The Arrowhead Ultra 135 is a grueling event. You can ski, fat tire bike or hike the 135 miles from International Falls to Lake Vermilion near Tower. It takes a special athlete to complete this event carrying all they will need to survive in whatever the weather brings. The ultra marathon begins on Monday, January 30th at Kerry Park in International Falls. Check our calendar of events to see what else is going on, just click on the tab above. Or, if you’d like to learn more about the Arrowhead Ultra 135, click here. Photo courtesy Burgess Eberhardt.
Meanwhile, ice anglers are getting out on Rainy Lake and the latest word is to try for walleye and sauger in the early part of the afternoon. jigging or bobber fishing with a minnow has been working best, and the fish will hit in anywhere from 20 to 30 feet of water. Ice conditions have been a bit of a problem, the bait shops will be able to direct you to the best and most accessible areas.
Voyageurs National Park will be in full swing of their winter series of events sponsored by Voyageurs National Park Association. There will be an opportunity to create your own snowshoes, or a canoe paddle. There’s a family fun day and a day to learn more about hiking throughout the region. If you want to learn more about all the winter series events, just click here.
Get out and explore the Park a bit on snowshoes, they are available the the Rainy Lake Visitor Center on Black Bay. The center is open Wednesdays through Sundays, just stop in to find out about borrowing the snowshoes and hiking the Oberholtzer or other nearby trails.
With the upcoming hoopla about the big finish to the NFL Season, you might consider stopping by the Koochiching County Museums where an annex is devoted to charter NFL Hall-of-Famer Bronko Nagurski. No doubt, the other exhibits are well worth seeing. There are artifacts going back through the lumbering, mining and fur trading eras as well as exhibits devoted to the very early native cultures that inhabited our area.
That’s the tag-line for the Freeze Yer Gizzard Blizzard Run here in International Falls, where it can be cold and you’d have to be bold to sign up for a race. People have been doing it for 37 years now and it’s a big event with runners coming from all over the upper Midwest and Canada. This year, the event will have special significance because our area has issued a challenge to Grapevine, Texas, where the Lake Grapevine Runners and Walkers hold their “Bold in the Cold” 5 and 15k races the same day, January 21, 2017.
Chamber of Commerce President Shawn Mason made a public challenge on Tuesday, January 10. At stake will be bragging rights to the coldest temperature at 9:30 am, greatest number of runners and frostiest facial hair and eyelashes. Grapevine is located a little north of….and between Dallas and Fort Worth. Their Bold in the Cold event may have an edge in numbers since there’s a much larger population within a reasonable drive. However, it’s almost a certainty International Falls will have the lower temperature and produce the frostiest facial hair.
Events for Icebox Days are all listed on our Calendar of Events, just click here. There are a lot of fun events in addition to the Freeze yer Gizzard Blizzard Run.
Lake Grapevine looks like a very inviting place, and I’m sure a fish or two are caught there regularly. Here in International Falls though, our anglers are walking on water to catch walleye and crappie. Snowmobile trails and some of the ice roads are open on Rainy Lake and people with portable ice fishing gear can really get out and explore. Along with the snowmobile trails, the cross country and snowshoe trails are also open and they are a great opportunity to see some winter wildlife while enjoying the quiet solitude and beauty of winter.
In our previous post, we mentioned an upcoming snowshoe lacing workshop at Voyageurs National Park. That’s one of many winter events planned at Voyageurs National Park. again, the full schedule can be found under our events tab, or just click here.
Yes, we have snow, and folks are taking advantage of the winter recreation available and that includes snowshoeing. You say you need snowshoes? Well, there’s a special program at Voyageurs National Park where you will end up with your own very personal pair of snowshoes. Jim DeVries, Senior Naturalist for the Laurentian Environmental Center will guide participants in the art of lacing a pair of snowshoes that are both beautiful and functional. The snowshoe lacing workshop will be from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday, January 28 and requires a $120.00 fee for materials and instruction.
Registration and payment can be made through Voyageurs National Park Association, just click here There are a minimum number of participants required and you need to register before January 13 to ensure materials will arrive on time.
This workshop is part of the “Winter at Voyageurs Event Series” brought to you by the National Park Service and sponsored by VNPA. Their series of events is included in our calendar of events which is accessible at the top of this page. Just click on the “events” tab. If you wish, you can visit their website to see the events with a click here.
Meanwhile, snowmobilers and skiers are hitting their trails and finding good conditions. The green trail on Rainy Lake and on to the Kabetogama and Ash River communities is open and staked. International Voyageurs Snowmobile Club has had their groomers out steadily with the recent snows. You’ll find the latest trail reports posted on their website, at www.ridetheborder.com
Ice anglers are also getting out and word is the walleye and crappie fishing has been good using jigs and minnows. Snowmobiles and portable gear will allow you to check out many of the best areas and remain mobile. With the ability to move around comes the responsibility to be safe. Know the ice conditions and put safety first at all times.