Friday, May 25, 2018

Blue Mound State Park, WI          May 25-27

Blue Mound State Park

Wisconsin State Park    

May 25-27




Blue Mound State Park Trail descriptions
Flintrock trail
This self-guided wooded 1.3-mile trail offers interesting interpretive signs explaining the geology of the Blue Mound area. Watch for flintrock boulders scattered along this trail as the trail takes you along the north side of the mound.
Indian Marker Tree trail
A half-mile trail named for an oak tree that was bent over 100 years ago and points towards a natural spring. The trail meanders along the north face of the mound through rock outcroppings. Native Americans and early settlers once used the tree marker to help locate water.
John Minix trail
Named for the previous owner of the park, John Minix, this 1-mile loop offers a gentle meandering jaunt through a dense hardwood forest. It is our easiest trail.

Access to Military Ridge State Trail
The park is next to the 40-mile Military Ridge State Trail, which is open to bicycling, hiking and snowmobiles when there is enough snow.
Pleasure Valley bike trail
A rolling 1-mile trail will take you through a peaceful sugar maple forest and a wide range of plant life in a open prairie. The Pleasure Valley Trail is groomed for both traditional and diagonal skiers in winter.
Weeping Rock hiking trail
Exploring the Indian Marker Tree Trail
A 1-mile extension of the Pleasure Valley Trail. Descend into a mixed forest of oak and maple trees. The trail follows Ryan Creek, a spring-fed creek, down into the glen. A beautiful rock face wall is at the bottom with water from springs seeping out of it.
Ridgeview trail
Along the south border of the park near the Military Ridge State Trail. It offers spectacular views of the surrounding area with easy access from the campground. The trail has moderate to steep hills and is not recommended for the novice skier.
Walnut Hollow trail
A half-mile extension of the Ridgeview Trail, this short trail takes you through a stand of Black Walnut trees before emerging back into the prairie.
Willow Springs trail
A 2-mile trail that winds through a mixed hardwood forest and passes a stand of willow trees and a spring that flows year-round. Years ago, Native Americans and early settlers used this spring as a reliable water source.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Interstate State Park, WI               May 11-13

Interstate State Park

Wisconsin State Park

May 11-13, 2018

dump station located across the road from the Ice Age Center.


Interstate Park Trails descriptions

Eagle Peak trail (0.8-mile linear)

A trail to the highest point in the park overlooking the valley. Hike 120 feet in elevation from the Pines Group Camp up to Eagle Peak. Return from the Peak to the Group Camp or continue to the South Campground past a 1930s CCC traprock quarry. Unsurfaced; stone stairs; uneven and steep terrain. 

Echo Canyon trail (0.7-mile loop)
Connects Summit Rock and Lake O’ the Dalles Trails. After leaving the Summit the trail descends into Echo Canyon, an extinct riverbed carved by glacial meltwaters. The steep, rocky talus slope of the canyon walls cools the surrounding air. The trail intersects Lake O’ the Dalles Trail on the north shore. Unsurfaced; stone stairs; uneven and steep terrain.

Horizon Rock trail (0.5-mile linear)

Route of the National Scenic Ice Age Trail; connects Pothole Trail to the Ice Age Center. The trail ascends from cool, damp creek bed up along a wooded bluff to high, dry Horizon Rock where prairie plants thrive. Named for its panoramic view of the river valley, Horizon Rock has a historic stone shelter from which to enjoy the view. Continue past the shelter to the Ice Age Center. Unsurfaced; stone stairs; uneven terrain; observation point from shelter.

 Ice Age National Scenic Trail

Interstate is home to the western end of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. The Ice Age Trail includes various portions of other forest trails.

Lake O' the Dalles trail (1.0-mile loop)

Wildlife viewing trail. Circles 23-acre Lake O’ the Dalles, connects the Beach, River Bottoms Picnic Area and the Camp Interstate Shelter. Forty yards of the trail follows the park road where a bridge crosses Dalles Creek. Unsurfaced, stone stairs; accessible fishing pier, Beach House.

Meadow Valley trail (0.3-mile linear)

Connects Horizon Rock Trail to the Beach parking area. Steep, switchback Talus Slope Trail descends the bluff below Horizon Rock Shelter to Meadow Valley Trail. Here the trail follows an extinct riverbed of glacial meltwaters now filled with ferns, mosses and wildflowers. Unsurfaced; stone stairs; uneven terrain.

Pothole trail (0.4-mile loop) 

The western terminus of the 1,200-mile National Scenic Ice Age Trail and the most geologically unique trail in the park. A short hike to scenic views of the Dalles of the St. Croix River gorge. Walk atop Old Man of the Dalles rock formation past world famous potholes formed by glacial meltwaters. Gravel surfaced; stone stairs; uneven terrain; observation deck and bench.

Ravine trail (0.5-mile linear)

Connects Skyline Trail to the Beach parking area. The trail descends 260 feet in elevation from the rim of the valley through ferns and old growth forest to a stone shelter built in the 1930s. Unsurfaced; uneven and steep terrain; 40 wooden steps; shelter building.

River Bluff trail (0.7-mile loop)

The trail intersects Lake O’ the Dalles Trail on the north shore. From the lake the trail winds between canyon and pond up to the precipitous edge of the lower gorge. Near its end the trail descends 60 feet in elevation from bluff to River Bottoms Picnic Area. Unsurfaced; stone stairs, uneven and steep terrain.

