Things to See & Do

TAKE A BREATH . . .LEAVE THE WORLD BEHIND . . .PREPARE TO BE SWEPT AWAY.

Experience a few moments of well-deserved serenity through the wonder of countless stars in a nighttime sky, the warmth and comfort of a campfire, the mysterious call of a loon, or the promise held in the morning sun as it rises over the pines.

Explore the wild side with a trek through a forest teeming with life, a scenic canoe ride down the river, the joy of catching your limit, the roar of many horses as trucks thunder into turn one, or the exhilarating feel of hitting the jackpot.

Embark on an adventure of your own making. Whether you crave relaxation, adventure, excitement, culture or history, Forest County can make your experience one to remember. —Winda Collins (Chamber Board)


Crandon International Off-Road Raceway

For over 45 years now they have been racing off-road trucks at the Crandon International Off-Road Raceway; the birthplace of short-course off-roard truck and buddy racing as it is known today.  Crandon Raceway (the Big House) was founded on a solid foundation of world-class motorsports talent, equipment and support.  The dedication of a not-for-profit board of directors ensures the continued Crandon experience along with the financial support of corporate partners.  The formula has to include the devotion of the raceway volunteers and organizations that look forward to the return of loyal fans each and every year.  With its roots in Baja and its birthright here in Crandon, short-course off-road is known as the fastest, most punishing form of auto racing on the planet.  Sanctioned by United States Auto Club (USAC), presented by AMSOIL , the Traxxas-Off-Road Series (TORC) will again deliver big off-road racing action events at Crandon Raceway in 2017.

Contact Phone:(715) 478-2222
Website:  www.crandonoffroad.com

Kovac Planetarium

An educational and entertaining Experience

Kovac Planetarium
Frank Kovac
Main 715-487-4411
Cell   715-490-5647

Address
2392 Mud Creek Road
Rhinelander, WI 54501

general@kovacplanetarium.com

Nicolet Country Club

Nicolet Country Club is one of the best-kept courses in Northeastern Wisconsin. We have a unique course layout covering approximately 4,800 yards. Our two nines are like playing two separate courses. The front nine is more-or-less wide open, but requires good iron play to hit small greens. The back nine is a par 32 layout that has several dog-legs that place a premium on accurate tee shots. The course is perfect for all skill levels. Each nine is played in 2 hours or less. You’ll enjoy our facility that includes an 18-hole golf course, driving range, practice green, putting green and fully stocked golf shop, and bar & grill.

Contact phone:   (715)674-4780
Address:  5245 Fairway Court, Laona
Website:    Nicolet Country Club


Mole Lake Casino Lodge Conference Center

Mole Lake is more than just great games and hot casino action. It’s your complete entertainment destination! Mole Lake Casino Lodge Conference Center is located just seven miles south of beautiful Crandon, Wisconsin, and offers all your favorite slot machines, dining, lounges, and also first class accommodations in our 75 room Lodge, which includes spacious suites, a fitness center, swimming pool and a full service Conference Center. While you’re here, be sure to enjoy the many mouthwatering options in our Café Manoomin, and also relax and enjoy our Lounges for your favorite cocktail.

Phone contact:    (800)236-9466
Address:   3084 Hwy. 55, Crandon
Website:  Mole Lake Casino

Potawatomi Carter Casino Hotel

The casino offers many slot machines, table games and an entertainment venue. Hotel amenities include 2 restaurants, an indoor pool, hot tub, sauna, fitness center and laundry facilities. There’s also a business center and many event spaces.

Phone contact:  (800) 487-9522
Address:  618 Wisconsin Hwy 32, Wabeno
Website: Potawatomi Carter Casino Hotel 


The Crandon Water Shows : 50+ Years of Free Family Entertainment

The Crandon Water Show is a family favorite in Forest County and has been for generations.  Spectators young and old have been entertained by the club’s jazz lines, doubles acts, and risen from their chairs to give a standing ovation as the three-tier final pyramid sails by.  From the tiny turtle pyramid to the barefoot pyramid and everything in between, it’s easy to see how this has become one of the longest running amateur water ski shows in the country.  Find Crandon Water Shows Alumni & Fan club page on Facebook or check out photos and the latest information on their web page.  The season kicks off in June with the first weekly Wednesday shows through August on beautiful Lake Lucerne.  Additional shows take place on Monday evening during the month of July.  Free admission.

Wednesday evenings late June – August
Get directions

Rusty’s Wabeno Bowl

Take the family for a game or two of bowling. A great family place.

Phone contact:  (715)473-2166
Address:  4489 N. Branch St., Wabeno

Wabeno Area Players

Wabeno Area Players works hard at creating a theatrical experience that will be inspirational, and educational, and have a positive impact on and within the community. They strive to give our audience performances with the highest quality and caliber. So spread the word! We appreciate your support and look forward to entertaining you for years to come.

Phone contact:    (715)473-5466
Address:   PO Box 325, Wabeno
Website:   Wabeno Area Players


Our Lakes, Rivers and Streams – Welcome Angelers!

Please help stop the spread of Aquatic Invasive Species

If you plan to bring your canoe or boat to Forest County, please do your part to help stop the spread of aquatic invasives like Eurasion Milfoil and Zebra Mussels. These life forms can be unintentionally transported from a contaminated lake to one that is not.

Be a responsible boater. Properly clean and disinfect your boat, trailer, and fishing equipment before leaving home. Thank you!

 


AgateFalls

This is a pretty waterfall, and relatively easy to get to. Stop by and see it on your way to or from Bond Falls.  Agate Falls is a Michigan State Scenic Site 6.5 miles east of Bruce Crossing on MI-28. There is a roadside park (Joseph F. Oravec roadside park) just past the bridge over the Ontonagon River. Unfortunately the provided trails and overlooks are somewhat limited. With some effort you can scramble down to the river to get some very good views of the falls, which seems to be popular with local fishermen, or scramble up the river banks to get to the old railroad bridge over the falls. The bridge is now part of a snowmobile trail.

