Friday, December 19, 2008

Snowshoe Hikes Scheduled for Hoffmaster State Park

a news release of Michigan DNR

In the tradition of community wide snowshoe hikes that were popular in New England in the 1920s, Hoffmaster State Park is hosting snowshoe outings for families this winter at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 24, and at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14. These hikes, sponsored by the Gillette Nature Association, are suitable for children seven years old and up accompanied by an adult. Snowshoes are provided by GNA for a small donation to defray the cost of snowshoe maintenance.

Snowshoe hikes begin at the Gillette Visitor Center. Pre-registration is required for all participants to ensure there is enough equipment. Those interested can call the Gillette Center at 231-798-3573. Participants should arrive 15-30 minutes before the program begins for proper snowshoe fitting. Participants should wear winter boots and layered outdoor clothing. Children under seven can be pulled by a parent in a sled. Snowshoe sizes are not available for children under seven years old.

The weather along Lake Michigan with associated lake effect snows can be considerably different than inland locations, and wind can be a factor. Participants should be prepared for all types of conditions. Six or more inches of snow are needed for snowshoeing. If snow is absent, the naturalist will lead participants on a winter exploration of the park. Refreshments will be served following the hikes.The Feb. 14 hike will conclude with a bonfire at the park's pavilion.

A Michigan State Park Motor Vehicle Permit is required to enter Hoffmaster State Park. Permits are available for purchase at the park entrance for $6 for a Michigan resident daily permit or $24 for an annual permit. Permits for non-Michigan residents are $8 for a daily and $29 for an annual.

See P.J. Hoffmaster Park
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