Sports & Outdoors

Baseball

Wauau is home to the Wisconsin Woodchuck's baseball team which plays at Athletic Park during the regular season that runs from early June through Mid August. 

BikingBike Trails

Bicyclists enjoy a wide variety of terrain in the Wausau Area. There are many miles of paved city, county and town roads providing hard-surfaced routes for novice to skilled riders. The Wausau Wheelers, a local biking club, sponsor regularly scheduled rides for both mountain and touring enthusiasts. Nine Mile Recreation Area is open for mountain biking from May 1 through October 15. Both cross-country and snowmobiling trails are marked and mowed during the summer months to provide over 43 km of varying terrain for biking enthusiasts. Silent Sports magazine calls the Nine Mile area "...a wonderful place as a mountain biking destination." Bike trail maps can be found online at Subject: Nine Mile County Forest Recreation Area Bike, Horse, & Ski Trails and Mountain Bay Trail, write or call the Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department, 212 River Drive, Suite 2, Wausau, WI 54403-5476, 715-261-1550.

Bowling

Any time of year, you can enjoy family fun at one of the five full-service bowling centers in the Wausau Area. With a total of more than 100 lanes, many with automatic scoring, you'll be able to roll a few games in temperature controlled comfort. There's fun for every age with special bumper bowling available at many of the centers. Several centers also have attached recreation centers with pool tables and video games as well as full-service lounges for the beverage of your choice.

Camping Facilities

LAKE DUBAY SHORES CAMPGROUND

Location: (privately owned) One mile west of Hwy. 51 on Hwy. 34 between Stevens Point and Wausau.
Contact: 1713 DuBay Drive, Mosinee, WI 54455 (715) 457-2484.
Services: 205 Sites (18 with full hook-ups, 187 with water & electric, 5 primitive) 3 Dumping stations, Showers, Flush Toilets, Children's Playground, Fishing, Swimming, Boat Launch, Nature Trails, Laundry, LP Gas, Groceries, Gift Shop. Canoe, paddleboat, camping trailer (on site) rentals. Open year-round.

For County Parks listed below contact: Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department, 212 River Drive, Suite 2, Wausau, WI 54403-5476 (715) 261-1550

DELLS OF THE EAU CLAIRE PARK (County)

Location: On Hwy. Y about 15 miles east of Wausau.
Services: 27 Sites (16 with electric, 11 primitive), Group sites available with reservations.
Swim Beach, Playground, Picnic Area, Hiking Trails, Fishing, Water. The campground is open May through October. Campground reservation phone number is (715) 261-1566.
Effective May, 2007 the public is prohibited from bringing any firewood into the park. Firewood is available for sale on site.

MARATHON PARK (County)

Location: Stewart Avenue, Wausau.
Services: 35 Sites (most have electric) Dumping Station, Showers, Flush Toilets, Water,Picnic Area, Concession Area, Wading Pool, Hiking Trails. City of Wausau ordinance prohibits campfires at the campground at Marathon Park. Portable grills may be used for cooking food. The campground is open May through October. Campground reservation phone number is (715) 261-1566.

BIG EAU PLEINE PARK (County)

Location: About 18 miles southwest of Wausau. Take Hwy. 153 west of Mosinee to Eau Pleine Park Road and turn south 3.5 miles.
Services: 106 Sites (66 with electric, 40 primitive) Electrical outlets available at campsites, Dumping Station, Swimming Beach, Playground, Picnic Area, Water, Boat Landing, Hiking Trails, Fishing. The campground is open May through October. Campground reservation phone number is (715) 261-1566.
Effective May, 2007 the public is prohibited from bringing any firewood into the park. Firewood is available for sale on site.

A group campsite is available and can accommodate up to 200 people. Reservations must be made in advance through the Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department, 212 River Drive, Suite2 Wausau 54403-5476.

Curling

A 300 year old sport that originated in Scotland found a niche in the Wausau Area more than 70 years ago on area lakes and stream. Today the Wausau Curling Club is located in Marathon County Park, is home to more than 300 local area members and host bonspiels (tournaments) many weekends from early November through late March.

Today curling is an Olympic sport with teams competing in events around the world. But the heart of curling is its social club play. Teams of four take to the ice at the Wausau Curling Club to slide 42 pounds "stones" into a target area called "the house." Points are tallied for the team with the stones closest to the center of the house. There are leagues for Rookies, Men's teams, Women's teams, and Open and Mixed teams. Seniors play three mornings a week during the season. The club also hosts all three local high school teams for weekly practice and league and tournament play. There is something for everyone in this rapidly growing participation sport.

It’s said curling is 80 percent social and interested newcomers and visitors are welcome to watch the weekly games Monday through Friday or during the many bonspiels. Visit the Wausau Curling Club's website for a calendar of events and specific information, or phone 715-842-3614.

