Sleeping Giant Loppet: Trail Conditions

Saturday, February 24th 2018    Report from Christian Carl - Park Superintendent

As of February 24th, only the 20km loop around Marie Louise Lake has been groomed after the heavy snowfall the park received on Friday February 23rd. This 20km loop is a bit soft and will be groomed throughout next week to ensure ideal conditions for the 41st annual Sleeping Giant Loppet on Saturday March 3rd, 2018. The upper 30km loop (Pickerel Lake Trail and Burma Trail) has not been recently groomed and is covered by approximately 20cm of fresh powder waiting to be prepped for race day. The 10km Ferns Lake Loop has not been recently groomed and will likely take a back seat for the next week since our priority will be focussed on the Loppet trails. The Thunder Bay Lookout Road from Rita Lake to the Lookout (18.4km round-trip) has not been recently groomed and will also not receive any attention until after the Loppet. Please note that the Marie Louise Lake Campground (including the Gatehouse and Visitor Centre) is presently closed for the season. Skiers are welcome to park in-front of the Marie Louise Lake Gatehouse and walk 100 metres past the closed gate to where the 20km loop intersects the road. A valid Ontario Parks vehicle permit OR a Thunder Bay Nordic Trails Park Pass must be displayed on the dash of all vehicles. Parking to access the ski trails is also available at Rita Lake. Please do not park along Highway 587. Call the Thunder Bay SnowPhone Hotline for current trail conditions at 807-285-0801 or call the Sleeping Giant Park office at 807-977-2526 for the most up to date information. We have Family Cabin rentals available year round which can be reserved by calling 1-888-668-7275.

Be sure to call the CRC Communications Thunder Bay Nordic Trails 24 - Hour "Snow Phone"at 807-285-0801 for daily updated trail reports.

The Visitors' Centre is no longer open on weekends but skiers can still park at the Marie Louise Campground gatehouse and ski the trails from that location. Skiers can also access the trails from Rita Lake where an in-out course of any distance may be skied or the 30km loop including the Burma and Pickerel Lake trails can be completed.  The trails will be closed for a period of time prior to the Loppet for final grooming. Check the snow phone at 807-285-0801 for details or the Thunder Bay Nordic Trails website at

REMEMBER: If you are a Thunder Bay Nordic Trails member you must display your membership card on the dash of your vehicle while in the park. Non-members must purchase a day permit at the Joeboy Lake self serve fee station located just inside the park boundary.

To check out a map of the 2018 course, click here.