A father-daughter duo hike the Jerry Lake Segment of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Photo by Jessica Featherstone
We are humbled and inspired by the 500+ donors who helped us surpass our $50,000 Challenge Match. Your collective generosity ranged from $5 to $5,000 and came from 17 different states showing the impact the Ice Age National Scenic Trail has on communities close by and those far afield.
Your support inspires us, underpinning all we do, as we work to create, support, and protect the Ice Age Trail. We look forward to doing justice to your donations by improving the Trail, foot-by-foot and acre-by-acre. Continue reading
The Holiday Season is in full swing…
For those of you who like to do your shopping from the comfort of your living room, there are THREE ways to benefit the Ice Age Trail Alliance AND get your holiday shopping done!
For those of you who want to spend your money locally, then consider heading over to the Ice Age Trail Alliance store.
Grab a plush Monty the Mammoth for the littlest hiker in your life.
#OptOutside. Get a dose of fresh air and hike off that extra slice of pumpkin pie.
Photo by Dave Caliebe
The Ice Age Trail Alliance is proud to participate in #OptOutside with our partner REI, Inc. #OptOutside takes place on Black Friday (November 29th) and encourages people to take a hike!
Here in Wisconsin, the day after Thanksgiving is also the heart of the nine-day gun deer-hunting season. Keeping this in mind, we have set up 14 hikes where deer hunting is not allowed.
All of the following suggested hikes take place in Ice Age Trail Communities. These hikes represent a perfect blend of natural surroundings and urban amenities. Continue reading
Photo by Paulette Walker Smith
There can be a lot of details to navigate when you hike the Ice Age Trail in Wisconsin’s fall and winter seasons: hunting season dates, trail closures on private property, and public lands where the Trail is open and hunting is also allowed.
Visit our Hiking During Hunting Seasons page to get a full breakdown of all the things to consider. Here are the main things you’ll want to remember: Continue reading
Annie Wiess (l) and Jason Dorgan (r). In 2007, trail runner Jason Dorgan set the first FKT on the Trail by running it in 22 days and 6 hours. In 2018, trail runner Annie Weiss broke the record and clocked her time at 21 days, 18 hours, and 7 minutes.
By guest writer, Rachele Krivichi
Since the late ‘90s, trail runners have been documenting their fastest trail runs under the moniker “FKT,” which stands for Fastest Known Time. The title implies that a person has run or hiked the trail faster than everyone before them. The tradition of FKT was started on the major hiking trails out west. However, in the past decade, a few runners have brought it home to the Ice Age Trail. In 2007, trail runner Jason Dorgan set the first FKT on the Trail by running it in 22 days and 6 hours. In 2018, trail runner Annie Weiss broke the record and clocked her time at 21 days, 18 hours, and 7 minutes. Mammoth Tales volunteer Rachele Krivichi spoke with both Jason and Annie to get their insights on accomplishing this challenge. Continue reading
Trail blazer, James (Jim) Staudacher, the first person to thru-hike the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Here he is along the Ice Age Trail in the Chequamegon National Forest, Wisconsin, July 1979. Photo courtesy of Jim Staudacher.
Article by guest writer, Bill Polacheck
For James (Jim) Staudacher, the inspiration for the journey of a lifetime came from the very first Ice Age Trail Guidebook, On the Trail of the Ice Age, written by Congressman Henry Reuss and published by the Milwaukee Journal in 1976. The guidebook captured the imagination of then 17-year-old Jim and he began researching the geography of the ice age in Wisconsin.
Two years later, he took a summer backpacking trip to Isle Royale National Park and decided that he wanted to be the first person to walk the entire Ice Age Trail route. Continue reading
Old Railroad Segment, Langlade County. BEFORE and AFTER. More clean-up efforts to yet to come. This initial work (by a dedicated volunteer and certified sawyer) is a great start to getting the Trail back into shape.
Shear winds and tornadic activity ravaged the North and Central regions of Wisconsin on July 19 and July 20, 2019.