Fall Colorama

From mid-September through the middle of October, the Wausau Area comes alive with a blaze of dazzling color. Brilliant hues of orange, red and yellow characterize the Fall season. To get the most of this breathtaking sight, try these areas:

Rib Mountain State Park

The view of the Wisconsin River Valley from the 60-foot observation tower at the top of the mountain rates as a must-see during the Fall Color season. For more information, contact Rib Mountain State Park at 715-842-2522.

Oak IslandOak Island Park

Located on the east side of Wausau right on the Wisconsin River.

Big Eau Pleine Park

(County) A peninsula in the Eau Pleine Reservoir, it encompasses 1450 wooded acres.

Dells of The Eau Claire Park

Listed as a Scientific Area by the state of Wisconsin, Dells of the Eau Claire has many examples of rare plants and unique geology.

Highway 51 Between Wausau and Merrill

If you'd rather drive than walk, take your car and head north toward Merrill. Wooded hills border the road and there are several spectacular vantage points.

Disk Golf

Disk Golf enthusiasts will be happy to learn of the 9 hole course within the City of Wausau.  Located in Memorial Park off of Sturgeon Eddy Road this scenic park will challenge any player due to water obstructions on 4 of the holes.

Fishing

Fishing at sunsetDo you like to fish? What better way to relax and leave your cares behind than to dip your line in the waters of the Wausau Area? Lake Wausau may be one of the great undiscovered fisheries in the state, containing northern pike, walleyes, muskie and pan fish. Public boat landings in a number of locations offer easy access to this large body of water that winds around the southern part of the Wausau city limits. Each winter, a new suburb appears on the lake when ice fishing enthusiasts raise their shanties as soon as the ice will support them. Muskie fishermen have been known to take some real trophies from these waters. In the Town of Rib Mountain, the Rib River contains small-mouthed bass, walleyes, muskie and northern pike. The Wisconsin River is a prime fishing spot for muskie, northern pike, walleye and small-mouthed bass anglers. Several boat landings are located along the river at public parks. Fishing near the dam of Schofield Pond yields walleyes, crappies and other pan fish. The Eau Claire River, feeding the Schofield Pond, boasts great bass fishing. Lake DuBay, just south of Wausau off U.S. Highway 51, is best known for pan fish and northern pike. If you're in search of walleye or pan fish, the Eau Pleine Reservoir ranks high with area fishermen. There are several other small lakes within a twenty-mile radius of the Wausau Area. Mission, Pike and Mayflower are the larger of these lakes holding northern, walleyes and pan fish. Fishing licenses can be purchased from the Department of Natural Resources at 5301 Rib Mountain Drive in the Town of Rib Mountain, Monday-Friday: 7:45 am-4:30 pm, or at most area retail outlets that sell fishing tackle or bait. Anyone over the age of 16 is required to have a valid fishing license in the state of Wisconsin.

Golf

GolfThe Wausau Area offers six public and two private distinctly different courses for every golfing ability. With three eighteen-hole and three nine-hole courses open to the public, there's a diversity of challenging greens for avid duffers. Several courses include driving ranges and most rent riding carts. Green fees vary, but most courses provide student and senior citizen rates.  

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Horseback Riding

If you're interested in single horsepower transportation, you'll find several options available inthe Wausau area.  Equestrians can meander through quiet fields and woods at a leisurely pace on horseback.  If you want to enjoy the old-fashioned fun a a sleigh or hay ride, a number of farms can hitch up teams for your family or group.  Contact the Wausau/Central Wisconsin Convention & Visitor Bureau for more infomration about specific privately owned and operated services available.  Equestrian trail maps for several Marathon County Parks and Froset Units can be found here.

Hunting

 The wood and hills surrounding the Wausau Area abound with wildlife and game birds.  Ideal natural conditions provide some excellent areas that offer public hunting access.  Hunting licenses in the Wausau Area are available at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources office, the County Clerk's office in Marathon County Courhouse and at many retail outlets selling guns and hunting equipment.  Complete Wisconsin hunting regulations may be picked up where licenses are sold. 

Kayaking and Canoeing

World Class Kayak CourseThe same rapids that first provided power to the lumber mills of Wausau's early settlers have now become the site of world-class whitewater kayak and canoe competitions. The unique Wausau course combines a natural riverbed and vertical drop with dam-controlled waterflow. It offers a consistent level of difficulty independent of wet or dry weather. The added bonus of a downtown course with spectator seating makes it a popular choice for white-water enthusiasts. Wausau's whitewater program has been named a Center of Excellence by the United States Canoe and Kayak Team making it a top U.S. Training site. In 2000, the Wausau whitewater course will host the Slalom/Mid America Series Race #1 and the Wausau Freestyle Kayak championship. For more information and the event schedule, please check out the events calendar or the Wausau Kayak & Canoe Corporation web site.

