Wisconsin’s Most Iconic Winter Experiences

Kortnee Hass

January 27, 2021

Winter in Wisconsin can be a magical time! The outside world seems to sparkle, the cold air makes your cheeks rosy, and cozy sweater season is always a plus. But for those who feel stuck inside, check out this list of winter activities to experience in Wisconsin to make the most of the cold. 


Wisconsin has 25,000 miles of snowmobiling trails just waiting to be explored. Snowmobiling is exhilarating and a fantastic way to get out and see the beautiful snow covered trees. Snowmobile trails often run through the quaint small towns and amazing landscapes. There is no better way to see winter in Wisconsin than by snowmobile.

(Picture credit: @fort_fremont via Instagram)

Winter Hiking and Snowshoeing

If you’re looking to explore the winter woods at a more relaxed pace, winter hiking is for you! Wisconsin is home to thousands of hiking trails that are gorgeous in the winter. The latest Cabin Podcast has already scoped out the best winter hiking spots in Wisconsin and you can check it out here. But if the snow gets deep and it’s hard to drudge through the snow, it’s time to put on your snowshoes. Many Wisconsin parks allow you to rent your snowshoes right on site! Snowshoeing is a great activity for all ages and is very affordable too.

Outdoor Bonfires 

Sitting around a fire isn’t just for summer nights! In fact there’s nothing quite like a bonfire when there is snow on the ground. So get some wood, blankets and friends (…maybe some s’mores supplies too!) and make a fire. Check your local Wisconsin park to see if you can host your bonfire there!

Ice Skating 

Minnesota might be the land of 10,000, but Wisconsin has over 15,000 lakes, many of which are perfect for ice skating. Make sure that the ice is thick enough, lace up your skates and have a blast! You can also find an ice skating rink near you. Many towns create their own rinks outside and many offer indoor options to keep you a little warmer.   

(Photo Credit: @theedgeh2o via Instagram)

Ice Fishing

Fishing is a year-round sport here in Wisconsin! If you don’t mind bracing the cold a little bit, ice fishing is for you. Sometimes people get fancy and buy ice fishing shelters and heaters, but truly all you need is a pole and an auger. If you really feel up for the task, check out some Wisconsin ice fishing competitions here

(Photo Credit: @shopdiscoverwisconsin via Instagram)

What’s your favorite way to embrace the chilly Wisconsin winter? Let us know in the comments! 

Anna Aversa is a junior journalism student at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Aversa is currently the social media intern at Discover Mediaworks, and mainly works on Discover Wisconsin. In her free time, she enjoys hiking and baking.

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