The areas hit the hardest by the storm were Polk, Langlade, and Waupaca counties. Hundreds of trees are down all along the Ice Age National Scenic Trail corridor. In a conservative estimate, well over 127 miles of Ice Age Trail was drastically affected by the storm. Continue reading
Summer storm damage. The northern tier of Wisconsin was hit by terrible storms with shear winds and tornadic activity, July 19, and July 20. Photo by Jason Pursell.
Summer Storm = Big Damage
Shear winds and tornadic activity ravaged the North and Central regions of Wisconsin this past weekend, July 19, and July 20, 2019. Expect to see a significant number of trees down along the Ice Age National Scenic Trail corridor.
Please exercise caution and common sense if you are considering a hike on any segment north of Highway 10, especially if you are planning to go anytime in the next two weeks. Areas where damage has been reported along the Ice Age Trail include (but are not limited to) the following: Polk, Barron, Langlade, Portage, and Waupaca counties.
Please know our dedicated volunteers, Seasonal Trail Crew, and partner agencies like the County parks and the Department of Natural Resources are busy assessing the damage and are taking the necessary steps to begin the safe removal of fallen trees and other debris. Continue reading
Two friends smile in delight after spending the day together hiking the Monches Segment of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Photo by Brad Dagen.
National Trails Day is Saturday, June 1st, 2019 and there’s plenty to celebrate along the Ice Age National Scenic Trail.
Hikes That Go the Distance:
Explore new territory.
1. Chippewa County, Chippewa Moraine Segment: National Trails Day Hike
Celebrate National Trails Day in Chippewa County. Appreciate the beauty of the North woods as trees and flowers unfurl in late-spring. This hike, led by members of the Chippewa Moraine County Chapter, starts at 9:00 a.m. and is about 4-miles in length. Plan to meet new friends, bring your own water, insect repellent, and to complete the hike by noon. (Chippewa Moraine County Chapter) Continue reading
Our catchy name for the Ice Age Trail Alliance’s mobile app, Mammoth Tracks, has gone the way of the woolly mammoth! Guthook Guides, the company who created our app decided to switch things up. So, when the glacier melts, well, you go with the flow.
What was formerly Mammoth Tracks is now available as an in-app purchase in the new and improved version of Atlas Guides‘ offerings of Guthook Guides hiking apps. You can find the Ice Age Trail featured near the middle of the page.
Special Spring Pricing!
The deal starts Thursday, April 11th and runs through Sunday, April 14th. Continue reading
GOOD NEWS! They voted YES!!
The U.S. House of Representatives voted to approve the S .47 Natural Resources Management Act, in a bipartisan vote, 363-62. Continue reading
Please CALL or EMAIL your House Representative before TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 26th at 3:30 p.m.
Voice your SUPPORT for the S. 47 Natural Resources Management Act.
S. 47 is one of the most significant public land packages to enjoy bipartisan support in congress in recent history! It will create more than 1.3 million acres of wilderness out West, add three national park units and expand eight others. Continue reading
Update for Android users of the Mammoth Tracks – Ice Age Trail app:
Mammoth Tracks is now available as an in-app purchase for Android in the new and improved version of Atlas Guides’ hiking app called “Guthook Guides: Hike & Bike Offline”.
Here are some common questions and answers about the new app.
Q: I have the Mammoth Tracks – Ice Age Trail app on my Android phone. Can I still use it?
A: Yes, you can still use it, and it will have the same data as the newer app. However, this app will not be updated (other than the data) or supported in the future.
Q: I have the Mammoth Tracks – Ice Age Trail app on my Android phone. Can I transfer my purchase to the new Guthook Guides app? Continue reading
A glimpse of boardwalk along the Jerry Lake Segment of the Chippewa Moraine in Taylor County.
Photo credit: D. Caliebe
We Need Photographs of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail!
