Wisconsin July 25, 2016
Take These 10 Mini Hikes Along Wisconsin’s Ice Age Trail For An Unforgettable Experience
There are only 11 national scenic trails in the United States, and one is right here in Wisconsin. The Ice Age Trail is a gorgeous trail that not many people outside of Wisconsin know about, and, unfortunately, not everyone in Wisconsin knows about, either. That’s kind of crazy, because the trail is a whopping 1,000 miles long, making it pretty hard to miss. All 1,000 miles are contained within the state. But unless you’re an intense hiker, you probably aren’t going to hit 1,000 miles, especially not at once. So here are 10 mini hikes you can take along the trail.
1. Merrimac Segment
Lightly rolling terrain and meadows await you on this segment of the trail. There are even sections with sand dunes. Go off-course on some boardwalks and even down into some mowed prairie.
2. Straight Lake Segment
This part of the trail will take you through Straight Lake State Park. It's a truly pristine natural area. Walk along the north shore for stunning lake views.
3. Sturgeon Bay Segment
The eastern terminus of the Ice Age Trail is right in Potawatomi State Park. You'll definitely want to hike the 3 mile section that hugs Sturgeon Bay. This part of the trail also coincides with some of the biking trails.
4. Scuppernong Segment
This portion of the trail will have you hiking through kettles in Kettle Moraine. A kettle is a pothole filled with water. These potholes were formed when glaciers retreated during the last Ice Age.
5. Devil's Staircase
In this segment, you'll be winding through 50 foot sandstone bluffs. You'll also get some pretty nice views of the Rock River. It's only 1.8 miles, making it achievable for virtually anyone.
6. Mecan River Segment
This 5.5 mile hike gives you some pretty spectacular views of the Mecan River. You'll pass by some delightful springs. You'll also walk through some pretty hardwood and pine forests.
7. Old Railroad Segment
Once upon a time, a train ran from Koepenick to the Pearson area. This area is full of pretty wetlands, both large and small. You'll also see a shallow glacial lake basin.
8. Chippewa Moraine Segment
This virtually untouched part of Wisconsin will leave you floored, with its kettle lakes and glacial features. Walk up hills and then into the gorgeous valleys. You'll love all the wildflowers.
9. John Muir Segment
This segment is a small loop around a lake in Montello, making it easy for anyone to do. Walk out onto a pier on Ennis Lake. Wooden foot bridges take you through forested areas.
10. Table Bluff Segment
This incredible segment of the trail is full of rolling hills. It is full of prairies, as well as steep, rocky slopes. There are plenty of overlooks, too, to get great views of the area.
Looking for more great trails? Check out