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Unread 12-29-2011, 01:14 PM   #1
05WK98TJ
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West Branch/ St. Helen winter wheeling question

Ive never been to the trails in this area and I understand they aren't very challenging, but im looking for a relaxed jeep trip. How would the trails be in the snow and are there any good campgrounds you would recommend?

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Unread 12-29-2011, 04:02 PM   #2
phittie1100
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Not sure about camping options up there this time of year, but there are a lot of two tracks and ORV routes in the area that get a lot more fun with a foot or two of snow on them. There are two big organized events in the area each winter that capitalize on the web of trails and rolling hills - SnoFari and Sno Blind. Steer clear of anything marked as a snowmobile route though - not because it is illegal, but the snow mobile folks pay a lot of money to keep their trails groomed in the winter and it helps cut down on conflicts between user groups. The St Helen Motorsport area is a lot of fun in the snow too.
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Unread 12-29-2011, 04:29 PM   #3
JeepXJMike20
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st helen trails are awesome with snow on the ground it make wheeling alot more fun. they have rock course their i never seen the rock course but they do have some nice trails. i posted a video of a jeep rock crawling in my thread and it is from st helen trails. i am diffently trying to go up there when we get alot of snow to wheel my xj.
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Unread 12-29-2011, 05:00 PM   #4
phittie1100
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If you haven't had a chance to check out the rocks yet, you gotta schedule time to get up there. The video Mike posted only shows the "Bunny Hill", designed for stock or nearly stock vehicles - there are 5 other obstacles there, one is cement drain tiles that is built for WAAAYYY more Jeep than I own, two are doable in mine, and the other two I have not tried, but might make a go of it coming down - pretty sure my DD is not going up the long one at the south end or the one with the big step at the top on the north end.
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Unread 12-29-2011, 05:09 PM   #5
JeepXJMike20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phittie1100 View Post
If you haven't had a chance to check out the rocks yet, you gotta schedule time to get up there. The video Mike posted only shows the "Bunny Hill", designed for stock or nearly stock vehicles - there are 5 other obstacles there, one is cement drain tiles that is built for WAAAYYY more Jeep than I own, two are doable in mine, and the other two I have not tried, but might make a go of it coming down - pretty sure my DD is not going up the long one at the south end or the one with the big step at the top on the north end.
i been up there 3 times i never seen the rock courses. where are the rock course? is their a map to follow? i take 7th street to dow road. i beleive that is the middle of st helen trails.
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Unread 12-30-2011, 10:15 AM   #6
phittie1100
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If you head to the parking lot at the NE corner of the MSA (go into St Helen and turn east at the traffic light - Airport Rd - and follow the road to the railroad tracks to Meridian Rd, right on the Roscommon/Ogemaw county line), there are pretty good (crude but effective) signs leading you SSW to the rocks. If you are OK getting there on your own with a map, it is just N of the Fire Trail, 1/4 mile W of Meridian Rd. If you look on Google Earth and find the MSA you can see 3 sand tracks in the trees running roughly N-S with 6-8 E-W connectors, looks sort of like a ladder.
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Unread 12-30-2011, 12:09 PM   #7
JeepXJMike20
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thanks man i am going to take that road next time i am up there.
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Unread 12-30-2011, 01:32 PM   #8
05WK98TJ
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Thanks for the help guys. Could I just pop a tent somewhere along a clearing in the trail or would dnr get mad
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Unread 12-30-2011, 05:23 PM   #9
JeepXJMike20
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going wheeling tomorrow to st helen trails westbranch area leaving home at 10:00am to get up there by 12:00pm and wheel to about 5:00pm. having one of my buddy going in chevy silverado with his girlfriend and i am taking the xj with my girlfriend. can anyone go wheeling tomorrow? i am trying to get more ppl to go anyone from here want to go wheeling?
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Unread 12-30-2011, 08:58 PM   #10
phittie1100
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 05WK98TJ
Thanks for the help guys. Could I just pop a tent somewhere along a clearing in the trail or would dnr get mad
The DNR has a free rustic camping permit you can download to camp in the State forests
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Unread 12-30-2011, 08:59 PM   #11
phittie1100
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Originally Posted by JeepXJMike20
going wheeling tomorrow to st helen trails westbranch area leaving home at 10:00am to get up there by 12:00pm and wheel to about 5:00pm. having one of my buddy going in chevy silverado with his girlfriend and i am taking the xj with my girlfriend. can anyone go wheeling tomorrow? i am trying to get more ppl to go anyone from here want to go wheeling?
I can't, we have our last family Christmas party tomorrow.
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Unread 12-30-2011, 11:04 PM   #12
JeepXJMike20
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Originally Posted by phittie1100 View Post
I can't, we have our last family Christmas party tomorrow.
its okay maybe next time. sounds like a fun time with the family.
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