Your web browser is out of date. Update your browser for more security, speed and the best experience on this site

5 fun winter adventures in the Northwoods


  • Article
  • Cross-country Skiing
  • Fishing
  • Lakes & Rivers
  • Parks & Natural Areas
  • Snowmobiling
  • Snowshoeing
  • Trails
  • Winter
  • Winter Biking

Need some winter getaway ideas? Here are five of our favorite winter activities in Vilas County, from fatbiking to ice fishing.


Vilas County has everything you need for an unforgettable winter adventure—vast, picturesque forests, endless amounts of snow and more than 1,300 postcard-perfect frozen lakes. At the end of the day, you’ll also find plenty of comfortable lodging properties. Here are five of our favorite winter adventures in northern Wisconsin.

  1. (Almost) lose yourself on snowshoes

In places like the Catherine Wolter Wilderness Area, you can explore more than 2,189 acres of pristine forest on trails that will take you past undeveloped lakes. You’ll feel like you’re in the backcountry, even when you’re steps from your car—it’s a true wilderness experience.

  1. Carve some fat bike trails

Discover a winter fat biking paradise on the WinMan Trails. These expertly groomed trails span 1,300 acres of public and private land, and they include endless loops that entertain riders of all abilities.

  1. Ski the wilderness

Our ski trails will take you through some vast forests. The Anvil Lake Trail runs through a beautiful section of the 1.5-million acre Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. You’ll find 12 miles of groomed trails that cover a mix of level and rolling terrain.

  1. Ride across the county

Vilas County has more than 700 miles of snowmobile trails, including some of the oldest in the state. In fact, the snowmobile was invented here! Trails connect all our communities and take riders through scenery that’s simply spectacular. Use our free app to find the perfect ride.

  1. Go ice fishing

In Vilas County, you’ll find beautiful ice fishing lakes everywhere. Some are ringed by resorts and vacation homes, while others are as wild and as beautiful as they were a hundred years ago. Some of these lakes take a bit more effort to reach, but when you do, you may be the only person dropping a line.