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About Our Trails

So what exactly do the Snowmobile Clubs do?

In this county, we have approximately 186 miles of trail and the state has over 25,000 miles of trail. Winnebago County has over 6,600 registered snowmobiles and the state has over 225,000 registered snowmobiles. Winnebago County has 12 snowmobile clubs, all of which are members of the WCSA (Winnebago County Snowmobile Alliance). Statewide, there are over 600 snowmobile clubs representing 28,316 families.

In this state, millions of dollars in revenues are derived from snowmobile-related businesses (including, but not limited to manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, dealers, resort and hotel facilities, restaurants, service stations, insurance agencies, hardware stores, etc.). In 1998, the Wisconsin Department of Tourism estimated that snowmobiling generated $188 million in business. This has rejuvenated the economics of many communities in the state.

As well as maintaining our trails and going riding, snowmobilers raise money for charities and organizations. Nationally, last year snowmobilers raised over $3 million for charities. Many rides are done for charities in our state. The beneficiaries are groups that fund multiple sclerosis and cancer research, etc. In Winnebago County, money is given from the clubs to benefit hover craft rescue, food panties, family crisis centers and others.
There is a 200 mile network of snowmobile trails in Winnebago County with 120.5 miles designated as state ‘funded’ trails.  The remaining 80 miles of trails are club trails, which means local clubs install and maintain these trails through fundraisers and membership dues.  Snowmobile trails are open to all REGISTERED snowmobilers. If you snowmobile on any trail in Wisconsin, chances are the trails were made possible by the local snowmobile club.  These clubs provide the trails for public use through volunteer efforts of club members.

By belonging to a snowmobile club, you are helping to support the sport and assisting in providing good trails.  You also have the opportunity to share the fun and fellowship of snowmobiling with others.

Snowmobile clubs have instructors who teach the DNR Snowmobile Safety Course.  The course is required for all children between the ages of 12 and 16 who wish to operate a snowmobile alone.  Contact the DNR, your local snowmobile club, or county association for safety class information.

Team work 

The snowmobile trail program in Winnebago County is dependent on the generosity of landowners who allow the placement of the trails on their property.  It is critical that all snowmobilers appreciate this special relationship and treat the landowners’ properties as they would their own.

Help keep landowners happy by:

  • Staying off the trails until they are open
  • Only travel on marked trails
  • Do not cut corners
  • If you leave the marked trail, you are trespassing


The WIOUWASH Trail is county-operated and named for the counties it passed through: Winnebago, Outagamie, Waupaca, and Shawano.  The trail extends from downtown Oshkosh 22 miles to Hortonville and from Tigerton 16 miles to Birnamwood.

Ever wonder about how the WIOUWASH trail began? Snowmobiling was involved in this trail from it’s inception. Back in the 70’s when the railroad abandoned the line, the idea of having a recreational trail was brought up. The county purchased the first stretch of trail from Hwy. 110 to Larsen in 1974. The state snowmobile trail aids program reimbursed the county 100% for that cost of roughly $60,000. Snowmobile use of the trail started almost immediately and due to the rough surface of the trail from the bed rock, biking and hiking were not a practical use yet.

In 1978, the remaining portion from Larsen to the county line was purchased with county money and other government aids and grants. Through the 80’s, lime screen stone was laid on the base allowing a more user friendly base for other activities.

In 1990, the bypass bridges around Larsen were installed. This again was achieved through the generosity of the snowmobilers and the state aids program, which funded the bridges 100%. The bridges were completed at a cost of $52,300. Through the use of the trail by snowmobilers, every year the snowmobile state trail aids fund supplies maintenance money to help with bridge repair, grading, signs, etc.

More Information on the WIOUWASH Trail