Skip to main content

DNR: Cooperative agreement establishes snowmobile trail reroute in Gogebic County

A trail reroute agreement has been reached in Gogebic County that will allow an important snowmobile trail segment to remain open this winter.

Snow River Mountain Resort (formerly Big Snow Resorts aka Indianhead and Blackjack) – part of Midwest Family Ski Resorts – announced in a Sept. 13 email the resort would no longer allow snowmobile or all-terrain vehicle operation on resort property. 

The closure along Snowmobile Trail UP 2 eliminated trail access between Wakefield and Ironwood, affecting the communities of Bessemer and Ironwood most directly. The trail is managed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Gogebic Range Trail Authority.

After several weeks of work trying to develop a reroute, an agreement was reached this week.

“This is great news for snowmobiling and the communities that rely on its economic lifeblood in the western Upper Peninsula,” said Ron Yesney, U.P. trails coordinator with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Parks and Recreation Division. “We will continue to work on establishing this route in concert with our numerous partners involved in this effort.”

Key to finding the reroute solution were private landowners Cory and Sandra Leuzzo, who granted permission for the trail to be rerouted over their property.

Other entities that aided the DNR and Gogebic Range Trail Authority included, the city of Wakefield, Bessemer Township and the Gogebic County Road Commission.

The reroute will be located south of U.S. Highway 2 and connect Ramsay with Wakefield. The trail will also use a significant portion of Old U.S. Highway 2.

“The city of Wakefield and Bessemer Township both retained the right to cancel their permits for the trail reroute with 14-days-notice,” Yesney said. “The trail permissions will stay in place as long as the trail remains safe and conflicts between motorists and snowmobiles along Old U.S. 2 and Cemetery Road do not occur.”

Snowmobilers should travel at a safe speed, observing municipal speed limits and ride with caution and respect.

To find out the latest information on DNR closures to trails, boating access sites and other amenities, visit Michigan.gov/DNRClosures. 

For more information on snowmobiling in Michigan, visit Michigan.gov/Snowmobiling.

Contact: Ron Yesney 906-228-6561 or John Pepin, 906-226-1352