A Day Ride To Devil Track Resort
by Scott A. Sumner
It was a brisk Saturday morning around 9am in January when my friend Albert picked me and my sled up for the 1 hour drive to Grand Portage to meet 5 other riders for a day of snowmobiling. There was fresh snow on the ground from the night before so I knew it would be a good day to ride. We live in a beautiful part of the world and the countryside we
were about to enter is really spectacular. Our destination today would be the Devil Track Resort located on Devil Track Lake in Grand Marais, Minnesota on the Beautiful North Shore. The ride up would be about 55 miles there on the trails adjacent to Grand Portage.
You have a large parking area to park your truck and trailer and then can put your riding gear on in the Grand Portage Lodge & Casino lobby. It was nice to see so many riders in the area getting ready for their day. It reminded me of the days gone past in Thunder Bay. You can ride the over 100 miles of groomed Grand Portage trails at no charge which is quite an attraction for Thunder Bay people I am sure. Also the Minnesota trail system has a trail fee charge of $16, which is quite reasonable as well. I am one of the reported 120 trail permits holders of the Thunder Bay Adventure OFSC trails which can be purchased for $200 before December 1st and for $250 after that time. I hope that number can increase and more riders can get out on these trails as well. It would increase the number of people to ride with at home!
The ride up to Devil Track Resort was fun. The scenery is beautiful and riding your snowmobile in the middle of nature is one of the things I like about the sport the most. We are lucky to be able to experience this and cover so much ground with today’s high tech machines. On the trail it was fun to stop and talk to other riders about their sleds. One young rider from Dryden, Ontario was out with his buddies on a 2011 Ski Doo Renegade 800 Etec that he had just picked up. At a cost of some $16000 it was nice to see someone so interested in the sport.
One of the best parts of a day ride like this for me is LIUNCH! Our group pulled into the Devil Track Resort to find many other riders. I was able to have a great Philly Cheese Steak sandwich in front of their fireplace and spend some time talking about snowmobiling. The adjacent Devil Track General Store had gas readily available and after a quick fill up we were off for the return trip to Grand Portage. One of my favourite spots on the trail is about 10 miles out from Grand Portage where the trail over looks a valley from elevation. It is a very pretty
It was time to load up the sleds and make the trip back to Thunder Bay. The border crossing people both on the way up and back were very friendly. Remember to bring your passport, which seems unusual to me when you are riding snowmobiles for the day!