Bond Falls

This is the best single waterfall in the Western U.P, and the second best waterfall in Michigan. If you are in the Western U.P., possibly on your way to or from the Porcupines or Copper Harbor, this is a definitely worth a stop.

Bond Falls is in the western U.P. on Bond Falls Rd, east of Pauding MI. This is the most impressive waterfall in Michigan with the possible exception of Tahquamenon Falls. The main drop is 40 feet high and 100+ feet wide. Above the main falls are a series of cascades and rapids that must drop a total of 20 feet.

The water level is controlled by a dam, and a steady flow over the falls is maintained for scenic reasons. Of course during the spring melt the flow is much higher.

Bond Fall is a Michigan State Scenic Site. The site was renovated around 2003. The old parking area was upstream of the falls, and a steep concrete stairway led to the base of the falls. The new parking area is near the base of the falls, and a level boardwalk leads you to prime views of the falls. The area is not quite as wild looking as it once was, but it is accessible to everyone. The trail on the east side of the falls is still wild with some steep rocky climbs. There are other trails that go off into the woods, and there are campsites nearby.

In addition to being very picturesque, this is a very popular waterfall, and unless you visit early in the morning or in winter, you are going to have a lot of company.

Brownstone Falls

A very scenic waterfall, and easy to get to. There is a $10 day use fee to visit the park. There are many other waterfalls in the area, including two others in the park.

Brownstone Falls is located in Wisconsin’s Copper Falls State Park. Here the Tyler’s Fork of the Bad River plunges into the Bad River Gorge. This is a very pretty waterfall, surrounding by impressive reddish brown rock. It is only 30 feet high but something about the surroundings make it look much larger. Copper Falls is a third of a mile upstream.

There are not a lot of vantage points from which to view this waterfall. Access to the gorge is prohibited, and would be rather challenging.

Copper Falls

The name sake of Copper Falls State Park. An easy to visit waterfall with a scenic gorge and a very scenic neighbor. There is a $10 day use fee to visit the park. There are many other waterfalls in the area, including two others in the park.

The Bad River has carved out an interesting gorge through the rocky terrain so prevalent around Lake Superior. It is hard to get a really good view of the waterfall itself. Most of the river goes around a large chunk of rock in two plunges.

There are several vantage points from which to view different parts of the waterfall. A large part of this trail is accessible to wheel chairs. Brownstone Falls is just a short distance downstream. The gorge just below the confluence of the Bad River and Tyler’s Fork is very picturesque. Access to the gorge is prohibited, and would be rather challenging.

Foster Falls

This is allegedly the 10th highest waterfall in Wisconsin. It is in a remote location off of a forest road but no hike is required, and it is relatively easy to find. Make sure you check out the far more impressive Potato Falls downstream or Superior Falls to the north before spending a lot of time looking for this one. It also makes sense to combine your visit to Foster Falls with a visit to the nearby Wren Falls.

Foster Falls is located in a fairly remote location 6 miles north of Upson Wisconsin. Apparently the Potato River splits with the eastern branch going over a steep drop and the western branch going down a more gentle cascade.  This is a wild waterfall with no fences or barriers of any kind. You can clamber about on the rocks as much as you like. You can even pick up a rock or two and take it home with you.

To reach this waterfall head north on 122 from Upson, or south on 122 from Saxon. Head west on Sullivan Fire Lane. This is a dirt road, but it is well maintained. Sullivan Fire Lane is about 6 miles north of Upson and 5 miles south of Saxon. Go just about 3 miles on Sullivan. Just before the road starts to look like a two track, there is a short side road to the right which leads to a turnaround. Park here. You will be able to hear the falls, which are a short walk to the right.

You can also reach this falls from the west. The main reason to do this is to see Wren Falls on the way. From Highway 169 take Vogues Road east. The road curves around to the south and eventually back west. At about 3.6 miles take a left on the connector with Casey Sag Road. Continue west on Casey Sag, taking the left fork, until you reach the dead end at the river upstream of the falls.

Gabbro Falls

Gabbro Falls is on the Black River and is as impressive, if not more impressive, than its more celebrated neighbors downstream along the Black River Scenic Byway. This is a largely wild waterfall with no fences or barriers of any kind. It consists of three separate drops. When the water is high there is a fourth drop that is the height of the other three combined. The main drop falls into a narrow crevice between two large rock formations.

Gabbro Falls is relatively easy to find but there is some confusing information out there. The waterfall is also known as Baker’s Falls, and it is often mistakenly called Garbo Falls (gabbro is a type of rock). There is also a Neepikon Falls upstream, but it is just an unremarkable rapid. To reach the waterfall head north on Blackjack Rd from US 2 in Ramsay. Head north for about 2 miles. Blackjack Rd takes a sharp left and goes over a wooden covered bridge. From this point on the road is gravel. Continue to the left (you are still on Blackjack Rd) and head up the hill. You will be heading roughly south at this point. At the top of the hill there will be some old, run down looking buildings on the right. Turn around, and park opposite the buildings. There are some obvious trails. To reach the top of the falls, head to the right. To reach the base, head straight.

You can rock hop across the river below the falls in low water. To reach the other side without possibly getting your feet wet, go back to Blackjack Rd and find the first gas line clearing from the covered bridge. This is the third, not the second gas line clearing from US 2. If you walk down the hill along the clearing, you will reach the river just above the falls.

Gile Falls

This small waterfall southwest of Hurley Wisconsin in the town of Gile is on the West Branch of the Montreal River. There are two main drops here with a sharp curve between them. The total drop is listed at 15 feet.

Gile Falls is off of 77 west of Hurley. To reach the falls park at the fire station off of 77. In the southeast corner of the parking lot there is a hiking/cross country ski trail. Follow this trail and it will take you to a bridge just above the falls. This trail skirts one of the impressive man made hills here. The hills were created during the mining era.

Some directions tell you to take Kokogan Street to Gile Falls Street. However there are signs posted here saying the trails are closed and large piles of deadwood block the trails.

