Michigan is a top destination for winter recreation. Harbor Country and nearby towns in southwest Michigan offer lots of places for playing in the snow. There are parks, preserves and trails to explore, extreme adventures like surfing Lake Michigan to be had, and winter sports for the whole family to enjoy. Discover your favorite place from the list below!
Cross Country Skiing, Snowshoeing and Hiking
Chikaming Township Parks & Preserves in Harbert and Three Oaks offer trails through woodlands and prairies.
Chikaming Open Lands manages the trails at Robinson Preserve in Lakeside, Jens Jensen Preserve in Sawyer and Turtle Creek Preserve in New Buffalo.
Grand Mere State Park in Stevensville is a 371 acre natural area and one of the area’s most popular cross country ski sites. There is no ski rental.
Love Creek County Park in Berrien Springs has groomed trails for skiing with separate trails for snowshoeing and hiking. There is also a 3 mile bike trail for fat tire biking. Ski, snowshoe and bike rental available.
Madeline Bertrand County Park in Niles has groomed ski trails that are lighted for night skiing. Ski and snowshoe rental available.
Sarett Nature Center in Benton Harbor offers ski lessons, ski and snowshoe rentals, and nature tours.
Warren Dunes State Park in Sawyer has 1,950 acres of trails, dunes and beach for cross country skiing and hiking, tubing and tobagganing. No onsite rentals.
Sledding & Ice Skating
Oselka Park in New Buffalo, located just west of the New Buffalo High School has a small sledding hill and ice rink.
Harbert Community Park in Harbert has an ice rink for skating and skate rentals.
New Troy Community Center in New Troy has a sledding hill between the community center and the park
The John & Dede Howard Ice Arena in St. Joseph is a partially enclosed ice rink with concessions, skate rentals and a warming shelter
Snowmobile trails are open from New Buffalo to Galien. The trail from Galien also extends into Indiana. The trails are well marked with a trailhead in Three Oaks and one in Galien.
Visit www.fishweb.com/recreation/snowmobile/trails/swl.html for updates on trail conditions. Snowmobiles must be registered and display a 3 year registration decal as well as a current trail user permit decal.
In the State of Michigan there is a $25 charge for a trail users fee. This permit is good from October 1- September 30. Permits may be purchased at Knoll Bros Gas Station or Captain Cook’s Sports in New Buffalo. The Featherbone Restaurant & Lounge in Three Oaks or the Bungalow Inn in Galien provide snowmobile trail information. You may also purchase a permit by calling the Michigan Snowmobile Association at 269-361-2285.
There are several downhill ski areas approximately 1 hour drive from Harbor Country for skiing and snowboarding. All offer lessons and rentals and many have full amenities, including lodging.
Bittersweet Resort in Kalamazoo
Swiss Valley in Jones
Timber Ridge Ski Area in Gobles