We foster experiences that renew the human spirit and promote community vitality.

Free Ski and Snowshoe Day, 2017

Saturday, January 7, 2017 - 8:00am

Test out your new skis or snowshoes on freshly groomed trails or explore untouched powder in the high country.

The Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation (IDPR) is offering Nordic skiers and snowshoers the opportunity to play in the snow at any of Idaho’s 18 designated Park N’ Ski areas and snow-belt state parks at no charge on Saturday, January 7, 2017.

 “The goal of Free Ski / Snowshoe day, in Idaho, is to introduce newcomers to the wonderful terrain and winter recreation opportunities across the state,” said Jennifer Okerlund, IDPR Communications Manager.

Some areas will have special events that offer free ski/snowshoe clinics, equipment rentals and refreshments.

Here's a list of area-specific events:

Idaho City Park N' Ski

All of the Idaho City Park N’ Ski areas will be Free on Free Ski day but the trails will not be groomed this year because of the Pioneer Fire.  Many of the trails have been burned over and the trail signs are destroyed.  Please see the map on this web page: http://bit.ly/2fTJjT1   to locate areas closed to snowshoers/skiers. 

This year IDPR trails staff will lead a beginner/intermediate snowshoe trip to Stargaze Point starting at 9:00 am Saturday Jan. 7th.  The intent to encourage first time or inexperienced snowshoers the joys of snowshoeing.  The trip will be approximately a 4 mile loop climbing 1000 feet in elevation. 

You must be in good physical condition because of the high elevation and steep trail.  No dogs please.  You must provide your own snowshoes and poles.  There is no cost and there is a maximum of 18 people.   Participants will be selected on a first come first serve basis.  The group will car pool from a location in SE Boise that will be announced.  Contact DeEtta Petersen, the yurt coordinator at deetta.petersen@idpr.idaho.gov or 208-514-2419 to get more information and to sign up. 

Farragut State Park

Free Ski Lessons 10:00AM and 12:30PM
Refreshments in the Park Visitor’s Center
27.5 km of Groomed Set-track Cross Country Ski Trails
New Skate Ski Trail; access at Thimbleberry
Pets are Only Allowed on North Side of Park During Winter; access is at Thimbleberry Winter Campground Two designated Snowshoe Trails Sledding Hill

Ponderosa State Park

Ponderosa State Park will host Free Nordic Ski and Snowshoe Day on Saturday, January 7. 2017. There will be free entrance into the park and free winter trail access all day. If you have never tried Nordic skiing or snowshoeing and would like to; join us between 11:00 am and 2:30 pm at the Activity Center in Ponderosa State Park. Gravity Sports, Hometown Sports and the Bear Basin Nordic Center Instructors will be providing free classic and skate ski lessons and the use of equipment during the lessons. McCall Outdoor Science School, McCall Master Naturalists, and the City of McCall Parks and Recreation will be offering free snowshoe use and instruction with guided tours of some of the park’s trails. There will also be a Winter Health Booth for information about protecting your skin and keeping warm outdoors during the winter from St Luke’s McCall Center for Health Promotion. Ponderosa State Park, with the help of McCall Master Naturalists, will provide hot drinks and snacks.

Priest Lake State Park

Priest Lake State Park will be holding ski and snowshoe lessons with guided tours from 10a-2p.

Lake Cascade State Park

* Free drinks, and baked goodies will be available

* Nordic ski gear and snowshoes will be available for free Demos

* Free Beginner lessons offered

* Enter for free drawing on President’s Day Weekend for awesome recreational prizes

11a-2p  Held at Hasbrouck Ranch Nordic Trail area 10 miles South of Cascade.  Turn west off of Hwy. 55 onto the Cabarton Road, travel west 1.5 miles to the trail head.

Harriman State Park

Park fees, including the winter access fees will be waived for this fun day in the snow, celebrating our winter recreation. Bring your skis, snowshoes, fat bikes, and your whole family out to play! 10a-3p

-Beginner Ski Instruction
-Winter Gear Demos (snowshoes, and fat bikes)
-1/2 Off Ski & Snowshoe Rentals (Call Henrys Fork Anglers @ 208-558-7528
-Wildlife in Winter Display
-History of Winter Gear Display
-Guided Snowshoe Hike
-Kids Wildlife Activity

For more information, contact Lake Cascade State Park at 208-382-6544 or cas@idpr.idaho.gov



Idaho State Parks at ID
37° 5' 24.864" N, 95° 42' 46.4076" W

Contact: Park Staff @ or inquiry@idpr.idaho.gov