Lakewood Cross Country Ski Trails
There’s something magical about cross-country skiing in a national forest surrounded by the beauty and solitude of nature. The Lakewood Cross Country Ski Trails, located in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, offer a Wisconsin winter escape like no other – 25 km of marked and groomed trails for skate skiing or classic skiing through changing terrain in the heart of the forest.
Five color-coded trails of varying lengths and difficulty provide skiers with an ideal location for a casual ski with friends or a challenging ski to prep for competition.
Inexperienced skiers can ski beginner loops which are accessed from the two main parking areas. One loop starts at McCauslin Brook Country Club, 17067 Club House Road, Lakewood. The other loop starts at the Old Highway 32 Road trailhead. In all, the Lakewood Cross Country Ski Trail has five trailheads.
Expert skiers, such as those training for the American Birkebeiner, can visit Lakewood to experience the most demanding trails in Northeast Wisconsin. Areas with steep hills and challenging curves are marked on the map and signs on the trail.
Skiers can choose the trails that fit their skill and interest levels. They can ski around a loop, point-to-point, or out-and-back. Trails are well-marked, with maps posted at the trailheads and trail intersections. The longest trail is the Blue Trail, stretching 20K from McCauslin Brook Country Club to County Road F. A detailed map of the trails can be found on the club’s website, Lakewoodxcskiclub.com. Paper copies of the map are located at trailheads and area businesses.
The Lakewood Cross Country Ski Club maintains the trail and is funded solely by trail donations, club memberships, and business memberships. Donations are greatly appreciated, and collection boxes are located at every trailhead. The club manages a group Facebook page and hotline, (715) 622-1754, with the latest trail conditions and snowfall amounts. These real-time updates allow skiers to make plans with confidence, especially if they’re traveling from a distance. The trails are located about 75 miles northwest of Green Bay.
Snowfall sets the schedule for the Lakewood Cross Country Ski Trails. In a snowy winter, the trail opens in late November, right after Wisconsin’s gun deer hunt. The season typically closes in mid-March. The ski club uses a PistenBully and smaller snow-grooming equipment, sprucing up the trail whenever necessary. With regular and plentiful snowfall, the trails stay in excellent condition.
Although there isn’t a warming shelter on the trail, skiers can find restaurants and bars nearby in Lakewood. For those who don’t own skis, ski rentals are available in downtown Lakewood.
This winter, the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest beckons you to experience nature on the Lakewood Cross Country Ski Trails. Enjoy the exercise. Escape the ordinary. Get outside and have some fun cross-country skiing this winter.