Reports - Trail and Recreation
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Paddling/Flambeau River - 3/21/18
The river is starting to become ice free in many locations. It will not be long and early season paddling, for experienced paddlers with cold weather gear, will begin.
The North Fork of the Flambeau River is controlled by dams and it generally remains near the ordinary high water mark throughout the summer. The South Fork of the Flambeau and other rivers in the area can become quite low at times during the summer months without consistent rain. Whenever planning a paddling trip, always check with an area rental/shuttle/guide service for the most current conditions and to select a suitable stretch of river based on your experience.
Snowmobile Trail Report - 3/21/18
Price County snowmobile trails are in poor condition and riding is not recommended at this time. Some areas may still have a good base but conditions are spotty. Tuesday 03/13/19 was the last day of trail grooming. The trails remain open through March 31, 2018. However, there is no snow in the forecast and riding will not improve. ATV and UTV use is nor allowed on the trails during spring break-up. Scroll down for the complete ATV and UTV trail report. Detailed reports from snowmobile club trail reporters are posted below upon receipt.
Cross-Country Ski, Snowshoe, Skijor & Fat Tire Bike Trail Report - 3/21/18
Only cross-country skiers are allowed to use the groomed/tracked portions of the winter silent sports trails. Other recreational users (snowshoe, skijor, and fat tire bike) are welcome to use the portion of trail that is not groomed/tracked. Activities vary by trail.
High Point Trail - (classic xc-ski, snowshoe, skijor & fat tire bike) - FINAL 2018 REPORT - For the current trail condition or information on lighted night skiing, call 715-767-5287.
Holy Cross Trail - (classic xc-ski, snowshoe, skijor & fat tire bike) - 03/19/18 - The trail is still holding up with open areas starting to melt down. Still skiable but not much classic track left. Grooming is probably done for the year. Please do not walk on the trail without snowshoes, some of the track was destroyed on the north end A loop by someone walking in the classic track!
Newman Springs Trail - (classic xc-ski, snowshoe, & fat tire bike) – FINAL 2018 REPORT - Trails are starting to show signs of spring. There has been no grooming recently, nor do we plan on doing any more for the remainder of the season due to warming weather. Thanks for the great season!
Palmquist Farm - (skate & classic xc-ski, snowshoe, & skijor) - FINAL 2018 REPORT - The ski trail is closed for the season.
Phillips School Forest Trail - (Skate & Classic XC-Ski Trail) - 03/19/18 - Due to warming temperatures and cold nights, the trail is in rough shape. The trail will no longer be groomed this season; the last grooming was March 6, 2018. Snowshoe & Fat Bike Trail 3-15-18 - As spring approaches the trails will continue to get lumpier and icier. It might be okay fat biking in the mornings before things thaw, and still fun for snowshoeing anytime of the day for at least another week. There is no snow or significantly cold weather in the long term forecast so we are putting the groomer away for the season. Spring is on the way!
Timm's Hill Trail - (skate & classic xc-ski, snowshoe, skijor, & fat tire bike) - 03/20/18 - Great spring skiing! The trail is in excellent condition. The trail was groomed and tracked 03/12/18 and had a 16-inch trail base.
Wintergreen Trail - (skate & classic xc-ski, snowshoe, & fat tire bike) - FINAL 2018 REPORT - Trails are starting to show signs of spring. There has been no grooming recently, nor do we plan on doing any more for the remainder of the season due to warming weather. Thanks for the great season!
Flambeau Hills Trail - (skate & classic xc-ski) 03/21/18 - The trail is in poor condition, hard in the mornings and soft in the afternoon, some open south slopes.
ATV, UTV & Off-Road Motorcycle Trail Report - 3/21/18Most trails are now CLOSED for spring break-up. During the spring thaw, motorized and non-motorized vehicle use on many trails is prohibited to avoid damage to the trail surface.
Price County Highway routes are closed October 16 to May 14. Municipality (city and town) routes and trails remain open year-round.
- Flambeau Trail System (70 miles) ~ CLOSED March 15 through April 30 -
- Solberg Trail (9.5 miles) ~ CLOSED March 15 through April 30 - Repairs are being made on the bridges.
- Georgetown Trail (18.8 miles) ~ CLOSED March 15 through April 30 -
- Pine Line / Price-Taylor Rail Trail/Prentice Area ~ OPEN with temperature restrictions - When officially open to snowmobile use (typically through March 31), and when the temperature is 28 degrees or colder, the Price County portion of the Pine Line Rail Trail (Prentice to Ogema), Snowmobile Trail 189 (Ogema to Timm’s Hill), and Snowmobile Trails 116, 181 and 118 (Prentice area loop) are open to winter ATV and UTV riding. The Taylor County portion of the Pine Line, south of Price County, is closed for the 2017-18 winter season. Click here to find Taylor County contact information.
- Tuscobia State Trail (64 miles) ~ CLOSED in Price County - The Price County section of trail will reopen on April 16, 2018 for the spring/summer/fall season. From Park Falls west to the Price County line, the trail is closed to ATV and UTV use in the winter. The trail may be open in counties to our west. Click here to view the communities along the trail and then click on the community name to find their contact information.
