All ATV trails and routes on County Forest land are now open; however, some of the USFS ATV trails remain closed due to damage from the recent storms. (See Forest Order, Closure Map and Trail Reroute Map links below).
The USDA Forest Service has updated their closures in Bayfield County. There are two closure orders affecting our area:
Forest Order 7-18-16-02 & Closure Map (Southern Bayfield County)
Forest Order 7-21-16-02 & Closure Map (Northern Bayfield County)
Trail Reroute Map to navigate the closure in Northern Bayfield County
USFS Washburn Ranger District Trail & Recreation Site Report (9/19/16)
The Washburn Ranger District of the Chequamegon Nicolet National Forest sustained more than 2,000 acres of damage from thunderstorms in the early morning hours of July 21. The storm resulted in blown over and damaged trees blocking roads and trails and devastating the popular Birch Grove Campground.
Since the storm, the Washburn Ranger District has been focused on recovery, working diligently to size-up the damages and devise a plan ahead.
To date, nearly 96 percent of the Forest’s roads north of Hwy 2 are open. The 13 miles that remain closed are mostly low use roads and roads within the Birch Grove Campground. For motorized trails, roughly 51 percent are open and all but one mile of the non-motorized trails on the Washburn Ranger District are open.
The District has been working on preparing and awarding timber sales to clear the remaining damaged roads, trails and Birch Grove Campground and salvage the timber.
“We are working very closely with our trail partners and timber purchasers to get the snowmobile trails open by December 1,” said Michelle Davalos, District Ranger on the Washburn Ranger District of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. “We realize how important these assets are to the local economy and appreciate everyone’s patience as we work through our processes to address the damages.”
The first timber sale was awarded Thursday to CJL Transfer, Inc. to harvest the damaged trees along approximately six miles of the Iron River ATV/snowmobile trail and 11 miles of Forest roads and right-of-ways.
“There will be additional timber sales in the coming weeks and months to continue our clean-up efforts,” said Davalos.
To see the list of roads, trails and recreation areas closed due to storm damage north of Hwy 2 on the Washburn Ranger District please visit www.fs.usda.gov/CNNF and click on Thunderstorm Damages Washburn Ranger District link in red. You may also call the Washburn Ranger District at 715-373-2667.
The public is also reminded about the closures associated with the flash flooding event on July 11. This includes the Drummond Connector, also known as Trail 63, on the Washburn Ranger District that was significantly damaged. The District is working closely with engineers to prepare a contract for the repairs.
Please visit our website at www.fs.usda.gov/CNNF/ and click on Flash Flooding Affects Forest for the latest list of closures. You may also call the Great Divide Ranger District at 715-264-2511.
Please use extra caution when operating on the trails and report any trail issues to the Forestry and Parks Department (715) 373-6114.
Emergencies should be reported to 9-1-1.
As always, riders should use caution when out on the trails. Please stay on the designated trails and routes and follow the trail signs. Be aware that there may be grooming equipment on the trails.
Trail maps can be found at area businesses and can also be viewed and ordered online.
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To report unsafe trail conditions contact the Forestry and Parks Department by or call 715-373-6114.
For visitor information or to receive a current Bayfield County ATV / UTV map, contact the Tourism Department via email.