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Property master planning
planning resource management and facility development
Public access lands
parks, forests, wildlife, fisheries, natural areas, trails, wild rivers and flowages
Explore Outdoors
locate a great place to recreate
Contact information
For information on the Recreation Opportunities Analysis project, contact:
Cameron Bump
park and recreation specialist
715-839-2786
Email: DNRroaComments@wisconsin.gov

 

Recreation opportunities analysis (ROA)

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources' mission includes providing a healthy, sustainable environment in which a full range of outdoor opportunities may be enjoyed by all people. To that end, the DNR is embarking on a study, known as the Recreation Opportunities Analysis (ROA), of existing outdoor-based recreation opportunities and future recreation needs in each region of the state. The study will identify future needs for providing high-quality recreation experiences and the role of DNR properties in helping to meet those needs.

Public Input Update

The public comment period for the following draft chapters has been closed. The department is currently analyzing the comments received and will be making changes to the chapters as appropriate. Once all the changes are complete, the department will publish the finalized ROA document on this site.

Draft Chapters

Finalized chapters

The public comment period closed for the Great Northwest and Upper Lake Michigan Coastal regions on October 27th. These chapters have now been finalized by the department. You can view the finalized chapters at the links below:

Region map

General Information

Goals

hunting the big buckThe goals of the Recreation Opportunities Analysis are to:

  • ensure that DNR resources are focused on providing recreational opportunities in the most appropriate places;
  • identify highest priority future recreational needs in each planning region and the department properties that are best suited to meet these priorities;
  • provide information on the full spectrum of outdoor recreation in each region to the department's master planning process, and further, provide information and guidance that enables the master planning process to identify which roads on DNR properties should be open to motorized vehicles;
  • use the best available information to identify existing recreation opportunities and future needs and priorities in each region of the state; and
  • ensure there is ample opportunity for public and stakeholder input in selecting priorities.
Products

UTV ridingOur analysis of recreation opportunities in Wisconsin will develop eight regional reports. These reports will describe existing recreation opportunities, future needs and priorities, and the potential role of state-owned lands in helping meet these priorities. The reports will provide guidance to the DNR's master planning process on a wide variety of recreation needs, including opportunities for incorporating motorized access.

Process

rock climingThe DNR will start by engaging representatives of statewide stakeholder groups from a variety of recreation interests. This group will help the DNR develop a set of recreation goals and objectives and develop criteria to identify appropriate locations for recreational activities. The criteria will include attributes and conditions needed to provide a high-quality recreational experience, identify the potential impacts of those activities and determine appropriate geographic distribution of opportunities.

Next, the DNR will engage regional representatives from recreation interest groups, recreation providers, business and environmental groups and others. For purposes of this study, the DNR will use eight regions [PDF] developed by previous recreation studies. These regional teams will generate information on existing recreation opportunities, future needs and initial guidance on how DNR properties could help meet these needs. The public will have multiple opportunities to provide input in the process.

Connection to other projects

This analysis is being conducted concurrently with a legislatively-mandated DNR project to inventory and map all roads on department properties. The results of this road inventory project will help inform the Recreation Opportunities Analysis.

Also concurrent with this analysis is the development of the 2017-2022 Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP).

The department will be using the results of the Recreation Opportunities Analysis to help inform the development of department master plans, including an amendment to the recreation portion of the master plan for the Northern Highland American Legion State Forest.

Recreation Opportunity Analysis Document

ROA Introduction Draft [PDF]
ROA Northwoods Region Final [PDF]
Upper Lake Michigan Coastal Region – Final [PDF]
Great Northwest Region – Final [PDF]
Mississippi River Corridor Region - Draft [PDF]
Western Sands Region - Draft [PDF]
Lake Winnebago Waters Region - Draft [PDF]
Lower Lake Michigan Coastal Region - Draft [PDF]
Southern Gateways Region - Draft [PDF]
ROA Appendices Draft [PDF]


Region Information

Northwoods Region

Public Input

September 2017

After reviewing the comments received, the department has finalized the Northwoods chapter to the Recreation Opportunity Analysis:
Northwoods Region [PDF]

June 2017

On June 12, 2017 the department released draft versions of the initial chapters for the Recreation Opportunities Analysis - the Introductory chapter and the Northwoods Region chapter.

The public was invited to review and comment on the Northwoods Region chapter from June 12 through 25, 2017. The department hosted a public meeting in Rhinelander on June 19 to gather input and comments.

April 2017

The department hosted three open house meetings in Arbor Vitae, Park Falls, and Antigo on April 24, 25, and 26, respectively. These open houses were designed to gather public comments, ideas, concerns, and perspectives on the existing recreation opportunities available in the region and future needs. The open houses were also an opportunity for the public to provide comments and perspectives on existing and potential future recreation opportunities at the NHAL State Forest.

These meetings were well attended with over 150 people signing in. The material presented at the open houses included:

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Northwoods Region

State properties

Federal properties

County Properties

Upper Lake Michigan Coastal Region

March 2018

After reviewing the comments received, the department has finalized the Upper Lake Michigan Coastal Region chapter to the Recreation Opportunity Analysis:
Upper Lake Michigan Coastal – Final [PDF]

October 2017

On October 6, 2017 the department released a draft version of the initial chapter for the Recreation Opportunities Analysis - the Upper Lake Michigan Coastal Region chapter.

Comments to the draft chapter were accepted through October 27, 2017.

