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black Four Birds Trail

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18.8 mile 30.2 kilometer point to point


Ascent: 2,848' 868 m
Descent: -3,076' -938 m
High: 1,199' 365 m
Low: 550' 168 m


Avg Grade: 6% (3°)
Max Grade: 34% (19°)


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Trail shared by John Maurizi

A through-hike trail spanning several parks traveling along ridges and lakes.

John Maurizi

Features Fall Colors · Views


The Four Birds Trail (white blazes) is about 19 miles long and is a through-hike or can be done in sections as out-and-back hikes or part of loop hikes with other trails.

Starting from the north, the trail ascends gradually over easy terrain until you reach a cliff ridge. The trail parallels a forest road. After your first descent from the ridge, the trail will cross two other forest roads. The trail can be difficult to find in this section. Watch for blazes.

After crossing a boulder-filled marsh area, you begin to ascend your second ridge. As you near the edge of this ridge, you'll cross another forest road that this trail will parallel. The trail follows very close to the cliff edge. After descending this second ridge, you'll reach a stream crossing and soon after you'll reach Green Pond Road. This section is 3.5 miles and a good place to turn back for an out-and-back.

If not, cross Green Pond Road and re-enter the forest passing a kiosk. The trail ascends gradually for about 1.5 miles until you reach another ridge with an outstanding viewpoint. Turn right and follow a forest road for about 3/4 of a mile. Watch for the white blazes as the trail turns right, off the forest road as it descends the ridge. This section is rocky and difficult to navigate. Some trail blazes are set off the trail further than expected.

After another 3/4 of a mile, you'll reach Timberbrook Pond. The trail turns left and follows the shoreline for about a 1/2 mile until you reach a junction with the Timberbrook Trail (yellow blazes). This section along the pond has a marked alternate route if the water level is too high.

The trail makes a sharp left at the Timberbrook Trail junction. Follow the trail for about 1.5 miles over varied rocky terrain, until you reach the top of "Riley's Rise," a small hill overlooking the north end on Splitrock Reservoir. The trail turns sharply right and steeply descends a rocky trail to an open forest area. After about 3/4 mile from Riley's Rise, you reach a trail junction with the Winnebago Trail (yellow blazes). Continue south along the shore of Splitrock Reservoir passing several very nice viewpoints on the water.

Three miles from Winnebago, the trail climbs up to a ridge for one mile until you exit the forest and cross Split Rock Road. This final section does not have any viewpoints. It still remains very rocky terrain and at times hard to follow. The trail ends at a small parking area further south on Green Pond Road.


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491 Since Nov 19, 2017
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