Trail News

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NEW! Volunteer Agreements - New Volunteers and Renewals

All new volunteers need to have a completed Volunteer Agreement for the National Park Service in order to participate in our trail improvement days or to volunteer at events. They have a new form on the Alliance Website.  All members that already have a Volunteer Agreement are asked to fill out this new updated form which will be good until October 2024.

To access the new Volunteer Agreement, here is the link:     Please fill out the fillable form and email it to

If you are a new volunteer, please read the following documents before signing the agreement:  

Cover letter from Eric Gabriel NPS

IATA Volunteer Risk Assessment Tool


When you send in the Volunteer Agreement to Dan Watson, he will sign it and return it to you.  Please print a copy for yourself or save it in your files.  Email me at to let me know that you have received your new signed Volunteer Agreement.

Volunteer Snowshoers Needed February 26th

The Chippewa Moraine Chapter is sponsoring a snowshoe hike with the Girl Scouts in NW Wisconsin at Camp Nawakwa on February 26th.  We will have 2 sessions of snowshoeing, one at 10:00 and one at 1:00.  We will be hiking around Picnic Lake with the scouts.  We are looking for volunteers who snowshoe to hike with us as we  lead the hikes.  Contact Vicki Christianson at to volunteer.  You will need the Volunteer Agreement to assist.  

We need a name for our chapter hiking patch

The chapter hiking patches have become very popular in the last 2 years.  Our committee has been meeting to plan for a hiking patch for the Chippewa Moraine Chapter.  As you can see by the patches in the picture, the patches have creative Ice Age catch phrases.  These often highlight special features of a chapter’s trails.  The current titles are:  Meander the Central Moraine, Meander the Mid-Moraine, Walk the Wauk (Waukesha), Be a Kettle Trekker, Walk Across Rock County, Dane Drifters, Glacial Drifters, Superior Lobetrotter, Traprock Trekkers, and Northern Kettle Moraine.  We are looking for a catchy phrase for our new chapter hiking patch.    Our main features in Chippewa County are high relief hummocky topography (big hills), outwash plains, ice-walled lake plains (The Obey Center sits on one of them), and kettle lakes.  If you have an idea for a catch phrase for our chapter patch, send your ideas to me at by February 21st.  We will vote on the patch name in March.

2022 Chapter Calendar of Events

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     26 - Chapter Snowshoe Hike - Camp Nawakwa, Date TBA


     20 - Chapter Meeting - 6:30


     16  Spring Trail Clean-Up

     21-24  IATA Annual Conference - Stevens Point, WI

     23 Adventure North 50K

     24  Outdoor Expo


     1 -  First Sunday Hike - 1:00 Chippewa River Segment

     4 – National Resources Foundation Hike - For NRF members only

     16 – Chapter Meeting - 6:30

     21- Trail Maintenance Day


     4 – National Trails Day Hike - Harwood Lakes Segment  (County E)

     18 - Trail Maintenance Day

     21 – Solstice Hike with GS - Camp Nawakwa


     18 - Chapter Meeting & Picnic - Millyard Park - Cornell


     7 – First Sunday Hike - 1:00 Harwood Lakes Segment (Plummer Lake)

     20 – Trail Maintenance Day


     4 – First Sunday Hike - 1:00 Chippewa Moraine – Hiker’s Choice

     17 – Trail Maintenance Day

     19 – Chapter Meeting – 6:30  Pizza Party


     1 – Parade of Colors Hike - 9-11 Chippewa Moraine Segment (with shuttles)

