Monthly Archives: August 2014

August 29, 2014

Drive the Great River Road Month Sweepstakes

how much do you know about the Great River Road – specifically, the network of more than 70 interpretive centers that tell visitors about the Mississippi River region’s history, culture and heritage?

Answer correctly for a chance to win $500!

This entry was posted in Contests, WGRR on Friday, August 29, 2014.

August 21, 2014

Easy Riding this Fall


Five bike trails for everyone

Fall is the ideal time for a biking getaway. The cool weather and wonderful scenery make pedaling a pleasure. These five trails are suitable for every rider.

Middleton – Community Trail System

Middleton’s award-winning community trail system is the perfect destination for a fall ride. The system consists of a network of bike paths, bike lanes and sidewalks. It connects bicyclists to parks and businesses throughout the community. During the fall, the best scenery can be found in the Pheasant Branch Conservancy. Ponds throughout the conservancy attract migrating ducks, geese and wading birds. The conservancy’s forests dazzle with autumn color. A 3.5-mile loop around the entire conservancy is a great fall ride.

Vilas County – St. Germain Bike and Hike Trail

Throughout Vilas County, you’ll find more than 50 designated trails, including rugged mountain biking trails and smooth paved bike paths. The St. Germain Bike and Hike Trail is a paved, level trail running through forests and along lakes. For 12 scenic miles, you’ll have a chance to see towering white pines set against a canvas of colorful leaves. The trail connects with a system of paved trails that stretches across the county, providing many miles of riding.

Oneida County – Bearskin State Trail

The Bearskin State Trail runs for 18 miles from Highway K near Tomahawk to Minocqua. The semi-paved, crushed-granite trail surface is suitable for most kinds of bikes. You’ll pass several lakes, including Bearskin Lake, Little Bearskin Lake and Lake Minocqua. If you’re looking for a level trail appropriate for beginning riders, this is it.

Boulder Junction – Crystal Lake Trail

The Crystal Lake trail is part of Boulder Junction’s outstanding network of trails that includes 45 miles of trails running throughout Vilas County. If you’re looking for great fall color, the Crystal Lake Trail is the place to ride. The trail runs from downtown Boulder Junction past Trout Lake and the Crystal Lake Campground. Crystal Lake is just as advertised – clean, clear and shimmering. The autumn-hued trees reflecting off the lake’s surface are a sight to behold.

Onalaska – Great River State Trail

The Mississippi River Valley is stunning in the fall. The tree covered bluffs and flocks of migrating waterfowl combine to create a visual display unlike any other. The Great River State Trail follows the Mississippi River for 24 miles, and a fall bike ride along this crushed-limestone trail is the perfect way to experience the sights and sounds of the fall season.


August 21, 2014

Five Fall Color Hikes

hiking in the fall

These trails are perfect for enjoying the autumn hues

When summer gives way to fall and the leaves are set ablaze with color, it’s time to put on your walking shoes and hit the trail. Here are five of the state’s best places for a fall stroll.

Pheasant Branch ConservancyMiddleton

Located in the center of Middleton you’ll find a natural oasis. This 550-acre nature conservancy offers miles of trails, including a 3.5-mile trail that encircles the entire nature area. In addition to fall color, the conservancy offers an opportunity to see migrating birds.

Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest – West Bend

West Bend’s location at the southern end of the Kettle Moraine State Forest’s Northern Unit makes it the perfect jumping-off point for exploring the forest’s hills and valleys this fall. The New Fane trail system provides 7.7 miles of scenic walking.

Schmeeckle ReserveStevens Point area

The Schmeeckle Reserve protects 280 acres of woodlands and wetlands. Enjoy a fall hike along five miles of trails through a diverse habitat. See migrating waterfowl on Lake Joanis. Boardwalks lead you over marshes and river-bottom forests.

Holmboe Nature TrailRhinelander

The Holmboe Nature Trail is ideal for people looking for an easy, scenic walk in the woods. The trail runs for just under a mile through old growth forest along the banks of the Pelican River. Keep your eyes peeled for white-tailed deer and other creatures that thrive in this protected natural area.

Awassa Nature Trail – Vilas County

At 0.5 miles, the Awassa Nature Trail is the shortest of our five trails. It’s also the easiest to use; the level trail is wheelchair accessible. The mature forest presents a spectacular color show in the fall. It’s a beautiful place to experience the wonder of the fall season.