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Peshtigo Brook Meadow and Woods

No. 564



Situated on sandy outwash with scattered low sandy ridges, Peshtigo Brook Meadow and Woods feature a series of northern sedge meadows in and around upland eskers and old beach dunes. The meadow is virtually undisturbed and supports the uncommon Le Conte's sparrow. Herb cover is moderate to dense and dominated by lake sedge, tussock sedge and woolly-fruit sedge. Other plants include blue joint grass, Buxbaum's sedge, marsh fern, swamp loosestrife, marsh skullcap, water horsetail, and northern bog goldenrod.

Shrub cover is sparse to moderate with bog birch, alder, white meadowsweet, and slender willow. The sandy upland ridges support patches of large-diameter red oak and white pine up to 34 inches in diameter. Red pine, Hill's oak, paper birch, red maple, and balsam fir are also present. Understory plants include pipsissewa, huckleberry, trailing arbutus, twinflower, partridgeberry, round-leaved shinleaf, American starflower, rosy twisted stalk, and sessile-leaved bellwort. In addition to the Le Conte's sparrow, breeding birds include the golden-winged warbler, Nashville warbler, pine warbler, ovenbird, scarlet tanager, veery, eastern wood pewee, sedge wren, black-billed cuckoo, sandhill crane, and common snipe. Peshtigo Brook Meadow and Woods is owned by the DNR and was designated a State Natural Area in 2008.

Very few State Natural Areas have public facilities, but nearly all are open for various recreational activities as indicated below. Generally, there are no picnic areas, restrooms, or other developments. Parking lots or designated parking areas are noted on individual SNA pages and maps. If a developed trail is present, it will normally be noted on the SNA map and/or under the Maps tab. A compass and topographic map or a GPS unit are useful tools for exploring larger, isolated SNAs.

The good majority of SNAs are isolated and have few or no facilities. Some SNAs have vehicle access lanes or parking lots, but their accessibility may vary depending on weather conditions. Parking lots and lanes are not plowed during winter. Hiking trails may be nonexistent or consist of undeveloped footpaths. A GPS unit or compass and a detailed topographic map are useful tools for exploring larger SNAs.

Entrance fees: Except for Parfrey's Glen, the Cambrian Outlook in the Dells of the Wisconsin River, SNAs within State Parks and some within State Forests, all other DNR-owned SNAs do not have any admission fees. For more information, see Wis. Admin. Code NR 45 [exit DNR]. For non-DNR-owned SNAs, we are unaware of any vehicle or admission fees. However, please contact the landowner for more information.

Allowable activities: DNR-owned land

The activities listed below are generally allowed on all DNR-owned SNA lands. Exceptions to this list of public uses, such as SNAs closed to hunting, are noted above and posted with signs on the property site.

Prohibited activities: all SNAs

Although a handful of sites allow activities like primitive camping (e.g. Lower Chippewa River on sand bars) or horseback riding (e.g. S. Kettle Moraine), the activities listed below are generally prohibited on DNR-owned SNAs.

  • Camping and campfires
  • Collecting of animals (other than legally harvested species), non-edible fungi, rocks, minerals, fossils, archaeological artifacts, soil, downed wood, or any other natural material, alive or dead.
  • Collecting for scientific research requires a permit issued by the DNR
  • Collecting of plants including seeds, roots or other non-edible parts of herbaceous plants such as wildflowers or grasses
  • Drones: Flying-related activities, including the use of drones, hang-gliders and model airplanes, are prohibited. Permission may be issued by the SNA Program for the use of drones for educational or research purposes
  • Geocaching
  • Horseback riding
  • Rock climbing
  • Vehicles, including bicycles, ATVs, aircraft, and snowmobiles except on trails and roadways designated for their use.

For rules governing state-owned SNAs and other state lands, please consult Chapter NR 45 Wis. Admin. Code [exit DNR].


Within Peshtigo Brook Wildlife Area, Oconto County. T30N-R18E, Sections 8, 9. 477 acres.

Driving directions

From the intersection of Highway 32 and Peshtigo Brook Road in Suring, go north on Peshtigo Brook Road for 3.1 miles, then east on Sleeter Road for 0.7 miles, then north on Pipeline Road for 2.9 miles, then northeast on Hawthorn Road for 0.5 miles to a small parking area. Walk northeast on the trail which loops through the site.

The DNR's state natural areas program is comprised of lands owned by the state, private conservation organizations, municipalities, other governmental agencies, educational institutions and private individuals. While the majority of SNAs are open to the public, access may vary according to individual ownership policies. Public use restrictions may apply due to public safety, or to protect endangered or threatened species or unique natural features. Lands may be temporarily closed due to specific management activities.

Users are encouraged to contact the landowner for more specific details. The data shown on these maps have been obtained from various sources, and are of varying age, reliability, and resolution. The data may contain errors or omissions and should not be interpreted as a legal representation of legal ownership boundaries. To create your custom map where you can zoom to a specific location, please use the DNR's Mapping Application.

Property Map [PDF]

Peshtigo Brook Meadow and Woods is owned by: Wisconsin DNR

Management objectives and prescriptions

Peshtigo Brook Wildlife Area