Featured Photo by Pierre Jarry 

4 Winter Trails by The Chippewa River!

The Chippewa River flows through west-central and northwestern Wisconsin. It runs 183 miles starting at Lake Chippewa and ending in the Mississippi River. There are many parks and trails by the Chippewa River that are ideal for winter fun from cross-country skiing to snowmobiling to snowshoeing. You can partake in these winter activities by yourself or with your loved ones.

5 Ways to Get Outside on the Turtle River

The Chippewa River State Trail is a 30-mile trail extending from Phoenix Park in downtown Eau Claire. It begins at the confluence of the Eau Claire and Chippewa rivers and travels south along the Chippewa River through a wide variety of habitats including river bottoms, prairies, sandstone bluffs, and wetlands. The trail ends at the town of Durand. During winter, snowmobiles are permitted on part of the trail from Porterville Road to Durand. The trail is not groomed so cross-country skiers and snowshoers will have to share the trail with snowmobiles. A big perk of this trail is that skiers do not need a trail pass to use these trails.

Carson Park is located in Eau Claire with 2 miles worth of trails. Carson Park is located on a 134-acre peninsula formed on Half Moon Lake, which is part of the Chippewa River. The trail is open year-round for activities and is known for its historic baseball stadium, Chippewa Valley Museum, and the Hank Aaron Plaza that features the Hank Aaron Statue. During winter, the trail is open for cross-country skiing, walking, and biking. The trail in Carson Park has a variety of terrain from hilly to wooded to tracked landscape. The trails are groomed throughout the season and admission is free for all.

5 Ways to Get Outside on the Turtle River

Hideaway Resort is a four-season resort situated on Lake Wissota with many outdoor features for its guests to enjoy. The resort offers six unique cabins with access to activities on Lake Wissota, just east of Chippewa Falls. It was formed after the construction of the Wissota Hydroelectric Dam on the Chippewa River. During the winter seasons, the surrounding area of the resort offers an array of activities like ice-fishing, snowmobiling, ice skating, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and sledding.

5 Ways to Get Outside on the Turtle River

Photo by All Trails

The Old Abe State Trail is a paved 20-mile trail connecting Lake Wissota State Park and Brunet Island State Park. The trail is on an abandoned railroad bed and winds through agricultural and forest land while following the shoreline of the beautiful Chippewa River. The trail features an abundance of wildlife and natural beauty, with many historical sites along the way. In the winter, the trails are open to the public for snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. The Ice Age Trail noted as a National Scenic Trail crosses the Old Abe State Trail.


I’m a senior at Winona State University majoring in advertising. I love anything related to arts and culture like dance, music, and visual art.

Carissa Chin

Writer , River Travel Magazine