Gorge Falls

A very scenic waterfall set in a very scenic gorge. An added plus is the close proximity of the equally impressive Potawatomi Falls. These are two of the most impressive falls on the Black River and are also the two easiest to access.

Gorge falls is named for the deep and narrow gorge above and below the falls. It is also one of the easier waterfalls to visit, being only a short distance from the parking area. There are a fair number of stairs to the falls overlook. It is only a short walk upstream to see Potawatomi Falls.

The Black River Scenic Byway starts north of US 2 near Bessemer. There are signs on US 2. Gorge Falls is about 14.5 miles north of US 2. The scenic area is on the right and is clearly marked.

Kimball Falls

Kimball Falls is in Kimball Wisconsin. While driving west along US 2 from Saxon Falls to Peterson Falls you will see a small sign on the south side of the road for Kimball Falls. Kimball Falls is a small rapids in a small park. It is less than a mile from US 2 and easy to get there, so visiting it will not take much time, and it would be a nice area to stop for a lunch break. The sign for Peterson Falls is the same style as the sign for Kimball Falls, but Peterson Falls is far more impressive.

Lake of the Falls

Lake of the Falls Waterfall in Mercer Wisconsin.

The falls drop 10 feet into the Turtle River in Lake of the Falls County Park. The park offers picnic and rustic camping facilities, as well as a boat landing with access to the Turtle Flambeau Flowage via the Turtle River.

Located 5 Miles West of Mercer via County FF; Picnic Area, Tables, Fireplaces, Drinking Water, Pavilion, Rest Rooms, Overnight Camping 35 Units, Swimming, Boat Launching Area, Boating, Fishing, Caretaker.

Manabezho Falls

The Manabezho Falls are part of the Presque Isle River’s spectacular final dash to Lake Superior. The entire 1 mile stretch is very beautiful, with lots of bare rock and rapids. It is easily accessible from the Presque Isle entrance off of CR-519 on the western end of the park.

Manabezho Falls is the largest, and last named drop on the river. It is also the closest to the main parking lot. A short walk with many stairs will take you to a nice view of the falls. There is an overlook at the top of the falls, but you cannot see much of the falls there. The falls can be seen from the trails on both sides of the river.

Downstream of the parking area is a suspension bridge for pedestrians which leads to Presque Isle. From the bridge you can see the fabulous potholes the river has carved into the gorge. In the summer, when the water is lower, the river goes to the left of the “island” (west), but when the river is high it surrounds the island, resulting in additional falls. In high water Manabezho Falls is very wide, but later in the summer it becomes segmented.

Manakiki Falls

From Hwy. US 2 in Bessemer take Powderhorn Rd North. When the road ends at the stop sign make a left hand turn on Black River Rd. Follow Black River Road until you see a sign for the Gorge Falls, turn left. Follow this road for about 3 miles until you come to a wooden bridge. Park before the bridge, then cross it and follow the creek on your left upstream (there isn’t much of a path).

Notes: This falls is also know as Maple Creek Falls. The falls are in a very steep canyon.

Nawadaha Falls

Nawadaha Falls is the upper most of the three falls along the Presque Isle River’s final stretch. Until recently you had to walk along a rather rugged trail with lots of steep ups and downs, and there were no viewing platform for the falls. Sometime after 2001 they added a viewing platform and a short trail to the falls from behind the entrance station.

This is a low, wide waterfall. Its width varies greatly depending on the water levels. Nawadaha Falls is similar to but a little higher than Manido Falls. The steepest part of the falls is on the eastern side, and when the river is low, most of the water flows there. There is a nice natural overlook out in front of this drop easily reached from the trail on the east side of the river.

South Boundary Road is not to far beyond Nawadaha Falls. You can cross the river here and hike down the other side to make a loop around all the Presque Isle Falls. The eastern side is much wilder, but the whole hike is very enjoyable

Peterson Falls

A nice easy to visit waterfall on the Michigan/Wisconsin border.

This waterfall is located on the Montreal River just a few miles upstream of Saxon Falls. The Montreal River forms part of the border between Michigan and Wisconsin so the falls is technically in both states, and can be visited from either state, but it is most easily visited from the Wisconsin side.

Some sources refer to this as Peterson Falls, and the sign on the highway says “Peterson Falls”. However others say that this falls is Interstate Falls and that Peterson Falls is a smaller waterfall upstream of Interstate Falls.

From Hurley head west for about .6 miles. This is just past the US 2/US 51 interchange. Look for the large Ero Nasi Construction sign and the smaller Peterson Falls sign. Turn right onto the gravel road. Follow this road a short distance (.3 miles) to a small turn around. Park here. The trail follows the river bank. It is about a 10 minute walk to Peterson Falls. The other waterfall is apparently in this same area and much closer to the parking area.

You can reach the gravel road if you are heading east but it is easy to miss because US 2 is a divided highway here. There is no “Peterson Falls” sign for eastbound traffic.

There are no fences here and you can get right down to the base or top of the falls. The area looks fairly wild despite the fact there is a house just downstream on the Michigan side of the falls.

Potato Falls

This is the just upstream of the most impressive waterfalls in all of Wisconsin, and is an interesting waterfall all by itself, especially if you are looking for some adventure. This is a large, hard to see all at once waterfall, but definitely worth visiting.

Potato Falls is in Gurney Wisconsin. This is a very impressive waterfall. If you are tired of having your hands held by the State Parks and are looking for a big waterfall that you can freely climb all over, risking life and limb, this is the one for you.

The waterfall is located in a county park in Gurney. The park is easy to find, and there is no fee. Gurney is on Hwy 169, about 12 miles northeast of Copper Falls State Park and about 3 miles south of US 2. The park is at the end of Potato River Falls Road, west of Hwy 169. Potato River Falls Road is gravel, but it is in good shape and the park is just about a mile from Hwy 169.

The park consists of a parking lot, a picnic area, a pit toilet and some trails to view the falls.

