Exploring the Trans - Wisconsin trail

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by rokklym, May 20, 2008.

  1. BrittC

    BrittC Been here awhile

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    Thanks for putting all of this together and sharing it so well. I can't wait to make the trip in a month!

    Can anyone recommend affordable lodging near Clam Lake? We're not packing tents so we need a motel/hotel each night...
  2. leben

    leben Adventurer

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    I definitely recommend the Clam Lake Junction motel. I stayed there a night last year when I was traveling the trail. It was clean, affordable and had everything i needed. If you stay there I also recommend eating at the Chippewa next door. Awesome gourmet pizza out in the boonies. The motel had a mini fridge so you can save the leftovers for breakfast.

    Another plus is there was an ATV power sports dealer right there if you end up needing any repairs or oil etc...
  3. rokklym

    rokklym one man wolfpack

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    The Clam Lake Junction in Clam Lake has some really nice rooms at a good price. I think rooms with 2 queens run about $70. The hotel is attached to the convenience store, so that is nice as far as getting supplies, but you have to make sure you get to town early enough since they sometime close early. Call and make reservation and ask their hours!

    There is also a place across the street next to the Elkhorn Lodge that has some cheaper basic rooms. The Elkhorn Lodge is a cool place to grab some food and a couple beverages!
  4. spliznat

    spliznat Adventurer

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    Bridge is out to construction from Hog Hollow to 133 (Map 2). There is also trees down on the Ziegler trail (Map 32). My ride partner and I moved 2 of them enough to pass. The 3rd tree we had to lift the bikes over. Luckily we were on KLR's and had enough gusto to lift them over. The tree is surrounded by either more larger trees and brush or soft deep mud. We also experienced snow on the northern trails (Map 38 east trail) that got to be 2 feet deep at times. Very slow going for a couple hours. Over all the ride was trouble free. We rode the TWAT from 5/4/14-5/7/14.
  5. spliznat

    spliznat Adventurer

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  6. thechickencow

    thechickencow Been here awhile

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    Looks awesome.
  7. advhound

    advhound Been here awhile

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    I am looking to ride the TWAT sometime around 6/15, leaving from Omaha. Is anybody in the area, or along the route interested in coming along? I am flexible +/- a couple days on the day I leave. How many days should I plan for the route to take with current conditions? Is this a reasonable trip to go solo on? Decently experienced rider and I will be riding a 990 ADV. From the looks of the ride reports, the route seems like it is a lot of dirt road, some ADV trails and a small amount of single track. If this is the case, then mud would be my biggest challenge. Is there a recent GPX file floating around? It sounds like there has been been some road closures etc.

    I'm excited about the ride, but do want some input on the route, especially since I may be riding solo, unless anybody is in?!:evil Thanks so much for your help.
  8. rokklym

    rokklym one man wolfpack

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    http://lonewolfexpeditions.<WBR>blogspot.com/p/trans-<WBR>wisconsin-adventure-trail.html

    Check that link for more info on the route and the GPS files.
    I usually do the route in 2 1/2 days and that's being at the start at 9am the first morning. If there are any road closures (which there probably will be) it is usually pretty easy to get around them and back on the route. The winter and this spring were pretty hard on some roads so there is repairs being done now.

    Overall the route is pretty easy. Its about 50/50 Pavement versus other surfaces. There is no singletrack, but there is some double track ATV style trails. There is always a chance of getting hurt, there is a lot of corners that sneak up on you, gravel on pavement, etc but overall the difficulty level is low. There are some ATV trails that are optional that increase the difficulty quite a bit. I'm not sure I'd ride those trails on my 990 solo and loaded down with gear, but others would I'm sure. I'd pack light!
  9. advhound

    advhound Been here awhile

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  10. FreeHugger

    FreeHugger Been here awhile

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    Is this Heaven? No its Iowa.
    A group of 5 guys and I rode the Trans Wisconsin Trail last week. Very impressed with the state, the route, the food, and the people of Wisconsin. Would recommend this ride to anybody.

    I took my 1200gs. Others rode a KTM 990 adventure, a KLR 650, a DR 650, a Vstrom 650 (it did it.. but battled due to lower clearance and inadequate tires), and a Husaberg 400.

    I had the most fun on the Perkinsville ATV Trails and further north, ripping along on that packed shale type gravel. Also had a blast on some of the County roads around Rockton and the fur trading place.

    On the route we camped at Lake Wazee outside Black River Falls (excellent), cowboy camped in the Chequamegon National Forest, and on the beach sites in Herbster (excellent). On the way back we hit the Flambeau River Campground and Wazee again.

