Silent Sports

More Northwoods trails are opening for the winter season.

Trails on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest are open for the season.

Forest county snowmobile trails will open at 9:00 a.m. on Friday, December 23. Vilas and Oneida county snowmobile trails have opened for the year.

Tim Gillin

A handful of people came up with a bunch of ideas Tuesday to increase the number of visitors to the popular Minocqua Winter Park and Nordic Center located several miles west of Minocqua.

Winter Park already has a good base of attractions: nearly 100 kilometers of cross-country ski trails, a winter tubing hill, snowshoeing trails and a skating pond. But the park gets little use in other seasons.

Ski Resorts and Trails Prep for Winter Recreation

Nov 11, 2014

All this snow is likely to make for some good skiing conditions.  Many downhill runs are opening for business, while cross country skiers may have to wait longer for groomed trails. 

Rib Mountain’s Granite Peak is set to open this weekend, while Ski Brule near Iron River, Michigan has already opened a few of its runs.

But Operations Manager Jessica Polich says more snow falling from the sky doesn’t actually make trails open any faster.  Ski Brule just needs cold temperatures to run its snow making machines 24/7.

Advisory Council Asks About Non-Motorized Trail Use

Nov 6, 2014
Tim Gillin

An advisory council to the state DNR is asking the public for input on non-motorized trail use.

The recently-formed Non-motorized Recreation and Transportation Trails Council hopes to represent the needs of silent sports users in Wisconsin. 

Council member and editor of Silent Sports magazine Joel Patenaude says the new survey wants feedback from users about their needs and concerns. 

Bearskin-Hiawatha Connection Opens

Aug 21, 2014

Cyclists can ride more easily between Tomahawk and Minocqua, now that the Bearskin and Hiawatha trails are connected.

The DNR has finished building a six-mile connector stretch that joins the two major trails together. 

Local business owner Jim Wise has been working to make it happen for more than two decades.  He says while it’s taken a while to secure funding, he has high hopes for the finished trail.

Boulder Junction Awaits Bike Trail Connection

Jun 6, 2014
Pete Rondello

Boulder Junction is hoping to rally enthusiasm for its growing bike trail system this summer.

Chamber of Commerce Director Theresa Smith says the original Boulder Junction trail was built in 1994 and has been expanding ever since.  Right now there are 29 miles of paved trail connecting Boulder Junction with Sayner and St. Germaine.  And she says there’s more to come.

Vilas County Debuts Silent Sports Map

Jun 3, 2014

Vilas County says a new silent sports trail map is getting a warm reception.

The map released last month combines details of more than 60 paddling, hiking, biking and ski trails in the county.    

Cindy Burzinski, Director of Vilas County Tourism and Publicity, says in the first two weeks that the map was available, they distributed 5000 copies. 

RASTA To Hold Mountain Bike Race

May 12, 2014
Belal Khan /

A mountain bike race outside of Rhinelander this weekend hopes to drum up financial support for trail maintenance. 

RASTA, the Rhinelander Area Silent Sports Association is holding the bike race May 17th at the Washburn Silent Sports trails near Perch Lake.

Spokesperson Suzanne Flory says it’s a new location for the RASTA Rally…which could make it more exciting for riders of all levels.

A recent study shows the increasing economic impact of silent sports in northern Wisconsin.

The report was authored by three UW-Extension researchers, a bicycle industry consultant and a former graduate student.

The study surveyed Ashland, Bayfield and Sawyer counties in 2012. The authors administered a year-long set of surveys.