     8 – Mammoth Challenge Hike - 10-12 Chippewa River Segment

IATA Announces 2022 Statewide Trailbuilding Events


Trail crew

  • January 20 – 22, Table Bluff Segment, Dane County
  • February 4 – 6, Cross Plains Segment, Dane County
  • February 17 – 19, Gibraltar Rock Segment, Columbia County
  • May 18 – 22, Rib Lake Segment, Taylor County
  • June 8 – 12, IAT-U: Crew Leader Training, Iola, Waupaca County
  • June 22 – 26, New Hope-Iola Ski Hill Segment, Waupaca and Portage County
  • July 13 – 17, Rice Lake Preserve, Marathon County
  • August 18 – 21, LaBudde Creek Segment, Sheboygan County
  • September 14 – 18, Rib Lake Segment, Taylor County
  • October 6 – 9, Lapham Peak Segment, Waukesha County
  • October 20 – 22, Wildcard

More information:

Season at a Glance: 2022 Trailbuilding and Habitat Management Events

We are on the list pending available funds at the Alliance for replacement of the 600’ Firth Lake boardwalk.  If enough funds are raised, there is the possibility of becoming the Oct. 20-22 Wildcard.  Cross your fingers!

Please note the Ice Age Trail University Crew Leader Training taking place in Iola on June 8-12.  Watch future Alliance news for information on these events.

Meet Our Chapter Leadership Team!

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Elections were held at the November 15th Chippewa Moraine Chapter Annual Meeting.  

  • Chapter Chair/Coordinator: Vicki Christianson
  • Vice Chair: Serena Stipek
  • Vice Chair-Maintenance: Jerry Sazama
  • Secretary: Mary Skalecki
  • Treasurer: Tom Kolb

Vicki has been a member of the chapter since 2004.  She is active with work days, shuttles, and headed up the project to establish Cornell as a Trail Community. She recently developed the local resources for the Mammoth 40 Challenge. She’s been working for several years at hiking the entire Ice Age Trail, and lives in Cornell.  This will be Vicki’s second year as Chapter Coordinator.  She is very grateful to Richard Smith for all of his training and advice during her first year in this role.  He was instrumental in her success.

Jerry needs no introduction as he has been active in many aspects of chapter leadership for many years. Jerry manages the maintenance program, devoting countless hours to it. 

Mary has been an active member of the chapter since 2004.    This will be her second year to  serve as Secretary. 

Tom is another long-time chapter volunteer.   This will be his second year serving as Secretary.

Report of 2021 Activities

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Thank you to all for putting your trust in me to take over from Richard’s capable hands.  A huge thank you to Richard Smith for all his help in training me in on all the tasks of a chapter coordinator.  He got me all set up with the various programs and taught me how to use them.  He was always happy to answer my questions whenever I called which was often.  Thank you very much, Richard.

In December, Jerry Sazama and I met with Matt Hanson,  the County Forester, and we walked Harwood Lakes to discuss the upcoming logging project which is scheduled for 2021, 2024, 2027, and 2030.  The greatest effect to the trail took place in the summer of 2021.  Logging took place from east of the heron rookery to the start of the horse trail.  This included the 2021 logging plus a corridor along the trail through the 2024 logging.  This will create a visual barrier for the clear cut in 2024.  The logging was completed and the logging road was graded by the county afterwards.  There was also a select cut of hardwoods near the horse trail.  Lots of shuttles took place in the spring and early summer as people came to hike Harwood Lakes prior to the logging project.

2021 Trail Maintenance Report

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2021 Trail Maintenance:

1.  Regular Mowing, blazing and clearing.

2.  Kiosk constructed at the new Otter Lake parking area.  Also GPS marking of possible trail extensions to the Otter Lake Esker.

3.  Flagged the possible move of the current trail head at County Z.

4.  GPS the possible extension of the trail from the south side of County Z to the area of the Blue Bridge.

5.  Located and roughed in the trails to two DCA sites to the east of Firth Lake.

6.  Tread leveling to the east of Firth Lake.   Exposed roots had made mowing the area very difficult.

7.  Switch trail reroute from 250th heading south from blue (temporary) to yellow (permanent).

8.  Annual upkeep maintenance on the Firth Lake boardwalk.

9.  Corridor clearing to the northwest of Firth Lake crossing.

10.  New Leopold Bench on the northwest shore of Firth Lake. Removal of old Leopold bench.  Water crossing installed on spur trail to Firth Lake parking area.

11.  Flag and rough in to a proposed DCA site north of 245th.

12.  Straightening and stabilization of two boardwalks to the north of 245th.

Mammoth 41 Event - A Full House!


We had a full house on our Mammoth 41 Hike on the Chippewa River Segment on Oct. 9th.  Fifty Four participants came to enjoy our beautiful Chippewa River Segment for the first time!  For most of our hikers, it was their first time hiking on the Ice Age Trail.  Several Girl Scout troops came for our hike, and many Cornell Scouts came with their families.  Everyone had a great time, and we are hoping that many of these families will join us again on future hikes.  Now that they have hiked this segment, maybe they will be inspired to try our other segments.  

Kids were encouraged to find a walking stick along the way, and by the end, they all had one.  After the hike, families and scouts were invited to the Cornell Visitor Center to meet Monty.   Craft materials were supplied and children decorated their walking sticks.  Thanks to our chapter volunteers for assisting on the hike and back at the Visitor’s Center.


Over 6,500 hikers participated in the Mammoth 41 Event statewide.  Their challenge was to hike 41 miles and visit 3 trail communities.  We had many hikers visiting Cornell and hiking our segments during the month.  Plans are already underway for Mammoth 42.  Many of our members participated.  Congratulations to all who completed the challenge.  Be sure you fill in your completion form and get it sent in by November 15th.  

Trailside Section Maps Available

New trailside section maps have been published for 2020 and will be available in mapboxes along the trail in coming weeks. The new maps are updated using the 2020 trail base map.

You can download and print your own copies here: 

Map 15f - Chippewa Moraine and Harwood Lakes segments - 267th Ave to Co Hwy E

May 16f - Firth Lake and Chippewa River segments - Co Hwy E to Cornell

Record Your Volunteer Time!

If you work on trail-related volunteer projects, it is up to you to record the time you spend. There are many, many reasons why this is important. It is also a bit of a pain. But it doesn’t have to be, if you take a few minutes to get your act together!

For awhile, more of our volunteer activity may be done as individuals working in pairs than in the past. That means more of the responsibility to log your time rests on you! 

Time spent on projects working at home can be counted.

Here’s what to do:

1. Download the Individual Hours Log Form here: 

   Word format

   Excel format

2. Save the form on your computer so you can start a new one every quarter.

3. Print out a copy to keep in your day bag, glove box, or on your desk. Or one for all those places. It’s just for rough notes. (A notebook will do, or even a dedicated page in your favorite Notes app on your smartphone.)

4. Whenever you go out on a project or work on one at home, just grab the nearest form (or your phone) and fill it in.

5. At the end of the quarter, grab the form(s) whereever they are and combine the data on a form right in your computer. 

Don't Park Overnight on County Highways

Backpackers and campers should be aware that you should not park overnight on county highway shoulders. If you do, your car will be towed away.

There are many places to park off the roadway which are available to hikers who need to park overnight:

  • The Chippewa Moraine Visitor Center on Hwy M
  • Circle Trail parking on Hwy M west of the visitor center
  • Rattlesnake Hill lot, on 260th Ave between Town Line Road and Plummer Lake Road
  • Hwy E, near Camp Nawakwa, by pulling far off the highway shoulder
  • Hwy CC at the Ice Age Trailhead parking lot
  • Hwy CC at the Perch Lake Fisherman’s parking lot 

Do not park overnight along Hwy M where the trail crosses (near the backpack camp site) as you are sure to be towed there due to the curve and lack of pull-off space.

Do not park overnight on Hwy Z for the same reason.

267th Ave for day use parking only.

Note that the Atlas and trail maps show parking at Plummer Lake boat landing on 167th St, but this is for day use only.