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Hey guys. I have always wanted to ride the Hayward, Eagle River, Rhinelander areas ever since the late 90s watching SnowGoer TV. This probably would be a next year plan due to vacation days needed and a drive distance of about 14 hrs, would it be worth it for us to do so? I have never been to the area, so I have no idea if there is enough snow and trails to keep us busy for about 4 days of riding I'd say. Just a kid who is now 38 and want to kick another item off the bucket list. Thanks for any input. Also any info on traul passes or registration needed for out of state guys is appreciated as well as where is a good town/place to base out of and stay ( always wanted to stay at the Lake Woods) thanks again!
 

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Theres 25,000 miles of trails in Wisconsin...Unfortunately we are in a drought currently...Some areas are in a severe drought...During a year like this it's probably not good to zero in on 1 location...Most likely it's not going to instantly flip, where we receive the season avg or better...Matter of fact I predict the sledding season will be a bust unless a person has the ability to ride anytime anywhere when the storm fronts hit different areas of the state...
 
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Out of state trail pass is $50.00, I guess my timeline advise would be 3rd week of Jan. to 3rd week of Feb., I been going up to Eagle River every year for the past 11 years for the races, approximately mid Jan., and there were times where the trails were bare, wait about a week and your chances are much better for good snow and trails! Worst case senario, if you stay East or closer to Eagle River, it would be much easier to head North up to the U.P. of Michigan, where they get a lot more snow if that is an issue. There are plenty of great trails in Wisconsin, but that would be a good back up plan just in case. You got time and plenty of other good guys here to guide you!
 

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My .02 would be to plan your trip to Mercer,Wi
There is seldom a year that you cant ride from there.Iron county arguably does the best job in Wi maintaining their trails .Its on the edge of the “snow belt”that extends into the UP so there is ridable snow after New Years about 98 percent of the time.
I would recommend your trip on weekdays if possible.
 

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Ive seen trail#2 in Iron River, MI completely bare and unrideable the second week of Feb 1991...Ya just never know...
 

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Do I dare ask what is in Hurley? LoL
Ugly women pretending to be dancers...Years ago the first sled rally of the season always started in Hurley, Wi around the 1st-2nd week in December...It was called the "Redlight Rally".....All thats left are the memories and a few lingering STD's...
 

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I would stay at Lakewoods then, nice place. You can go in several directions from there, 4 days should be fine. Conditions can go bad, just depends on the year.
 

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Just like anywhere you are never going to be able to plan an exact spot a year out. Pick a week and follow the snow reports and land where the snow is. Last year southern WI was better than northern WI most of the season.
 

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Ugly women pretending to be dancers...Years ago the first sled rally of the season always started in Hurley, Wi around the 1st-2nd week in December...It was called the "Redlight Rally".....All thats left are the memories and a few lingering STD's...
Whoa they arent all ugly. Just at least half of them. Ive literally walked into one of the "gentlemen clubs" and walked right out lol

Personally I would stay in the cable area and no more south. When hayward was "good" last year. Cable was way better.
 

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Ive seen trail#2 in Iron River, MI completely bare and unrideable the second week of Feb 1991...Ya just never know...
Iron River is way east of the snow belt though.
Mercer/Hurley area to Houghton is a pretty safe bet just about any season.
The weird part is the few times there is no snow there it lands in southern WI and northern Il
 

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I live Northwest of Hayward by about 30 miles. Bayfield, Sawyer, and Iron Counties in this part of the state get pounded with traffic. Week days are by far the best riding.
Where I am at, we started grooming on December 23rd 2020, December 3rd 2019, and December 10th 2018. Our County, Bayfield County and Iron County tend to get first rideable snow and that snow is reliable until mid March. Iron County tends to last 1-2 weeks longer.

Pretty much anywhere in Northern Wisconsin is good. There are lots of online trail reports that you can refer to in order to fine tune your destination. Don't limit yourself and keep in mind that most folks on here are tourists themselves and recommend those areas that they are most familiar with.
 

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In the 90's, when you saw ER on Snowgoer TV, they actually were almost always guaranteed to have snow....now, its hit and miss, as is most of Northern WI throughout the winter. ER is a beautiful place to ride, as are all directions East, West, North, and South of there (when there is average or better snow). I would spend a day riding the area, but try to stay somewhere away from town a little. I would also recommend riding during the week when there is a bit less traffic. If you want the full experience of riding during the two race weeks, its a great atmosphere, but riding will be way less than ideal. I'm sure all the area businesses would love to have you.
 
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