Trail Conditions: Fair
Snow Cover: 3-5
Date of Report: March 8, 2022
This may be one of the last snowmobile trail update as we near the end of the season.
We had a very bad ice storm that hit our region this weekend which included freezing rain, ice, and a couple inches of wet snow on top. This heavy ice and snow caused many trees to break and branches to snap as well very low hanging trees and branches. Additionally, the rain on top of the newer snow that we had received the week prior made things slushy out in the open and roads icy.
The temperatures this week have not been warm enough to melt the heavy ice off the trees to allow them to start lifting and there is a lot of debris down on the trails. This combination makes trails impassable for a groomer. The low-hanging, ice-covered branches could break windshields, lights, and other components on groomers and the large branches down could damage drags if they were caught in them.
So, with that said the groomers in the northern part of the county (from the Chippewa Flowage to the Bayfield Co line) will not be out again this season as crews continue to move along trails chain sawing and cleaning up. This will take time as we move into spring, as it has been a very slow-moving process with the amount of debris.
The GOOD NEWS! For those of you are looking for one last weekend to ride, the southern part of the county (south on the Chippewa Flowage) did not get as much of the storm damage. There may be some down branches but not bad and the 2-3″ of fresh snow was helpful! They have good conditions and have been out grooming! The Flambeau is out grooming today and tonight and the Tuscobia has been groomed. The Tuscobia east to Price County was groomed and is excellent! 5 south is being groomed now, please note there is some logging off this trail. If you are looking for a good ride this weekend, please visit the southern part of Sawyer County!
As mentioned, the rain made the fresh snow slushy in spots, most of the wooded trails stayed protected from that rain, but the lakes did get a lot of slushy spots. Now that the temperatures have been cold again and will be through the weekend the lakes did harden back up and will continue to harden so you can ride but please be cautious of ruts created from the slush and refreeze.
So, in conclusion, the northern area you can ride but do know you will have to move in and out of down debris and low hanging branches and they have not groomed. Is passable on a sled but be cautious. The southern area will be great riding!
A HUGE, HUGE thank you to the crews who have been out clearing and chain sawing! Thank you for rolling up your sleeves and getting to work so quickly!