Waukesha/Milwaukee County Chapter

The Waukesha/Milwaukee County Chapter was established in
1984 and currently has more than 500 members. We are
responsible for maintaining 45.8 miles of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail between Monches (on the border of Washington County) and the Town of Eagle (on the border of Jefferson County). The Chapter regularly sponsors Ice Age Trail workdays and hikes which are listed below.

The Chapter meets the third Thursday of each month (except July and December) at 7:00 pm at the Homestead Hollow Trecker Lodge facility of the Lapham Peak Unit of Kettle Moraine State Forest (driving directions). Occasionally, we will meet at a different location, so be sure to check the Chapter's calendar for location information.  Our agenda always allows the opportunity for discussion of news and concerns beyond scheduled reports, and occasionally we have speakers with informative and entertaining programs at the meetings.

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2014 "In the Mud" Award Winners

Each year the Chapter votes on one or two individuals who have gone above and beyond the "call of duty" when it comes to the volunteer work they did throughout the year. This year, we are pleased to announce that Chris Miller and Jane Wester are the recipients of the prestigious "In the Mud" Award for their commitments to support and protect the Ice Age National Scenic Trail.

"Walk the Wauk" Program

The Chapter's Walk the Wauk program rewards hikers who have walked all Ice Age Trail segments in the Waukesha/Milwaukee County Chapter's territory. Download the program brochure to learn how you can join the ranks of "Walk the Waukers". Once you have completed the program, you will receive Ice Age Trail Alliance and Walk the Wauk patches, as well as an Ice Age National Scenic Trail sticker and certificate. If you or your family would like to be highlighted for your accomplishment of completing the Walk the Wauk program, please contact us.

For additional photos of each segment, click on the links below.     

Monches     Merton     Hartland     Delafield     Lapham Peak Waterville       Scuppernong           Eagle        Stony Ridge

Don't forget to stop at the Southern Kettle Moraine State Forest Headquarters near Eagle. They have a wonderful nature center that features a museum, auditorium, and gift shop.

Ice Age National Scenic Trail Displays

The Hausmann Nature Center, located in the Lapham Peak Unit of the Southern Kettle Moraine State Forest, opened to the public in June, 2012. The nature center is closed at this time, but will be reopening again in June and will remain open through October. Anyone interested in volunteering at the Hausmann Nature Center can contact Louise at 262-646-8583.


Our Chapter was invited by the Friends of Lapham Peak, to have an interpretive display that would educate the nature center visitors about the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Seven miles of the Trail traverses through the park, and there are currently four ColdCache features located there. After many months of research and fundraising, the display is now complete and is located along the west wall on the second floor. It includes a wall map of Wisconsin explaining the glacial lobes and route of the IANST, a cabinet that holds a digital photo frame, atlas, and companion guide, brochure holder with informational material, and various text boxes. Check it out the next time you are visiting Delafield. Here are a few photos.

Be sure to visit our friends at Clear Water Outdoor the next time you're in Delafield. While you're there purchasing your next pair of snowshoes or hiking boots, check out our display.

We are planning on putting more displays up at various locations in Waukesha County. If you would like to donate to our "display" fund, please contact Russ.

Volunteers Needed!

Adopt-a-Trail Program

TRAIL MONITORS - The Waukesha/Milwaukee County Chapter relies very heavily on volunteers to maintain the Ice Age National Scenic Trail, and report any trail issues so they can be addressed quickly. Any signs of vandalism should especially be reported immediately, so we can increase our presence in any vulnerable areas. If you have a problem to report, please contact Pat. You can also fill out a Trail Report, and if you have questions about what to watch for, we have a guide to assist you. To learn how you can get involved, please visit our Adopt-a-Trail Program page.

MOWERS - With close to 25 miles of Trail that needs to be mowed several times during the Spring, Summer, and Fall months, we can always use some extra hands to help with the mowing duties. We supply the equipment, including the trailer, but a vehicle with a hitch is necessary. If you think you may enjoy running a brush mower and have a few hours to spare, please consider this volunteer opportunity. The time commitment depends on the weather, and how much rainfall we experience. Training is provided, and we recommend going out with a partner for safety reasons. Plus, it's a lot more fun with someone to share the work with.

HIKE COORDINATORS AND LEADERS - We are in need of people who are willing to coordinate and lead hikes. We have seen a steady increase in the number of hiking participants recently. That means we could use help with organizing hikes, educating people on plantlife and geological formations along the Trail, and answering questions that may arise. Training will be provided. If you enjoy exploring the Southern Kettle Moraine area and sharing your knowledge of the great outdoors with others, please consider becoming a volunteer hike leader.

GREETERS AT MEETINGS - Greeters are a vital part to making people feel welcome at our Chapter meetings. They are asked to arrive about 30 minutes before the meeting to hand out nametags, ask people to sign in, and answer any questions newcomers may have. This has been very successful and we are always looking for new faces at the door.

Please contact us if you can help with any of the opportunities listed above. Volunteers should always track their hours for quarterly reporting. Click here for the hour logging document.

GREETERS AT HAUSMANN NATURE CENTER - Volunteers are needed every Saturday and Sunday from June - October to greet visitors, answer questions about exhibits, operate the gift shop area, and assist children in the Kids' Corner. The hours of operation will be 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm. Two people will be on duty at all times, and self-scheduling can be done via a Google spreadsheet. This is a great opportunity to meet Lapham Peak visitors, learn new skills, and share the wonderful features of this beautiful building and surrounding scenic views. Orientation is provided, with new sessions beginning in May. If this is something that interests you, please contact Louise via email, or call 262-646-8583.

Upcoming Events

Chapter Meeting

Thursday, April 17th, 7:00 pm - Please join us at the Homestead Hollow Trecker Lodge located in the Southern Kettle Moraine State Forest - Lapham Peak Unit in Delafield.

