Frequently Asked Questions about the Lincoln Community Forest
What started all of this?
Local citizens first became concerned in 2007 when a representative of the Plum Creek Timber Company proposed to subdivide what is now the Lincoln Community Forest. The town board and citizens attending expressed concern about associated environmental impacts, loss of public access, increased pressure on town services and degradation of the town’s rural character.
Then in 2011, after a heightened attempt to sell the property, town citizens met with the Bayfield Regional Conservancy (BRC), Marengo River Watershed Partnership of the Bad River Watershed Association, and the realtor that had the property on the market to explore alternative ownership and management options.
How was the Lincoln Community Forest purchased, and for how much?
In December 2012, the BRC acquired the 396-acre tract from Plum Creek Timber Company for $673,000. That’s roughly $1,700 an acre. The full purchase price was funded by two grants, one half from the federal US Forest Service Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Grant Program, and the other half from the State of Wisconsin’s Knowles-Nelson Stewardship (Habitat Areas) Grant Program.
What are the objectives of the two grant programs?
The Forest Service grant enables local governments, Indian tribes or qualified nonprofit organizations to acquire private forests to create community forests that provide community benefits such as recreation, income, wildlife habitat, stewardship demonstration sites, and environmental education.
The Knowles Nelson Stewardship (Habitat Areas) Grant Program protects and restores important wildlife habitat in Wisconsin in order to expand opportunities for nature-based recreation activities. Both grants require the property remain whole and not be subdivided.
What facilities and improvements are required by the granting agencies?
The Knowles-Nelson Stewardship (Habitat Areas) Grant Program requires signs at property entrances that state the property is open to the public for hunting, trapping, hiking, cross-country skiing, and fishing.
Is the Lincoln Community Forest a park?
No, it is not a park. It is managed to maximize benefits to fish and wildlife habitat while providing nature-based, low impact recreation opportunities.
Who owns the Lincoln Community Forest?
The Bayfield Regional Conservancy (BRC) applied for the grants and now hold title to the property.
Does BRC pay property taxes?
Yes. The BRC pays all property taxes previously paid by Plum Creek. This property continues to be enrolled in Wisconsin’s Managed Forest Law Program.
Will the Town of Lincoln someday own the property, and if so, when?
It was the BRC’s goal to convey the property to the Town of Lincoln once it was acquired, pending a majority vote of approval by the town citizens. and town Board The process to convey the property has been delayed do to procedural issues within the U.S. Forest Service.
Who should I contact for additional information?
Bayfield Regional Conservancy
Trail Information and Directions
Length: 5 miles
Trail Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
A 400-acre working forest owned and managed by the BRC with help from the Friends of the Lincoln Community Forest. The forest offers a variety of non-motorized recreation opportunities to the public including hiking, wildlife viewing, birding, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, fishing, trapping, and hunting.
Directions: From the community of Sanborn, take County E 3 miles south and west to Four Corners Store Road. Travel south and west on Four Corners Store Rd for 5 miles. At the Town Hall, travel west on Altamont Rd for ½ mile to Marengo River Rd. Travel ¼ mile on Marengo River Rd to the trailhead.
Entrances to the forest can be found at 28430 Marengo River Road, 28350 Marengo River Road, and 27000 Gerber Road.
Lincoln Community Forest Map
Forest Plat Map
The Lincoln Community Forest property was sold to the Bayfield Regional Conservancy by the Plum Creek Land Company.
Geocaching in the Lincoln Community Forest
The Bayfield Regional Conservancy has created a geocaching series to highlight trails and properties they helped protect. The Lincoln Community Forest hosts two of these geocaches.
Geocaching is a real-world, outdoor treasure hunting game using GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location. Geocaching is a great way to find beautiful trails and places you wouldn’t normally hear about. Below are the www.geoaching.com official cache numbers and GPS coordinates to find each cache.
What do you need?
The only necessities are a GPS device or a GPS-enabled mobile phone so that you can navigate to the cache. If you wish to log your finds online, you’ll also need a www.geoaching.com account.
- If you take something from the geocache (or “cache”), leave something of equal or greater value.
- Write about your find in the cache logbook.
- Log your experience at www.geoaching.com. We’d also love if you’d take a photo while caching and post it to our Facebook page. Try to be sneaky so as to not give away the location.
Official geocaching.com numbers
Big Ravine Trail
Frog Bay Tribal National Park
North Pikes Creek Wetlands