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Trail Report: Bayfield County, Wisconsin – February 18, 2017

Trail Conditions: Poor
Snow Cover: 6-12"
Date of Report: February 18, 2017
Area Report:


With the warm winter weather we’ve been having trails are in varying conditions throughout the County. With even warmer temps in the forecast and an increasingly warm sun trails will be melting during the day and solid and icy at night. The snowpack is generally holding in the forested and shaded areas, but not as much on the exposed farm fields and roads.


Please keep in mind that some of these trails are on private land.  Private landowners give us permission to maintain portions of these trails on their property.  If a segment is in poor condition or if riding could result in damage, please refrain from use.  Any damage to the trail system, especially those that exist on private land, will jeopardize our future use privileges and potentially result in permanent trail closures.


With warmer temperatures forecasted this weekend there is the potential to create wet, sensitive and highly variable trail conditions.  As a result, ATV use has the potential to damage the system and create additional problems when colder temperatures return. To help minimize damage to the snowpack all ATV use is prohibited on snowmobile trails if the temperatures reach 28 degrees or higher. This includes tracked or wheeled ATVs and UTVs. However, ATV use is still allowed on the Tri-County Corridor and Town Road routes.


Trail Closures:

  • Trail 13 south out of Washburn to the Tri-County Corridor is no longer rideable.
  • Trail 4 east to Sanborn and west to Delta are is also closed.
  • Trail 63 north out of Grandview.



In the far Northwest Corner of the county Trail 1 was groomed yesterday and is in very good shape up to highway 13. It’s nice for the locals until it turns to mush by Saturday. I’m sure that’s it for grooming unless big changes occur. In the Port Wing Area the trails are in varying condition with woodland sections ranging from fair to good. Most of the road segments are in poor to fair. Looking toward the weekend things do not look good, with temperatures heading into the upper 40’s or even 50’s. Near Herbster and Corny trails are holding snow and rideable, but Trail 1 may need to be closed after the weekend.

In the Valhalla area the groomer will have been over everything by Friday (2/17/17) with the exception of south of Washburn. Despite the warm temperatures trail conditions have held however with a holiday weekend and high traffic they will diminish fast starting Saturday afternoon we’ll see what happens come Monday as it sounds like rain and warm temps. Ride with extreme caution, logging has started on North boundary and corners are icy.



Trails in the Iron River area have been groomed as best as possible this week and are fair at this time. With warm up starting, not sure when we’ll be out grooming again. We expect trails south of Hwy 2 will be the first to go as traffic and warm weather finally got through the base. The Tri County Corridor held up quite well but road crossing lead ins are starting to show their age with some being bare so be aware of those issues and expect icy areas due to melting during daylight hours and refreezing overnight throughout the area.



Barnes: Barnestormers snowmobile trails are in poor to good condition.  Trails appear to be very icy on the corners.  Our road routes are down to very little snow coverage and dirt.  If you venture out riding, use extreme caution.  Our grooming operations ceased on Monday 2/13.


Namakagon: NTG was out grooming last night and the east and north side of our trail system is finished. Trails to Clam Lake are currently in good to very good shape. We will also be out today (2/16/17) as the temperatures will be cool enough to groom for the upcoming weekend. All of our trails should be done by the end of today (2/16/17). There are some very unseasonably warm temperatures just around the corner for this weekend. We are hoping out trails will hold up through the traffic and warm weather. Trail 15 North of Camp Eight Rd is getting thin, no grooming beyond this point. Still rideable with caution. We likely will not be grooming until temperatures drop again and snow falls in our area. Please be safe on the trails, watch for other sleds and groomers (which are out day and night).


Drummond: Trails in the Drummond area have been groomed as of Wednesday (2/15/17). North 63 to Sweden road has been groomed, snow conditions in this area are poor to fair; the road route is mostly bare, no grooming past this point to Mason or East 4 to Ashland County due to lack of snow cover. 63S to Lake Owen is also in fair to good condition with bare spots that are exposed to the sun.  Trail 7 to trail 35 is in fair condition as well as trail 6 to Janes road route. All trail lead ins to the woods are in poor condition at the road crossings. Will try to get one last touch up in to on 63S before the weekend.


Timber Sale Activity:

Trail 1 – South of Cornucopia – off Stage Rd. a sale has gone active on this section of trail so watch for caution signs and logging equipment.

Trail 31 – South of Barnes – A one mile section of Trail 31 South that has been plowed to allow the road to freeze down for a future logging job, but it is still passable. There is also a private logging operation using a small section of Trail 31 South.