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Recreation

Ride. Cast. Hike. Glide.

What you need to know about ATVing in Rusk County

ATVers can find some great trails to ride in and around Ladysmith in Rusk County, whether it's a cruise through the scenic Blue Hills or a trek through more than 80,000 acres of county forest land that's open to riders. Here's what you need to know before you go.

What do I need to ATV in Rusk County?

In Wisconsin, ATV and UTV operators born after Jan. 1, 1988, who are at least 12 years old (or 16 years old if they're UTVers) must complete an ATV/UTV safety certification course to operate on public trails. (The Wisconsin DNR recommends all riders complete a safety course before hitting the trails.)

Learn more about taking the safety course and other state ATV/UTV regulations here.

Where can I rent an ATV?

Many riders bring their own four-wheelers to Rusk County, but if you're looking for rentals, you can find them at Airtec Rentals in Rice Lake (located in Barron County, Rusk County's neighbor to the west).

Where can I ride? (And when?)

ATV routes are located throughout Rusk County, following county roads and lightly trafficked trails and passing through scenic county forests, which have 80,000 acres open for exploration. Ladysmith is a great place to launch your adventure--find a map of Rusk County's ATV trails here.

In the Blue Hills in northwestern Rusk County, riders will find the Blue Hills Area ATV Trail, a 24-mile route that runs roughly north-south through the county's beautiful scenery and woodlands. The trailhead is located 12 miles north of Weyerhaeuser on North Bucks Lake Road off County Highway F. Learn more about ATVing in the Blue Hills.

Rusk County's ATV trails and county forest lands are open to ATVs from the Friday of Memorial Day weekend until December 31 (or when snowmobile trail grooming starts).

Where can I stay?

Rusk County is home to a campground that specifically caters to ATVers and UTVers. The Perch Lake Campground in the Blue Hills sits between Audie and Perch lakes and offers direct access to the ATV trail connecting to Perch Lake Road. The campground is home to 15 sites equipped with water and electricity, picnic tables and fire rings with adjustable grills. Learn more about the campsite and make reservations here.

Many of Rusk County's welcoming lodging properties also offer easy access to the trails, and you'll find places to stay in Ladysmith and throughout the county. See information about Rusk County's bed & breakfasts, hotels, motels, resorts and cabins here.