Upper-
To view the upper falls take the trail to the left. There is a sign indicating it is the trail to the upper falls. The trail ends at an observation deck from which you can view the upper part of the waterfall. This is a complicated waterfall consisting of several drops each going in different directions. Below the part visible from the observation deck, the water tumbles down another 20 feet in two different places. In high water it probably becomes one big sheet of water.

From the observation deck it is fairly easy to get down to the river. From here you can walk downstream to the top of the Lower Falls, or clamber around on the rocks and through the water looking for better views of the upper falls. In higher water this may be dangerous if not impossible. If you could get to high ground on the far bank you might be able to get a more comprehensive view of the entire falls.

Lower-
This is one of the most impressive waterfalls in all of Wisconsin, especially if you are looking for some adventure. The waterfall is large, easy to find and provides all sorts of opportunities for exploration. There is also a nearby upper falls that is equally as impressive.

There is an observation deck right by the parking lot from which you can get a somewhat obstructed view of the falls. It is tempting to try to get down to the river from here, and you will see evidence of people having worked their way down the steep hills, but if you go back to the parking lot you will find a maintained trail complete with stairs that will take you down into the gorge. At the bottom of this trail there is a observation deck from which you can get a nice distant view of the entire waterfall.

You can get even closer if you wish. The trail leads to the river and you can walk upstream towards the falls. Unfortunately you will have to wade across the river at some point. The walls on the side of the river you will be on become sheer and there is no river bank. In the spring crossing the river may not be possible. If you do cross the river you can get right up to the base of the falls. There are some also precarious spots from which you can get dangerous view of the falls

Potawatomi Falls

A very scenic waterfall along an especially scenic part of the Black River. An added plus is the close proximity of the equally impressive Gorge Falls. These are two of the most impressive falls on the Black River and are also the two easiest to access.

Potawatomi Falls is just upstream of Gorge Falls and is reached from the same parking area. Potawatomi is the name of one of the native tribes. This waterfall is wheelchair accessible. Gorge Falls is just a short walk away.

The Black River Scenic Byway starts north of US 2 near Bessemer. There are signs on US 2. Gorge Falls is about 14.5 miles north of US 2. The scenic area is on the right and is clearly marked. The falls are a short walk from the parking area.

Powderhorn Falls

Powderhorn Falls is located in Bessemer Michigan. This is a small waterfall and there are no signs identifying its location. Visiting it requires you to climb down into a steep gorge (there are some ropes to help) and you have to cross the creek to get a good look of the falls. If this sounds like too much work, Gabbro Falls is much larger and much easier to visit.

The falls is located off of Powderhorn Road, about 1.5 miles north of US 2. Powderhorn Road is easy to find, thanks to the giant skier on US 2. The road leads to the Big Powderhorn Mountain Ski Area and there is plenty of signage. The falls on the otherhand has no signs. Look for Flintlock Road on the left. This is a small, rough dirt road. Opposite this on the right side of the road is a trail. The road runs parallel to the creek and the creek is not visible from the road. If you reach the Powdermill Creek Resort or the big curve in the road you have gone too far.

The trail will lead you to top of the falls. Some ropes will help you make the descent into the gorge. The area just above the falls appears to be part of somebody’s backyard.

This falls is also known as Powdermill Falls.

Red Granite Falls

Red Granite Falls is located in Wisconsin’s Copper Falls State Park. This is better described as a set of rapids instead of a waterfall. Here the Bad River tumbles over and through a large number of rocks.

The area is a mile or so upstream of the much more scenic Copper Falls and Brownstone Falls. The one big advantage Red Granite Falls has over the others is that there are no fences here, and you can easily get out on the rocks amidst the rapids.

After you enter the park, take the first left on the road to Loon Lake. The trail to the fall is a 2.5 mile round trip through woods. There are a few ups and downs, but it is mostly level. The area is clearly marked on the park map.

Rainbow Falls

This is the last of the main falls on the Black River before it enters Lake Superior. This is an interesting waterfall. Unfortunately the best views are from the east side of the river and the observation deck is on the west side of the river. The hike from the west side trail-head is 1/2 mile. Another option is to drive down to end of the Black River Scenic Byway, cross the river and hike back up to the falls. A suspension bridge takes you across the river and a mile long, scenic, and mostly level trail, takes you back to the falls. The views are far superior. In low water you can wade across the river above the falls.

The Black River Scenic Byway starts north of US 2 near Bessemer. There are signs on US 2. Rainbow Falls is about 16 miles north of US 2. The scenic area is on the right and is clearly marked. It is about a 1/2 mile walk from the parking area to the falls. There are a lot of stairs at the end.

The waterfall has carved out a large pothole. Most of the river falls into the pothole, but some of the water, depending on how high the river is, goes around or jumps clear over this hole.

Saxon Falls

When it has water this is a very impressive waterfall. Unfortunately it is hard to get a good view of the falls. If you are looking for some adventure it might be a fun stop, but there are many other nearby waterfalls that are more scenic and easier to get to.

Saxon Falls is located on the Montreal River just a few miles upstream of Superior Falls, about 10 miles west of Ironwood. The Montreal River forms part of the border between Michigan and Wisconsin so the falls is technically in both states. It can be visited from either side, but both require a bit of work.

Like Superior Falls there is a dam and power plant here and the water is diverted. Unlike Superior Falls there is no visitor friendly viewing area for the falls. The falls are large and complicated.

To reach the Wisconsin side from US 2, turn north on 122. Take a right onto County Rd B. When the road takes a 90 degree right turn, turn left onto the dirt road leading to the Saxon Falls Flowage. There is a sign. If you are travelling west on US 2 you will encounter County Rd B before 122. Take a right onto County Rd B, and when the road turns 90 degrees to the left, keep going straight onto the dirt road leading to the Saxon Falls Flowage.

From the parking area there are trails that go to the right into the woods. From here you can make a difficult descent down to the falls. This is not easy. The trail climbs up sharply, turning away from the falls, and continues along the rim of the gorge for awhile.

