Winter Wonderland: Activities for a Midwest Winter

by | Oct 5, 2022 | Outdoor Adventure

The Midwest of the United States is known for experiencing all four seasons throughout the year, but in the winter, some of the greatest activities in the area are on full display. This time of year provides beautiful scenery, exciting adventures, and awe-inspiring weather for both visitors and those who call the Midwest “home.”  

Whether it’s for an extended vacation or just a weekend getaway, there’s plenty to do during your winter escape. Here are a few ideas to get you started. 

Snowshoeing

If there’s one thing that the Midwest gets a lot of each year, it’s snow. Minnesota alone can get up to 70 inches of snow on average. This doesn’t stop many from getting out and experiencing it, and one of the many activities that people do during this time is snowshoeing. 

Snowshoeing is a type of hiking that involves trekking across snow with the assistance of footwear that allows you to displace your weight over a larger area. In other words, it’s easier and quicker to glide across the snow than if you were hiking in regular snow boots. Because of its large accessibility to most people, snowshoeing is a popular and fun sport for the whole family to enjoy together, regardless of athletic ability. 

The wilderness and outdoors of the Midwest have no shortage of great places to go snowshoeing. Because the terrain is relatively flat and wooded, there are plenty of designated areas that provide incredible landscapes to enjoy with your friends and family. Check out some of the best places to visit across the region here. 

Snowmobiling

According to the International Snowmobile Manufacturer’s Association, there are over 1.1 million registered snowmobiles in the United States alone, and a large portion of those vehicles are at home in the Midwest. Snowmobiling is an incredibly popular recreational activity in the region because, just like with snowshoeing, the terrain is flat, wide open, and beautiful all at the same time. 

There are hundreds of trails just waiting to be explored on the back of a snowmobile. Looking for one that will fit your skill level? Check out this helpful guide. 

Ice Skating

The winter temperatures in the Midwest can be brutal, with temperatures regularly being below zero in many parts. With the cold temperatures, however, comes a unique possibility not available in most climates. Most bodies of water in the Midwest freeze over so thickly that ice skating on the surface of lakes and ponds is a normal tradition for wintertime events. 

When deciding to participate in ice skating, use safety precautions!

  • Wear appropriate clothing including coats and scarves, not only for warmth but for padding as well.
  • Make sure that you and any participants have helmets to wear in case of a crash.
  • Always make sure that the ice is thick enough to support your body weight. The last thing you want to do is plunge into lake water when the temperature is below zero!
  • Take care of your skates to avoid injury.

Looking for some of the best-rated spots in Michigan to get some skating in? Check out this helpful list.

Experience winter at its finest.

It’s been said that there is no better place to experience winter in the United States than the Midwest. The temperatures might be freezing, but the scenery is beautiful, the activities are exciting, and the memories will last a lifetime. What will you be doing the next time you find yourself in the area? 

Let’s spread some more Midwest love! Read our post on the best national parks in Minnesota, here.

Someone holds a paper airplane with the sun glaring in the background.
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