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Upper Lake Michigan Coastal Region

State properties

State Parks
State Forests
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Area
Wild River

Federal properties

County Properties

Great Northwest Region

March 2018

After reviewing the comments received, the department has finalized the Great Northwest Region chapter to the Recreation Opportunity Analysis:
Great Northwest Region – Final [PDF]

October 2017

On October 6, 2017 the department released a draft version of the initial chapter for the Recreation Opportunities Analysis - the Great Northwest Region chapter.

Comments to the draft chapter were accepted through October 27, 2017.

The material presented at the Great Northwest Region open houses included these table-top display boards:
Great Northwest Region [PDF]

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Great Northwest Region

State properties

State Parks
State Forests
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Areas
Wild Rivers
State Flowage

Federal properties

County Properties

Mississippi River Corridor Region

Public Input

May 2018

The public comment period for the draft version of the Mississippi River Corridor Region chapter closed on May 4th, 2018. The department is currently analyzing the comments received and will be making changes to the chapters as appropriate. Once all the changes are complete, the department will publish the finalized ROA on this site.

March 2018

On March 27th, 2018 the department released a draft version of the Mississippi River Corridor Region chapter for public review and comment:
Mississippi River Corridor Region - Draft [PDF]

October/November 2017

The department held open houses in October and November to gather public feedback on recreation opportunities in the Lake Winnebago Waters, Mississippi River Corridor, and Western Sands Regions. In addition, the department was also collecting input from the public through an online public comment opportunity through November 17, 2017.

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Mississippi River Corridor Region

State Properties

State Parks
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Areas
State Riverways

Federal Properties

County Properties

Western Sands Region

Public Input

May 2018

The public comment period for the draft version of the Western Sands Region chapter closed on May 4th, 2018. The department is currently analyzing the comments received and will be making changes to the chapters as appropriate. Once all the changes are complete, the department will publish the finalized ROA on this site.

March 2018

On March 27th, 2018 the department released a draft version of the Mississippi River Corridor Region chapter for public review and comment:
Western Sands Region - Draft [PDF]

October/November 2017

The department held open houses in October and November to gather public feedback on recreation opportunities in the Lake Winnebago Waters, Mississippi River Corridor, and Western Sands Regions. In addition, the department was also collecting input from the public through an online public comment opportunity through November 17, 2017.

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Western Sands Region

State Properties

State Parks
State Forests
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Areas
Federal Properties
County Properties
Lake Winnebago Waters Region

Public Input

May 2018

The public comment period for the draft version of the Lake Winnebago Waters Region chapter closed on May 4th, 2018. The department is currently analyzing the comments received and will be making changes to the chapters as appropriate. Once all the changes are complete, the department will publish the finalized ROA on this site.

March 2018

On March 27th, 2018 the department released a draft version of the Mississippi River Corridor Region chapter for public review and comment:
Lake Winnebago Waters Region - Draft [PDF]

October/November 2017

The department held open houses in October and November to gather public feedback on recreation opportunities in the Lake Winnebago Waters, Mississippi River Corridor, and Western Sands Regions. In addition, the department was also collecting input from the public through an online public comment opportunity through November 17, 2017.

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Lake Winnebago Waters Region

State Properties

State Parks
State Forests
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Areas
Federal Properties
County Properties
Lower Lake Michigan Coastal Region

May 2018

The public comment period for the draft version of the Lake Winnebago Waters Region chapter closed on May 4th, 2018. The department is currently analyzing the comments received and will be making changes to the chapters as appropriate. Once all the changes are complete, the department will publish the finalized ROA on this site.

March 2018

On March 27th, 2018 the department released a draft version of the Mississippi River Corridor Region chapter for public review and comment:
Lower Lake Michigan Coastal Region - Draft [PDF]

December 2017

The department held open houses in early December to gather public feedback on recreation opportunities in the Lower Lake Michigan Coastal and the Southern Gateways Regions. In addition, the department also collected input from the public through an online public comment opportunity through January 2, 2018.

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Lower Lake Michigan Coastal Region

State Properties

State Parks
State Forests
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Area

Federal Properties

County Properties

Southern Gateways Region

May 2018

The public comment period for the draft version of the Southern Gateways Region chapter closed on May 4th, 2018. The department is currently analyzing the comments received and will be making changes to the chapters as appropriate. Once all the changes are complete, the department will publish the finalized ROA on this site.

March 2018

On March 27th, 2018 the department released a draft version of the Mississippi River Corridor Region chapter for public review and comment:
Southern Gateways Region - Draft [PDF]

December 2017

The department held open houses in early December to gather public feedback on recreation opportunities in the Lower Lake Michigan Coastal and the Southern Gateways Regions. In addition, the department also collected input from the public through an online public comment opportunity through January 2, 2018.

Maps

The following maps have been prepared to provide background information. They are based on the best information that the department could gather at this time.

Properties in the Southern Gateways Region

State Properties

State Parks
State Trails
State Wildlife Areas
State Natural Areas
State Fishery Area

State Riverways

Federal Properties

County Properties



How to stay informed

The public will be invited to participate in the development of the regional reports. Public open house meetings and this website will be used to gather citizen input. Sign up to receive periodic updates and return to this web page for updates and a listing of opportunities to participate in the process.


Contact information
For information on the Recreation Opportunities Analysis study, contact:
Cameron Bump
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
1300 West Clairemont Ave
Eau Claire WI 54701
715-839-2786
Email: DNRroaComments@wisconsin.gov
Last revised: Tuesday May 08 2018