There is a metal stairway down the gorge behind a fence and a big “No Trespassing” sign. A little research has shown that this stairway is used by paddlers to access the river apparently with the approval of the Northern States Power company.

The Michigan side can be seen from the Powers Trail System. Here you can get a nice, if distant, view of the lower drop, and some nice views of the gorge.

Shay’s Dam Falls

5 Feet Turtle River (Mercer Area) Head east on County J in Mercer for 2.5 miles. Turn north (left) on Beaver Lodge Circle. Proceed 3.6 miles, passing Beaver Lake Road. Turn east (right) on Fisher Lake Road 1.2 miles to small side road on the left leading to Shay’s Dam. Watch for “Shay’s Dam” sign. Park with picnic area available.

Shining Cloud Falls

Shining Cloud Falls is the largest and most scenic of the Porcupine Mountain’s back country falls. It is at least a 5 mile one way hike to the falls, but definitely worth it if you like hiking and wild waterfalls.

You will have to hike at least 5 miles in to see the falls, and another 5 miles to get back. If you are looking for a good long day hike this is a winner. In addition to the main falls there are also a number of smaller cascades, and whatever route you take there is lots of wilderness scenery.

The total drop of the falls is about 20′. The falls consists of two parts, a slide on the left, and a plunge on the right. In higher water the two parts merge, but in lower water the two parts are distinct. Plunge falls are rare around Lake Superior.

From the trail you cannot see much of Shining Cloud Falls. Just below the falls is a deep and precipitous gorge and the trail passes high above the falls. There is one distant somewhat overgrown overlook on the trail. To get better views you will have to descend into the gorge a bit. Getting to the top of the falls is not too hard, and assuming the water is not really high, you can walk down the side of the slide to reach the base of the falls.

The real challenge with seeing Shining Cloud Falls is reaching it. It is located on the Big Carp River Trail. This trail begins at the Lake of the Clouds Overlook. It is 8.5 miles one way from Lake of the Clouds to Shining Cloud Falls. This features some fabulous escarpment scenery. Another scenic route is to take the Lake Superior Trail from Presque Isle to the mouth of the Carp River and then hike upstream to the falls. It is about 7.5 miles to the mouth of the river, and the falls are 1.25 miles upstream. The shortest, but perhaps least scenic route is to take the Pinkerton Trail to the mouth of the Little Carp River, follow the Lake Superior Trail to the mouth of the Big Carp River, and then follow the Big Carp River Trail upstream to the falls, for a total distance of about 5 miles.

Downstream of Shining Cloud Falls are a number of unnamed falls and rapids. Several of these are larger than some of the named falls on the Little Carp River. The last drop near the Lake is known as Bathtub Falls. If you are hiking upstream to the falls, do not be fooled by the smaller drops. The trail follows the river closely, but it climbs away from the river before reaching Shining Cloud Falls. There is no sign marking Shining Cloud Falls, but it is very distinctive.

Superior Falls

This is a very impressive waterfall just a short distance from the shores of Lake Superior. Water is diverted by a dam, but the power company is required to maintain a flow over the falls. It is relatively easy to get to, and not too far off US 2.

Superior Falls is located on the Montreal River just a few hundred yards from Lake Superior. The Montreal River forms part of the border between Michigan and Wisconsin so the falls is technically in both states, but it is most easily visited from the Michigan side.

This is an impressive waterfall consisting of several drops and some very dramatic gorge walls. Unfortunately there is a dam a short distance above the falls and most of the water is diverted for power generation. The power company is required to maintain at least 20 cubic feet of water per second flowing over the falls. Early spring is the best time to see the falls.

Superior Falls is off of Hwy 122 north of US 2. The US 2 and Hwy 122 junction is in Wisconsin, but you will cross into Michigan. About 1/2 mile past the Michigan border turn left on to the gravel road that leads to the parking lot. There is a sign saying “Superior Falls”. Northern States Power operates the Superior Falls Hydro plant and keep the area open to the public.

From the parking lot you can head to the left for a nice scenic view of the final drop (65 feet). You can see some of the upper falls as well from here. The fence is a bit frustrating and often blocks your view, but it also will save you from a long, long fall into the gorge. The overlook is at the top of the gorge wall pictured below.

There is a wide grassy trail that leads farther upstream. From here you can find a relatively safe way down to the level of the top of the final drop. This is not a maintained trail, but it gets a lot of local traffic. From here you can get a good look at the upper drop (20 feet), a bunch of rapids above that, and the dam above that. It looks like the dam may have been built on the edge of another sizable drop.

From the parking lot there is also a paved trail that descends steeply down to the river and lake. Superior Falls is very close to the lake. You can look at the falls, and then turn around and look at the lake. Once at the bottom you can walk upstream for some closer views of the final drop. There is a well beaten path that goes behind the power house. The cliffs and rocks at the base of the falls are really spectacular.

Upson Falls

Upson Falls is in Upson Wisconsin. It is in a small town park off of Park Rd. If you are heading south on 122, take a right when you reach Upson and you will be on Park Rd. There are signs on 77 telling you how to reach Upson Falls.

This is a small waterfall consisting of a couple of drops, the largest of which is around 6 feet high. The waterfall is on the Potato River (or Creek at this point). As the Potato River flows north it gets more impressive. The large Potato Falls are roughly 20 miles away. Foster Falls is about 6 miles downstream.

Wren Falls

A wild and dramatic falls located in the woods of Iron County. A rough two track leads to within a couple hundred yards of the falls, but you may prefer to hike in. This is one of the most scenic falls in Wisconsin, despite by no means being the biggest.

Wren Falls is located on the Tyler Forks, a tributary of the Bad River. The Bad River is aptly named, as it and its tributaries have carved rocky, twisted and often deep gorges through northern Wisconsin on its way to Lake Superior. The falls is only 12′ high at most, but the deep gorge it slides into is very impressive, and the dramatic view from the overlook seems to make the falls look much bigger than it actually is.

