Mother and daughter scenic overlook of Lake Superior at Lutsen Mountains

Special Use Permit

To ensure the sustainability of the ski area, Lutsen Mountains will need to continue investment in facilities and infrastructure to remain competitive in the destination ski area market. Expansion will be necessary to support this investment while offering a quality and competitive experience. The master plan nearly doubles the skiable terrain, adds variety to the mix of slopes, includes parking and skier service buildings and provides an opportunity for future generations to enjoy skiing and snowboarding at Mid-America's highest alpine resort. 

Many U.S. destination resorts, primarily in the western states, operate through a special use permit with the US Forest Service. The existing footprint of Lutsen Mountains is entirely on private land, however, the adjacent land is part of Superior National Forest designated for "Recreation Use in a Scenic Landscape". The proposed expansion and application for a special use permit is consistent with the Forest Service mission for this land and is similar to permits issued to other ski areas across the nation. 

Here are a few highlights of the plan:

  • The expansion will add novice and intermediate runs to help introduce young families to the sport 
  • The land will enable Lutsen Mountains to expand from 180 to 320 skiable acres, allowing the resort to grow visits and fund future infrastructure investments necessary to ensure the ski area's long-term survival
  • The plan includes an expanded base area, skier services and parking on both Eagle Mountain and Moose Mountain
  • The expansion will add opportunities for cross-country skiing and provide an improved route for the Superior Hiking Trail 
  • The expansion will increase visitation from Minnesota, neighboring states, and Canada
  • Special use permits are used to provide ski areas and their visitors with access to national forests for recreational purposes. This process can take up to 3 years. 

For a summary of our Master Development plan, click here

For More Information: email [email protected].

Lutsen Mountains Extended Master Plan