Visitors Enjoy Snow-Covered Hartley Nature Center

The Harley Nature Center has many different trails so visitors can go skiing, biking, hiking and more.

DULUTH, Minn. – After Duluth received over eight inches of snow the other week, Northlanders are out taking advantage of the conditions at the Hartley Nature Center.

“Winter’s my favorite season so just always enjoyed the peaceful desolation of winter and being up here there’s so many outdoor things to do even in the winter, it’s a lot of fun,” Duluth resident Jared White said.

“The park itself, it’s been as busy as we’ve ever seen it. People are just out enjoying the trails. There’s about 5 kilometres of cross country ski trails here at the park that the city of Duluth grooms. Now that we actually have some snow on the ground, the skiing’s been great the last couple of days,” director of operations at the Hartley Nature Center Matt Willey added.

And all of the new snow from that winter storm has made the trails even better.

“It was a little icy, the start of the season was a little slow, we just hadn’t had a lot of snow, we had a lot of melting and re-freezing, but now that we’ve gotten this snow, the trails are in really great shape,” Willey said.

There are many different trails, giving visitors several options to enjoy the park.

“There’s also about 10 miles or so of multi-use trails that the COGS grooms for fat biking or for hiking, there’s a lot of folks that get out their snowshoeing on those trails,” Willey said.

Like most other places, Hartley Nature Center has had to make adjustments to still give people the chance to enjoy the outdoors.

“Planning for it, it’s been a challenge, it’s hard to predict what it’s going to look like come March, April, sometimes it’s even hard to predict what it’s going to look like a week from now. So it’s been a challenge,” Willey added.

And as the pandemic continues, the center works to be a spot that people enjoy all winter long.

“I think it’s really important that people can get outside and get some fresh air and do stuff. Being in a place where outdoor activities are so accessible has been really beneficial for my family during this time,” White said.

“A place where people can go and escape. There’s portions of this park where when you’re in it, you don’t feel like you’re in town, the trails are always maintained really well, the snow is great and it’s just a beautiful place to get out and explore,” Willey added.

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