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Scenic St Croix Snowmobile Tour
<img src="images/u/Tours/atlas054tn.gif" width="100" height="100" align="right"> A roll through St. Croix and southern Polk Counties is a winter treat for anyone. But, if you live in the Twin Cities metro-area, it's a double blessing; it's a great ride, and it's just an hour from your front door. Start with an interesting mix of terrain from rolling to downright hilly, add a pair of railbed trails for speed, a casino for lunch, a pair of sparkling state parks for spectacular scenery, and you've got a sure-fire recipe for winter fun. So, limber up the sleds; St. Croix County offers 195 miles of trail, while Polk County adds another 350 miles. Little more than a mile north of Interstate-94, Woodville is a convenient place to park and begin this tour. Just south of town, head east on Corridor Trail #39 toward Wilson, the first destination on this tour. Corridor Trail #39 also runs south on the Wildwood Trail, a six-mile rail-bed trail that joins the Pierce County trail system.Swing north on Corridor Trail #39 just west of Wilson. The highs get higher and the lows lower as the terrain becomes more deeply cut. On the way to Glenwood City you'll pass Glen Hills County Park and its horseshoe-shaped lake. After a pleasant roll over open farmland you'll cross the Polk County line and follow Willow Creek into Clear Lake, a good spot for a pit stop. From Clear Lake, Corridor Trail #39 runs on an abandoned rail bed along Hwy. 63 to Turtle Lake just over the Barron County line. There, the St. Croix Casino welcomes sledders with a special parking area and warming room.At Turtle Lake you'll hop onto the Cat Tail Trail, Corridor Trail #12, for a quick run west to Amery. There, you can opt for a shorter, 140-mile loop by swinging south on Corridor Trail #46, then west on Corridor Trail #18 to Somerset. On the way, you can visit the New Richmond Heritage Center, an 1884 Italianate farmstead that details local history. If you opt for the longer loop, you'll continue west on Corridor Trail #12 as it leaves the flat rail-bed for a rolling mix of farmland, woods and lake country. Near Dresser, you'll pass the slopes of Trollhaugen Ski Area. You can take a spur trail in for a closer look at the skiers and snowboarders from a restaurant overlooking the slopes.North of Dresser you'll get to see what trap rock is all about as you pass an abandoned quarry where this jagged volcanic rock once swelled up through fissures in the earth's crust. This process created walls of rugged stone. It's what St. Croix Falls falls over. You can learn more about it and the other forces that shaped this beautiful terrain at the Ice Age Interpretive Center at Interstate State Park. Additionally, the park offers 2 miles of snowmobile trails and 10 miles of cross-country ski trails. Turning south on Corridor Trail #43, you'll pass a club trail that runs a few miles west into Osceola, the location of a Polaris snowmobile engine factory. You'll see a lot of farmland before and after the appropriately named crossroads village of East Farmington. Near Somerset the trail crosses the Apple River, a popular summer tubing destination. Northwest of Hudson, you can pick-up a spur trail for a side-trip to the edge of 3,155-acre Willow River State Park noted for its lakes waterfalls and panoramic river scenery. The park offers winter camping and ten miles of cross-country ski trails, but alas, no snowmobile trails. As Corridor Trail #43 swings east, you'll sled across roller coaster farmland closely paralleling the busy Union Pacific rail line. Be sure to give the engineer a wave. Along the way you'll pass the friendly little towns of Roberts, Hammond, Baldwin as you head back to the trailhead at Woodville.The snowmobile trails of St. Croix and Polk Counties - your recipe for Wisconsin winter fun. <br><br><a href="http://www.travelwisconsin.com/d2k/images/u/Tours/atlas054.jpg" target="map">Click here for a trail map.</a>