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Exploring that 'wonderland of snow': ULTRA Snowmobile Club to hose two 'Classic Cruises' in January

Sights like this should be a common one in the Detroit Lakes area this coming month, as the ULTRA Snowmobile Club is hosting two rides for classic and vintage snowmobiles on Jan. 6 and 20. (Tribune file photo)1 / 3
The Detroit Lakes-based ULTRA Snowmobile Club will be hosting a ride for vintage and classic snowmobiles this coming Saturday, Jan. 6, departing from the M State campus parking lot and heading for points north. A second ride is planned for south of Detroit Lakes on Saturday, Jan. 20, departing from the Becker County Fairgrounds. There is no cost to take part in either ride. (Tribune file photo)2 / 3
Detroit Lakes-based ULTRA Snowmobile Club will be hosting not just one, but two rides for classic and vintage snowmobiles in January, not to mention its Vintage Rally, Swap Meet and Radar Run in February. (Tribune file photo)3 / 3

Now that the holiday celebrations are winding down, it's time to start thinking about pulling that old snowmobile out of storage and hitting the trails. There are over 250 miles of snowmobile trails to enjoy in Becker County — approximately 130 of which are maintained by Detroit Lakes' own ULTRA Snowmobile Club.

ULTRA is hosting not just one, but two rides for vintage and classic sleds in January, with the first scheduled to take place this coming Saturday, Jan. 6.

"We start gathering at the M State college parking lot at 9 a.m., and try to get going by at least 10," says organizer Wayne Schlauderaff. "We'll take off on the trail towards Cotton Lake, then stop at Curly's for a little bit. From there we'll head up to Richwood and then head back toward Detroit Lakes with a stop at Sunlite to have a burger. We're usually back in town sometime between 3 and 4 (p.m.)."

It's about a 50-mile trip altogether, Schlauderaff added. "It takes most of the day. It's a good time."

For those who would like to explore even more of Becker County's trails, ULTRA will host a second Classic Cruise on Saturday, Jan. 20, with this one starting at the Becker County Fairgrounds and heading for points south.

"We'll ride down to Vergas and stop at the Skal restaurant for a burger, then head back to Detroit Lakes with stop at Shorewood Pub," said Schlauderaff, noting that this ride will be about the same length as the first one.

Like this Saturday's ride, this one is also slated to depart at about 10 a.m., Schlauderaff added. People start showing up at around 9, however, because although the event does not include a formal show, the public likes to get a look at all the sleds on display. Known as the "Classic Cruise North" and "Classic Cruise South," both rides are geared specifically toward sleds that are of 1980s vintage or older — but anyone who has a working snowmobile to ride can participate, Schlauderaff said.

"It's a family friendly event," he added. "All ages and all sleds are welcome."

Both rides are free and open to the public, Schlauderaff said; simply show up at M State this coming Saturday or at the county fairgrounds on Jan. 20 to take part. For more information, please call Wayne Schlauderaff at 218-849-3069.

Also coming up a little later this winter is the ULTRA Vintage Rally, Swap Meet & Radar Run on Saturday. Feb. 17. Visit for more information about the ULTRA Snowmobile Club.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 17 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454