The project began six years ago. Susan Foote-Martin, conservation biologist with the DNR, says the mapped auto trail links together various nature locations, and now reaches into every area of Wisconsin.
"Essentially the project links the very best places to view birds and wildlife in general throughout the state."
Foote-Martin says citizens nominated their favorite National forest sites, State Natural Areas, county, city and State Parks, private museums, and nature centers for inclusion in the project.
"You can see all kinds of things from the best geology to the best birds to the best big game viewing and see all the beautiful Great Lakes beaches and all the smaller lakes in-between and the rivers. It's quite comprehensive."
Foote-Martin adds, full-color viewing guides with maps and descriptions of every site will lead you to old growth timber, great gray owls, bald eagles, timber wolves, shorebirds, deer, loons, cranes and a variety of animal life and nature.
Foot-Martin says nominations from the public were narrowed down by following a site assessment protocol to evaluate each location.
"And we ranked them according to our protocol and those that were the most user-friendly and the easiest to find and the richest in wildlife viewing opportunities were the ones that actually ended up becoming part of the trail system."
The Great Wisconsin Birding and Nature Trail is based on major highways, and then allows nature travelers to veer off onto county and town roads.
To get your complimentary guide, call your local DNR office, Wisconsin welcome center, or visit TravelWisconsin.com