BALSAM LAKE, WI -- The Stower Seven Lakes State Trail in Polk County will be opening for its yearly equestrian season beginning October 1st.
Built on a former railroad corridor, this 14-mile trail begins in Amery and ends about one mile from Dresser at 90th avenue. The trail right-of-way was acquired from Wisconsin Central Limited in 2003 by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) under the Stewardship Program. The trail was named in recognition of the longtime public service and leadership demonstrated by Harvey and Marilyn Stower of Amery.
Historically, the Stower Seven Lakes State Trail was open to bicyclists, walkers, joggers, and cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter. It was only recently that the Stower was opened for equestrians and snowmobiles.
On July 21st, 2020, the Polk County Board of Supervisors chose to add snowmobiling and seasonal horseback riding to the trail. This equestrian season is designated from October 1st to the Friday before the traditional gun deer season (November 18th, 2022.). For convenience, Polk County has built a new parking lot in Wanderoos centrally located north of the Stower Seven Lakes State Trail. The lot has ample space for trailers and has lighting and other amenities. Other trails within Polk County for horseback riding are outlined in the Trade River Equestrian Trail System, and includes the Barrens Loop, the Harris Loop, Somers Lake, the Lagoo Loop, the River Loop, the Wolf Creek Trail, the Cattail State Trail, and the convenient Trade River Equestrian Campground located in Polk County, Wisconsin. The campground and trails are open May 1st through November 15th.
The Stower Seven Lakes State Trail is open 6am to 11pm year-round.