Marathon County ParksRed Leaves

  • BIG EAU PLEINE PARK
  • MISSION LAKE
  • MARATHON PARK
  • DELLS OF THE EAU CLAIRE PARK
  • SYLVAN HILL PARK
  • SUNNY VALE PARK
  • RIVERSIDE AND PICNIC ISLANDS
  • OAK ISLAND AND ISLE OF THE FERNS
  • D.C. EVEREST PARK
  • BLUEGILL BAY PARK
  • SANDY BEACH PARK
  • SHOOTING RANGE PARK

Cross-Country Skiing

Think about rolling uplands smoothed by glaciers, covered by 360,000 acres of timber, with bluffs cut by the Wisconsin River. Add a deep blanket of snow and you have some of the best cross-country skiing in the state. Beginner or advanced skier, you can find a trail to suit your skill level in the Wausau Area. Map boards are posted at each site, showing the trails and their difficulty. Complete maps are also available from the Wausau/Central Wisconsin Convention & Visitors Bureau or at the Nine Mile Chalet.

The only course requiring a pass is at the Nine Mile County Forest Recreation Area, although donation boxes have been posted at each trail to cover grooming and other maintenance costs. Trails are groomed by the Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department in cooperation with the Wausau Nordic Skiers, Inc.

NINE-MILE COUNTY FOREST RECREATION

Difficulty: Beginner to Expert Length: 20 miles (33 km); loops from .5 mile to 9.6 miles Grooming: Frequently groomed 8' wide skating lane and machine set double tracks on all trails. Location: Take County Hwy. "N" 3.5 miles west from US Hwy "51" (just south of Wausau). Turn south on Red Bud Road. 1.25 miles to trailhead area on west side of road. This heavily wooded trail, the best in the Wausau Area, offers a unique blend of forest types and scenic views. The well-groomed trail system has been widened to accommodate skaters and diagonal skiers. Trails have been designed to provide a challenge to skiers of all abilities. There is a trailhead building with indoor facilities and plenty of room for parking. The heated trailhead building provides a changing area, restrooms, a spacious lounging area, hou and cold drinks and ski equipment rentals. Rental services are available only during building hours. (see schedule) Trail fees (for trail grooming and maintenance) are required at Nine Mile County Forest Recreation Area. Season trail passes are available at the trailhead building, Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department, and at Wausau Area retail ski shops. Daily trail passes are available only at the trailhead building. Building hours at Nine-Mile during the ski season are: Mon.: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tue.-Fri.: 9 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sat.: 8 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sun.: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (Night skiing by lighted trails); Open all holidays. For fee schedule at Nine-Mile Forest call the Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department at 261-1550 or Nine-Mile Chalet at 715-693-3001.

BIG EAU PLEINE PARK TRAIL

Difficulty: Beginner to Intermediate Length: Main loop is 7.0 miles (11 km) Location: Take State Hwy. "153" 7.5 miles west of US Hwy "51" (Mosinee Exit). Turn south on Big Eau Pleine Park Road and follow 3.5 miles to park entrance. Continue in park 1 mile to parking area on left. One of the most remote trails in Marathon County, this trail travels through the beautiful wooded land of Big Eau Pleine County Park, a peninsula which juts into the Eau Pleine Reservoir. The trail generally follows the shoreline, and the terrain is rolling and wooded - a lovely area away from the crowd. This trail system is no longer groomed, but the public is welcome to ski on the trails.

SYLVAN HILL PARK

Difficulty: Beginner to Intermediate Length: 1.3 miles (2.1 km) Grooming: weekly machine set single track and a skating lane. Location: On Wausau's northeast side. Take North Sixth Street (Cty. Hwy. "W") to Horseshoe Spring Road and turn right (east) on Sylvan Street to Sylvan Hill Park. Parking is available at Sylvan Hill Park. A local favorite because of its in-town location, the trail adjoins the Sylvan Hill tubing hill area and chalet. A donation is requested to help cover the cost of grooming.

RINGLE TRAIL

Difficulty: Beginner Length: Main loop is 3.4 miles (5.5 km) Location: Take State Hwy. 29 east of Wausau. Turn north on County Hwy. "Q". Turn east on Poplar Lane and follow 1.2 miles to parking area on south side of road. Great for beginners and for those who want to enjoy classical skiing across gently rolling terrain. This trail takes skiers through scenic hardwood forests and is considered by many to be a hidden gem. This trail system is no longer groomed, but the public is welcome to ski on the trails.

Downhill Skiing

If you prefer the fast pace of the slopes, check out some of the great downhill skiing the Wausau Area has to offer.

