Despite most people waking up to fresh snow Monday, it should start feeling more like spring this week with temperatures in the upper 50s.
The early snowmelt and overall drier spring has meant the Chequamegon Nicolet National Forest staff have been able to get work done earlier than usual.
“That helps us to get a jump start on the campground cleaning that we typically do, removing hazard trees, cleaning up some of the leaves that had blown in after last fall, cleaning some fire pits out and getting the bathrooms prepared with the developed rec sites in mind. I think our forest is actually in pretty good shape moving into this recreation season,” said West Zone Recreation Program Manager Chad Jacobson.
The Chequamegon Nicolet National Forest open its ATV, horseback, and bike trails this past weekend.
Most developed campgrounds within the forest are set to open Thursday.
The Forest Service saw an increase visitor use last year. Jacobson expects that to keep up this season.
“We’re kind of taking an all hands on deck approach this year to provide the recreation opportunities that we’ve had in the past, but knowing that because of there is the expectation of high use this year,” said Jacobson. “As a recreation staff we have to acknowledge that we can’t do everything that we’d like to do. Keeping safety as our number one priority, we may have to limit some of the maintenance work we do or reduce the number of times we go to certain sites.”
You can check out which campsites will be opening and the latest forest conditions on the Forest Service’s website.
Jacobson says calling the ranger station in the district you plan on visiting is the best way to get the very latest conditions.
He also asks that people do their part to stop the spread of invasive species.
Don’t bring in firewood from outside the area and clean off your hiking shoes, vehicles, and boats of any mud or debris that be carrying outside invasive species.