Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area

Quick Facts

Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area


(715) 476-7846

Map Directions

Things To Do


Slip your boat into the water, take it out far enough to lose sight of the landing and look around, you're treated to a view of nature - of wild beauty and all its splendor. Tall stands of pine and birch crowd the shoreline, a pair of loons dive in a quiet bay, and high overhead, a bald eagle circles.

This view will remain. The rugged Turtle-Flambeau Flowage will not fall victim to fragmented development along its shores. The scenic beauty and wild character will be preserved for future generations to enjoy.

Map of Turtle Flambeau Scenic Waters Area (WI)

Latitude, Longitude: 46.146600, -90.156684



  • Boating

    There are six access sites in the Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area providing boat and canoe launch facilities on the Turtle-Flambeau Flowage. Lake of the Falls County Park on the north end of the Flowage also has a boat launch.

    Springstead Landing located on the south side of the Flowage is the largest access site and offers the most amenities including a triple wide concrete launch ramp and boarding docks. The paved lot provides parking for 75 vehicles. A toilet building, a hand pump for drinking water, and a public pay telephone are also available.

    Fisherman's Landing is located on the north side of the Flowage and includes a concrete launch ramp, boarding dock, toilet building, and gravel parking for approximately 25 vehicles.

    Sportsman's Landing is located on the west side of the Flowage near the dam and offers a concrete launch ramp, boarding dock, and gravel parking for about 15 vehicles.

    Trude Lake Landing also has a concrete launch ramp with gravel parking for 15 vehicles.

    Murray's Landing on the east end of the Flowage is a shallow water access with a gravel launch area. This site is recommended for smaller boats and canoes only. A toilet building is available here and the grass parking area provides parking for approximately 20 vehicles.

    Sturgeon Bay Landing has a gravel launch area with very limited turnaround space and is therefore recommended for smaller boats only. The gravel parking area will accommodate 3 to 5 vehicles.

  • Bird Watching

    The Flowage, known for its high density of bald eagles, osprey, and common loons is also home to black terns, merlins, trumpeter swans, and over 150 other bird species.

  • Bicycling

    Cyclists are welcome to explore the miles of paved roads.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    The Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area Auto Tour is a self guiding tour illustrating the interactions of humans with the native flora and fauna. This tour will give you a glimpse of the spectacular resources of the area. Management programs that will insure the future of these resources are explained. The tour is 24 miles long and has fifteen stops.

  • Camping

    The Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area offers 66 remote campsites accessible by water only (6 new sites in 2010). The family campsites and two of the group sites do not require registration, a fee, or a camping permit. Six of the group sites are available by reservation only and require a fee.

    Fifty-eight sites scattered throughout the property are designated family campsites. These sites are limited to a single camping party only. A single camping party consists of an individual, a family (parents, dependent children, and not more than two guests), or a group not exceeding six unrelated persons. Seventeen of the family campsites include a picnic table as well as the fire ring and open air pit toilet. These sites are designated with a letter "C" as the prefix to the site number. Eight group sites are available.

  • Fishing

    The Flowage provides the best of north woods fishing experiences. The Flowage supports a diversity of native warm water fish species including walleye, muskellunge, northern pike, smallmouth and largemouth bass, lake sturgeon, and various panfish species.

    The Flowage is best known for its superb walleye fishery. Walleye are by far the most abundant gamefish and provide the majority of sport fish harvest. Natural reproduction and abundance of catchable size walleye are outstanding.

    Black crappie has proven to provide some exceptional panfishing during the early summer months and through the ice. Like all crappie populations they are cyclic and when numbers are up fishing is tremendous.

    Muskies provide outstanding trophy angling. In the past muskies in excess of 50 pounds have been caught. Annual stocking is used to supplement the limited natural reproduction.

    Smallmouth bass provide quality fishing when action is slow for other species. "Smallies" in the Flowage are exceptionally heavy fish for their length.

  • Hiking

    The Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area offers five trails designated for hiking; there are also many miles of old logging roads if you care to explore the back country.

    The Hidden Rivers Nature Trail is a 2 mile interpretive trail located off Fisherman's Landing Road. Big Island Trail, Wilson Hills Trail and Deadhorse Trail are hunter walking trails that are great for hiking any time of year. Little Turtle Trail is also a hunter walking trail and is a favorite of bird watchers - this trail is closed to hiking between December 15 and April 15 if the ground is snow covered because it is part of the MECCA Cross Country Ski Trail system.

  • Historic Sites

    The Turtle-Flambeau Flowage was created in 1926 when Chippewa and Flambeau Improvement Company (CFIC) built a dam on the Flambeau River downstream from its confluence with the Turtle River. The dam flooded sixteen natural lakes and forms an impoundment of approximately 14,000 acres. The Flowage was intended to provide flood protection and to augment river flows for hydro-electric plants operated by downstream electric utilities and paper mills.

  • Hunting

    The diverse topography, vegetative cover and water resources of the Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area offer a wide variety of hunting and trapping opportunities. Deer, bear, ruffed grouse, woodcock, turkey, snowshoe hare, raccoon, coyote, bobcat, red fox, mink, beaver, otter, fisher, muskrat, and a variety of waterfowl call the area home.

    The Deadhorse Ruffed Grouse Management Demonstration Area is intensively managed in cooperation with the Ruffed Grouse Society to enhance habitat for ruffed grouse. The emphasis is to provide a variety of habitat types of various age classes. Managing for ruffed grouse entails maintaining a relatively young, highly productive forest as well as encouraging mast (acorns) and berry crops.

    The Little Turtle Waterfowl Management Area encompasses the Little Turtle Flowage where maintaining breeding and nesting habitat for waterfowl is emphasized. The open grasslands and wetlands help protect nesting waterfowl from predators.

    There are twenty-four miles of designated hunter walking trails at four locations. Trails are mowed approximately once every two years to maintain the grass and clover for wildlife and to provide hunter access.

  • Picnicking

    Ample opportunities for visitors to picnic are available.

  • RVing

    Following the storm of July 27, 2010, staff worked hard to reopen campsites damaged from the storm. Most campsites reopened but a few are still closed. Of these, some are being re-located. Contact Park for further information.

  • Water Sports

    Canoeing and fishing are popular pastimes.

  • Winter Sports

    The Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area offers many miles of hiking trails and old logging roads that are open to cross-country skiing and snowshoeing; these trails are not groomed but do offer opportunities to explore the back country. Hidden Rivers Nature Trail, although not groomed, is a great place to enjoy winter scenery and wildlife on skis or snowshoes.

    The MECCA Cross-Country Ski Club maintains a groomed cross-country trail on the property. This Club trail is open to cross-country skiing, skijoring, and snowshoeing.

    MECCA Trails: The MECCA Cross-Country Ski Club grooms 18 km for skating and classical skiing. Snowshoeing and skijoring are allowed only on untracked (skating) portions of the trail.

    The Little Turtle trailhead is located off Popko Circle East in the Little Turtle Waterfowl Management area. The Cabin trailhead is located south of Mercer on town of Mercer lands off Beachway Drive. The heated log cabin at this trailhead offers a changing room, sitting area, and wood stove. Hot beverages, cookies, and water are available for purchase. Portable toilets are located at both trailheads. A warming shack sits at the midway point along the Little Turtle River.


Open year-round.



The Turtle-Flambeau Scenic Waters Area is located in southern Iron County in far northern Wisconsin. Access from the south is via either U.S. Highway 51 or State Highway 13; access points are off State Highway 182 on the south side of the property or County Highway FF to the north. The property office is located on Highway 51 at the DNR Ranger Station in Mercer.

Phone Numbers


(715) 476-7846