- Flambeau River State Forest Trail (38 miles) ~ CLOSED - The trail is closed to ATV and UTV use for the winter. It will reopen on May 15, 2018 for the spring/summer/fall season.
DNR Fishing Report
Walleye, Northern Pike and Largemouth Bass season closed on March 4, 2018. Panfish season remains open year round. Open water game fish season opens May 5, 2018.
With the recent warm weather, we are starting to see open water again on some of the area’s trout streams. Though it’s not as popular as in other parts of the state, catch-and-release trout fishing opportunity is currently open in streams of Price and other counties. Hardy anglers who can adapt to deep snow, cold temperatures, and changing stream flow conditions can enjoy the solitude that this transitional season has to offer. Price Creek, Little Elk River, and South Fork Main Creek have native brook trout of catchable sizes approaching 13 or 14 inches. Wood Creek and Rib River also offer have native brook trout along with a chance to catch an occasional brown trout 20 inches or longer. Several stocked streams such as Douglas Creek, Smith Creek, and Butternut Creek may still have holdover trout that survived and grew since they were planted in April 2017. Reminders! Only artificial lures may be used in the early catch-and-release Inland Trout season which continues through May 4, 2018. Inland Trout - General fishing on inland lakes and ponds closed on Sunday, March 4, 2018, and reopens on May 5, 2018, as well as Inland Trout fishing in streams, springs, and spring ponds.
Guide Fishing Reports
3/14/18 - Northwoods anglers have some good ice conditions to work with as our area temperatures remain below average and more importantly below freezing. Even when evening air temperatures are in single digits, the longer day light conditions begin to decrease ice thickness. Anglers need to be aware of changing conditions and it is recommended that anglers take a spud and ice picks with them as the season progresses. It’s always best to fish with a partner. Bluegills are biting throughout the day but the bigger gills are coming in the late afternoon. Fish are located on the second break mud sand transition areas. Waxies and jigs are working. Crappies continue to hold in the deeper basins with many fish suspended in the water column.
Good Luck Fishing, Joe Brezinski, Northland Guide Service
DNR Outdoor Report - 3/14/18
DNR to waive fall turkey drawing; licenses on sale now
MADISON - New this year, fall turkey hunters will no longer be required to apply or compete in a drawing for fall turkey harvest authorizations. Instead, one fall turkey harvest authorization will be issued at no additional cost with the purchase of a fall turkey or conservation patron license. Customers will need to specify their zone of choice when purchasing their license.
First managed elk hunt in Wisconsin history is result of over 22 years of conservation efforts by DNR staff and partners -- Following more than 22 years of elk management and reintroduction efforts, 2018 will mark Wisconsin's first managed elk hunt in state history. "This is an incredible conservation success story for Wisconsin," said Department of Natural Resources Secretary Dan Meyer. "Thanks to the efforts of so many great organizations and individuals, the northern elk herd has continued to grow to the point where we can offer this very special and long-awaited hunting opportunity." The area of the planned hunt is within the Clam Lake elk range of Sawyer, Bayfield, Ashland, and Price counties in far north-central Wisconsin. Original restoration efforts occurred within this range with the release of 25 elk from Michigan in 1995. This northern herd is projected to reach a population level of over 200 animals this year, including a high proportion of bulls. Read the full article at http://dnr.wi.gov/news/Weekly/?id=631#art1.
Record 12,970 permits awarded for 2018 black bear hunt
Notifications have been sent to 12,970 hunters who successfully drew a black bear permit for the 2018 hunting season.
County Deer Advisory Councils will begin spring meetings in mid-March to start the antlerless harvest quota and permit-setting process for the 2018 deer seasons. Various deer season structure options for each county will also be discussed by councils.
Flambeau River State Forest Outdoor Report - 3/21/18 - Due to the warming temperatures logging operations on the Forest are at a standstill. Sap is flowing when our temperatures are above 40 degrees and the sun shines. It flows slower with cloud cover. Nights are still below freezing. The rest of this week and weekend temperatures looks to be good sap flowing weather. One of the most exciting moments for us northerners is when the first geese fly thru with their musical honking and the first robin is sited. Well, we are happy to say that the geese have been flying overhead, some swans were seen and heard with their nasal honking, and robins were sited. A few turkeys have begun gobbling and looking to mate. The great horned owl eggs should be hatched soon and eagles are sitting on their nests. Male grouse have been seen puffed up and displaying. We haven’t heard any drumming yet. Snowshoe hares are mating. The weather continues to challenge the Flambeau River wildlife. Snow depths ranges from 0 to 24 inches. The snow is such that predators can run on the hard surface of the snow and the deer and elk break thru. We are watchful of all the usual March activities when temperatures rise and we have the extra daylight hours. We’re eager for any sign, as winter has seemed long, but spring is in the air. Keep vigilant watch over the daily phenological changes because they happen so fast. Take time and quietly go out and see the splendor that nature offers. Have a good rest of the week and weekend!
Check on burning and campfire restrictions on the WI DNR website at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/ForestFire/restrictions.html.