Reaching the falls is straightforward, especially if you have an ATV or a high clearance vehicle. For those of us with less rugged vehicles, you may need to hike about 1.5 miles to reach the falls. From Highway 169 take a right onto Vogues road. Vogues road is a wide, well maintained dirt road. Follow Vogues road for 3.6 miles. It does a big arc, and ends at a hairpin turn where it meets Casey Sag Road. At this point you will be heading west. Casey Sag Road continues west as a rough two track. Another two track heads south. This is the road, or perhaps more accurately the trail, to Wren Falls. You could take a car or truck down it, but it is only wide enough for one vehicle, and there is no room to pass, and little room to pull off. People take ATVs down the trail, and mountain bikes would work well.

Follow the trail for about 1.3 miles. There you will reach a fork. Take the right fork, and follow it for about 1000 feet. It ends at a turn around. There is an impressive overlook here, a 100 feet above the falls. There is a steep descent down to the base of the falls here if you look carefully. If you follow the trails on the rim downstream, you can find some less high but still steep descents into the gorge.

There is a smaller cascade with a drop of a few feet about 1/2 mile downstream that can be heard from the trail. With some effort you can climb down to it.


Forest County Historical Society Museum

Located in the “Old Carter House” at 105 W. Jackson Street in downtown Crandon.  The museum is maintained and operated by the Forest County Historical and Genealogical Society.  Hours of operation are during the summer months and vary.  Free admission.

Phone Contact:  (715)-478-5900
Website:  www.forestcountyhistory.org
Get directions

Forest County Potawatomi Cultural Center, Library and Museum

The Forest County Potawatomi Cultural Center, Library and Museum.

Museum director Mike Alloway.  Hours of operation:  Monday – Thursday 7a.m.-5p.m.  Friday and Saturday by appointment only.  Admission is $3.00 per adult.

Phone Contact:  (800)-960-5479 ext. 7478
Website:  www.fcpotawatomi.com/culture-and-history
Get directions

Lumberjack Steam Train

Cowboy re-enactment shows are always a popular choice for visitors to the area.

Ride the Steam Train into a Historic Logging Camp.  The steam train runs out of Laona and transports people to the Camp 5 Museum, which is located at 5068 US Hwy 8 in Laona.  The steam train and museum operate Monday – Saturday (closed Sundays).  The season starts in late June and ends later in August.

Cowboy Re-enactment:  July & October
Fall Festival:  3rd and 4th Saturdays in September & 1st weekend in October

Phone Contact:  (715)-674-3414
Website:  www.lumberjacksteamtrain.com
Get directions

Mecilkalski Stovewood Museum

Mecilkalski Stovewood Building Circa 1899

This National Historic Site was constructed with a unique method of folk architecture also known as cordwood construction. Built at the turn of the century, it is the only known commercial example utilizing the stovewood building method in the United States.

 

Website:   Mecilkalski Museum

Northwoods Veterans’ Center

The Center, located on Crandon’s Main Street across from the Forest County Courthouse square, operates a small museum that contains a collection of military uniforms, equipment, and other military artifacts.  The Forest County Courthouse square also includes the Forest County Veterans Memorial, which contains lists of Forest County Veterans, wartime memorials and artifacts. Free admission and the building is open daily.

Get directions

Town of Hiles Museum

The Town of Hiles Museum is located in the Hiles Town Hall and Community Building.  The museum is operated and maintained by the Hiles Service Club.  Call for hours of operation.

Phone contact:  Kathy Bruening, President (715)649-3168
Website:  www.townofhiles.org
Get directions

Wabeno Logging Museum

Built in 1941 by the Wabeno Lions Club, the museum contains memorabilia and records preserved in a replica of an old logging camp.

The Wabeno Logging Museum and Old Wabeno School House in downtown Wabeno are operated by the Town of Wabeno Parks Board.  Free admission.  Call for hours of operation.

Phone contact:  Larry Rummel (715)850-1861
Website: www.townofwabeno.org
Get directions


Forest County Recreation Map 2017

Public Snowmobile Trails

Enjoy snowmobiling in Forest County with over 405 miles of groomed, state-funded trails winding through the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. All trails link to both casinos and all hospitality businesses in Forest County, providing many pit stops along the trail for food, lodging, and refreshments.

100 Mile Snow Safari Trail: The 100 Mile Snow Safari has approximately 150 miles of marked and groomed trails through the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest linking all the localities of Forest County. Maps, food, etc., are available at pit stops throughout the system.

Lumberjack Memorial Trails: The Lumberjack Memorial Trails club grooms and maintains over 90 miles of trails in central and southern Forest County. These trails link to the 100 Miler as well as to the trails in the Lakewood area.

Three Lakes Trails: The Three Lakes Trail system has over 80 miles of groomed trails in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, linking Forest and Oneida Counties in the western half of the county.

Tombstone-Pickerel Trails: The Tombstone-Pickerel Trails include over 20 miles of groomed trails in southwestern Forest County, with numerous pit stops and resorts, as well as provide a link to the Langlade County trail system.

Black Bear Sportsmen’s Club: The Black Bear club has over 40 miles of groomed trails, linking the Crandon area north and west to trails in Oneida County.

County_Snowmobile_Map_2017

Public ATV Trails

ATV trails, routes, and trailhead development is always ongoing in Forest County. As a result of the coordination and cooperation of the U.S. Forest Service, Forest County ATV clubs, citizens and townships, Forest County has over 300 miles of ATV routes and 47 miles of state funded ATV trails.

The two state trails in Forest County are the Nicolet State Trail and the Wolf River State Trail. The Nicolet State Trail is located in eastern Forest County. It is 32 miles long connecting with Oconto County to the south and Florence County to the north. The Wolf River State Trail is 15 miles long and is located in the central and southern part of the county. Both trails are abandoned railroad corridors that have been surfaced with gravel and are open year round for ATV, UTV, dual-sport motorcycle, and snowmobile use. These state trails are the ONLY snowmobile trails in the county that are open year round to ATV/UTV use.

For further information about trail use, please contact the Forest County Forestry Department at (715) 478-3475.

Download the Forest County ATV Map.

Please stay on the trails. Going off the trails may result in permanent trail closure and fines.

atv trail map

NST Map

WRST

Cross-Country Ski Trails

CHEQUAMEGON- NICOLET NATIONAL FOREST – FOREST COUNTY

Ed’s Lake Trail: This trail is located on County Highway W between Wabeno and Crandon. The trail is groomed. There is a 2.3 mile loop trail suitable for beginners, with the intermediate trail offering a 2.7 mile loop as well as a 3.5 mile loop.

Nicolet North Trail: This trail is located 10.5 miles east of Eagle River to Forest Road 2460, then south on 2460 for 2 miles to the trailhead. There are 13 miles of groomed trails with several loop opportunities.

Anvil Trail: This trail is located 8.5 miles east of Eagle River on Highway 70. There are 12 miles of groomed loop trails ranging from gentle, rolling to hilly.

FOREST COUNTY FORESTRY DEPARTMENT

Otter Springs Trail: This trail is located 4 miles east of Crandon off Highway 8 on Forest Road 2378. This trail has a parking area and ski shelter available. It offers a 1.25 mile loop and .75 mile loop suitable for beginners. The intermediate trail is a 3 mile loop. Groomed for Classic and Skate skiing. SEE MAP

Ottersprings2014

Hemlock Lake Ski Trail: This trail is located 1 mile east and 4 miles south of Crandon off County Highway W on Hemlock Lake Road. This is a 2 mile loop trail with parking area. Trail is groomed for Classic skiing only. SEE MAP

hemlocklake

County Forest

HunterWalking Trails 2016

Mountain Biking Trails

CHEQUAMEGON-NICOLET NATIONAL FOREST – FOREST COUNTY

Ed’s Lake Trail: This trail is located on County Highway W between Wabeno and Crandon. There are 6 miles of trail in upland hardwoods.

Nicolet North Trail: This trail is located 10.5 miles east of Eagle River to Forest Road 2460, then south on 2460 for 2 miles to the trailhead. There are 13 miles of trail with several loop opportunities. The Nicolet North Trail connects with the Anvil Trail.

Anvil Trail: This trail is located 8.5 miles east of Eagle River on Highway 70. There are 12 miles of groomed loop options. In addition to designated trails, all logging roads and undesignated/ unmarked trails within the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest are open to mountain bikes unless otherwise posted. Information may be obtained at the local Forest Service office located in Laona, (71) 674-4481.

FOREST COUNTY FORESTRY DEPARTMENT

Otter Springs Trail: This trail is located 4 miles east of Crandon off Highway 8 on Forest Road 2378. There are 5 miles of trail in upland hardwoods.  SEE MAP

Ottersprings2014

Hiking, Birding & Nature Trails

Argonne Experimental Forest Trail: Located 1.5 miles east of Hiles on Highway 32 to Forest Road 2184, then north on 2184 for 1.5 miles to the trailhead.  The self-guided loop trail gives the hiker a chance to learn more about northern hardwoods and forest management. The trail features 17 stops along an easy 3/4 of a mile walk which takes about an hour.

Ed’s Lake Trail: Ed’s Lake Trail is located on County Highway W between Wabeno and Crandon. There are 6 miles of trail in upland hardwoods.

Franklin Lake Trail: Located 9 miles east of Eagle River on Highway 70 to Forest Road 2178, then south on 2178 for 3 miles to Forest Road 2181, then east on 2181 for 5 miles to the campground and trailhead. This is a 1 mile interpretive loop trail that takes you through a tamarack swamp, hemlock cathedral and 300-year old white pines.

Halley Creek Bird Trail: Located 5 miles east of Blackwell on Goodman Park Road to Forest Road 2103, then south on 2103 to trailhead. This is a one mile loop trail with bird viewing opportunities in four different habitat types.

Hidden Lakes Trail: Use the directions for the Franklin Lake Trail. This is a 4-mile (one way) interpretive trail which begins at Franklin Lake Trail and eventually joins the Luna-White Deer Trail.  Discover the molded landscapes of an ice age past, the cycle of seasons and the spiral of ages to come. Map & Directions

Knowles Creek Interpretive Trail: Located 9.5 miles east of Wabeno on Highway C to Forest Road 3132, south on 3132 for a 1/2 mile. This is a 1/3 mile barrier free access interpretive trail which follows the north shore of Knowles Creek impoundment.

Knowles Creek Impoundment and Interpretive Trail: This 170-acre wetland impoundment is a favorite for wildlife viewers. Open water, marsh, old fields, and forests combine to attract many species including owls, hawks, eagles, loons, and waterfowl. Enjoy a 0.75-mile hiking trail, which has easy access. Located 9.5 miles east of Wabeno on Highway C to Forest Road 3132, south on 3132 for a 1/2 mile.  This is also a state designated Watchable Wildlife viewing area.

Laura Lake Walking Trail: This trail, located on Laura Lake, is a 2.25-mile loop. It is of moderate difficulty being uneven and narrow with some exposed rocks and roots. The trailhead is located between the swim area and the boat ramp. Directions: From Laona, follow US Highway 8 northeast for 14 miles. Turn left on FR 2163 and drive 5 miles north to Laura Lake Campground. Parking is available for 7 vehicles.

Michigan Rapids Hiking Trail: This hiking trail is of moderate difficulty, being a wide trail with some gentle slopes. In the early spring, some wet areas can be found. Watch for poison ivy at the end of the trail.  The trail length is approximately 2 miles that loops around. Directions: From Laona, take US Highway 8 north about 3 miles, to FR 2131. Turn right and go east approx. 12 miles to FR 2134. Turn right and travel south 1.5 miles. Look for trailhead sign on left just south of the Peshtigo River crossing at Burnt Bridge. Parking for 3 vehicles available.

Nicolet North Trail: Located 10.5 miles east of Eagle River to Forest Road 2460, then south on 2460 for 2 miles to the trailhead. There are 13 miles of trail with several loop opportunities. The Nicolet North Trail connects with the Anvil Trail.

Otter Springs Skiing and Hiking Trail: The Otter Springs trail is located on a large area of hardwood forest with scenic view of Otter Springs and Bug Lake.  The trail is 8 miles in total length. The beginner’s trail is about 0.75 of a mile long located near the graveled parking area. The intermediate trails are hilly and more challenging. The second trail is 1.25 miles in length with hills and curves. The trails are all well marked and groomed. The ski shelter is located between the two intermediate trails. Directions: The trail is located 4 miles east of Crandon, off of Highway 8, north on 2378. The trail is entirely on Forest County land and is maintained/developed by Forest County Forestry Department.

Pickerel Lake Walking and Biking Trail: The Pickerel Lake trail is 2 miles long, however from Highway 55, there are 4 miles designated for walking/biking. It is good for easy walking and biking, due to it being paved. Directions: Located 18 miles southwest of Crandon. From Crandon take Highway 55, and turn onto Pickerel Lake Road by Hills Still Supper Club. The trail is located next to Pickerel Lake Road.

Scott Lake Trail and Shelp Lake Trail: From Hiles head south on Highway 32 to Forest Road 2174, then north on 2174 for 5.5 miles to Forest Road 2183, east on 2183 for 6 miles to the trailheads. The 1/3 mile Scott Lake Trail is located on the south side of 2183. You can walk among some larger diameter eastern white pines, hemlocks and hardwoods. The boardwalk to Shelp Lake is located on the north side of 2183. This short walk will take you out over a floating bog.

hiking trails

Canoe Routes

Brule River – Forest County:

Put in below Brule Lake Dam. Take out at Highway 139. Bridge. Length – 18 miles. Water should be medium high. Two rapids. USDA Forest Service campground two miles east of Nelma.

Peshtigo River – Forest and Marinette Counties: See map, left.

Put in at Big Joe Canoe Landing. Take out at the CCC Bridge. Length – 7.5 miles. Nice stretch of quiet water which is good for the novice or families.

Put in at the CCC Bridge. Take out at Burnt Bridge. Length – 9.5 miles. This stretch is for the intermediate canoeist; there are several rocky stretches with rapids.

Put in at Burnt Bridge. Take out at Burton Wells. Length 5.75 miles. This stretch contains Class II, III, and IV rapids. There is one portage around Michigan Rapids.

Put in at Burton Wells. Take out at Goodman Park. Length – 6.25 miles. Class II, III, IV rapids. There is one mandatory portage around the falls.

Pine River – Forest and Florence Counties:

Put in at FS Road 2182 near Haystack Corners. Take out at FS Road 2168. Length – 20 miles. Slow, winding up to Highway 55. Faster with a few difficult rapids after Highway 55. Trout fishing.

Put in at FS Road 2168 to Chipmunk Rapids. Length – 18 miles. Excellent trout fishing. Several rapids. Portage around a dam. Picnic area at Highway 139. Camping area at Stevens Creek and Chipmunk Rapids. Some boulders.

Popple River – Forest County:

Put in at Highway 55 10 miles north of Argonne. Take out at the Town of Popple River. Water must be high. Two underdeveloped campsites on the route. Brook and brown trout fishing. Very secluded area. One portage, few rapids.

Wabikon and Riley Lakes Canoeing Path – Forest County:

Put in 6 miles east of Crandon. Aquatic birds such as Osprey and Great Blue Heron live among these lakes. In the hemlock forest, on a peninsula on the west shore, sightings of birds such as the Nashville Warbler can emerge. Wild rice can also be found on these lakes. A stream on the south end leads to Riley Lake, an undeveloped and shallow lake. From there you can paddle the Indian River on the south end upstream to Indian Springs, another marsh community with spring ponds. You can also fish for brook trout on the Indian River and in the springs. This 1,000-acre site is best traveled by canoe. Directions: From Crandon, travel east 5.5 miles on Highway 8/32. Turn south on Potawatomi Trail, to find the boat landing 0.2 of a mile down on the south side of the road, (715) 674-4481 (US Forest Service. Website)

Wolf River – Forest and Oneida Counties:

Put in at Pine Lake. Take out at Little Rice Lake Dam. Length- 10 miles. Small stream, water should be medium high. There are a few riffle rapids and occasional beaver dams. Eagle, deer and small mammals are common sights. Secluded area.

Put in at Little Rice Dam. Take out at Highway B Bridge. Length – 15 miles. Small, winding stream. Water should be medium high. Numerous beaver dams, wild rice beds, railroad artifacts, and rocky shallows. Very secluded.


Rustic road 34

Located in Forest County. From the Village of Alvin, follows portions of Lakeview Drive, Carey Dam Road and Fishel Road to WIS 70. The route is 8.8 miles in length and the surface is paved and gravel in portions.

Located in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. This scenic route includes the Old North Road, the very first road in the Town of Alvin, and one which has changed very little over the years. The road leads through a heavily wooded area, including a 50-year-oldpine plantation, abundant with wildlife, and is ideal for hunting, fishing, hiking, skiing, and snowmobiling.

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Auto Tours

The Heritage Drive National Forest Scenic Byway, the first scenic byway in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, was dedicated in May 1992. The byway incorporates a 10-mile section of Military Road (Forest Road 2178) and 4 miles of Butternut Lake Road (Forest Road 2181). A tabloid-styled interpretive guide and special byway signs help visitors learn more about the forest’s rich cultural history.

The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Auto Tour of Forest and Vilas Counties is a self-guided natural history auto tour beginning in Eagle River and ending in Three Lakes. The 80-mile tour takes about 4 hours to complete. There are two developed picnic areas along the route, including one at Franklin Lake. There are 12 designated stops on the tour. Two stops feature short walking trails and one stop is a museum. The tour helps you better understand the meaning of multiple use, while taking a leisurely drive through the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest.

For further information or brochures, check out the website for the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest.