Wisconsin River Overlanding Tour (WROT)

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Ryan Harden
Updated February 19, 2021

Trail Specifics

Trail Type
  • Dirt/Sand
  • Gravel
  • Overlanding Tour
  • Paved
Overall Trail Class
3
Obstacle Class
Class 3 ​11-15" 27-38cm​
Turning Radius
Acceptable for most RL4WDs
Width
2 Vehicle Narrow
Average Encroachment
No Brush
Trail Depth
Class 2 6-10" 13-25cm​
Trail Grade
Class 3​ 11-15°​

The Wisconsin River Overlanding Tour is a mix of paved, gravel, and dirt trail. It includes river crossings, a few Slow Speed Trails, but mainly Gravel and dirt trails with optional legs to explore. 

This trip will take roughly a full day. Make time to stop and take in the sights so it's best to take a weekend or a least a few days to make this entire trip. There are places to wilderness camp, but not many and they are not on the map as you'll need to get permissions from the DNR before you overnight most likely. This tour takes you through some old towns and lots of history. We'll continue to update the maps to include some of the awesome businesses you should check out as waypoints in the coming years. 

This tour includes roads that may not be maintained in winter. Some of these roads in the Mississippi River basin may wash out completely with heavy rain or Spring snowmelt. It's best to always travel with a group, never alone, and while the gravel roads are not difficult, you may be surprised to find sections of the tour that are beyond your vehicle's ability or experience level. 

You will want a Ham radio with the local repeaters programmed in. As you get further away from the cities, you'll experience many dead zones, especially in the hills. We've been through here where roads and bridges were totally wiped out. Please mind the Spring thaw and avoid this route as the thaw comes out of the ground. Please post in the comments section below when you plan on making the trip to try and encourage others to go with you! We're a 4X4 family and want to make sure each group has the needed items to make your experience a fantastic, safe journey. 

If a section of this route is closed, please record the new track and post it here so we can modify the tour to include the new area. Pictures, videos, and reviews help people decide the best routes, the best places to visit, and together, we can make these tours amazing! 

 

Join or Log In to see the printable maps, downloadable GPS tracks/waypoints, and write reviews/send trail reports. Funds are used to build more trails.

Map listings are subject to change at any time for any reason. Please respect all property, pick up trash, report abuse, and be an ethical trail advocate. Your actions speak for all of us. Trails are mapped via the Universal Trail Rating System. If you find the rating system to be wrong, please write a review to correct (send pictures if possible).

Call your local chapter club, Trail Guide Ambassador, or ask about trails you’re thinking of going to before you go there. Please travel with a buddy, never alone. If a trail is closed, please write a review ASAP to inform others of what you saw. Read the map listing reviews as people will post things that may aid you in your visit.

We’re all the eyes and ears of the trails so your reviews are crucial to keeping trails open and expanding.

Use your discretion before attempting to crawl or maneuver over trails & waypoints. The Road Legal 4WD Association, Chapters, Trail Guides, Elders, Land Owners, Sponsors, and Members are not responsible for your course of action, only you are.

Do not attempt anything beyond your capability, get proper training, and never travel alone.

NEVER POST UNETHICAL or ILLEGAL ACTIVITY TO ANY WEBSITE OR SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNEL. Those who oppose us, are always watching us.

We recommend you carry a first aid kit, ABC automotive fire extinguisher, recovery gear, and communication with you at all times when on the trail. Please take the time to ask questions and get training on vehicle and equipment use.

User reviews

2 reviews
Overall rating
 
9.5
Fun Factor
 
9.0(2)
Scenic Value
 
10.0(2)
Northern loop being mapped
Overall rating
 
10.0
Fun Factor
 
10.0
Scenic Value
 
10.0
Nate and I are jamming out a northern loop. The scenery is just amazing. 
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Amazing views, some neat trails!
Overall rating
 
9.0
Fun Factor
 
8.0
Scenic Value
 
10.0
I loved this tour. We didn't give ourselves enough time to do it, but man... it was a blast! Need to go back and add more waypoints, history, and alike. Would like to try it in winter too since many of those roads will be unmaintained. I loved the washed-out bridge, the Mississippi, the old towns, all of it! 
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Comments (13)

Rated 5 out of 5 based on 1 voters
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I'd really like to go on this trail, I was wondering the best gps to use and or if there are signs along the way, will it be easy to navigate?

Karl Beicher
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Hi Karl,
I did a portion of this a few weekends ago. I used an app called onX offroad. I imported the GPX file into the app and followed the route. The only time I used my normal navigation system (Apple Maps) was to the getting to the starting...

Hi Karl,
I did a portion of this a few weekends ago. I used an app called onX offroad. I imported the GPX file into the app and followed the route. The only time I used my normal navigation system (Apple Maps) was to the getting to the starting point in Suak Prairie. There are other navigation apps out there but o found onX a great tool for this one.

Most of these routes getting to each trail is a public road so that portion is easy. But keep an eye on your turns to each trail as most of them are not marked much more than a street sign.

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Dan Hamilton
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Thanks Dan. I was considering doing it next weekend but after reviewing the Google Maps Streetview, it did seem like a lot of country roads. Since I live on a country road I wasn't so sure about it. Ultimately we're hanging further south in...

Thanks Dan. I was considering doing it next weekend but after reviewing the Google Maps Streetview, it did seem like a lot of country roads. Since I live on a country road I wasn't so sure about it. Ultimately we're hanging further south in Wisc and just camping. That said, what were your thoughts on the route?

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Mark McArthey
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There's definitely a fair amount of paved country roads to get place to place. What I did to get more of a direct gravel to gravel experience is: review the map before-hand and take the opportunity to trim the routes between each waypoint or...

There's definitely a fair amount of paved country roads to get place to place. What I did to get more of a direct gravel to gravel experience is: review the map before-hand and take the opportunity to trim the routes between each waypoint or trail. It was likely less scenic than designed though and it appears like the further west you go, the more common the off pavement gets.

Scenic value of this trip is great. But if you're looking for offroad fun, there's some spots along the way, but I wouldn't call it the main focus of the drive.

That being said, if you don't have time to do the entire route, it would be worth a day or two trip if split into sections like I did. A lot of the areas have kayak inlets and the usual river related parks/activities. Bring some kayaks with you and it could easily turn this into a good weekend trip in my opinion. Just don't go out there expecting to get a crazy amount of offroad time in your vehicle.

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Dan Hamilton
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Has anyone done this route recently? I'd like to drive this sometime this month.

Dan Hamilton
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I haven't done it at all this year.

Ryan Harden
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Anyone have recommendations on places to stay near the Spring Green Area?

Also, where can I best find information about the places we'll be travelling through? Does the DNR have some sort of guide book or otherwise?

Comment was last edited about 3 months ago by Mark McArthey Mark McArthey
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When are you going? We were thinking about going tomorrow (07/14)!

Angie Richardson
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We were planning for closer to the end of the month. Since I work during the week it'd be pretty short notice to go so quickly, but I'm willing to get a small group together!

Mark McArthey
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With the gnarly storms that would have followed us all day today, we decided to not attempt it. Instead we’re headed north instead to checkout the trails near Grand Marais, MN. Let us know when you take on this one and maybe we’ll join you!

Angie Richardson
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Map Files Added.

Ryan Harden
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