Snowy season isn’t just for skiing and snowboarding in Northern Michigan. Here are four ways to enjoy cold-weather temps and fresh powder off the slopes at The Highlands at Harbor Springs.

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Man attempting a obstacle course

Photo by Rachel Soulliere

Horseback riding. Ziplining. Sno-Go biking. An enchanted snowshoe trail. While The Highlands at Harbor Springs claims the highest vertical and most skier and rider-accessible acreage in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, the ski resort is also making a name for itself beyond the slopes. We recently stopped by and tried a few cold-weather activities ourselves—and highly recommend these four for a wild winter getaway.

Zipline Adventures

The Highlands describes their high-speed ziplining as an “all thrills, no skills” activity for adventure seekers, and that’s pretty spot-on. With eight different ziplines (the longest is a quarter of a mile and 1,320 feet up from the ground) and one bridge to traverse, there’s plenty of space for practicing trust falls, front flips and flying through the air upside-down Spiderman-style.


Two people zip lining

Photo by Rachel Soulliere

Sno-Go Bikes

If skiing black diamonds isn’t in your future, Sno-Go bikes are a great way to get on the mountain for a scenic morning ride or a day of shredding. Combining bicycle handlebars with new skiing technology, these bikes are super stable and work in all types of snow conditions. The best part? Beginners are welcome here. Every first-time renter receives an introductory lesson to get you rollin’.

People on sno-go bikes

Photo by Rachel Soulliere

A man using a sno-go bike

Photo by Rachel Soulliere

Horseback Rides

Experiencing the resort’s trail system via horseback is a must-do year-round, but it’s especially magical when the grounds are blanketed in snow. Experienced guides will lead you along a serene trail during an hour-long ride that begins and ends at The Highlands Equestrian Center. Reservations are required; call 231.526.3030.

The Enchanted Trail

Once night falls, this one-and-a-half-mile roundtrip snowshoe or walk leads to a rustic yurt in the forest, where you can snuggle up around a bonfire, make s’mores and grab a cocktail or a cup of hot cocoa. Soak in the sparkling lights illuminating your path to and from the yurt, as well as inter-active installations such as the “Sing!” stop, where visitors who pause to share a song are rewarded with a show of lights.

Pop up restaurant

Photo by Rachel Soulliere

Post-Winter Adventure Food Recommendation

After a full day in the elements, there are a variety of restaurant options to choose from on the resort grounds. But we’re most excited about the new Italian pop-up dining experience that opened in December at the Country Club of Boyne—Bella Sorpresa. Cozy up around the fireplace, sip some pre-dinner bubbly and indulge in home-cooked Italian specialties like the house favorite porcini vellutata, a velvety soup featuring porcini mushrooms, or the anatra, a Culver Farms duck breast with fondant potato and poached pears. The eatery is open Wednesdays through Saturdays until early March; reservations recommended.

Photo(s) by Rachel Soulliere