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Wisconsin’s Wiouwash State Trail is named for the four counties it passes through: Winnebago, Outagamie, Waupaca and Shawano. Currently, 41 miles of the rail-trail are open in two disconnected sections, separated by a gap of approximately 30 miles.
The northern segment spans 19 miles between the small towns of Birnamwood and Split Rock in Shawano County. The majority of the route is shaded by dense tree cover. In Eland, the Wiouwash State Trail links with the 83-mile Mountain-Bay State Trail, which travels west to Weston and east to Howard.
The longer southern segment extends 22 miles from just north of downtown Oshkosh to Hortonville. Scenic views of Lake Butte des Morts dominate closer to Oshkosh, while prairie remnants and farmland stretch out as far as the eye can see along the remainder of the trail. North of Larsen, the Wiouwash State Trail connects to the Friendship State Trail along US 10. That trail continues eastward to Menasha and its stunning converted railroad trestle over Little Lake Butte des Morts. Passage through the Rat River Wildlife Area also offers numerous areas for birding, canoeing, and hiking.
Long-term plans call for connecting the two segments when the necessary right-of-way becomes available.
For the northern segment of the Wiouwash State Trail, parking is available in downtown Birnamwood, Eland, Wittenberg and Tigerton. All four towns can be reached from US 45.
For the southern segment, parking is available in Hortonville (Lakeview Avenue), Medina (Wisconsin Avenue/State Route 96), Larsen (County Highway T) and Oshkosh (Westwind Road, near the junction of US 45 and US 41).
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