While there has been no new snow recently, temperatures have remained below freezing and Sawyer County snowmobile trails have held onto what they have.
A bonus for riders is that several days and nights of freezing fog created hoarfrost on all trees and bush, making for a very scenic landscape.
The Snowmobile & ATV Alliance reported Monday, Jan. 11, that seasoned riders who traveled in the area last weekend “continue to be surprised how good the trails have held up from the Chippewa Flowage to the north. There are some rocks and some inside corners that have some washboard and the trails along the highways are pretty brown but once in the woods they are quite good.”
New snow is in the forecast for late this week, followed by colder temperatures. Even three inches of snow would make conditions in many areas of the county excellent.
All of the lakes have been reported to be staked with the exception of Lac Courte Oreilles, which still has some large gray areas. Some lakes have slush. Riders are urged to always ride the staked trails, as wandering away from them can lead to open spots, stumps, rocks, heaves, fisherman shanties and tip-ups, and plowed ice roads that create a berm.
In surrounding counties, Washburn and Bayfield county trails are open, Ashland, Price and Rusk county trails are closed and Barron trails are partially open.
Lake Hayward is now staked on the west end near the city beach, Holiday Inn Express and Marketplace Foods. The trail that comes out behind Hayward Marine is no longer there or marked on the map, as that area opens up most of the winter and is unsafe.
The new bridge on Trail 18 from Callahan Lake to the Tiger Cat Flowage is complete and open. Riders are urged to ride it with caution, stay on the trail and slow down. More snow is needed before this trail can be groomed.
The Alliance issued a special thanks to those who put in many man hours to build and install the bridge: Adam Friedrich and his son Calvin, Tom DiGiorgio, Bryan Duray and his employee Mark.