The amazing outdoor opportunities available in Northern Wisconsin have been attracting nature lovers and sportsmen for decades. An afternoon snowmobiling, cross country skiing, snowshoeing or ice fishing is so enjoyable that the area has become a popular four-season destination, filled with adventure no matter the weather. But why limit yourself to just one day?
Northern Wisconsin camping need not be limited to the summer months when the local campgrounds are open and brimming with vacationers! With the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest covering 1.5 million acres of wilderness and boasting of 800 miles of winter trails to explore, nature need not be out of reach during the winter months. And with a little preparation, camping in the snowy season can be even more rewarding than in July!
Discover the Tranquility of Winter Camping!
If you have spent a summer afternoon exploring the forests of Phelps, you already know the deep serenity and peacefulness that the trees and lakes inspire. Much of the wilderness throughout Northern Wisconsin can seem completely untouched by the human hand, as if you have been transported back to a time before the area was settled. Now take that feeling and multiply it by ten, because the winter forests are even more peaceful and still and your chances of encountering another person is even lower!
Imagine waking up to crisp, fresh air with the silence around you only being broken by the quiet steps of a whitetail deer or the soft whisper of an eagle’s wings as it flies to its watchful perch. The whole world seems to have come to a halt in such a way that the magnitude of nature’s beauty is more breathtaking than you thought possible. The snow covering the ground and trees glistens in the early morning sun, beckoning for you to come and play at the same time as it invites you to do nothing but soak up the sight.
Winter camping allows one to enjoy all of this, treasure these moments in nature, for much longer than a short snowshoe trip or snowmobile ride ever could. It is the opportunity to see Northern Wisconsin as few ever have. Delight in easily spotting the tracks of wildlife or the giant eagle’s nest, which is much more difficult in the summer months where fresh greenery masks these signs. What’s not to love about camping in the winter?
Northern Wisconsin Winter Camping Tips
A little preparation and a bit of common sense will ensure that your winter camping adventure is successful and memorable. Here’s a few tips to get you ready for your winter fun, and visit REI online for more in-depth planning and a winter camping checklist.
- Check the weather forecast and time your camping trip for moderate weather.
- Dress in layers but don’t wear cotton. Wear underclothing that dries quickly and outer wear that repels water.
- Pack extras of winter clothing so you can swap wet for dry as needed.
- Eat lots of carbohydrates to build up energy.
- Bring plenty of water (or a pot to melt snow!) and mix drinking water with a little bit of Gatorade to help prevent freezing.
- Use a sled to haul gear to your camping destination and as a bonus fun activity.
- Pack a tarp and set it up to block the wind and snow from your cooking or sleeping area.
- Bring first-aid supplies and be prepared for all weather conditions.
- Bring a cell phone for emergencies and leave your trip plans with someone, just in case.
- Don’t forget your camera! You will want to capture the breathtaking scenery and surprise wildlife encounters!
The most important thing is to have a tent that is equipped for the winter weather. Four season tents are specifically designed to resist snow and wind with stronger materials. You can choose between a freestanding, self-supporting, or tunnel style tent with either single wall or double walls. The best tent depends on your destination and specific camping trip needs. Check out Outdoor Gear Lab’s reviews of the most popular four season tents to find the right one for you.
Explore Northern Wisconsin This Winter!
Don’t miss out on the wonders of winter in Northern Wisconsin! Whether you are planning a snowmobiling trip or a camping expedition, the Phelps Chamber is here to help. Feel free to give us a call at 715-545-3800 or email at Chamber-Office@PhelpsWi.US. We know you will love every moment of winter fun in Phelps!