We may not currently have snow on the ground in Rockford, but we all know it will be returning soon. With Christmas break and vacations looming in the very near future, it's the perfect time to educate yourself on all the cool places you can take your family to have a ton of outdoor winter fun in Rockford!

A nice winter hike in any of our local parks is always so peaceful, hopping on your sled and hitting the snowmobile trails is fun too, but there's even more winter fun to be had than just that! Check these out:

  • Sledding at Twin Sister Park or Aldeen Park. (Sledding is no longer allowed at Sand Park in Loves Park due to safety reasons.)
  • Ski, snowboard, or tube at Gateway Parks at Alpine Hills - Currently the hills are still closed, but hope to be open by mid-December. A 4 foot snow base is required for the slopes to be open, and we need at least 7 consecutive days below 20 degrees before that can be accomplished. Stay up to date with slope conditions at gatewayparks.com/alpine.
  • Snowmobile Trails at Lockwood and Searls Park - Park district snowmobile season is mid-December through mid-March. Trail conditions are posted on the Park District's Rainout Line at 815-889-2001.
  • Cross Country Skiing - Depending on conditions, ( at least 4 inches of snow are required) cross country skiing is available on the trails at Sinnissippi Golf Course, Lockwood Park, and Aldeen Golf Club.
  • Outdoor Public Skating and Hockey - Outdoor skating takes place on the Eclipse Lagoon at the Nicholas Conservatory and Gardens, and ice conditions are monitored very carefully. Stay up to date on ice conditions on the Rainout Line at 815-889-2001. Ice skates and other equipment are not provided.
  • Ice Fishing - Available at Levings Lake and Martin Park, but ice thickness is not monitored, so be sure to use proper safety precations.
  • Disc Golf Courses - Open for winter play at Anna Page Park.