Thursday, August 18, 2022 / by Julie Winter-Paez
Phelps, Wisconsin is a gem that few people know about! For those looking to escape the stresses and hustle and bustle of fast paced city life, Phelps should be your destination. Huge amount of activity up in Phelps. We are about 19 miles north of Eagle River. The north side of the Phelps township is Michigan's Upper Peninsula. You're bordered by Forest County on one side. To the south, the township of Washington, and to the west, the township of Conover. So you are nicely nestled here at the very farthest point of Vilas County, which is awesome. Great place, Phelps is filled with wonderful good fishing lakes, recreational lakes, and trail systems galore. So this town is nestled within 650,000 acres of Nicolet National Forests, as well as Ottawa National Forest. And the headwaters of the mighty Wisconsin River and the Deerskin River begin in Phelps and the other waters flow into Lake Michigan. So you're surrounded by some really big and stunning water. One of the best lakes in Phelps is North Twin Lake, which is 2600 acre lake that also connects to South Twin for about another 700 acres of waterfront. One of the best fishing, even ice fishing lakes in the Northwoods. Phelps does Scarecrow Fest and they have a Maple Syrup Fest. Just a lot of great things up in this community and just a couple of other unique things about Phelps 41 lakes, 37,000 acres to roam, 1395 miles of trails, and 40 snowmobile trails up here in Phelps.
You can go right through the downtown Phelps area and look at those beautiful flowers in the summertime, everything is so gorgeous. A lot of beautiful waterfronts here, again North Twin is a big lake. You've also got beautiful long and big stands up in the Poh-Wah-Gom Passage, which is some of the most expensive real estate in Northern Wisconsin. Those are two fantastic connected lakes with amazing fishing as well, and beautiful recreation, too. So a lot of people don't know that Phelps has its own school. They have an elementary, a middle, and a high school. And they have a fantastic welding program as well up here. So you could be up in Phelps. You also have in the downtown Phelps area. You also have high speed Internet Charter Spectrum, which is one of the few areas in the Northwoods that has Internet. The Waverley Park, where they have a huge amount of outdoor parks and activities as well as down by the waterfront. So there's really a lot of history up here. Early town in northern Wisconsin, I believe in the 1890s it was settled. Early 1800, it was developed, it was Hackley, I believe, initially. But they used to get confused with another town in Wisconsin, so they renamed it Phelps around 1913. So this town has been around for a very, very long time. Very big intertwined with logging and fur trading. And that was sort of the staple and the roots for Phelps, Wisconsin. Going down Co Op Road, which runs along the shorelines of North Twin, just so you can see how rich and lush it is in here in the summertime. Look at no houses, no driveways, all town roads cloud and maintained by the township of Phelps. But look at how beautiful and lush the greenery is up here. It's really a spectacular place to live. And with over 40 mobile trails, over 20,000 miles of trails to hike there's really a really beautiful infrastructure up here in Northern Wisconsin for outdoor recreation.
The Conover-Phelps bike trails have really done a beautiful job in creating an infrastructure that is really friendly to the cyclist. It's winding, they even put in the bridge infrastructure, the whole nine yards. But now as we get up here, we're going to turn on Highway K so you can get a really lovely idea of what a typical town road in Northern Wisconsin, up in Phelps, Wisconsin, really looks like. And you can see the little driveways, the waterfront crinkling through the trees here as we go down the road. More bike and trail infrastructure. Another thing about Phelps that a lot of people don't know is they have one of the least densities as far as people per capita, as most of the townships that we've talked about. They are, I believe, 19 people per acre. They also have about a 19.5 miles commute daily the people in Phelps have, which is actually less than the average in the country, which is about 25 miles. The biggest difference being in Northern Wisconsin, when you're going 19.5 miles to work, you're actually doing it in 20 minutes versus I used to do a commute in Atlanta, Georgia, and 19 miles could take me an hour and a half on any given day. So that's another great thing about Phelps. Highway 17 is the main road north into town, and it's a state highway. The rest of the highways up here are all going to be town roads instead of major state highways.
Phelps is on the very end of Vilas County if you look on the map. So this is the final little piece before you get to the Upper Peninsula and basically the next county over. So a lot of great things, over 41 lakes in the township of Phelps. Tons of miles and miles of trails and camping and all kinds of great stuff. I know one of the things I neglected to mention is Blackjack Forest. You can see Blackjack Wilderness Trail has over 58,000 acres of land, and it's called Blackjack Springs. Great 14 day camping trips, it's a really wild area filled with beautiful trails and hiking and camping if you're an outdoor enthusiast. It's sort of based around what they call Whispering Lake, which is in the middle of it all right up in Phelps. So, legend has it that if you're on one side of the Whispering lake, you can yell across, and you can hear yourself clear as a bell on the other side of the lake, which is something I've never done. But learning a little bit more about Phelps has made me want to go out there and take a look at it. So, really a fantastic place.
So again, Phelps is filled with outdoor recreation. You have tons of waterways, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, snowshoeing trails, ATV, UTV, hiking, and biking. There's camping, trapping, campgrounds, bird watching, wildlife observation, geocaching, as well as the normal ice fishing, summer fishing, fly fishing, canoeing, kayaking, and paddle born. Phelps is really a wonderful gateway to everything the Northwest has to offer. We can help find you the perfect spot in Phelps in Northern Wisconsin. Give us a call we would love to be your personal tour guide and show you what is unique and great about Phelps, Wisconsin.