Tribal Heritage Crossing of the Wiouwash State Trail

Photographed April 17, 2015
Opened October 12, 2013
Oshkosh, Winnebago County, Wisconsin
44.033489,-88.580486 (where to park to access the trail)
44.032903,-88.581758 (where to access the trail)

The entrance (I used) to the Tribal Heritage Crossing of the Wiouwash State Trail is located adjacent to the parking lot for Two Brothers Family Restaurant, located at 1930 Rath Lane, Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54904.

NOTE: The parking lot adjacent to the restaurant is posted as "for customers only". However, there is plenty of parking on Rath Lane. Be sure to check the Google Map coordinates before heading out.

NOTE: The trial loop is about four miles in length.

The Tribal Heritage Crossing of the Wiouwash State Trail has been one of the highly-anticipated benefits of the new causeway, recently completed as part of the US 41 Project. Runners, walkers, bikers and in-line skaters are now able to cross the lake on the trail, which connects to the Wiouwash State Trail on the north end. It provides access to fishing, as well as interpretative displays for all 11 of Wisconsin's Indian Tribes, plus a Natural History kiosk.
The interpretative displays open a window to a water system with a history that is remarkable. It is the ancestral home to Native Americans who have been here "since time immemorial", and it is an important place for all Indian tribes of Wisconsin.

The earliest written accounts of Lake Butte des Morts describe a vibrant river channel winding through a "vast expanse of wild rice," teeming with fish, furbearing animals and waterfowl. In the mid-1850s, with an influx of new settlers and industry -- including two dams on the twin lower Fox River outlets of Lake Winnebago -- the waterway changed dramatically.

The Causeway reconstruction project was undertaken to address capacity and safety needs on US 41. The result is a new, eight-lane Lake Butte des Morts crossing, created by widening the existing causeway to the west, in addition to the new trail.
The foregoing content and media file prepared by US 41 Project is in the public domain.

The following interpretative displays are listed in the order I encountered them along the trail, but are numbered using the Wisconsin DOT map (at the bottom of this post):

Overlook 12: Lake Butte Des Morts History
(this overlook contains a series of markers; see below)

This media file prepared by US I 41 Project is in the public domain.

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