Norberg Trail, campground loops, and the Beach Trail. The winds of January may have caused snow to drift off of Bear Head Lake to the Beach Trail, so use caution. Norberg Trail winds its way through several large stands of white and Norway pines while showcasing our names sake, Bear Head Lake, and one of our designated trout lakes, Norberg. Norberg Loop is our most challenging groomed ski trail with several steep hills.

Skiing Base: 10 inches. Conditions: Good. Groomed: Excellent

Snowmobiling conditions: Excellent. Groomed Yes.  Base: 8 inches.