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For information, contact:
Devil's Lake State Park
S5975 Park Rd.
Baraboo, WI 53913-9299
608-356-8301

Devil's Lake State Park Current conditions

Conditions as of Tuesday, November 25, 2014:

Winter at Devil's Lake

We have snow! But not enough for skiing or snowshoeing, and the lake is not yet frozen over.

Last Friday, 6 swans were spotted on the south end of Devil's Lake. They were still there on Sunday and will probably be there for a bit or until the lake starts to freeze. There are two types - trumpeter and mute swans. You can tell them apart by looking at their beaks. Mute swans have orange beaks and the trumpeters are all black.

Trails

Hikers and pets may not travel on the cross-country ski trails when trails are snow-covered.

Cross-country ski trails

About 5" of snow fell on November 24. Initial wet and rainy conditions, coupled by blowing and drifting have made trails impassable to cross-country skiers. Trails do not have enough snow for grooming or tracking.

There are about 6 miles of cross-country ski trails at Devil's Lake. Trails are maintained, but not meticulously. When staffing is available, ski trails are groomed before the weekends and after any significant snowfalls.

Snowshoe trails

Snowshoeing at the park is increasing in popularity in recent years. Snowshoers may go anywhere in the park except on the cross-country ski trails. The popular bluff trails are often too steep and stepped for enjoyable snowshoeing. Trails that work better for snowshoers are Roznos Meadow, Sauk Point, Grottos and the gently ascending East Bluff/East Bluff Woods trails.

New 2015 vehicle admission stickers

Next year's new park stickers will be available for sale beginning December 1. Park stickers make great Christmas and holiday gifts. We have gift/enclosure cards and envelopes available for giving park stickers. 2015 annual stickers are valid from their purchase date through December 31, 2015.

Roads and parking

Most county and township roads through the park are plowed during the winter. However, park roads and parking is much more limited, with only certain areas being plowed. Limited parking is usually available at the north shore, south shore, CCC/Group Camp, Parfrey's Glen and Steinke Basin. Outlying, smaller and lesser-used parking areas are not maintained or plowed during winter.

Other winter recreation

The hill between the Nature Center and the Quartzite Campground that many people have used for sledding is closed due to the construction in the Quartzite Campground.

Ice fishing will be open when the lake freezes over, usually sometime in December. The Park does not monitor or measure the thickness of the lake ice, nor does it vouch for the ice's safety. Ice thickness and quality can vary with time and location. Ice fishers and people walking on the lake's ice must use their own best judgment about the safety of the ice.

Construction will significantly impact fall and winter camping

Attention: Due to multiple Shower/Flush Toilet Building development projects all family campgrounds are now closed for the off-season.

We have targeted this project to be completed in time for the Memorial Day weekend in 2015 or earlier. Please sign up for future email updates via Gov Delivery.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause. Thank you for your support while we complete this very important project.

Don't move firewood!

Don't move firewood!Due to the potential of carrying harmful tree pests and diseases, Wisconsin has restrictions for moving firewood.

Group Camp will remain open all year.

Group Camp is completely reserved by groups on weekends through November 16.It may be used by family campers on some weekdays (on a first-come, first-served basis). Availability for family camping will depend on reservations through the fall and winter. One winterized water tap will be available and non-flush restrooms will be open. There are no electric hook-ups at the Group Camp.

The exact duration of these closures is necessarily indefinite, since the work and construction schedules depend on weather and other variable factors.

Hunting in the Park

Hunting and trapping is open in limited areas of the park from November 15 to December 15, except that hunting with legal bow and crossbow methods is allowed through the Sunday nearest January 6. This includes the regular gun deer season, November 22 – 30. No park-specific permit is required, but all parked vehicles must have a valid WI State Parks vehicle admission sticker.

Hunting and trapping is not allowed in the popular day-use areas around the lake, Parfrey's Glen, any of the picnic areas, Visitor Center, Headquarters, Nature Center or camping areas. You can get a hunting map of Devil's Lake online or at the park Visitor Center.

Nature center

The Nature Center is open during the fall from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday – Saturday. It will be closed on Sunday and Monday.

Events

See the DNR events calendar for a list of events at all state parks.

Concessions

The north shore Chateau and all concessions operations are closed for the off-season. Concessions will reopen in the spring, approximately the first weekend in May.

More information

Devil's Lake State Park is open every day of the year from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.  The Visitor Center is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., except for Christmas Eve, Christmas day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.

Park newspapers and maps are available at the main north and south shore entrance stations. Self-pay stations are available for use at five locations in the park.

Last revised: Tuesday November 25 2014