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Langlade County News

40th Anniversary of Ice Age Trail To Be Celebrated Here In The County of Trails on Saturday

October 1, 2014

This is a very big weekend for Ice Age Trail enthusiasts in Langlade County.

On Saturday morning, the final 2014 hike on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail in Langlade County will take place over the Kettlebowl segment northeast of Polar.

And that evening, supporters will gather again for the 40th anniversary celebration dinner at Swartzendruber’s Supper Club.

The hike will serve as a local annual observance of National Trails Day held earlier this summer in other parts of the country. The special day is organized each year by tail groups to observe the Oct. 2, 1968 signing of the National Trails Act by President Lyndon B. Johnson.

Interested persons and groups should meet at 9 a.m. in front of the Langlade County Forestry Office at the fairgrounds. Chapter membership or fees are not required as the outing is open to the public.

Hikers are encouraged to wear suitable clothing and bring a lunch for the early fall stroll. Transportation to the trailhead northeast of Antigo will be by carpooling from the fairgrounds.

The five-mile Kettlebowl segment includes scenic high ridges and large kettles formed by ice chunks lodged in the landscape by the retreating continental glacier over 10,000 years ago. The hike will also include a stop at the historic Norem Sheep Ranch which once flourished in the Polar area.

The hike will be the final opportunity to earn the patch for persons who participated in at least one of the other chapter outings held in 2013 or this year.

The anniversary dinner will start with a cash bar at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m.

Guest speaker will be M. J. Eberhart, alias the Nimblewill Nomad, with a presentation about his experiences of hiking all 11 National Scenic Trails, including Wisconsin’s Ice Age Trail and two treks on the Lewis and Clark National Historical Trail in 2004 and 2006.

In August, Eberhart completed a 2,200 mile trek of the Oregon National Historic Trail from Independence, Mo. to Oregon City, Ore. A second edition of his book, Ten Million Steps, is available from online sources. His website, www.nimblewillnomad.com includes a wealth of information about his treks.

A program will include awarding of 40th Anniversary Hiker patches to persons making two of the five chapter outings held over the past two years.

Additional information on the Ice Age Trail and the local chapter can be obtained by mail inquiry to 622 First Ave. or by calling 623-2645. Maps and other trail information are also available from the Langlade County University of Wisconsin-Extension Office, 837 Clermont Street.

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