Trail News

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Chapter Annual Meeting and Elections - November 21

meeting - slice

The Chippewa Moraine Chapter of the Ice Age Trail will hold their chapter meeting on Monday, November 21 from 5:30-7:00 at the Chippewa Falls Public Library.    Join us to learn about all the work that has been accomplished in our chapter this year, and what is on board for 2023.  We will be holding elections for the following officers:  Secretary, Trail Maintenance Coordinator, and Vice Chair (Assistant Coordinator).  These will be for two year terms.  

We have one position open for the Assistant Coordinator.  This person would work with the Chapter Coordinator on the office work side of things, such as the monthly newsletter, postings on the Ice Age Trail website, and committees.  The Assistant Coordinator would step in if the Chapter Coordinator was unavailable.  If you are interested in serving the chapter in this capacity, please contact Libby Stupak at:      

Volunteer RAMP UP - November 9th - Virtual


The Volunteer RAMP UP, formerly known as the Regional Rally, will take place virtually on November 9th from 6-8 pm.  Join the Alliance for this event and learn about what has gone on this year throughout the trail and get a sneak peak at next year’s trail building season.  You will also meet some new staff at the Alliance, including the new Executive Director (a familiar face to many).  

You can register for the event on the Alliance website.  After you register, you will receive an agenda and link for the event in your email closer to the event.

New Boardwalk at Firth Lake

New Firth Lake boardwalk

The Chippewa Moraine Chapter of the Ice Age Trail has completed the Firth Lake Boardwalk.  In September, the volunteers prepared the trail from the Firth Lake parking lot to the old boardwalk, and cleared vegetation for a 20’ wide strip along the route of the new boardwalk.  The first two weeks of October had crews busy at the Brunet Island State Park garage.  The lumber was dropped off and crews got to work building 100 frames.  All the cut ends of boards were treated to prevent rot.  Our team of carpenters built the 24’ span bridge on site where the creek flows out of the lake at the beaver dam.  Finally, the volunteers hauled all the lumber and pans to the site and laid them out along the route of the new boardwalk. 

October 17-21, crews of about 25-30 volunteers per day worked from 8am-4pm to build the boardwalk.  Working out from both ends of the bridge, pans and posts were set.  Headers were mounted on the posts.   Then 8’ frames were set in place.  Next came the deck boards.  On Tuesday, we created 3 bump outs to allow groups pass each other along the long boardwalk.  Posts were added to the boardwalk for the handrail.  By the end of the day, the west bound section had all of its deck boards in place.   On Wednesday handrails and kick rails were installed on the finished deck portions.  At the very end of the day, a cheer went  up as the last deck board was installed at the eastern end.  Thursday, work continued on the handrails and kick rails.  By afternoon we shifted gears to removing the old boardwalk.  Two sawyers started at the east end and cut the boardwalk into manageable pieces.  These were hauled down the boardwalk on dollies and wheelbarrows to the west end, and loaded onto a trailer which hauled them to the large dumpsters at the parking lot.  On Friday we continued the removal of the old boardwalk and completed the task by noon.  

October Hikes: Parade of Colors + Hike and Meet Monty + Mammoth Challenge

Oct Hikes

We had great turnouts at the Parade of Colors Hike on October 1st and the Hike and Meet Monty Event on October 8th.  Thank you to the volunteers who brought baked goods and shuttled hikers for the Parade of Colors.  Thanks to the volunteers who helped lead the hike on the Chippewa River Segment. 

Over 7,000 people signed up for the Mammoth Challenge, and a lot of them came to Chippewa County to hike.  If you participated in the Mammoth Challenge and completed your 42 miles and your 3 trail communities, be sure to turn in your challenge completion form.  The deadline is November 15th.  You should have gotten the form in your email.  If not, you can find the form on the Alliance website:

The Mammoth Hike Challenge Returns!


The Alliance is gearing up for the Mammoth Hike Challenge 2022. Registration is now open on the Ice Age Trail website. Go to to register. Participants are challenged to walk/hike/run/backpack 42 miles on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail and visit 3 Trail Communities. Mileage can be accumulated individually, or you can register as a team and combine your miles.  (So a family of four hiking together would each hike 10.5 miles) The Challenge is open to all ages and ability levels. People who complete the Mammoth Hike Challenge will earn a 2022 limited edition challenge patch and certificate.

It is getting easier to travel to a Trail Community each year. Cornell became the 13th Trail Community in 2020. In 2021, they added Antigo and Sturgeon Bay. This year they added Rib Lake and Merrill, putting the count to 17. It’s great to see more communities in the northern tier of the trail! (The other communities are:  St. Croix Falls, Lodi, Cross Plains, Verona, Janesville, Milton, Whitewater, Delafield, Hartland, Slinger, West Bend, and Manitowoc/Two Rivers. By mid-August, updated itineraries will be available for planning your outings, so stay tuned. Download the free Strive ON app for information on the Trail Communities and nearby trail segments.

