COUNTY FOREST ORDINANCES

The Clark County Forestry and Parks Department welcomes you to enjoy our county forest opportunities. Summer and fall are two very busy recreational seasons on the forest. Trail use and hunting are popular benefits of this large public land holding.


Clark County strives to provide pleasant and memorable experiences for as many people as possible. To this end, county ordinances have been established to promote health, safety and general welfare of the visitor while protecting and safeguarding county resources for future generations. The following is a brief account of some Clark County Forest ordinances and policies commonly asked about. For a complete listing of county forest ordinances or for further clarification, please call or write: Clark County Forestry & Parks Dept. 517 Court Street, Room 103 Neillsville, WI 54456 Phone: (715) 743-5140 www.clarkcountywi.com


COUNTY FOREST ROADS AND TRAILS


1. No person shall operate a vehicle that causes damage to soil or natural vegetation.


2. No person shall operate an unauthorized vehicle on roadways or surrounding area that are gated, bermed, cabled, barricaded, closed, or posted prohibiting access.


3. No person shall operate a vehicle on designated cross-country ski trails, hiking trails, bicycle trails, or wildlife trails unless expressly authorized.


4. No person shall operate a vehicle on ATV/UTV trails, snowmobile trails, or similar trails unless such trails are posted allowing such operation.


5. No person shall operate a vehicle on trails and routes not designated for such use. Operators shall abide by all trail and route signs.


6. Only street legal motorcycles, driven by licensed operators, are allowed on the ATV trail system. All non-street legal motorcycles may only operate on the Knobby Ridge Motorcycle trail.


7. All Clark County ATV and Motorcycle trails are closed from March 16th to May 14th and from November 1st to December 14th of each year. From Nov. 1st through the gun deer season; ATVs and UTVs may operate on designated ATV/UTV trails during non-shooting hours for hunting related purposes only (i.e. transportation of hunting stands and dead game). Any operation off designated ATV/UTV trails is strictly prohibited.


8. No person shall operate an ATV, UTV, snowmobile, motorcycle, or other similar vehicle in the county forest during shooting hours of gun deer season as established by law. a. During shooting and non-shooting hours of the bear season, ATVs and UTVs may be operated on designated trails and off designated trails for the sole purpose of retrieving and transporting a bear carcass. Any other operation off designated trails is strictly prohibited.


9. No person, except authorized personnel, may park, stop, abandon, or leave (attended or unattended) any vehicle in any manner that blocks, obstructs, or limits use of any roadway or trail.


10.Designated forest roads including Dam #2 Forest Road, Bald Peak Forest Road, Abbott Ranch Forest Road, Koehlers Ford Forest Road, Horse Creek Forest Road, and the Butler Forest Roads are always open to licensed motor vehicle traffic. Clark County makes no guarantee for snow removal and/or towing. Revised 01/10/20 J:\Forestry\OUR Doc's\ADMIN-F&P DEPT\Ordinance\2020 Green Sheet.docx 11.The Department may authorize, by permit, a person with physical disabilities to operate a vehicle as a mode of personal conveyance to achieve certain exemptions from trail related ordinances. A permit is not required for a person with physical disabilities to use a motorized wheel chair.


TREE STANDS AND GROUND BLINDS


1. No person shall install, occupy, or use any elevated hunting devices with the following exceptions: Portable tree stands may be used and installed as long as such stands are installed no earlier than one week prior to the earliest designated bear or deer hunting season and removed no later than one week following the end of the latest bear or deer hunting season. The placement, usage, or removal of such tree stands shall not cause any damage to trees or other natural materials. Tree stands shall not be bolted, nailed, or screwed in any manner to a tree. Use of screw in tree steps is prohibited.


2. A person may install, occupy, or use any ground blind under the following conditions: Ground blind shall not be bolted, nailed, or screwed to any tree; and ground blinds shall be installed no earlier than one week prior to the earliest designated bear or deer hunting season and removed no later than one week following the end of the latest bear or deer hunting season.


3. Portable tree stands and ground blinds may be installed and left unoccupied as long as the following information is printed in English and attached to the tree stand or ground blind in a clearly visible manner from the ground and kept legible at all times: I.) Owner’s Department of Natural Resources identification number; or II.) Owner’s name and address


4. The installation of portable tree stands and ground blinds do not warrant exclusive territorial hunting rights in such area.


5. Any tree stand or ground blind that are not marked appropriately or are not timely removed shall be deemed abandoned property and subject to removal and disposition by the Department in accordance with applicable state law.


6. No person shall cut, displace, or remove timber or other natural material for shooting lanes. No person shall hunt using any shooting lanes. Minor pruning is allowed between September 1 and March 31 for the placement of tree stands only.


COUNTY FOREST CAMPING


It is legal to camp on most county forest lands. Camping is not allowed within 250 feet of a trail located at Levis/Trow or Wildcat Mound or at the top of Levis, Trow, or Wildcat Mounds. All campers are required to acquire a permit to camp, prior to setting up camp. County forest camping permits can be obtained at the Forestry and Parks office Monday thru Friday, at Rock Dam Park and Russell Memorial Park while managers are present, or at the Parks Reservations website https://webtrac.co.clark.wi.us. Self-registration opportunities exist at Wild Rock Park, Wildcat Mound Park, Rock Dam Park, Timber Lane Parking Lot (west end of Timber Lane Forest Rd), Sherwood shooting range (Sherwood Rd), Knobby Ridge Motorcycle Trailhead (Hwy 10), Snyder Park and Levis Mound Trail Center (Fisher Ave). Permits may also be processed through the mail anytime prior to camping dates (allow 5 days mail turn-around time). The associated fee is $7.00 per night and per unit. Snyder and Rock Dam campgrounds remain open through the gun deer season with fees ranging from $17.00 to $33.00 per night as of 2020. Clark County makes no guarantees as to quality of camping experience, due to common occurrence of inclement weather. Snow removal or towing of mud and/or snow bound vehicles will be at campers’ expense.

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