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Contact information
For more information about the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest, contact:
For camping and recreation questions:
Clear Lake Visitor Station
8282 Woodruff Road
Woodruff, WI 54568

Crystal Lake Visitor Station
3237 Crystal Lake Road
Boulder Junction, WI 54512

Rosy Richter
Visitor services associate

Tom Shockley
Forestry team leader
715-356-5211 ext. 259

Craig Dalton
Property manager
715-356-5211 ext. 258

Wisconsin State Parks and ForestsNorthern Highland-American Legion State Forest

Hemlock Lake

Reserve campsites at Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest.

Established in 1925 to protect the headwaters of the Wisconsin, Flambeau and Manitowish rivers, the Northern Highland-American Legion (NHAL) State Forest occupies more than 232,000 acres in northern Wisconsin. The forest provides employment and economic support to rural and urban communities through the production of forest products, recreation and tourism.

Property info


The Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest is located in Vilas, Oneida and Iron counties, in heart of the Northwoods near the cities of Woodruff and Minocqua. It is approximately four hours northeast of Minneapolis and four hours north of Madison.


The forest is spread out across three counties. For directions to the individual campgrounds, please see camping information.

Directions to NHAL visitor stations:
Clear Lake Visitor Station: From the intersection of highways 51 and 47 in Woodruff, follow Highway 47 south 3.5 miles, turn left on Woodruff Road and the Clear Lake entrance will be on the right.

Crystal Lake Visitor Station: From the intersection of highways 51 and 47 in Woodruff, travel Highway 51 north 6.2 miles to Highway M. Turn right on Highway M and drive 2.7 miles to Highway N. Turn right on Highway N and travel 2 miles, the Crystal Lake Visitor Station entrance is on the left.


A vehicle admission sticker is required for all family campgrounds and posted fee beach and picnic areas. A trail pass is required for all groomed cross-country ski trails and mountain bike trails. Hunting and fishing licenses apply. Camping fees [PDF] are updated annually.

Certain groups and individuals may be eligible for waivers on vehicle admission, trail pass or camping fees.

Volunteer campground host openings

The NHAL is looking for campground hosts to set an example by being a model camper, assist and inform campers of regulations, help keep the campground presentable, assist with nature center programs and assist visitors with campfire wood bin procedures. If interested in this volunteer position, please call Beth Feind (715-614-5120) or Nikki Kloes (715-614-0281).

Management and business

Planning documents

Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest Master Plan

Completed in 2005, the master plan reflects years of planning and public input. The final plan, maps, variances and amendments are included in the plan, as well as documents used during the plan's development.

What's new

The implementation plan to provide additional motorized access during the fall hunting season has been finalized (link below). In July 2018, the department shared a proposal to open 35 miles of existing roads to seasonal vehicle access during the fall hunting season, September 1 to the last day of the December 4-day antlerless gun deer season. Based on public feedback, the department has modified the original proposal, removing approximately 4.5 miles from the proposal. See the finalized NHAL Implementation Plan for Motorized Access for Fall Hunting.

Questions about the proposal can be directed to the NHAL property manager, Craig Dalton.

Amendment to master plan

In October 2017, the Natural Resources Board approved an amendment to the recreation portion [PDF] of the master plan.

Public involvement

Public involvement in state forest management, operations and monitoring is part of sustainable forestry. We seek public involvement because we believe people, communities, organizations and businesses realize the potential public benefits of state forests and are willing to work to further the goals of sustainable forestry.

Timber sale program

The state forests are managed sustainably for multiple uses. Active timber management is a part of that overall effort on many parts of each forest. Timber sales are advertised for sale typically from one to three times annually, depending on the size of the forest.

Last Revised: Friday February 01 2019