From 2005 – 2007, Landmark Conservancy (formerly Bayfield Regional Conservancy) assisted with the acquisition of five properties totaling approximately 1100 acres in the Mount Ashwabay area. These lands are now owned by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bayfield County, and the Ashwabay Outdoor Educational Foundation (AOEF). A trail system of over 40km provides year-round outdoor recreational opportunities and is maintained by AOEF staff and volunteers.

In 2023, Mount Ashwabay was celebrating their 75th anniversary! Landmark wanted to share newsletter articles from the archives about a couple of the conservation projects that tie our histories together! Ruth Oppedahl is the author of these articles and was Executive Director of Bayfield Regional Conservancy at the time of these projects. She recently reflected,

“These multi-year acquisitions were a testament to the goodwill and hard work of all the partners. They ensured continued operation of Mt. Ashwabay Ski Hill and the Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua which are important economic entities in the region. It also protected the significant ecological site of the Nourse Sugarbush, which before that was an Ojibwe Iskigamizigan (sugarbush).”

On Saturday, January 20th Landmark is co-hosting a free Candlelight Snowshoe and Nordic Ski event in partnership with Mt. Ashwabay on a portion of this trail system. Landmark is thrilled that this land continues to provide a place for people to enjoy outdoor recreation, connect with nature, and build community!

Landmark Conservancy Conservation Projects Around Mt. Ashwabay Numbered

Conservation Projects Around Mt. Ashwabay

1. 400 acres. Protected 8.1.2006

2. 70 acres. Protected 11.1.2005

3. 250 acres. Protected 12.29.2005

4. 160 acres. Protected 12.1.2007

5. 200 acres. Protected 12.1.2005

Read Newsletter Articles from the Archives:

“Nourse Sugarbush-Wisconsin’s Newest State Natural Area” Fall, 2005

BRC Nourse Sugarbush Newsletter Page 1
BRC Nourse Sugarbush Newsletter Page 2

“The Last Parcel on Mt. Ashwabay” Fall, 2007

BRC Newsletter Page 1
BRC Newsletter Page 2