Cold winter weather inspires people to stay indoors more, but there are certain activities that can only be enjoyed in the snow.
Paul Stark, recreation and athletic programmer with Southern Lakes Parks and Recreation, said to embrace the cold and mentioned several winter activities.
“Anyone can find something to do in the winter outside or inside, they just have to start out trying different activities until they figure out what they like best. If you live in Michigan you know that winter comes around every year and lasts for a good part of the year,” Stark said.
One of the most popular spots to sled locally is at the Linden County Park, off Linden Road. The hill is on the north side of the park, next to Byram Lake. Sledders must bring their own sled, and there are picnic tables available.
“Sledding with friends and family is always fun and people are getting great exercise walking back up the hill after a ride down the hill,” Stark said. “Build snowmen and snow forts with your children, shovel off a neighbor’s driveway or sidewalk especially if they are senior citizens or have some type of limitations.”
With the recent blast of cold weather, most local lakes should be strong enough to walk on.
“People love to ice skate and play pond or lake hockey when the ice is safe,” Stark said. “Of course, you cannot go by any frozen lake in Michigan and not see all the ice shanties on the ice. Ice fishing is just as popular as any other winter activity. Those people are some diehard fishermen.”
Downhill skiing and snowboarding
In Groveland Township, Mt. Holly Ski and Snowboard Resort is the closest and most popular downhill ski facility around. While the resort regularly deals with unpredictable weather week by week, the snow status and weather is updated daily on its website, skimtholly.com.
Skiers and snowboarders have more than half a dozen trails to choose from. Go to their website for prices.
“I believe downhill skiing and snowboarding at Mt. Holly and other nearby ski resorts is one of the most popular winter sports. Snowmobiling is also extremely popular in Michigan,” Stark said.
Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing
Huron Meadows Park, a 1,540-acre area just south of Brighton, has an 18-hole green golf course that’s covered with snow in the winter. This makes it an ideal spot for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing, right by Maltby Lake.
It’s one of the few parks in southeast Michigan that offers classic and skate-style groomed cross-country ski trails. With more than 15 miles of classic trails going over easy to moderate terrain, and more than 11 miles of trails groomed for skate-style on rolling hills, this area accommodates skiers of any level.
Trails are groomed regularly, and the tall trees give cover from the wind. The trail is also lit at night, making the trailheads visible any time of day. After you’re done with your workout, pick from the three picnic areas and enjoy a snack and the views.
For snowshoeing, the Morain Fen trail and the Hidden Lake trail are both located south of Hammel Road with three miles of trail. The trailhead for these paths, along with other classic style ski trails, is located next to the Cedar Ridge restroom building, according to metroparks.com. Go to the website for prices.