In NW Wisconsin, it’s a common summertime view: cars driving up to their cabins from the Cities. Summer is a magical time for owning a cabin- swimming, fishing, bonfires, hotdogs, etc. But Winter has its own magic. Here are some benefits, facts, and tips to help you Unwind Up North when the snow is falling.
There is nothing like having the family at the cabin for Thanksgiving (eating a wild turkey), Christmas (with a tree you cut down yourself), New Year’s (fireworks across the lake are breathtaking)… or having a special someone over for Valentine’s Day (I don’t think I need to specify).
Outdoor Activities for Kids
Kids love the snow. Kids get tired playing in the snow. Kids go to bed early after a day in the snow. Parents get to spend a quiet evening by the fireplace when the kids go to bed. Everybody wins! Sledding, snowmen, skating, snowball fights, snow forts, downhill and cross-country skiing—it’s a winter wonderland (especially if you keep the phones indoors).
Outdoor Activities for Adults
Ice fishing, hunting, snowmobiling, snow-shoeing, plus all the things listed for kids (we’re all young at heart, right?). There are also events going on outside of the cabin- Christmas at the Forts (Forts Folle Avoine), chili feeds, open skates, ice fishing contests, holiday specials at local restaurants, church sales, etc. Check out local sites (links below) to see what’s happening.
- Burnett County– https://burnettcountyfun.com/
- Washburn County https://www.washburncounty.org/what-to-do/family-fun
- Polk County http://www.explorewisconsin.com/spotlight/PolkCounty
You have probably heard it several times a day- “We’re too connected to our phones”, “I binge-watched an entire series over the weekend”, “Separate your work from your home life or you’ll go nuts”, etc. Going to the cabin helps you escape from the constant information-dump or beeps and dinging of devices (even if the reason you disconnect is because you don’t have service). Fresh air, a nice view, and some quiet time can help you relax and reboot. Or if you’ve been angry or overwhelmed lately, there’s something cathartic about flinging yourself down a snowy hill on an innertube.
Winterizing Tips When You Go to Your Cabin Year-Round
- Winterize and store your boats (there are numerous businesses that do this in NW Wisconsin).
- When you shut off your heat before you leave, your waterline pipes can freeze- even if you’re only gone a few days (this is an expensive nightmare). Keep your cabin at 55 degrees, if possible, or make sure you empty out your water lines before you head home. If you’re on friendly terms with your neighbor, they can check your cabin to make sure the heat is functioning properly.
- Clean or replace your furnace filter so it runs efficiently.
- You don’t need to shut off all your breakers if you’re visiting often, but you should unplug appliances.
- If you’re keeping the refrigerator on, make sure you are taking out anything that will expire so you don’t have some unexpected surprises next time you’re up.
- Cover your outdoor furniture/grill/etc or store them so they don’t get damaged.
- Take care of your snowmobiles if you have them- make sure their batteries are charged, oil is changed, and any other maintenance is performed so you don’t have any disappointment when you’re ready to hit the trails.