GTPulse: Rove Point Trail Open to Public for Beautiful Views and Snowshoeing
Snowshoeing is my new favorite outdoor activity. I went yesterday for the first time and went into it reluctantly. I had visions of a weekend spent indoors, using the snow as an excuse to seclude myself. I stayed in all day Saturday and found myself ready to get out of the house on Sunday. Plus, I thought a lot of snow would give me a true experience of what it was like to snowshoe. After taking 20 minutes to get the snow off of my car, and another 20 to shovel the snow around my car, I was on my way to Rove Estate in Traverse City.
Rove Estate is home to a vineyard, winery, wooded trails, and the highest point on the Leelanau Peninsula.
“The highest point is 1165 feet. You can see three counties and the back of sleeping bear dunes,” Evan Glowicki, assistant manager of Rove Estate said.
“This is the second year we’ve done it. It’s getting more and more popular. We have one main trail which is the Rove Point Trail, it’s about a quarter of a mile.”
The trail is free to use and open to the public, of course with the hope that snowshoers will come in for wine, food or cider after walking the trail.
“We do $2 off our charcuterie board, $2 off wines and hot cider is only offered on weekends.”
Because I’ve never snowshoed before I was nervous. Can you fall? Is it hard? Do you have to be in shape? I still get winded if I have to go up more than a couple of flights of stairs. Luckily, I didn’t have to go it alone. When I first moved here I had joined Traverse City Adventure Girls, a group started by local women through an app called Meetup. Pam, a regular organizer of events for the group was going and so were a couple of other women.
Pam was kind, engaging and helped me strap my snowshoes on properly. The two other women joined us and we trekked through canopies of fluffy pine trees iced with layers of shimmery snow. Each turn on the trail led to a setting more picturesque than the last, with the pinnacle of the views marked by a picnic table on top of the highest point of the trail.
Beyond being surrounded by beauty, snowshoeing is a great workout. When my thighs weren’t burning my breath was shortening, but not in a way that made me want to stop. Being physical felt good, being in the sun felt good, quietly walking with other women who had shown up to be there with me too, felt good. I don’t think enough can be said about working up a bit of a sweat in the sunshine, cold or not. It’s mind-quieting.
The trail took us around half an hour to finish and ended with a trip back inside of the winery. Afterward, I felt warm and energized, and my legs felt like I had just finished a beginners Pilates class. I am officially a fan of snowshoeing and look forward to doing it more this winter. The trails will be open as long as there’s snow on the ground, and reservations do not need to be made to go out, however, guests need to bring their own snowshoes. Getting outside, Sundays and wine just go together, and it’s made all the more perfect by being surrounded by quintessential northern Michigan beauty.