Should hiking be the main focus of your Wisconsin vacation, then you won't want to miss the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Extending some 1,200 miles, this delightful footpath showcases geological effects left over from the last Ice Age. During the Ice Age, glaciers carved out much of the landscape that we see today in parts of the Midwest, though there are hardly a wide number of Midwest attractions that so effectively allow visitors to inspect the creations of this phenomenon. You will be able to enjoy a firsthand look at the effects of continental glaciation when enjoying the Ice Age Trail Wisconsin experience, and when touring the rest of the state, it's interesting to note that the rolling hills, the numerous river valleys, and the abundant lakes are all evidence of past glacial activity.
When looking at a Ice Age Trail Wisconsin Map, you'll notice that it starts on the eastern side near Sturgeon Bay. Dipping southward from there, the Ice Age Trail moves a bit westerly as it approaches the Milwaukee area. In the southeastern part of the state, this extended Wisconsin National Park trail takes a sharp turn towards the west, passing south of Madison before heading north. The western terminus for the trail can be found at Interstate State Park, which rests on the St. Croix River. If you can't pick the trail up at one of the ends, then you can always access it via a number of trailheads that are found along its course. Parking areas are offered at the different trailheads if you are driving. Should you be hanging out in one of the state's larger metropolitan areas, the closest Ice Age National Scenic Trail trailheads can often be reached via public transportation as well.
The Ice Age Wisconsin National Park trail is actually administered by a few different agencies, with the National Park Service assuming most of the responsibility. Aiding in the administration are a number of public and private agencies, who donate resources to help maintain the path. Often times, the Ice Age National Scenic Trail overlaps other popular hiking trails, and it also passes through numerous municipal parks, so you can enjoy a number of different experiences while walking along it. You'll pass over hilltops, wander among forested regions, and be able to take in the natural beauty of the state when you add the Ice Age Trail to your Wisconsin vacation itinerary, and the changing seasons transform the surrounding environments during the course of the year. The trail is open year round, though some parts are prone to closings depending on the various Wisconsin hunting seasons. Wearing bright colors while enjoying the Ice Age Trail Wisconsin experience is recommended when passing through any hunting areas.
Wisconsin Lake Michigan vacations are extremely popular, as there's a full
range of things to do when enjoying time near this
large body of water. Wisconsin's entire eastern border provides access to Lake
Michigan, and cities like Sheboygan
and Milwaukee rest on its
shores. Boating on the Lake Michigan Wisconsin side is just one option when
it comes to the recreational possibilities, and the summer months see an increased
amount of boaters who take to the water in a number of different kinds of crafts.
You can take a private boat out on Lake Michigan, or you can hop on a ferry,
book a charter excursion, or enjoy a sightseeing cruise. Kayaking
on the Lake Michigan Wisconsin side is also becoming quite popular.
While enjoying Wisconsin Lake Michigan vacations, you can take in the views
from a golf course, from a state park beach, or from the grounds of a sensational
music festival, and that's just the beginning when it comes to enjoying yourself
along the state's eastern coast. Door
County offers some of the best beaches on Lake Michigan Wisconsin, and if
you have time to visit just one of them, you should head for the sandy stretch
at Whitefish Dunes State Park. Closer to Milwaukee, more great beaches on Lake
Michigan Wisconsin await you. Bradford Beach is one of the more popular Milwaukee
area beaches, and it boasts concession stands, a bathhouse, and volleyball courts.
Surfers can take to some of the beaches on Lake Michigan Wisconsin when the
waves are up, and while surfing here isn't exactly akin to hitting the waves
in places like Maui or
Ventura in California, it can be
pretty good at times. Building sandcastles, flying a kite, sunbathing, and swimming
are just some of the other things that you can do at the beach while enjoying
Wisconsin Lake Michigan vacations.
As one might imagine, fishing
on the Lake Michigan Wisconsin side is an extremely popular vacation activity,
and there are plenty of charter companies up and down the coast that can get
you out on the water. Steelhead, lake trout, and Chinook salmon are just some
of the fish species that you can catch when fishing on Wisconsin's portion of
Lake Michigan. If fishing isn't exactly your thing, sightseeing cruises and
dinner cruises are fun ways to get out on the Lake Michigan waters during your
Wisconsin vacation. In addition to being able to claim parts of Lake Michigan
and Lake Superior, Wisconsin also boasts thousands of inland lakes,
so you will have plenty of options available when it comes to getting out on
the water in almost every part of the state.
While driving in or landing at one of the various Wisconsin airports is the most popular way of getting to the Badger State, visitors can also arrive by way of car ferry. Since 2004, the Lake Express car ferry system has been transporting people across Lake Michigan, and it's a wonderful trip to experience if you have the opportunity. You can also hop on the SS Badger to get from Michigan to Wisconsin. The Lake Express travels between Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Muskegon, Michigan, while the SS Badger travels between Manitowoc, Wisconsin and Ludington, Michigan. The SS Badger executes its crossing of Lake Michigan in about 4 hours, and if you're looking for a more speedy transit, the Lake Express covers its distance in just 2.5 hours.
Wisconsin Lake Michigan vacations can be as busy or as relaxing as you want them to be, and they offer something for everyone. Having Lake Michigan close by while enjoying the eastern Wisconsin coast helps to make for a very promising setting. While enjoying the Summerfest music festival in Milwaukee, for instance, you can enjoy lakefront views while listening to the music and savoring the local culinary offerings. Should you be golfing at the stunning Straits course at Whistling Straits, the lake views will prove inspirational even if your round is going south. Plan your Wisconsin Lake Michigan vacation today, and see for yourself just how much there is to see and do in and around the state's eastern coast.
When hiking along certain Ice Age Trail Wisconsin stretches, you will have to pay a fee. Fees are also common for those who wish do some camping as well. You might also need a camping permit if you want to set your tent up along the way, so it's important to get the lowdown on all of that before you claim a spot in the wilderness. It's also a good idea to arm yourself with a good map when hiking along the Ice Age National Scenic Trail, even if you are just planning a short day hike. The distances between some of the access points, or trailheads, can be relatively far apart. If you're not planning on camping overnight, you might get yourself into a bit of a jam if you don't have your exit strategy planned in advance. Be sure to consider the terrain at hand as well when hiking along this Wisconsin National Park trail, as some stretches are more strenuous than others.
Regardless of whether your Ice Age Trail Wisconsin experience lasts just a few hours or extends over the course of a few weeks, a fun time awaits you. Should you visit the trail in the winter, you might replace hiking with snowshoeing or cross-country skiing, while stargazing at night is popular at any time of year. Plenty of lakes and streams can be accessed while hiking along the trail, so you might look to do some fishing during your excursion, and the hard surface stretches are ideal for biking, snowmobiling, and horse riding. Don't forget to bring your binoculars if you enjoy birding, as it's just one more thing to enjoy when enjoying your time on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail!