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Northern Wisconsin's Best ATV Trails

Top Bayfield, Wisconsin Hiking/Walking Trails

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Northern Wisconsin's Best ATV Trails

In Northern Wisconsin, you'll find some of the best ATV trails in the Midwest United States. Bayfield County alone has over 180 miles of ATV trails, along with numerous Forest Roads that can also be used for ATV travel. Some ATV trails are also open to UTVs, typically those up to 50 inches wide. 

What to bring when hiking:

  • Water-proof sneakers or boots
  • Water bottle
  • Backpack
  • Hat
  • Jacket
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug spray
  • Snacks
  • GPS
  • Walking stick

Forgot some of this stuff at home or at your campsite? You can visit stores like Howl Downtown, Trek & Trail and Howl Adventure Center to get the items you need.

General Rules

All ATVs and UTVs must be registered, either in Wisconsin or some other state. For Wisconsin residents, a Trail Pass is not required; for non-residents, a Trail Pass is required.

The rules for ATVs and UTVs do not apply to dirt bikes. The use of dirt bikes in Bayfield County is very limited. Specifically, it is illegal to operate dirt bikes o the following.
  • Public highways
  • Forest roads
  • Any trail in any Bayfield County Forest
  • ATV trails on private property

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Image may be subject to copyright

Iron Horse Trail

Length: 19.5 miles
Surface(s): Gravel
Category: Rail-trail
Access: Parking available along Harbor Road

Iron Horse Trail runs from Reservation Highway 5, north of Bayfield, to Hurley, Wisconsin, south of Bayfield. While this trail is designed for ATVs and snowmobiles, it is used by hikers and mountain bikers. Keep in mind that how well the trail is maintained depends on the time of year. Don't expect it to regularly be in perfect condition.

Tri-County Corridor Trail

Length: 61.8 miles
Surface(s): Asphalt and crushed limestone
Category: Rail-trail
Access: Parking is available at Ashland's Central Railyard Park and along Superior's Moccasin Mike Road

Description: Tri-County Corridor Trail extends from Pulp Hoist Road, in Ashland, Wisconsin, to Moccasin Mike Road, near Superior, Wisconsin. The trail runs through three counties: Ashland, Bayfield, and Douglas. While most of the trail is made up of crushed stone, the section near Ashland is paved with asphalt. Along the way, you'll be treated to fantastic views of Chequamegon Bay, groves of birch trees, and historic bridges, high over scenic rivers and streams. Note that you'll have limited access to amenities, along the way, as this trail is somewhat secluded most of the way. Expect to find occasional hikers and mountain bikers on this trail.

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Image may be subject to copyright

Tuscobia State Trail

Length: 74.0 miles
Surface(s): Dirt, grass, crushed stone
Category: Rail-trail
Access: Parking is available at the trail ends in Rice Lake and Park Falls

Description: Tuscobia State Trail is a lengthy trail that runs frm Rice Lake, Wisconsin to Park Falls, Wisconsin. Along the way, you travel through two of northern Wisconsin's most unforgettable areas: Flambeau State Forest and Chequamegon National Forest. This trail also overlaps the 1,200-mile hiking trail that runs across Wisconsin. Mountain bikers and hikers also use this trail.

Wild Rivers State Trail

Length: 104.0 miles
Surface(s): Gravel and ballast
Category: Rail-trail
Access: Parking is available in Gordon, Wisconsin at the northern trailhead.

Description: Wild Rivers State Park Trail extends over three Wisconsin counties: Douglas, Washburn, and Barron. This trail runs through some of Wisconsin's more remote areas. You'll encounter scenic lakes, rivers, and streams. Part of the trail runs along the Namakagon River, a tributary of the St. Croix River, and part of the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. In Douglas County, the trail is made up of rough ballast, while the Washburn and Barron portions of the trail are covered in gravel. Expect to occasionally encounter mountain bikers and hikers on some parts of Wild Rivers State Trail.

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Image may be subject to copyright

More Information

For general information on ATV and UTA rules and regulations, check out the Bayfield County ATV-UTV site.

Bayfield County also has information of current trail conditions.

If you need a map of Bayfield County ATV trails, click here.

Moderate

Lost Creek Falls Walking Trails

Length: 3 miles
Features: Waterfall, forests, wild flowers
Distance from our campground: 30-minute drive

Meyers Beach Sea Cave Trail

Length: 4.6 miles
Elevation gain: 269 ft.
Dog friendly: Yes
Fee: $5.
Features: Meyers Beach, Mawikwe Bay, sea caves (access via canoeing)
Distance from our campground: 25-minute drive

Mountain Bike Trailhead

Features: Downhills, rocks, interesting signs and decorations
Distance from our campground: 6-minute drive

North Pikes Creek Wetlands Community Forest

Features: Beaver Hollow, wetlands, swamp hardwood forest
Distance from our campground: 10-minute drive

Jerry Jay Jolly Hike/Ski Trailhead (otherwise known as Pikes Creek Trail System)

Length: 8 miles
Features: Pikes Creek, forestry
Distance from our campground: 10-minute drive

Reviews

This trail does not work for bikes, and the parallel highway, US 2, has a lot of traffic, with many trucks, with a narrow paved shoulder. There are wonderful paved local roads through this area, and with a little misdirection now and then, it is a much better option for bicyclists. http://www.dot.wisconsin.gov/travel/bike-foot/countymaps.htm At the link above you will find a links to maps that show the best local roads and recommended routes along this corridor.
Tri-County Corridor Trail. Jeff Emerson, TrailLink.com
I would not recommend any tire width less than 1.5". This is a snowmobile/ATV route with very little other use. I live in the area and use the local road system rather that the trail for riding. Even on a Mt Bike it is diffucult to hold a line due to the large rock size used for the trail surface. Beautiful country, and a good local road system with not to much traffic make the use of the trail by bikes not worth the grief.
Wild Rivers State Trail. Jeff Emerson, TrailLink.com
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