Always up-to-date and accurate…reports on trail conditions and recreational opportunities in Price County.
Fall Color Report – Final 2014 Report
Fall color peaked September 27-28, 2014. We are past peak and most leaves have fallen. We hope to see you next September & October for the fall color season.
ATV, UTV & Off Road Motorcycle Trail Report – 10/27/14
The Georgetown Trail, Tuscobia State Trail, Solberg Trail and Flambeau River State Forest Trail are open and welcoming motorized trail enthusiasts.
The majority of the Flambeau Trail System in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest is open for motorized trail use. However, the Wintergreen Trailhead and the Wintergreen Salvage Closure Area are closed due to storm damage. Closed trail sections include Trail 102 from Hwy 70 south 2.5 miles to Forest Road 653, Trail 103 from Hwy 70 south 1 mile to where it intersects with Flambeau Motorized Trail 102, and Trail 101 from Hwy 70 north and west 2.5 miles to where it intersects with Forest Road 549E (Wintergreen Road). Call the Park Falls forest office at 715-762-2461 if you have specific questions.
Fishing Report – 10/29/14
With the cool and variable weather of late, fewer and fewer anglers have been venturing out on waters in the Northwoods. This past weekend saw a couple of very nice fall days and that produced a spike up in fishing activity. Most of the angling pressure was for musky and the action was still considered excellent. Nearly all of the anglers have been dragging large suckers around and they are having very good success on musky in the 34 to 40-inch size. There was one report of a 50-inch fish caught in the past week, so trophy potential has been getting better. Action on artificials has been hit or miss, as the colder water temperatures have made the fish more reluctant to hit fast-moving baits. Walleye success continues to be generally slow with only a few reports of catches being made. Some decent perch and crappie have been found along and near the mid-depth cover, such as deep weed lines and brush/cover in 8 to 15 feet of water. DNR Senior Fisheries Biologist Thomas “Skip” Sommerfeldt
Fishing/Hunting Guide Reports
When you visit the Price County region consider hiring a guide. Guides are on the water and in the woods on a regular basis and will put you on the right track in order to make your fishing or hunting trip successful and FUN. For more information on guide services, please see http://www.pricecountywi.net/recreation/hunting/guides/.
10/27/14 – We have had some great fall weather and some great area fishing to go with it. As I said in past weeks reports I’m doing mostly Musky trips right now and the bigger fish are starting to feed heavy. Clients are doing best in my boat on Suckers and Quick Set rigs but we are still getting a few fish casting. Jakes, Grandmas and larger rubber baits are putting a few fish in my boat yet but more important the musky are following these lures right to the suckers that we are pulling behind the boat. I look for the bite to pick up a bit as the weather starts to cool this week. Other Ross’s Sport Shop boats reported some great Crappie and Walleye catches this week as well. Crappie are still scattered in the basin areas of the lakes and you really need to keep moving to stay on fish. Plastics or Minnows on 1/16 ounce Bottom Feeder Tackle jig heads are working well for the Crappie right now with Pink, White and Chartreuse being the top colors in our boats. John Carlson, Ross’s Sport Shop & Guide Service – www.facebook.com/RosssSportShop
10/23/14 – Musky fishing with suckers has been good to excellent recently. We have been averaging one to four fish almost every time out.Still getting fish around the weed edges that are close to deep water, running the sucker both with and without a float (but I really like to watch that bobber go under!). Also got in to some really big largemouth fishing with pike suckers. Fishing weed edges with timber mixed in. Crappies have dropped down and mostly vacated the shallows for the season, so start looking for them around the edges of the deepest holes. Marc Morone, Elk River Custom Rods & Bait Shop, Phillips – Old School Guide Service
Outdoor Report – 10/28/14
Now that the temperatures have cooled, deer are really starting to move. Hunters have reported seeing rub & scrapes and some nice bucks. There is a good number of turkeys and broods are frequently seen along roadways. Most hunters have reported seeing good number of grouse, especially if they got off the trail and out into the woods. Mast crops are dwindling, and chipmunks & squirrels are busy harvesting and storing as much as they can of what’s remaining.
It has become easier for the public to locate and access the thousands of acres of private forest land in Price County that are in the open managed forest program and available for hiking, fishing, hunting and other recreational purposes. Visit the Wisconsin DNR website for a web-based mapping tool http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/forestlandowners/opentopublic.html.