Hike and Meet Monty at the Mammoth Hike Challenge On Saturday, Oct. 8

Come with your family for a wonderful hike on the Chippewa River Segment on Saturday, October 8th. Hikers should arrive at 9:45 a.m. at the County CC parking lot for this 10:00 hike. This will be a 3.8-mile in-and-back hike that travels high above the Chippewa River, through the Krank Preserve, around Perch Lake to the trailhead at County Z, and back again. Kids are encouraged to look for a good walking stick. After the hike, join us at the Cornell Visitor Center to meet Monty the Mammoth, the mascot of the Ice Age Trail, and learn about the Ice Age Trail. Kids will have the opportunity to decorate their walking sticks.   

Half-Century-Old Boardwalk Will Be Replaced in October


50-year-old Firth Lake Boardwalk 

The new boardwalk will be similar to Mudbrook

The Chippewa Moraine Chapter of the Ice Age Trail will replace the 50-year-old Firth Lake Boardwalk. The boardwalk has served us well, but over the past few years, it has been a challenge to keep the boardwalk structurally sound. A big thanks to our carpenters who have worked hard to keep the boardwalk in shape.  It may be a bit wonky, but it has always been solid under hikers' feet. Volunteer crews have been working throughout September to prepare the site for the project. The wood has arrived and is being prepared.  The bridge section of the boardwalk will be built ahead of the project. The 750-foot boardwalk will be built the week of October 17th by a team of local volunteers, WisCorps volunteers, and MSC volunteers.  

Note:  The October 15th Trail Work Day is canceled due to the Boardwalk project.

CNG Contributes to Firth Lake Boardwalk Project

The employees at Charter Next Generation in Bloomer voted to make a donation to the Ice Age Trail in Chippewa County. Many employees take their families for hikes at the Obey Interpretive Center.  CNG made a generous gift of $4500 towards our Firth Lake Boardwalk project. Jerry Sazama and Vicki Christianson attended an open house at GNC and were presented with the check. Thank you to Charter Next Generation for helping to make our project possible.

Ever Wonder About The Pulaski Tool?

PBS American Experience has a program about Ed Pulaski and the story behind his invention of this tool that bears his name. Learn about the beginnings of the National Forest Service and the largest forest fire in Forest Service history. After the Big Burn, Ed Pulaski invented the pulaski, used by firefighters to fight wildfires and by Ice Age Trail volunteers for trail construction. Spectrum TV has the program on its On-Demand list. If you have access to programming that includes PBS, this program is highly recommended. 

Parade of Colors - Fall Hike - At Chippewa Moraine, Sat. Oct 1

Glacial lake in fall color along Ice Age Trail in Chippewa Moraine area, Chippewa County.

Experience the colors, smells, and sights of fall on the Ice Age Trail at the annual Parade of Colors event on Saturday morning, October 1st. Bring friends or family members to the David Obey Ice Age Trail Interpretive Center east of New Auburn between 9:00-11:00.

Chapter shuttle volunteers await you. Choose from a list of hikes (2 miles, 4 miles, or 6 miles), and a shuttler will whisk you off to your starting point for a one-way hike back to your car at the David Obey Ice Age Trail Interpretive Center. The Chippewa Moraine segment will have its fall colors on full display as you hike over hills and past our many kettle lakes. Be sure to stop in at the Obey Center after your hike with its displays of glacial information and animals of Chippewa County.

There’s no fee, but donations are appreciated. Stay and hike as long as you’d like, but be sure and register before 11 to get a shuttle to your starting point.

For more information, email

Registration (9-11 a.m.): 

Great Horned Owl Takes Flight At Obey Center

Great-Horned Owl at Obey Interpretive Center, Chippewa Moraine Ice Age Trail Unit, along Ice Age Trail

The Chippewa Moraine Chapter of the Ice Age Trail received a request from the David Obey Ice Age Interpretive Center to sponsor the taxidermy for a great horned owl turned in to the Center.  This was voted on and approved at the July picnic meeting.  The taxidermy has been completed, and the owl will soon be soaring from the ceiling at the Center.  This will be a great addition to the collection of animals in the Chippewa Valley.  

"Chip Off The Old Moraine” Patch Offered to Hikers Who Complete All Segments

Chippewa Patch for hikers who complete all Chippewa County Ice Age Trail segments.

The new Chapter Hiking Patch was designed at JM Productions in Cornell.  They are producing the patches, and they will be available this fall.  

Hikers who complete all of our segments and CRs will be eligible to register for this patch.  They will also receive a certificate of completion.  

Thank you to the patch committee for their work on this project.