Who We Are
The Sawyer County Snowmobile & ATV Alliance is a nonprofit corporation made up of 10 snowmobile and ATV clubs in Sawyer County. Sawyer County, located in Wisconsin’s Northwoods, is a beautiful recreation area for both summer and winter sports. According to the readers of Snow Goer magazine, Wisconsin’s Northwoods is the best overall place in North America for Snowmobile trail riding and family snowmobiling. In addition to winning the Best Trail Area and Best Area Catering To Families categories, the Northwoods tied for second with the Yellowstone area in voting for Best Overall Snowmobiling Area!
The purpose of the Alliance is to help create and maintain the best off-road ATV/UTV and snowmobile trails in the world. There are over 600 miles of uncongested, well-groomed, well-marked, trails that twist and turn past glacial lakes and rivers. Our trail system also includes miles of routes on gravel and paved roads that connect the trails. Northern Wisconsin also has an incredibly supportive infrastructure for off-road traffic. You can ride for days encountering little traffic, but never be far from restaurants, resorts, fuel, repairs & lodging.
Our unrivaled trail system and infrastructure is only possible because of the dedication of hundreds of ATV and snowmobile club volunteer members. Club members work together to renovate, clearing and mark the trails in order to keep them in great riding condition.
The Alliance participates in the Association of Wisconsin Snowmobile Clubs (AWSC) and the Wisconsin ATV Association (WATVA) for the betterment of both sports throughout the state.
President: Dan Schauder, firstname.lastname@example.org
Vice President: Doug Mrotek, email@example.com
Treasurer: Lori DeJoode, firstname.lastname@example.org
Secretary: Cathy LaReau, email@example.com
Funding and How it Works
The Wisconsin DNR controls the money for developing and maintaining trails. The money comes from ATV/UTV registrations, out-of-state trail passes, and a small percentage of the State gas tax. There is no other source of money.
Government agencies located in Sawyer County either contract directly with the Alliance, or with Sawyer County Forestry Department who then contracts with the Alliance. Contracted areas include all of Sawyer County, the part of the Chequamegon National Forest and the Tuscobia State Trail located in Sawyer County, trails located on tribal lands of the Lac Courte Oreilles, and the Flambeau State Forest. Contracts generally include brushing, signing, grooming, grading and general maintenance of trails.
All money received by the Alliance must be “earned.” Volunteers submit work reports after the work is done and the Alliance is then reimbursed. Volunteers put in countless hours grooming snow trails, brushing and grading trails, and making repairs from storm damage such as tree blow-downs, wash-outs, and ice damage. The money is used to purchase and maintain equipment such as tractors, brushers, snow drags, and trailers used in maintaining the trails. Volunteers are truly “volunteers;’ they are not paid for their time.
Help is Needed!
Unfortunately, the funding has not kept pace with the rising costs of necessary equipment, repairs, materials and supplies to maintain the trail system. Over the years the costs have increased substantially, while the reimbursements have stayed flat leaving the Alliance with serious budget issues. For example, a new snow grooming machine costs about $260,000 now compared to $80,000 a few years ago. In an effort to help defray some of these expenses, a new fundraising group called “Friends of the Alliance” was formed in 2019. In 2021, Friends of the Alliance raised over $20,000.
If you ride and enjoy our trails, please consider helping out by making a donation to the Alliance. Make your check payable to “Sawyer County Alliance” and mail it to P.O. Box 163, Hayward, WI 54843.