This is the latest stop in the series 101 Things To Do. We took a break from weekly stops due to the pandemic, but we will highlight outdoor activities that don't conflict with health and safety recommendations.

Skiing, snowboarding, and tubing in the winter, along with ziplines and an aerial challenge course in the summer provide visitors to Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area with year-round adventures.

“We have an adventure park where we have a zipline tour,” said Jim Rochford Jr., general manager. “Two guides take out a group of people, and they will go through six ziplines throughout the area.”

Next door is the Aerial Challenge, a ropes course with six different circuits that range from 12 to 48 feet above the ground and feature 120 elements or ways of moving from one pole to the next.

A young boy crosses a rope bridge, secured by a body harness and SmartSnap connection, on Sept. 15, 2019, at Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area in Dresser, Wis. Steve Gardiner / RiverTown Multimedia
A young boy crosses a rope bridge, secured by a body harness and SmartSnap connection, on Sept. 15, 2019, at Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area in Dresser, Wis. Steve Gardiner / RiverTown Multimedia

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“We sell a three-hour admission to the Aerial Challenge, and typically by the end of three hours, people are tired,” Rochford said. “The higher you go on the ropes course, the more difficult it is.”

Safety is a concern, so everyone on the ropes course wears a full-body harness which is attached by a lanyard to a device called a SmartSnap. That device allows a person to transfer from one element to another while remaining secured to the wire above.

In the winter, snow activities prevail, and Trollhaugen has 100% snowmaking capabilities on 23 trails offering a wide variety of terrain and difficulty.

The Aerial Challenge is a ropes course featuring 120 elements of different levels of difficulty and varying heights above the ground. Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area is in Dresser, Wis. Steve Gardiner / RiverTown Multimedia
The Aerial Challenge is a ropes course featuring 120 elements of different levels of difficulty and varying heights above the ground. Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area is in Dresser, Wis. Steve Gardiner / RiverTown Multimedia

“We are a family-owned ski area,” Rochford said. “We’ve been owned by the same family since 1967.”

Rochford said one of the most popular events at Trollhaugen Ski Area is night skiing on Fridays, from the day after Thanksgiving until the second Friday in March. They sell a $20 ski pass that is good from 9 p.m. until 3 a.m.

“We are known for our youth lesson program,” Rochford said, noting that lessons are available for skiing and snowboarding for all ages, as well as adaptive lessons for skiers requiring special equipment.

Trollhaugen Ski Area offers ski and boot rental packages, and has several possibilities for wedding and event venues.

“We have a lot of people that are leaving the metro area and driving past as many as seven ski areas to get here,” Rochford said. “We hope that is because we are doing a good job. We want them to have such a good experience that they come back often. There are a lot of things to do in this area, even in the wintertime. We want people to feel like it is home here.”

If you go...

Name: Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area

Address: 2232 100th Ave., Dresser, Wis.

Phone: 651-433-5141 or 715-755-2955

Website: trollhaugen.com/

Hours: Vary by season and activity. Check the website.

Cost: Varies by activity. Check the website.