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For information on State Natural Areas, contact:
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Wisconsin State Natural Areas Program Loon Lake Woods (No. 396)

Loon Lake Woods

Photo by Aaron Carlson

Resource links:

Loon Lake Wildlife Area


Overview

Location

Within Loon Lake Wildlife Area, Barron County. T35N-R14W, Section 29. 59 acres.

Description

Description

The gently rolling terrain of Loon Lake Woods supports a second-growth southern mesic hardwood forest of sugar maple and basswood with large red oaks common. Associates include red maple, white ash, white oak, paper birch, and yellow birch. Tall shrubs include beaked hazelnut, alternate-leaved dogwood, and arrow-wood, which is generally sparse to moderate in density. Ironwood, and American hop-hornbeam are present as small trees in the understory. The groundlayer contains species such as maidenhair fern, zigzag goldenrod, large-flowered bellwort, sessile-leaved bellwort, bishop's-cap, wild geranium, interrupted fern, violets, and sedges. Several ephemeral kettle ponds are scattered through the area with black ash, alder, and wetland herbs including sensitive fern, marsh marigold, wild calla, water-parsnip, blue flag iris, and common water-hemlock. Birds include broad-winged hawk, least flycatcher, yellow-throated vireo, northern waterthrush, veery, scarlet tanager, and blackpoll, Tennessee, chestnut-sided, and Canada warblers. Loon Lake Woods is owned by the DNR and was designated a State Natural Area in 2003.

Access

Driving directions

From the intersection of Highways 63 and 48 in Cumberland, go south on 63 4.6 miles, then west on 18-19 Avenue 3.1 miles, then south on 1st Street 0.3 mile to a small parking area east of the road. Walk east into the site.

Ownership

Loon Lake Woods is owned by:

  • WDNR

Maps

The DNR's state natural areas program is comprised of lands owned by the state, private conservation organizations, municipalities, other governmental agencies, educational institutions and private individuals. While the majority of SNAs are open to the public, access may vary according to individual ownership policies. Public use restrictions may apply due to public safety, or to protect endangered or threatened species or unique natural features. Lands may be temporarily closed due to specific management activities. Users are encouraged to contact the landowner for more specific details.

The data shown on these maps have been obtained from various sources, and are of varying age, reliability, and resolution. The data may contain errors or omissions and should not be interpreted as a legal representation of legal ownership boundaries.

Objectives

Site objectives

Manage the site as a northern mesic forest reserve and an ecological reference area. Natural processes will determine the structure of the forest.

Management approach

The property is primarily managed passively, allowing nature to determine the ecological characteristics of the site. Exceptions include control of invasive plants and animals, access to suppress wildfires, salvage of trees after a major wind event, and maintenance of existing facilities.

Site-specific considerations

  • Ephemeral ponds would have no vehicle entry provisions in case of salvage operations.

Recreation

Very few State Natural Areas have public facilities, but nearly all are open for a variety of recreational activities as indicated below. Generally, there are no picnic areas, restrooms, or other developments. Parking lots or designated parking areas are noted on individual SNA pages and maps. Trails, if present, are typically undesignated footpaths. If a developed trail is present, it will normally be noted on the SNA map and/or under the "Access" tab. A compass and topographic map or a GPS unit are useful tools for exploring larger, isolated SNAs.

Allowable activities

In general, the activities listed below are allowed on all DNR-owned SNA lands. Exceptions to this list of public uses, such as SNAs closed to hunting, are noted under the "Access" tab above and posted with signs on site.

  • Hiking
  • Fishing
  • Cross country skiing
  • Hunting
  • Trapping

Prohibited activities

  • Camping and campfires
  • Collecting of animals (other than legally harvested species), non-edible fungi, rocks, minerals, fossils, archaeological artifacts, soil, downed wood, or any other natural material, alive or dead. Collecting for scientific research requires a permit issued by the DNR
  • Collecting of plants including seeds, roots or other non-edible parts of herbaceous plants such as wildflowers or grasses
  • Drone use, unless authorized by a SNA research permit
  • Geocaching
  • Horseback riding
  • Rock climbing
  • Vehicles, including bicycles, ATVs, aircraft, and snowmobiles except on trails and roadways designated for their use

For rules governing state-owned SNAs and other state lands, please consult Chapter NR 45 Wis. Admin. Code [exit DNR]

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Last revised: Thursday, October 19, 2017