Preliminary recommendations from County Deer Advisory Councils regarding deer population objectives will be made Nov. 3, with public comment due by Dec. 5 – County Deer Advisory Councils will release preliminary recommendations regarding deer population objectives November 3. These early recommendations, made on a county-by-county basis, will be open for online public comment November 3 to December 5.
DNR publishes most recent wildlife surveys with help from citizens – As part of a regular annual monitoring of wildlife in Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources published the latest wildlife reports focusing on different species around the state.
Grouse & Woodcock Hunting: Grouse season opened September 13, 2014 and runs through January 31, 2015. Most hunters have reported seeing decent numbers of grouse in the area. View the National Woodcock Migration Mapping System. The WI DNR produced an interactive mapping system to identify bird habitat. View the Fields and Forest Interactive Gamebird Hunting Tool (FFLIGHT) tool.
Turkey Hunting: The Fall Wild Turkey season is September 13 – November 20, 2014 and December 1 – 30 in Zone 4. There are many turkeys in the area, and fall hunters should have a good chance at harvesting one. There are leftover Fall Wild Turkey Hunting permits available for Zone 4 located in southern Price County. There is a certificate available for hunters harvesting a wild turkey for the first time at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/hunt/firstturkey.asp.
Waterfowl Hunting: The Canada Goose Northern Exterior Zone season is September 16 – December 16, 2014, with a daily bag limit of two geese. The Duck Hunting Season in the Northern Zone is Septemer 27 – November 25, 2014. Bag limits vary by type of duck. View Migratory Bird Regulations. There are many geese in the area, and duck hunters have reported seeing a fair number of birds as well.
Dear Hunting: White-tailed deer bow season is September 13 – January 4, 2015; Gun season is November 22 – 30, 2014; Muzzleloader season is December 1 – 10, 2014. New this year is a crossbow deer hunting season which runs concurrent with the regular archery season; during the regular gun deer season, a gun deer license will authorize bow and crossbow use. It is important to note that persons purchasing a traditional bow and a crossbow license will receive only one set of tags.
The hunting season is nearly halfway through, but the Wisconsin DNR asks that hunters keep logging their hunting activity on the Deer Hunter Wildlife Survey. For hunters new to the Deer Hunter Wildlife Survey, participating is easy; start by clicking this Deer Hunter Wildlife Survey link. The survey runs until January 2015, all participants who enter an email address will receive a personalized report at the end of the season detailing their recorded hunts and wildlife observations. Here are some of the numbers so far: Since the start of the bow season on September 13th, 1,729 hunting trips have been entered. On average, hunters spent 4 hours per trip and have rated the weather as a ‘7’ (with 1=worst 10=best). Hunters reported seeing nearly 800 bucks, 2,100 does and 1,400 fawns. In addition to recording deer, hunters also reported seeing a fair number of wild turkeys (2,440), ruffed grouse (275), raccoons (295), and bears (91).
Black Bear: The season closed October 7, 2014.
Wolf Hunting: The only area currently open for wolf hunting in Price County is Zone 3. The season has closed for Zones 1 & 2 in northeast Price County. Visit DNR Wolf Hunting & Trapping for details.
Other: Opossum, skunk, weasel and snowshoe hare hunting has no season limits, bags limits size limits or possession limits. Coyote hunting is a continuous open season except during gun deer hunting seasons. To view a list of all hunting and trapping season dates, visit the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website at http://ua.dnr.wi.gov/topic/trap/.
Paddling / River Report – 10/27/14
The water levels on the North and South Forks of the Flambeau River remain good for paddling but cold water gear is recommended at this time. When planning a river trip, check with an area rental/shuttle/guide service for the most current conditions and to select a suitable stretch of river based on experience.
Snowmobile Trail Report
The trails will open December 11, 2014, conditions permitting.
Cross Country Ski Trail Report
The trails typically open in mid-December. The Wintergreen Ski and Hiking Trail System and Hwy. 70 trailhead remain closed as part of a timber harvest sale. Following timber harvest this fall, the trail system will be reevaluated to see if the trail system can be used for the 2014-2015 ski season.
Snowshoe Trail Report
The trails typically open in mid-December.