The evening of Saturday, January 11th the Friends of Rydell and Glacial Ridge Refuges Association will be hosting a Candlelight Ski and Owl Prowl event at Rydell National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) near Erskine, MN. The timing of this event coincides with a full moon, and hopefully good snow conditions, clear skies, and moderate temperatures! The Rydell NWR Visitor Center will be open throughout the event, which will run from 4:45pm to 8:30pm. Although all five of Rydell NWR’s trails will be open for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing, Golden Pond and Church Lake trails will be groomed and lighted for this event. Even though luminaries will be distributed along these two trails, we recommend that visitors bring along a headlamp, if they have one, just in case it is cloudy and there is minimal moonlight. As visitors traverse the trails, multiple owl calling stations will be set up where the calls of several owl species (e.g., saw whet, barred, great horned) will be projected into the woods to try to generate a response. Who-who-who knows what you might hear! We will have several pairs of adult and child size skis, as well as snowshoes, available for visitors to use. If you have questions, contact Lisa Wiersma at 218-687-2229 x10 or lisa_wiersma@fws.gov. If temperatures are below zero or wind chills are in the double-digits below zero, the event will be cancelled and potentially rescheduled at a later date.

    On Saturday, January 18th the Friends of Rydell and Glacial Ridge Refuges Association will be hosting a Snowshoe Lacing Workshop at the Rydell NWR Visitor Center. The one-day workshop will run from 9:00am – 5:00pm. Class participants will learn how to lace their own pair of Ojibwa-style snowshoes. This is a fun, hands-on class. You will be able to work at your own pace with provided instructions and friendly presenters to assist you along the way. Pre-registration is required and class size is limited to 12 participants. The deadline for registration is January 3rd.

    To obtain more information and to get a registration form, contact Lynda Knutsen at 218-689-4320 or lynda_knutsen@fws.gov.