Hayward Area Color Tours

In the fall the forest colors change from the greens of summer to reds, oranges, yellows, and browns as the rapidly shortening days and frosty nights produce a riot of color. Not all species of trees change color at the same time. Scattered red maple in swamp areas begin to change to brilliant red in late August. About the time of the equinox, September 22nd, the sugar maple change to rich oranges or yellows. The peak of the maple color is generally considered the peak of the color in the northland. The aspen turn color to a bright yellow as the maple begin to lose their leaves. Oaks change to dark reds and shades of reddish brown a few weeks after the maple. Sumac become a bright red around the time that the maple color changes. The last tree to change color is the tamarack which is the only conifer to lose its needles. About the time that most of the hardwoods have lost their leaves the tamarack in the swamps become yellow.

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SIX SELF-GUIDED TOURS

Following are links to six popular color tours, three each for the northern and southern sections of Sawyer County. You will have an opportunity to print directions for each tour, in order to have a ready reference on your journey. Please choose your adventure below, and be sure to bring a camera!  Click below for narrative and map or skip the narrative and click on the box for maps only.

Color Tour 1 ~ Hayward Area 73 mile loop

This is a 73 mile tour that begins in Hayward and passes through the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. Most of the route is paved; however 12 miles are on gravel roads.

From the Hayward Area Information Center building drive north on Highway 63 one half mile to the intersection with Highway 77 and turn right (east). The route follows Highway 77 east over the Namekagon River and up O'Brien Hill which is the hill on the east edge of the Namekagon valley about 2 miles into the tour. In the logging days around the turn of the century O'Brien Hill was famous for the dangerous trip down the steep grades with heavily loaded sleighs - many were wrecked and the horses and driver injured or killed.

Turn right (east) on Twin Lakes Road 8.4 miles into the tour. The tour follows Twin Lakes Road east and in about 3 miles you cross over the Tiger Cat Flowage. The original Twin Lakes were to the north (left) of the road but a dam constructed downstream in 1936 by the WPA program raised the level of the water by 4 feet flooding marshland and making the present flowage. Twin Lakes Road ends at a T intersection with County Highway A. Turn left (north) on A and drive to the intersection of Highways A and 77 which is known as Dow's Corners. Turn right (east) on Highway 77 and drive 6.8 miles to the intersection with Highway S. Turn right (south) on S and drive 4 miles to the intersection with the Moose Lake Road. About one half mile before you reach the Moose Lake Road you cross the Teal River, known as Tea Creek in the white pine logging days, one of the many streams used to transport logs to the mill.

View Map

On the left side of the road at the intersection of S and the Moose Lake Road is a historical marker telling about the 1790 battle between the Chippewa Indians and an invading band of 700 Sioux warriors in 200 canoes. Turn left (east) here and follow the Moose Lake Road. In about 0.7 mile the road surface changes to gravel. At 33.6 miles into the tour turn right (east) on Forest Road 174.

The area surrounding the intersection is the former location of CCC Camp Sawyer. Camp Sawyer was built on the remains of an old Hines Lumber Company camp from about 1914. There is an old stone fireplace in the woods to the left (west) of the intersection and two concrete pillars and a sign mark the location of the rest of the camp to the right. The men in the CCC camp planted trees, built roads and fought fires. The large plantations of red pine and white spruce that you pass in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest are testimony to their hard work.

For additional information:

Hayward Lakes Visitors & Convention Bureau, Sawyer County, WI  USA
PO Box 1055
Hayward, WI  54843
tel:715-634-4801
www,haywardlakes.com

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Color Tour 2 ~ Chippewa Flowage 60 mile loop

Color Tour #2 is a 60 mile loop giving the visitor spectacular views of the Chippewa Flowage and colorful forests.

Beginning at the Hayward Information Center building drive southwest on Highway 63 one block to the stop lights and turn left (southeast) onto Highway B and 27. At 0.5 mile turn left at the stop light and continue east on County B. At 9 miles you pass between the two Round Lakes. Round Lake is on the left and Little Round Lake is on the right.

