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Wisconsin DNR Outdoor Report for the South Central Region 12-29-2012

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Dodgeville DNR Service Center area

Grant County – Certain areas of the county received in excess of 10 inches in the last snowfall, which made great snowmobile trail conditions in the valley, but with the 50 mile per hour wind gusts, blowing and drifting snow on the ridges, it made for many barren trails across most of the ridges. As of Dec. 26, many ridge top areas are bare of snow, but greatly populated with corn stalks and chisel plowed fields. The late fall, also provided local farmers ample opportunity to chisel plow area for spring planting. Snowmobiler are urged to use caution when traversing farm field areas. According to the TravelWisconsin website, as of Dec. 24, the Grant County trails are open, but in poor conditions with snow depths noted 4-10 inches. Trails are not groomed, but snowmobilers will find certain sections of the trail system have been groomed. The Cassville area north has been groomed. Ice anglers at the Bertom McCartney and Hoosier lake are finding a few bluegills. With the advent of the new snowfalls, many larger turkey flocks have been spotted in many farm fields searching for waste grains. – Richard S. DeWitte, conservation warden, Cassville

Fitchburg DNR Service Center area

Dane County Keep an eye out for winter visitors such as the snowy owl. – Nancy Frost, wildlife biologist, Madison

Devil’s Lake State Park More than a foot of snow fell at Devil’s Lake on Dec. 20. Some places received 16-18 inches. The cross-country ski trails are now groomed, tracked, and in good condition. The lake finally froze over completely on Christmas day, but of course the ice is still very thin after so recently freezing. The sledding hill in Quartzite campground is closed because it is in a construction area. All of Quartzite campground is closed to visitors for safety reasons as work progresses on the campsite electrification project. Archery-only deer season goes through Jan. 6. The most popular hiking areas around the lake and bluffs, the campground and picnic areas, and Parfrey’s Glen are all within the no hunting areas. Because of the campground electrification project, all family campgrounds are currently closed for the season. Year-round family camping is available at Mirror Lake State Park, about 15 miles from Devil’s Lake. Only the nine campsites in the Devil’s Lake group camp will remain open for the off-season. Sites may be used by family campers as well as groups, and all campsites will operate on a first-come, first-served basis. Campers must park in the CCC parking lot in the middle of the Group Camp, and walk up to 200 yards to a campsite. There are two non-flush restrooms and one winterized water tap available. No electricity, showers, or running water rest rooms are available. The project work includes upgrading all electrical campsites to 50-amp service, and some current non-electrical sites will become electrical sites. Call the park at 608-356-8301 and press “3” for the “current conditions” message for the most up-to-date information. – Richard Hesed, visitor services associate

Governor Nelson State Park All cross-country ski trails have been groomed and tracked and are in good to excellent condition. – Rene’ Lee – park manager

Lake Kegonsa State ParkAll cross country ski trails are in good condition and were last groomed and tracked on the evening of Dec. 23. Pets, hiking and snowshoeing are prohibited on all designated cross country ski trails. Please see our winter map for alternate locations. – Sarah Bolser, park manager

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