We are on the lookout for photos we can use in our publications. Right now, we have a 2020 edition of Ice Age Trail Guidebook in the works.
What makes the Guidebook so valuable, besides detailed segment-by-segment descriptions and maps, is the high quality, expressive photographs it contains. Most of the pictures were taken, not by professional photographers, but by trail enthusiasts who snapped the shot while out hiking! Each photo wonderfully captures the beauty of the trail experience. Continue reading
The Ice Age Trail Alliance is pleased to announce we are hiring a paid intern position for 2019. This opportunity is based in our Outreach, Engagement & Education Program. The length of employment ranges from 7-8 months. Please read the position description linked below.
Currently, the Ice Age Trail Alliance seeks an intern to work side by side IATA staff and volunteers to introduce new and diverse audiences to the Ice Age Trail. The IATA recognizes and embraces the fact that we must engage new audiences and the next generation to be successful in continuing our mission of creating, supporting and protecting the Ice Age Trail. This intern position will build awareness of the Ice Age Trail and IATA to a diverse population engaging them through hikes, presentations and service learning events. This position will include a mix of field work, community outreach, and administrative duties, such as collecting, tracking and sharing data and stories, grant reporting, and updating various marketing platforms. We ask qualified applicants to apply by Friday, February 8, 2019.
Photo Credit: Jo Ellarson
We’re jumping for joy! A successful Challenge Match helps make the Ice Age National Scenic Trail a treasure for all generations to enjoy! Photo by Dineo Dowd.
Just WOW. Your generous support, and that of 530 Trail users from across the nation, joined together and exceeded the $60,000 Challenge Match. You gave through social media, check, and IRA’s. You shared the Match with friends and family. You generated more than $124,000 for the Alliance and ultimately the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Continue reading
Snow covered boardwalk along the Plover River Segment, Marathon County. Photo by Rachel Roberts.
First the Good News:
The Ice Age National Scenic Trail remains open for hiking, snowshoeing, running, and backpacking. Please continue to enjoy the Ice Age Trail and the activities which get you outside and bring you joy.
Now, for the Not-So Good News:
Even though the Ice Age Trail itself is not closed during the government shutdown, ALL VOLUNTEER-BASED activities are suspended. Continue reading
Snow-covered thistles enliven a winter landscape. Photo by T. Knaack.
The land trust accreditation program recognizes land conservation organizations that meet national quality standards for protecting important natural places and working lands forever.
The Ice Age Trail Alliance is pleased to announce it is applying for renewal of accreditation. A public comment period is now open.
The Land Trust Accreditation Commission, an independent program of the Land Trust Alliance, conducts an extensive review of each applicant’s policies and programs. “The rigorous accreditation and renewal process ensures we’ve satisfied a specific set of criteria as a land conservation organization,” said IATA Executive Director Mike Wollmer. “As an accredited organization, the Alliance continues to demonstrate credibility with its current and future donors, partners, and supporters.” Continue reading
A snowy hike along the Chippewa Moraine Segment. Photo by Melinda Hayes.
Start off 2019 strong with a heart-pumping hike and plenty of fresh air!
It’s easy to get your 10,000 steps with a hike on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Let the scenery renew your spirit and the crisp, winter weather invigorate your pace.
Give the gym a break on the weekends and mix up your routine. A whole-body workout is possible during Trail Improvement days. Besides the camaraderie of working alongside other trail enthusiasts, there’s the added bonus of knowing your ‘workout’ showed the Ice Age Trail some love. Continue reading
Tony Schuster (and his wife Nancy) enjoys a fantastic day hiking on the Ice Age Trail as Field Editor for the Harwood Lakes Segment in Chippewa County. Tony and Nancy carefully walked the segment to make sure the reality of the Trail was reflected across all three hiker resources. Photo by Nancy Schuster.
Work has begun to update the Ice Age Trail Guidebook, the Atlas, and the Databook. The goal is updated, published versions by February 2020.
