These trails are among several that were professionally planned by Trails Anonymous under a contract with the City and funded by the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program. Two more of these trails have yet to be built. The Pine Bluff Trail is slated for construction before winter settles in. Pine Bluff will link the Gil Larsen Trail in the Ravine bottom to the East Rim Trail, creating access all of the way up to the North Ravine Trailhead on Meyers-Olson Road. If grant funding comes through for 2021, the final link, Hemlock Heights Trail, would make a similar connection between the Gil Larsen Trail and the trail network northwest of the Bayfield school.
Kate Kitchell from the City of Bayfield Parks and Recreation Committee and Bayfield Area Trails Committee has been inspired by the generosity and spirit of all who pitched in. “It’s truly remarkable to see what we’ve been able to accomplish!” My heartfelt thanks to Sue Aiken, Katie Barningham, Adrian Bethel, Bill Bland, Ian Campbell, Matt Carrier, Abe Clark, Mike Eldred, Liz Fentress, Bob Feyen, Neil Howk, John Ipsen, Genevieve Johnson, Dave Judd, Mike Kinnee, Kate Kitchell, Gene Lemmenes, Chris Nybo, Anney Olson, John Olson, Mark Peterson, Sheree Peterson, Keith Ray, Janel Ryan, Erik Scott, Kris Wegerson, and Bob Wood. “You’re the best!”
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Hope to see you out on the trail!
“It’s pretty cool to see the community involvement—the blood, sweat and tears, all of it,” Krift said. “And the community-building around these trails. I didn’t have too many expectations but there are so many returnees getting into the swing of things; they come back and they already have the skills. The progress we’ve made is really cool.”
Volunteer Genevieve Johnson was working with a rogue hoe, a tool for digging up dirt and scraping the trail. She said the day was “a steamy one.” And then she summed up what’s made it all worthwhile: “We’re already getting feedback from locals and tourists hiking in from the trailhead; they’re excited to see what’s going on. They say, ‘Thank-you for your work.’”
The cultural and natural history around the Bayfield area is heavily intertwined; you can’t talk about one without the other.
Congratulations to volunteers with the Bayfield Area Trail Stewards (BATS)—18 of them!--who are working hard on improvements to the Gil Larsen Trail—also known as the Iron Bridge Trail—in Bayfield’s Big Ravine.
Check out the trail!