5 Cures for Cabin Fever

Winter is in full swing here in Southeast South Dakota. Everyone says March is the snowiest month so it’s the perfect time to get out and find ways to enjoy this snowy season. Here’s just a few ideas to get you started:

  1. Cross Country Skiing – Ski trails are available in several state parks in the region including Adams Homestead & Nature Preserve at North Sioux City, Lake Herman State Park near Madison, Newton Hills State Park near Canton and Union Grove State Park near Beresford, as well as at the Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls. Parks offer groomed trails where you can surround yourself with the beauty and wonder of a South Dakota winter. Many of the trails conveniently begin and end near heated warming shelters.
  2. Snowshoeing is an easy and enjoyable way to get outside during snowy winter days. All you need is a sense of adventure and good boots. If you can walk, you can snowshoe. If you don’t have your own snowshoes, you can check them out from these state parks: Big Sioux Recreation Area near Brandon, Good Earth State Park near Sioux Falls, Lake Herman State Park near Madison and Newton Hills State Park near Canton. The parks have free check out of both adult and youth snowshoes for a day or a weekend.
  3. Great Bear Ski Valley – For a full range of winter activities, Great Bear Ski Valley is the place to go. They offer 14 downhill slopes with varying levels of difficulty for downhill skiing and snowboarding or you can explore the quiet beauty of Great Bear on 4 miles of groomed cross county ski trails. The Kirby Tubing Park is popular for family and group outings with friends and has South Dakota’s only tubing lift. Great Bear also has eastern South Dakota’s only Terrain and Fun Park featuring wall rides, rails, table tops and boxes. Equipment for all sports is available for rent. If you’re a beginner – no worries. They also offer lessons. And if you get cold, come into their warm and inviting Lodge for some hot chocolate or to sit by the fireplace.
  4. Snowmobiling – If you have a snowmobile, there’s hundreds of miles of trails for you to explore throughout the region! Snowmobile season runs through March 31st so there’s plenty of time yet. You’ll find numerous groomed trail systems between Garretson, Dell Rapids, Parker, Viborg, Brookings, Madison, DeSmet and Mitchell. For a map of these trails and info about trail conditions, visit sdgfp.arcgismaps.com . State Parks that provide snowmobile trails are Lewis and Clark and Pierson Ranch Recreation Areas near Yankton, and Big Sioux Recreation Area near Brandon.
  5. Butterfly House & Aquarium – If all you really want to do is head for the tropics, even for a day, then the Butterfly House & Aquarium in Sioux Falls is the perfect escape. Enter this tropical conservatory and feel transported to another climate entirely. You will be surrounded by hundreds of free-flying butterflies from around the world as well as beautiful blooming tropical plants and flowing streams. Visit the Pop-up Dome Aquarium, Shark & Stingray Touch Pool and Pacific Tide Pool and observe the amazing marine life. You’ll come out refreshed and ready to face a little bit more of winter.

Spring is just around the corner, but there’s time to make the most of the last weeks of winter and enjoy its beauty and the opportunities it offers for adventure.