Silverbrook trail (1.2-mile linear)

Wildlife viewing trail. Hike through a variety of habitats to a remote area of the park rich in local history. The trail follows part of the original road from St. Croix Falls to Osceola. Pass by an abandoned copper mine to the grounds of Silverbrook Mansion and view 18-foot Silverbrook Falls. Unsurfaced; accessible; observation point and bench.

Skyline Nature trail (0.75-mile loop)

The self-guided interpretive trail begins at the Ice Age Center. Interpretive labels describe the changing landscape of plant communities. Unsurfaced; accessible.

Skyline trail (1.6-mile linear)

The longest trail in the park includes Skyline Nature Trail and part of the National Scenic Ice Age Trail; connects the Pines Group Camp to the Ice Age Center and intersects Ravine Trail. The trail climbs past rock-strewn ravines to the forested rim of the valley. Unsurfaced, uneven and steep terrain; wooden benches.

Summit Rock trail (0.5-mile loop)

A trail to the highest point on the bluffs with spectacular views of the river gorge. At the intersection turn right through Canyon Valley to the Summit. View Old Man of the Dalles rock formation located high on the Wisconsin bluffs upriver from the Pothole Trail observation area. At the intersection past the Summit stay left to return to the trail head; to the right is Echo Canyon Trail. Unsurfaced; stone and wooden stairs; uneven and steep terrain; observation point.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Minneopa State Park - Oct 13-15th

Minneopa State Park
Oct 13-15th

B2e - Red Fox Campground
6 electrical sites
4.5 miles of hiking trails


New Ulm Oktoberfest
http://schellsbrewery.com/events/01-oktoberfest/

Tap the Oktoberfest keg, munch on a wurst and try your feet at some German dancing, – all in our beer tent.  Dirndls and lederhosen welcome!
  • Large fest tent set up at the brewery
  • Lederhosen clad servers make their way through the crowds with litre steins of Oktoberfest bier!
  • Live music from the brewery’s own Schell’s Hobo Band and Alpensterne
  • Authentic German food available for purchase
  • Stein holding contest with prizes available for winning times!
Saturday, October 14th at the brewery.
  • 10:30     Gates Open
  • 10:45     Beer Wagon Arrives
  • 11:00     Tapping of the fest keg
  • 11:02     Schell’s Hobo Band
  • 1:30       Alpensterne
  • 4:30      Last Call for Alcohol!
  • 5:00      Close
$10 General admission.  Kids 12 and under are free.  Pre-sale tickets not available.  Entry fee paid at gate.  This year we will be giving a portion of the proceeds from the event to Veteran Suicide Prevention.  

  

Friday, September 29, 2017

Wild River State Park - 9/29-10/1

Wild River State Park 
9/29-10/1

43e
34 electrical sites
35 miles of hiking trails

Our trip from Oct 2016 at the same park

Al's Weekend - cancelled..




Thursday, September 14, 2017

Mille Lac Kathio State Park - Sep 14-17th

Mille Lac Kathio State Park 
Sep 14-17th

30e
25 electrical
35 hiking
Dump in Park




dump station is at park entrance

Trail next to our site.

Once there we looked at all site and found that 32e was a nicer spot. 
 touched way from the road





from your camp fire you are out of view from onlookers.


back of site you can barely see your neighbor's table and fire pit

Friday, September 01, 2017

Fort Ridgely State Park - Sep 1-4


Fort Ridgely State Park
Sep 1-4

29e
15 electrical sites
8 miles of hiking trails
dump station in park


This was our site 29e right next to the bridge
lots of room on this site

Best site was just right next to us.  
31e
60 feet long
room for a tent hidden behind the trees
with a view of the river
you can see our camper through the trees
lot of room around the camp site.




Monday, August 28, 2017

Blue Mound State Park


Blue Mound State Park                 
Aug 28- Sep 1

66e
40 electrical sites
13 miles of hiking trails
dump station in park


A neighbor's farm cats love to come at visit campers in homes for food.

There a number of trails to hike at the park.  One runs along the fenced in Buffalo area.  
With beautiful views 
sometimes you can only see the buffalo from a distance
Other times you can see them from a platform next to the road.  
We sat there watching them for more than a hour.  
Blue Mound State Park has 140 Buffalo with a pure blood line.  We are so lucky to have a state investing in saving and preserving the animal's blood line, breeding animals without defects.  Next year Blue Mound will be offering jeep rides to the buffalo because you might not see them in this vast park.  Not many states are preserving these animals.  It is nice to see two Minnesota State Park with Buffalo and soon one more to add to the mix.  



Friday, August 25, 2017

Upper Sioux State Park - Aug 25-28th

Upper Sioux State Park
Aug 25-28th

19e
14 electrical sites
18 miles of hiking trails
No dump station in park








There is no dump station in the park, but Granite Falls water treatment plant on hwy 212 has a dump station.

The park of frogs and tipi.  
Three Tipies to choose from
roads in side of the campground

Wicked Tree at the entrance of campground










Friday, July 28, 2017

Myre-Big Island State Park

Myre-Big Island State Park
July 28-30

15e
32 Electrical sites
16 miles of Hiking Trails
Dump in White Fox Campground



Site 15e is 120 feet long, but the power is near the front of the site.  If you had  a pop up camper too with your camper, this site would be ideal for a large party.  Lots of space for tents too.  The end of the site has a 30x30 cement slab, prefect for a group to gather on.
 It has a fire pit.

 Water is on the far side of the site.  Not close to hooping it up to your rig, but close to refill your tanks by pails of water.
 Lots of room still in front of the truck.
 You can see the power pole near the tree to the right.