GRANITE PEAK at Rib Mountain State Park

Location: Four miles southwest off of Highway 51, Exit 188 to Rib Mountain Drive (follow signs) Contact: Department of Natural Resources. 715-842-2522. Services: 30 Sites (primitive) Children's, Playground, Picnic Area, Hiking Trails. Open mid April - late October. Open daily, 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. No reservations. State Park Fees apply Special hourly sticker available at park entrance from mid-May through August

Granite Peak Ski AreaCovering over 860 acres, Rib Mountain State Park boasts a well-maintained network of hiking and nature trails that allows visitors to enjoy many wildflowers and other plants growing throughout the park. On rare occasions, the quiet hiker may even come across deer grazing along the pathways. Campsites, picnic areas, an interpretive center, scenic overlooks, and a 60 foot observation tower provide a spectacular view of the Wausau Area and surrounding countryside. During the summer you may enjoy one of the “Concerts in the Clouds” at the amphitheater and in the winter ski down one of the many runs at Granite Peak Ski Area on the north side of Rib Mountain.

Ski PatrolRib Mountain State Park is fast becoming one of the premiere ski facilities in the Midwest. With the highest vertical in Wisconsin, 624 feet, the Rib Mountain runs range from the easy and meandering to the heart-stopping pitch of the "slalom" course. A total of 13 runs, one over a mile long, means skiers can experience a variety of fun at any ability level. Improved snow-making and grooming equipment produce near perfect ski conditions throughout the season. Professional instructors give lessons for all skill levels. Special events, including the Badger State Winter Games take place here throughout the season. For information call (715) 845-2846 or go to skigranitepeak.com

For snow conditions, call 1-888-948-4748 or 715-355-8788 24 hours a day.

Water Skiing

Wausau is home to the Central Wisconsin Water Ski Show Team the "Water Walkers."  The Walkers start practicing indoors each year around february when the lake is still frozen in preparation for their first show around Memorial Day.   The team performs each Wednesday and Sunday evening during the summer alternating between the Lake Wausau and Lake DuBay locations.   Interested in participating, log in to their web site.

Sledding and Tubing

Looking for more winter action?  Sylvan Hill Winter Recreation Area maybe the excitement you are looking for!  Sylvan Hill is like a water park only building of snow!  Three straight runs 1800 feet high and three curved "lazy river" runs down the hill.  The runs are separated with berms and when you get to the bottom, hitch on to one of the two  tows for a ride back up.  The facility is also equipped with snow making facilities to ensure excellent conditions along with a warming house that has concessions and a roaring wood burning fireplace to warm up your toes.    

Snowmobiling

With over 800 miles of groomed trails winding throughout Marathon County, snowmobiling enthusiasts can find a variety of terrain and scenery unequaled anywhere in the state of Wisconsin. A county coordinator constantly monitors the grooming, snow depths and signage, making sure all trails are well-maintained throughout the season. Many trails interconnect with other systems in the state for hundreds of additional miles to ride. A number of area motels also offer access from their grounds. A free trail map with gas, food and comfort stops marked is available from the Wausau/Central Wisconsin Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Rib Mountain Travel Center and the coordinator's office at 212 River Drive, Suite #2. You can check on snow and trail conditions online or by calling 1-888-948-4748 or locally 355-8788.

Snowshoeing

Another winter sport you may like to try in our area is snowshoeing. With all of the trails through woods and parks, it's the perfect sport for enjoying area wildlife and scenery. Snowshoeing makes an excellent family sport for any level of athletic ability. Many area rental and sport shops have sets of snowshoes for sale or rent at reasonable rates.  Night snow shoeing is offered at Nine Mile County Forest Recreation Area Bike, Horse, & Ski Trails, with lighted trails. 


If you're still looking for things to do, check out these available facilities in the area:

Lakes 30,000 acres
Public Use Lands 50,000 acres
Local Parks
(sprinkled throughout the area)
34
County Parks 23
Whitewater Course 1
Swimming Beaches 8
Boat Landings 6
Swimming Pools 5
Wading Pools 1
Softball/Baseball Fields 21
Private Fitness Clubs 6
Outdoor Tennis Courts 23
Indoor Tennis Courts 4
Golf Courses 8
Auto Race Tracks 1
Movie Theaters
(includes 17 viewing screens)
4
Bowling Centers 6
Outdoor Ice Skating Rinks 11
Indoor Ice Skating Rinks 2
Cross-Country Ski Trails 55 km
Snowmobile Trails 800 mi.
ATV Trails (Summer) 22 mi.
ATV Trails (Winter) 675 mi.
Mountain Bike Trails 43.2 km
Hiking Trails 118.35 mi.
Ski Hills 1
YMCA 2
YWCA 1

Many of these are listed for you in this guide, but should you require more information, please feel free to call Wausau/Central Wisconsin Convention & Visitors Bureau at 1-888-948-4748 or locally 355-8788.

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