Beth and Mick Endersbe run the Ideal Market and Rivers Eatery in Cable, specializing in thin-crust artisan pizzas baked in a large stone oven. They and their daughters, Carley and Libbey, also love to be out on the CAMBA bike trails “from the day the frost is out until the snow flies,” according to Mick.
The acronym CAMBA stands for Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association, which has developed a popular off-road mountain-bike trail system of some 300 miles in Bayfield and Sawyer counties. Trails are based in Cable, Delta, Drummond, Hayward, Namakagon and Seeley, through national and county forests and on some private land.
Mick’s family travels to other trail systems in the country, but “there are none better” than CAMBA trails, Mick says. Why? With so many miles of trails, you see few riders, making it feel like a true wilderness ride.
“You realize quickly that CAMBA did not always take the quickest route between points, but rather the one that best represents the area you are traveling through.”
Trailheads are on well-maintained roads, and trails are almost always loops, he says, which means riders can start and finish at the same trailhead. “Finally, there is something for everyone. A family or a group of experienced riders will never be disappointed by driving to a trailhead only to find out it didn’t meet their needs.”
CAMBA trails are open to the public and include ski trails, snowmobile trails and two-track forest roads. You don’t need a membership or a permit (but some trailheads have parking fees). Many trails are open May 1.
“We encourage membership,” says Ron Bergin, executive director of CAMBA, as a way of supporting the nonprofit organization.
Riders of all abilities should find trails matching their skills, from moderate to difficult. Experienced bikers generally like to tackle the narrow single-track trails – twisting and winding paths on which riders may have to maneuver around rocks and roots. These challenging routes can resemble a hiking trail, Ron says.
The association has created 75 miles of single-track trail. CAMBA also hosts the Festival of the Trails, this year running May 25-27, to promote single-track trails and tourism. It’s also a fundraiser. The festival includes self-guided rides, a night ride and instruction for single-track trails.
Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association, CAMBA. 715-798-3599. www.cambatrails.org