Tweets from Nature
Hunt Hill Audubon Sanctuary combines the best in brews and beaks with their Birds & Beer series. With each evening program, enjoy the company of others interested in birds, explore a new locale each time, sip some beer and nibble on some snacks, all the while learning something new during the special presentation by a variety of experts. Make your plans for these upcoming dates May 11, September 14 and October 12.
The Chequamegon Bay Birding & Nature Festival is flying into its 11th year at the Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center in Ashland on May 18-20. The weekend is packed with workshops, speakers and field trips with topics ranging from birding by bicycle to a coldwater hatchery tour, and a coastal and inland wetland walk to an Aldo Leopold native seed orchard tour.
Head to just outside of Mercer on May 12 for the Northwoods Birding Festival at the North Lakeland Discovery Center. The schedule includes birding walks created for every skill including bird banding demonstrations and a whole array of field trips for further discovery.
Crex Meadows Wildlife Area & Visitor Center in Grantsburg invites you to their annual Spring Bird Festival on May 20. Explore local bird hot spots, build a wood duck house, learn from aviary experts and let the kids get a messy with special crafts.
Time to Hit the ATV Trails
Northwest Wisconsin is known for its primo snowmobile trails, but did you know that once the snow melts and the weather warms you will find over 1,000 miles of ATV trails. This area boasts of a trail system that is rider friendly; linking many small towns, with restaurants and lodging establishments along the way. Sawyer County boasts of the #1 ATV trail system in Wisconsin, with an award winning trail system has over 140 miles of trails nestled in the Chequamegon National Forest.
The Washburn County ATV Scenic Tour contains over 100 miles of trails with 35 stops along the way. ATV trails open on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend and remain so through the fall as conditions warrant. Trailheads offer plenty of parking and trails are well marked to make navigation easy.
However, Hurley in Iron County beats the rest, with not only 200 miles of trails, but also the largest ATV/UTV Parade in the Northwoods. This event celebrates the opening of the ATV season with music, food, beverages, vendors and a parade of hundreds of ATVs down the city’s main drag. Contact the Hurley Chamber for details.
Spring is here and summer is just around the corner – and the greens are once again green. Dust off your clubs and head to one of Northwest Wisconsin’s many challenging golf courses.
Why golf for just one day when you can make it a whole vacation? A stay at Rosenthal’s Resort or Heartwood Conference Center & Retreat puts in you in the middle of Wisconsin’s northwoods beauty and within a short drive of several golf courses. Enjoy all the amenities of these resorts, then choose your course of the day. Fox Run Golf Course, just north of Webster, offers pine tree lined 9-hole regulation and 9-hole par 3, plus footgolf courses. Discover the uniqueness of sand greens at Sand Greens Country Club, Danbury. Choose from three championship courses that are close by: Siren National Golf Club, Siren; Voyager Village, Danbury; and Black Bear Golf Club, Minong. Spooner Golf Club offers many risk/reward opportunities throughout the course.
Looking for a challenging 9-hole course? Check out Entwood Golf Course in Ladysmith. This mature golf course has a signature hole that will test your skills with a dogleg to the right, with water on the left and right of the fairway. Finish off a fine day of golf with a visit to their clubhouse for a drink and a sandwich.
Swing on by the sites: rosenthalsresort.com, heartwoodconferencecenter.com, foxrun.golf, sandgreenscountryclub.com, sirennational.com, voyagervillage.com, burnettcountyfun.com, blackbeargolf.com, spoonergolf.com and entwoodgolf.com.
Parks & Rec
Northwestern Wisconsin has one of the largest concentrations of waterfalls in the upper Midwest. You can thank the unique geology of the Penokee Hills which has plenty of fissures and well worn paths for water to fall and spill as it heads toward Lake Superior.
Fortunately many of the waterfalls are quite accessible, and two of the easiest to visit are the pair at Pattison State Park outside of Superior in Douglas County. Big Manitou Falls, located near the entrance of the park features a 165 foot drop, making it the largest waterfall in the state. It’s sibling, Little Manitou Falls, which has a 30 foot drop, is located only a short hike upstream.
Ashland County’s Copper Falls State Park near Mellen features a series of waterfalls of the same name. The namesake falls drops through a gorge of dark volcanic rock spilling into the Bad River. A hiking trail loops the falls and river, affording plenty of opportunities to view and photograph this natural wonder.
Southeast of Superior is Amnicon Falls, located in Amnicon State Park. This little park is worth the trip to hike the 2-mile loop, viewing the upper and lower falls and the signature covered bridge spanning across the Amnicon River.
Take the Challenge
We all have a competitive streak and the region offers plenty of events to satisfy our nature for competition or personal challenge.
Fishing tournaments pepper the state, but one of the most enjoyable and challenging fish to catch is the northern pike. Musky Tale Resort’s Northern Encounter is a fishing contest in Sawyer County where you can try your hand at landing the big one. But if Northern isn’t your style, the Chippewa Valley Bass Attack has a tournament on May 13 on Barron County’s Big Chetac Lake near Birchwood.
Lace up your shoes and head to Superior on May 20 for the Harbor House 15K Run & 5K Run/Walk. This event that supports the Douglas County Crisis Shelter features a beautiful out and back course run on the paved surface of the Osaugie Trail. The Race starts at the Richard Bong Veteran’s Historical Center.
So you think you are pretty hot stuff. But are you up to the challenge of Lawn Mower Racing? Sponsored by the Friends of Fifield Volunteer Fire Department in Price County, this May 28 event features hot laps at noon with races that begin at 1 p.m. on a 1/6 mile oval track. Let the grass fly!