Winter isn’t something that just happens in Wisconsin: It’s part of who we are. Embracing winter is our way of life, made easier by the bounty of cold-weather activities waiting right outside our door – some of which you can’t find just anywhere! This winter, bundle up and try your hand at these unique Wisconsin winter sports.
Looking to escape cabin fever without leaving your dog at home? Luckily, Scandinavians were thinking ahead for you. While skijoring, the skier is connected to a dog via a harness for a faster form of cross-country skiing. Even better, your furry friend can help bear the brunt of the endurance cross-country skiing requires.
Did you know Wisconsin boasts some of the most prestigious speedskating facilities out there? Milwaukee is home to the Pettit National Ice Center, which is the official training facility for the U.S. Olympic team. We’ve had our successes on the Olympic stage, like gold medals for skaters Eric and Beth Heiden, Bonnie Blair and Casey FitzRandolph, but the Pettit isn’t just for those seeking international glory. The 400-meter Olympic Oval is open year-round and open to the public.
Fat Tire Biking
They make cars specific for winter driving in snowy areas, and in Wisconsin, they do the same for bikes. Winter fat biking is a trend that gets riders out on snow-covered paths with extra-wide rims and low-pressure tires to cruise across the soft winter terrain.
Be sure to refer to the Department of Natural Resources to see which trails are designated for the sport, and if you’re really feeling adventurous, check out the Bike Across the Bay event in Washburn, where you can ride your bike across frozen Lake Superior.
You don’t have to borrow a drone to get a bird’s eye view of snow-covered canopies and trees. Instead, head to Wisconsin Dells for a pair of ziplining experiences only a cold-weather destination can offer. Vertical Illusions offers a tour that begins at Chimney Rock Park, flying you through Aspen Grove and over Friendship Lake Canyon. You can also snowshoe to the summit if the weather calls for it. BigFoot Zipline Tours is also open year-round and provides spectacular views of Northwoods pines on seven separate lines.
Just as fun to watch if you aren’t up for gliding 100 MPH across a frozen lake, this sport is like Formula 1, Wisconsin style. The boats, propelled by wind-driven sails, glide across the ice at speeds that can be six-times that of the wind. Catch it on Geneva Lake, Lake Winnebago in Central Wisconsin, or Lakes Mendota and Monona in Madison.
Keep up-to-date on all things winter weather with the Wisconsin Snow Report, featuring updated ski, snowboard and snowmobile conditions from every corner of the state!