At 13.5 miles turn right (south) onto Highway CC. In about 2 miles you begin to see lakes and bays that make up the Chippewa Flowage. The Chippewa Flowage was created in 1923 when Northern States Power built a dam on the Chippewa River. The dam flooded 15,300 acres and joined several small lakes into one large body of water.

Follow CC to the right around a sharp right turn in New Post and continue west. Highway CC turns south at 27 miles, however continue straight (west) on Highway N. Highway N ends at a T intersection with County Highway E at 31 miles. Turn left (south) on E and in 0.2 mile follow E to the right around a sweeping curve. At 34.2 miles follow E around a sharp left corner and pass a cranberry bog on the right side of the road. Highway E intersects with Highways 27 and 70 at 36.6 miles. Turn right onto Highway 27 and drive west. Continue on Highway 27 past the intersection with Highway 70 in about a mile and continue to the intersection with Highway K at 41.3 miles.

View Map

Turn right onto Highway K and drive east. At 44.2 miles you pass a cranberry marsh on the left on the shore of Grindstone Lake. Shortly after seeing the marsh you enter Northwoods Beach at 45 miles. At 46.4 miles you cross Grindstone Creek. Lac (lake) Courte Oreilles is on the right. Turn left (west) onto County E at 48.6 miles. County E follows around the north shore of Grindstone Lake.

At 51.7 miles turn left onto Williams Road. Spring Lake is on the right at this T intersection. Williams Road winds southwest and west. At 53.9 miles continue straight on Williams Road and up a small hill past a cross road. The route turns onto Highway 27 at 55.8 miles at a T intersection. Turn right (north) on 27 and follow the highway into Hayward. At 60.2 miles turn right (northeast) at the stoplight onto Highway 63 and in one block you are back at the Hayward Information Center building.

For more information on lodging, dining and more!

Hayward Lakes Visitors and Convention Bureau, Sawyer County, WI  USA
PO Box 1055
Hayward, WI  54843
https://haywardlakes.com

Color Tour 3~ Chequamegon Nicolet National Forest 70 mile loop

This is a 70 mile tour that passes through the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest east of Hayward. The majority of the tour is on paved roads however 8.5 miles are on gravel road.

From the Hayward Information Center building drive north on Highway 63 one half mile to the intersection with Highway 77 and turn right (east). The route follows Highway 77 east over the Namekagon River and up O'Brien Hill which is the hill on the east edge of the Namakagon Valley about 2 miles into the tour. In the logging days around the turn of the century O'Brien Hill was famous for the dangerous trip down the steep grades with heavily loaded sleighs - many were wrecked and horses and drivers injured or killed.

At 21.9 miles on the tour turn left (north) on Forest Road 203.

Forest Road 203 is blacktopped for the next 2 miles and passes through a tunnel of hardwoods that overhand the roadway. Shortly after turning on FR 203 you pass Two Deer Lake on the left and then Perch Lake on the right. At 27.9 miles FR 203 intersects with FR 622. Here you can turn left to take a short side trop to look at an impoundment on Lynch Creek and hike a short trail to a viewing platform.

The color tour continues on FR 203 and at 31.2 miles Crystal Springs overlook in the right. Crystal Springs is a bog dotted with small potholes. It is especially scenic in the fall when the bog is framed by the reddish brown color of the oaks and yellow of the birch. The colorful foliage contrasts nicely with the patches of water that reflect blue sky. In another mile FR 203 intersects County Highway M. Turn left (west) on M and drive 9.8 miles to the village of Cable.

View Map

Along the way you pass just south of Lake Namakagon. Namekagon can be loosely translated from the Chippewa as "Place of the Sturgeon". A pleasant walking side trip can be had by driving south on FR 207 2.6 miles and hiking in to Rock Lake about a half mile west of the fire lane. In Cable turn left (south) on Highway 63. There is no color tour sign at the intersection M and 63.

The color tour route crosses the Namekagon River about 1.5 miles south Cable. The Namekagon is part of the St. Croix Riverway and is a National Wild and Scenic River. You parallel and occasionally cross the Namekagon or its backwaters on the drive back to Hayward.

For more information on the Riverway contact the National Park Service at Box 100, Trego, WI 54888 or call 715-635-8346. About 5 miles south of Seeley turn right (northwest) on Nelson Lake Road. Continue on 3.8 miles to Highway T. Turn right (northwest) and continue on T to Highway 27. Turn left (south) on 27 and drive 3.6 miles to Highway 77. Turn left (east) and continue on to Hayward.

For more information:

Hayward Lakes Visitors and Convention Bureau, Sawyer County, WI  USA
PO Box 1055
Hayward, WI  54843
tel:715-634-4801
www.haywardlakes.com

Color Tour 4~ Winter Area 45 mile loop

This is a 45 mile tour that begins in Winter and passes through the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. Most of the route is paved; however, 10.4 miles are on gravel roads.

Begin the tour in Winter at the intersection of Highways 70 and W and drive west on Highway 70 to the intersection with 27 and G. In about 4 miles you will pass a small park on the south side of the highway. At the intersection of Highways 27 and 70 and G lies the village of Ojibwa. Ojibwa, established in 1917, was one of the first planned communities in Wisconsin. The village had 173 houses and 133 barns, all of colonial architecture. Turn right (north) on Highway G and cross the Chippewa River. The large house on the left was a stopping place or hall for loggers and is the oldest house in Sawyer County.

VIEW MAP

The tour continues north and east on G along the north bank of the Chippewa River which you will cross at Bishop's bridge. There was a small settlement along the river here. Turn left (north) at the T intersection with Highway W. In just over two miles a road to the west leads to the Chippewa Flowage Dam. Continue north to the intersection with Highway B and turn right (east) onto Highway B. In 3.8 miles turn left (east) onto Universal Drive. Follow Universal Drive for 0.75 mile and continue straight (east) onto Black Dan Road. Follow Black Dan Rd for one mile and turn left (north) at the T intersection with North Clover Road. Follow the paved road for 3.4 miles to the T intersection with Blaisdell Lake Road. Turn right (east) on Blaisdell Lake Road and continue east and south crossing Lake Loretta at a narrows. Follow Blaisdell Lake Road east to the T intersection with Highway GG. Turn left (north) on GG and drive to Forest Road 311. Turn right (east) on the gravel road and drive 5.4 miles to the intersection with Forest Road 162. Turn right (south) on Forest Road 162 and drive 5.2 miles to Highway 70. Turn right (west) on Highway 70 and drive 14.5 miles back to Winter.

Winter Area Chamber of Commerce                                     
P.O. Box 245                                                                               
Winter, WI 54896                                                                     
1-800-762-7179                                                                           
715-266-2204                                                                             
www.winterwi.com

Color Tour 5 ~ Begin at the intersection of Highways 70 and H in Radisson 45 mile loop

This is a 45 mile long tour - all on paved roads.

Begin color tour 5 at the intersection of Highways 70 and H in Radisson. The first white settlement in Sawyer County was located along the Chippewa River and was known as Wallace. When the Omaha Railroad decided to extend a branch to Park Falls, Oric Whited purchased 5,520 acres north of the Chippewa River and persuaded the railroad to change the route through his land. The village of Radisson was constructed along the railroad.

Drive north on Highway H through magnificent hardwood forests. Much of the land here is part of the Lac Court Oreilles Reservation. Several parts of this tour are underlain with Barron Quartzite. Catlinite or pipestone deposits are a feature of this quartzite. Native Americans dug up the soft pipestone and carved it into pipes and amulets that hardened with exposure to air.

At 8.3 miles north of Radisson, Highway H ends at a T intersection with Highway CC. Turn left and drive west on Highway CC. In 3.8 miles CC intersects with Highway N. Highway N continues straight however turn left (south) and continue on Highway CC. The highway jogs around Ashegon Lake in about 2 miles. At the intersection of Highway 70 and CC in Couderay, turn right (west) on Highway 70. The village of Couderay grew up around a sawmill located on Eddy Creek around 1890. Couderay means "The Lake of the Short Ears" in French.

View Map

Drive west from Couderay on Highway 70 for approximately 2.5 miles to Highway C. Turn left (south) on Highway C. Highway C crosses the Couderay River just south of the intersection with Highway 70. The Village of Lemington and the Wisconsin Central Railway are located about 2.5 miles south of 70. The Tuscobia Trail (an old railroad grade) crosses Highway C just south of Lemington. Continuing south from Lemington, Highway C crosses Highway 48. The hills to your right are the Blue Hills, a quartzite deposit that was rounded off and flattened by glacial activity.

Continue south across Highway 48 and follow Highway C south and east. For the next three miles Highway C gives a roller coaster effect over a series of hills with spectacular views to the east.

Highway C intersects with Highway 48 again in Exeland. Exeland was so named because the Arpin Lumber Company built a railway from Atlanta (North of Bruce) which was crossed by the Soo Line Railroad between 1900 and 1914. Turn right onto Highway 48 in Exeland and continue east through Exeland to the intersection of Highways 48, 40, and D.

Turn left (north) on Highway 40, which will parallel the Chippewa River. About 4.7 miles north of the Highway 48, 40, and D intersection is Belilles Falls on the Chippewa River. The village of Wallace was located in this area and was the original settlement area of Radisson. Tour 5 ends in Radisson.

Winter Area Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Box 245
Winter, WI 54896
1-800-762-7179
715-266-2204
www.winterwi.com

Color Tour 6 ~ The Stone Lake Area 48 mile loop

The Stone Lake tour is 48 miles long and includes 14.8 miles of gravel roads. The woods along this tour are predominantly oak with some maple.

Begin the tour in Stone Lake at the intersection of Highway F and Highway 70. Drive southwest on Highway 70 and turn left (southeast) on Washburn County Highway BB just past the bridge. In 3.3 miles BB will turn however continue straight onto Ranch Road. In about 0.4 miles there is a gully that was a mile-long ditch dug by the Rice Lake Logging Company to divert water from Lake Sissabagama to the Slim Lake chain for driving logs down to Rice Lake.

The road passes between Sissabagama Lake and Little Sissabagama Lake. Turn left (southeast) on Sissabagama Road. The tour intersects the paved Highway F at a T intersection. Turn right (southwest) on F and continue southwest following Lake Chetac at a distance. Highway F intersects Highway 48 at a T intersection. Turn left (northeast) on Highways F and 48 then in 0.4 mile turn right (south) on F. The tour leaves the paved road near Bemis and Hunter Legion Post 379 and turns left on Stony Hill Road. Continue east and north on the gravel Stony Hill Road. The majority of the land along this section of road is managed as part of the Sawyer County Forest.

VIEW MAP

Stony Hill Road intersects with Highway 48 at a T intersection. Turn left (west) and follow Highway 48 about 3 miles to East Shore Road. Turn right (north) on East Shore Road and bear right at a Y intersection about 2 miles ahead. Past this intersection you can again catch glimpses of Lake Chetac. East Shore Road ends at a T intersection with Chapel Road. Turn left (west) on Chapel Road, drive about 0.2 miles and turn right (northeast) on Summit Lake Road. The turn is just before the intersection of Chapel Road with Highway F and is right next to a small church. Drive down the gravel Summit Lake Road, which becomes paved in about 2 miles. Continue straight at the stop sign and turn right (northeast) on Right of Way Road. This road passes under a high railroad trestle owned by the Wisconsin Central Railroad - the name on the trestle still says Soo Line. The tour crosses the Couderay River. Turn left (north) on Butler Road and continue to a T intersection with Highway 70. Turn left (north) on Highway 70. There is a historical marker on the south (left) side of the highway about one mile ahead. The tour continues west on Highway 70 and turns left (southwest) on Highway 70 at the intersection of Highways 27 and 70. Stone Lake and the end of the tour are just down the road.

For More Information Contact:

Birchwood Area Chamber of Commerce
www.birchwoodwi.com

Stone Lake Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 75
Stone Lake, WI  54876
715-865-FEST
www.stonelakewi.com