Perhaps you think that winter is only a time for snowmobiles. Think Again! Think cross country skiing in Newberry, only 60 miles from the Mackinac Bridge. Step into a pair of boots and skis, move onto some groomed ski trails and try that rhythmic swishing glide that carries you easily through the snow.
Canada Lake Pathway, about seven miles southeast of Newberry, has more than 15 miles of trails through rolling hardwood hills that are groomed regularly, including five miles of groomed skating trail. On most clear days you will find the cars of several skiers in the parking lot while on a good weekend you may find the parking lot full to overflowing. A chance to get some exercise, visit with friends and have some fun in the winter season are all good reasons to come out and ski Canada Lake!
Every year, on the third weekend in March, a local Newberry group organizes the Tahquamenon Falls Nordic Invitational at the Pathway, freestyle and classical ski races covering distances of 50, 25 and 10 kilometers. The event is not only fun to watch but to participate in as well. Three to four hundred skiers, from beginners to Olympic athletes, travel to Newberry from several states and Canada each year. The competition is the final crowning jewel in the four-race Upper Peninsula series.
Tahquamenon Falls State Park offers a four-mile cross-country trail that is groomed regularly and follows the pathway along the Upper Falls for part of its length. By midwinter, the spray from the Falls has frozen into great, mounded ice formations unlike anything you've ever seen before. The trail winds through large, old-growth hemlock, beech and maple that give the impression of being in some hidden, primeval part of the world.
If you number yourself among the more adventurous people or value solitary country, there are hundreds of thousands of acres of state land in this area that offer the chance to "bushwhack" on skis or snowshoes, if you prefer something more stable than skis.