    Wonderful trip. The best ride I've taken in the Midwest. A real Dual Sport ride. Great mix of pavement, gravel, and trails. Beautiful camping options. Excellent food suggestions built into the route. Wildlife and great scenery in abundance. I was the only non married guy in the group, but the ladies of Wisconsin are nothing if not great flirts. I even met a women celebrating her 100th birthday at The Thorpedo. She asked if I was married and I said no. She said "well, I'll take you to bed." :)

    My bike staring down some weather.
    [​IMG]

    DC77 on his KTM
    [​IMG]

    Lake Wazee
    [​IMG]
  11. InTheMuck

    InTheMuck So it goes...

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    Looks/sounds like a great trip! Some of us might do this the end of September...although we will likely skip the southern portion. We will be departing from Madison, WI and some of us have ridden the route between Cassville and Lansing already. I liked that area a lot though, so we might start there, or we might head more north towards Wildcat Mountain State Park.

    So, how was the centenarian? :evil :lol3
  12. advhound

    advhound Been here awhile

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    Great report, that looks like a hell of a ride! Wishing I had hit the trail up when I lived closer, but wasn't sure if going solo on a 990 was a good idea based on some feedback. Good to see the big bikes tearing it up. Funny about the Midwest women
  13. TheGuy

    TheGuy n00b

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    What is the earliest anyone has done the trip?
    Of course after the trails open but I am getting some spring fever and cant stop thinking about it.
  14. jeepster33

    jeepster33 streaming bits Supporter

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    +1
  15. TigerXC

    TigerXC Adventurer

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    Me too. My plan is to run southern sections of it in AprilÂ…if it has stopped snowing by then.:rofl
  16. Too Tall

    Too Tall Been here awhile

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    I and two others will be starting the TWT on May 15th. Hope any snow is melted up north by then and day time temps are above 50 degrees.
  17. rokklym

    rokklym one man wolfpack

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    Glad to see there is a lot of interest in doing the route this spring!:clap

    I would like to clear up some things though as far as the route goes in regards to spring riding.

    The actual route on the GPS file is about 95% public roads so since you are operating a street legal vehicle on public roads, I believe you can legally do it anytime the roads are clear enough for you to ride.

    That being said, there are sections of ATV trails that are optional on the route, and there are sections of ATV trails that are public roads as well. So obviously you can't ride the ATV trails until they are open for the season, but things get tricky when you are operating a street legal motorcycle on a road that is also and ATV trail, that happens to be closed to ATV's but not regular passenger vehicles. The best option is to err on the side of caution and avoid those sections, so my recommendation would be to NOT do the route until the ATV trails are open unless you avoid the ATV sections. Clear as mud right? I'm going to ask Cannonshot to chime in here with his opinion since he is much more well versed in the legal side of things.

    So, when do the ATV trails open?

    Clark County opens May 15th
    http://www.co.clark.wi.us/index.aspx?nid=226

    Taylor County (Perkinstown Trails) are closed until April 30th
    http://www.co.taylor.wi.us/departments/f-m/forestry-recreation-2/trails/

    It looks like most of the other trails in Wisconsin aren't open until May 15th depending on the conditions, so I probably wouldn't plan on riding this route until May 15th unless you plan on skipping all of the ATV sections.
  18. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    National Forest roads that are restricted on the Motor Vehicle Use Map generally open on May 1 in the area in the northern part of the state when the TWAT comes through. These would be some of the two tracks that may be open to ATVs but are not ATV trails. Like Chad said, a few of these are options on the far northern segment. The Perkinstown Motorized Trail will be on the same schedule as it is also USFS. Keep in mind that if there are wet conditions, the USFS may extend the opening date either by order or by asking for voluntary compliance until a new opening date is announced. Riding while it is too wet will leave "permanent" ruts that cause problems for riders and could get us further restrictions or closures.

    Hope that helps out. You should be able to ride this path prior to May 1 if you stick to the principal road based route.
  19. Too Tall

    Too Tall Been here awhile

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    So, based on the above comments, can I assume the ATV trails will be open for our street legal dual sports when we begin on the south end May 15th?

    Once riding, what is the best way to determine if they become closed due to weather (rain/snow/etc)? Are the trails marked closed at the trailhead or online?
  20. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Administrator Super Moderator

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    Yes, the 15th will be OK. You will be generally aware if it has been unusually wet which would lead you to check the web sites for the trails that you are concerned about to see if there is a closure posted. For the USFS, they will have info on their news release page for any unusual closure. There may be a closure notice posted at a trailhead, but I wouldn't count on it.