WinMan Trails

Fun day with the family

Fun day with the family

Sometime in August I realized that the summer wasn’t going to last forever.  I’m not sure why it took me over two months to work that out, but I used it as motivation to fit a whole summer’s worth of activities into just a few weeks.  I wasn’t real successful.  I did have some experiences worth recommending, so I’ll share some of those in the next few blog posts.  First up: WinMan Trails.

WinMan Trails is one of the reasons why we recommend the Manitowish Waters area to people who participate in the silent sports.  The trails are open for hiking and biking in the summer and snowshoeing and cross country skiing in the winter.  I knew all that going into our family trip, so I thought we were prepared when we showed up with our bikes, helmets, sunscreen and water. 

If we just wanted to bike on paved paths – we could have done that.  From the parking lot at WinMan, there are paths that lead all over the Manitowish Waters area, and even connections through to Boulder Junction.  It’s a great trail system that connects to restaurants, parks, and scenic overlooks.  They’re well-kept, you rarely have to worry about trails that are blocked by downed trees, or slippery gravel and sand.  So we could’ve biked for miles with the gear we had.  

If you really want to take advantage all that WinMan trails has to offer, you might want some more gear.  What I learned is that WinMan has a lot more to offer.  There are miles of non-paved trails.  They vary from novice to expert, and go across rocks and bridges, and between pines on narrow dirt trails.  There’s an off-trail area where you can practice your technical skills before heading out, something like a “Terrain Park” that skiers use, except for bikers.  That’s why you’ll see everyone in the photos has a lot more protective gear on than my kids.  They lived and they had a great time living on the edge.

Outside of the actual biking/hiking, WinMan has a lot to offer.  Picnic tables for a lunch or snack, a gift shop that serves cold beer and Gatorade and tools to help air-up and maintain whatever you’re riding that day.  There’s also a firepit which I imagine gets a lot more use when the cross-country skiers or snowshoers are using the trails.

The overall experience was great – and it was free.  WinMan operates on donations only.  We were happy to contribute to the cause.  It was a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon, and we’ll be back sometime soon.  Next time I’ll have a GoPro on my bike so you can see my son (Owen) living on the edge.



Posted By: Phil Souzek - Aug. 26, 2023, 6:03 p.m.