We will be welcoming Kristin Collins of Wisconsin Lyme Network who will be heading up a presentation on Lyme Disease. Lyme disease is a spirochetal infection caused by Borrelia burgdorferi. It is caused by a type of bacterium called a spirochete. An infected tick can transmit the spirochetes to the humans and animals it bites. There is some debate to whether other bugs can transmit it, or if it is sexually transmitted. It is however transmitted in utero. It is a multi systemic inflammatory infection. If left untreated it will travel from your skin, through the bloodstream, joints, organs, and will establish itself in various body tissues, and can cause a number of symptoms incuding neuropsychiatric manifestations. (reference: Wisconsin Lyme Network).

The meeting will wrap up with snacks and beverages, allowing time to socialize with other outdoor enthusiasts. Please bring something to share with the group. If you are interested in being a greeter for this, or any other meeting, contact Kris. Check out our Chapter events calendar for more information.

Hikes

Click here for a "Hike Schedule" flyer you can hang on your refrigerator.

 Hiking boots

Saturday, April 19th, 9:30 am - Please join us at the Emma Carlin Trail parking lot. From there, we will hike east through open country with wetlands and prairies, then through woods that go past the short trail to the Kettle Moraine State Forest Headquarters. We will continue to Cty N for a total distance of 4 1/2 miles. A return shuttle will be provided. There is more information on our Chapter events calendar, so be sure to check it out!

Sunday, May 4th, 9:30 am - Monches is one of our most popular segments of the Ice Age Trail that traverses through Waukesha County. Meet at the parking area on the border of Washington and Waukesha Counties where Cty E and Cty Q intersect. You will have to park on the shoulder, so be sure to watch the signs for parking restrictions. The hike will be approximately four miles in length and will conclude at E. Kilbourne Road where a return shuttle will be provided. Additional information is available on our Chapter events calendar, so be sure to check it out!

Sunday, May 18th, 9:30 am - Meet at the Village of Hartland  parking lot off Hwy K and the Bark River on the north side of Hartland. We will follow the Ice Age Trail south along the Bark River through Hartland and several parks, then go around the Hartland Marsh loop off Cottonwood Ave. Hiking options will be available. A return shuttle will be provided. Additional information is available on our Chapter events calendar, so be sure to check it out!

Saturday, June 7th, 9:30 am - We will be sponsoring two hikes that will start from the DNR parking lot just north of Monches on the Washington/Waukesha county border. This year, we will be partnering with the Washington/Ozaukee County Chapter for our largest event of the year. National Trails Day is a great opportunity to get the family out exploring one of Wisconsin's many treasures, the Ice Age Trail. Dogs are welcome, too, but must be on a leash and under the owner's control at all times whenever on the IAT. A return shuttle will be provided. Additional information is available on our Chapter events calendar, so be sure to check it out! If you would like to join the planning committee, please contact Becky.

If you are out on the Trail during the fall and winter months, please use caution when you are in areas where hunting is allowed. Be sure to wear bright colors, and if you take your dog with you, he must be leashed and under the owner's control at all times. It is recommended that a bright colored scarf or other garment be placed on the dog as well. Leashes can not exceed 8 feet in length, or 6 feet on Waukesha County property year-round. Click here for leash regulations. Here are more guidelines from the Ice Age Trail Alliance to follow during hunting season.

Workdays

 Treadwork

Saturday, May 3rd, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm - We will be sprucing up the Scuppernong segment near Eagle. This is a beautiful area in Wisconsin, but over time, water has started to erode part of the Trail and the corridor now needs clearing as well. The terrain is fairly easy to walk on, and this would be a nice project for youth to work on. All training and tools are provided. We recommend that you check out our Chapter events calendar for more information.

Saturday, May 31st, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm - We will be returning to the Scuppernong segment to continue to work on clearing the corridor and addressing erosion issues on the tread. All tools and training will be provided, but we do have additional information available on our Chapter events calendar, so be sure to check it out! This is a great project for beginners who are considering getting involved with trail maintenance.

Community Outreach

Friday, April 18th, 10:00 am - 1:00 pm - The Betty Brinn Children’s Museum welcomes back their award-winning educational traveling exhibit, Smokey Bear and Woodsy Owl: Home Sweet Home, through May 4th. Developed in partnership with the US Forest Service, the exhibit encourages families to spend time together outdoors and inspires children to discover and care for the natural resources that sustain our world – our home sweet home. Along with other vendors, we will have a display and volunteers available for visitors to ask questions and pick up informational materials. 

Saturday, April 26th, 8:30 am - 11:30 am - Join the School District of Waukesha, Waukesha Education Foundation, and the City of Waukesha as they host their 4th Annual 5K run/3K walk and 1 Mile Youth Run at Waukesha North High School. BACK THIS YEAR...Zumba for a cause! Our Chapter will have a booth with informational materials and an opportunity to sign up for volunteer opportunities. Stop over and say "Hi" to us. Click here for a flyer and visit our events calendar for more info.

Volunteer Coordinators

  • Chapter Communication Coordinator - Kris
  • Volunteer Coordinator - Yvonne
  • Public Outreach Coordinator - Jane
  • Treasurer & Hike Coordinator - Russ
  • Hike Coordinator - Becky
  • Trail Coordinator & Thru-Hiker Liaison - Pat (262-490-3515)
  • Secretary - Kevin
  • Membership Coordinator - Judy

Other places you might enjoy...

NuGenesis Farm, Delafield                                                                       Retzer Nature Center, Waukesha                                                                                              Urban Ecology Center, Milwaukee                                                          
Schlitz Audubon Nature Center
, Milwaukee                                              
Wehr Nature Center
, Franklin

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