We’re looking for dedicated and enthusiastic hikers and lovers of the outdoors to volunteer as Field Editors. That means YOU!
Field Editors will be asked to:
- Hike a selected segment or connecting route of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail,
- Review and verify existing book info,
- Submit a Field Edit Report providing any updated, corrected, or new information.
Good News for Taxpayers over the age of 70 ½!
Congress voted, in 2015, to make permanent the exclusion from income of up to $100,000 per person, per year, for Individual Retirement Account (IRA) distributions which are given directly to charities. Continue reading
The happy, thousand-watt smiles of brand new Thousand-Milers fill the Alliance headquarters. Photo by Jo Ellarson.
Lynn Williamson and Patrice Nicolet recently completed their thousand-mile journey on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Laughing, they remarked, “We’re still friends, too!” Williamson and Nicolet became Thousand-Milers by section hiking the Ice Age Trail. The Thousand-Miler Map and Checklist helped them plan and document their progress as they hiked the Trail in bits and pieces over a period of years.
You too can get started on your very own adventure, solo, or with a friend, or an entire passel of people. Winter is a great time to cozy up to a warm fire and to plan your hike. Will you hike it a segment (or two) or connecting route (or more) at a time? Will you choose to hike the entire Trail in one continuous, multi-day effort? The decision is yours. Continue reading
How it works:
- Instead of going to Amazon.com, you will need to go to the AmazonSmile page which is: https://smile.amazon.com/;
- Now, log in like you normally do when you log into your Amazon account;
- Right underneath the Amazon search bar you will see small orange text that says “Supporting: Name of the Organization”;
- If you hover the mouse over the “Supporting: Name of Organization” it will bring up the option to change the charity you are currently supporting, or give you the opportunity to select one. (This may also be an option from your account settings.);
- Amazon will offer you a rotating list of their “spotlight charities” and below that a search bar that says “Or pick your own charitable organization” here is where you can type in “Ice Age Trail Alliance”;
- Click on the “Select” button. Now you are all set to start shopping;
- Amazon gives 0.5% of the purchase price, of whatever you order, to the Ice Age Trail Alliance (for example, a $100.00 purchase earns 50 cents for the Alliance);
- Remember: in order for a charity or organization to benefit from any Amazon shopping you do, you must use the AmazonSmile portal.
The EXTRA good news is this: AmazonSmile purchases benefit charities or organizations ALL year long…not just during the holiday season.
Snag a combo pack – Anniversary T-Shirt & Monty – and be a part of the national celebration!
On October 2nd, 1968 the National Trails System was created. This momentous occasion formalized the curation of America’s great hikes and critical points in human history. The National Scenic and Historic Trails were born.
On December 15th, 1958, a group of citizens came together and the Ice Age Trail Alliance was formed to create, support and protect what would become the Ice Age National Scenic Trail.
The Alliance has enjoyed a year of celebrating the 50th and 60th anniversaries by building new trail, reaching new groups, and protecting landscapes. We are continuing the celebration by offering reduced pricing on our 60th Anniversary T-Shirt made by Seek Dry Goods. Continue reading
Tornado damage along County Highway F just north of the John Muir Segment in Marquette County. Photo by thru-hiker, Jason Pursell.
Trail Condition Highlights
The Parnell Segment near Butler Lake was hit hard during an August 31st storm which produced high winds and tornados and many trees were blown down. While the staff of the Kettle Moraine State Forest-Northern Unit have downplayed the extent of the damage, hiker reports (as recently as 11/02/2018) indicate the route is still extremely treacherous and it is exceedingly easy to get lost. The on-going IATA recommendation is to avoid the Parnell Segment at this point in time.
Firth Lake Segment:
A portion of the Firth Lake Segment in Chippewa County has been closed by a private landowner. In order to bypass that segment, which extends from east of Firth Lake SIATA and Chippewa County Forest to about 1 mile west of Hwy CC, it is necessary to bypass everything between Hwy CC and Firth Lake. Continue reading