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People in Owatonna are hearty soles. Mary Jo Knudson, the Recreation Supervisor for Owatonna Parks and Recreation writes, "parks and trails have seen a HUGE jump in users these days, parking lots are full and trails are busy." [Editor's note: her blog post was published before the frigid weather descended upon the region this weekend.]

Knudson pointed out, "It's important to know how to share so everyone has a great experience...We try to avoid sign pollution in our park system...learning to read the snow is a great way to know if you're 'on the right path.'"

She offers these pointers.

  • "Groomed ski trails have a distinct track for two skis and should only be used for skiing."
  • "Groomed fat tire bike trails are narrow."
  • "Paved trails throughout the system are broomed off after each snowfall for ease of use."
  • Regarding pets, "owners must have dogs on a leash and clean up any waste. Pet waste stations and garbage cans are provided throughout for owners."

Groomed cross country ski trails can be found at Brooktree Golf Course (2.5+ miles) and along Kaplan's Woods and Parkway (8+ miles). Fat tire bike riders will find about seven miles of groomed trails at Kaplan's Woods. Sledding is available at Brooktree and West Hills.

Find a full graphic of winter offerings from the Owatonna Parks and Recreation department.

Sure. It was a cold weekend in Owatonna. And, sure. We may barely get above zero over the next week and a half. But check out these really cold places...

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