Best Hiking Trails In Wisconsin


Best Hiking Trails In Wisconsin

Wisconsin is one of the many states in the United States that features a blessed natural beauty and pristine ecosystem. Since it is a coastline state, there is almost everything you might want and different ecosystems. With more than 2730-miles of hiking trails, you may ask, what are the best hiking trails in Wisconsin?

Wisconsin has many excellent trails for the summer. However, many other trails come to life when you are looking at them in the winter months.

  • Bayview Trail – Madeline Island
  • Timm’s Hill Trail
  • Bearskin State Trail – Minocqua
  • Devil’s Lake Loop – Baraboo
  • Ice Age Trail – Devil’s Lake
  • Quincy Bluff and Wetlands State Natural Area – Wisconsin Dells
  • North Country National Scenic Trail – Copper Falls

While most of you might have heard about the natural beauty of Wisconsin, you might not understand which of the trails are the most comfortable. Fortunately, we have selected 7 of the top trails that will be comfortable for almost any expert hiker. If you love hiking, these trails will ensure that you have some fun throughout the year.

Best Hiking Trails In Wisconsin

Quality is one of the first things we look for in a trail. If you are sure that you will experience something new or challenging, it makes the trail more worthwhile. The following trails are what you want to consider when you have the opportunity to visit Wisconsin. Hiking in Wisconsin can be fun when you know where to go:

1.      Bayview Trail – Madeline Island

The Bayview Trail is one of the longer loop trails located in the state of Wisconsin. It is around 2.9-miles in total length and will gain an elevation of around 32-meters. While this might not be much, there are still a few challenging sectors to look out for before you start your trail journey.

One of the main highlights of the trail is the view and the Lake that you can see from almost every part of the trail. The trail takes you close to the water and it is for all hiking skill levels. This also means that children can enjoy the trail if they feel the need to do so.

As you might notice, the trail is broken into different trails that one can take. Unfortunately, the Wood trail will take you through the forest and this can be frustrating. It has a lot of mud and can be tiresome for beginners.

Check Out Our Hiking Gear Guide for Beginners before you hit the trails in Wisconsin! 

2.      Timm’s Hill Trail

The Timm’s Hill Trail is one of the most versatile trails in Wisconsin. Instead of being one trail, the system consists of a variety of different loops. Some of these trails might cross one another, but there are different difficulty levels located. It is also perfect for mountain biking and it can be used with horses during the summer months.

The main trail is perfect for looking over the scenic area and the luscious green ecosystem. It boasts high points that will need to be climbed, but once you have reached the top, it can be seen as an accomplishment.

Since the trail is for beginners, it means there are no real challenging aspects to consider. However, you will need to experience the trail during the spring and summer months. It can be very dangerous due to snow in the winter.

3.      Bearskin State Trail – Minocqua

Built-in 1887, the Bearskin State Trail is one of the older trails on the list. It was first built by loggers from New Lisbon to Minocqua to haul timber from the different forests. However, the trail has become popular among hikers and cyclists over the last century for the length and challenge that it offers.

With an overall distance of 26-miles, it one of the longer trails as well. However, it will traverse scarcely populated areas and woods. However, the bridges crossing over the lakes are the best part of the trail and will give you excellent views of the areas around you.

You will need to take all your food and water with you, as these resources can be scarce when looking at this trail. You must be prepared and there is very little signal for mobile devices in times of emergency. However, it is a good trail for the avid hiker, especially hikers.

4.      Devil’s Lake Loop – Baraboo

The Devil’s Lake Loop Trail is located in Wisconsin and will take you around Devils Lake to give you picturesque views of the lake and a good workout experience. The trail is around 6.1-miles in length and while it might be deceptive at first, it is one of the harder trails in terms of distance.

The trail takes you along the lake, but it also gives you clear views of the lake and in many cases, it will bring you up close to the lake. The Devils Doorway section is one of the best areas that will make the trail completely worth it.

There are no extreme difficulties when it comes to the trail, but the combination of steep hills and distance can be tedious for beginners. According to most trail experts, this one has an intermediate/difficult rating and should be done with adequate fitness.

5.      Ice Age Trail – Devil’s Lake

If the Devil’s Lake Loop is not long enough for you, you might want to consider the Ice Age Trail. It is located near Devil’s Lake, but features more of a scenic route and will allow you to experience everything that the trail has to offer.

Once again, it brings you close to the lake and you can see most of the popular destinations found on the loop trail. There are numerous caves and wildlife species that can be seen with the longer trail and it also takes more time to complete.

It has less traffic than the loop trail, which means you will probably be alone most of the time. It is important to take care of your safety. With a distance of 10.6-miles, it means heatstroke is a real possibility if you don’t have the fitness.

6.      Quincy Bluff and Wetlands State Natural Area – Wisconsin Dells

The Quincy Bluff and Wetlands State Natural Area are one of the most natural terrains that you can explore. There are no trail market or any additions that are man-made. This will bring you closer to nature and you can have some fun.

One of the best aspects is the uninterrupted wetlands that are inviting for the explorer. These tracks are flat, which means the seasoned hiker should not have issues completing the trail. The overall distance is in the range of 9-miles when going back and forth.

Unfortunately, there are real dangers on the trails and many people have come face to face with wolves. You will need some basic survival skills and we recommend taking special care of your kids when taking them along on the trail.

7.      North Country National Scenic Trail – Copper Falls

The North Country National Scenic Trail covers three stats while starting in the upper part of Wisconsin, the trail stretches through parts of Michigan and Minnesota. However, the copper Falls section located in Wisconsin is the only fully developed part of the trail.

The trail is around 13.1-miles, but it is one of the easiest trails due to the flat design. However, you will need to be careful when nearing the waterfalls and you might need to be careful. There are beautiful scenic views of the lakes as well.

There are no real dangers to be careful of and while you might want to stick to the Copper Falls section, it is easy to wander through different sections. We recommend that you keep your eyes on the directions located on trees and scattered around the trail.

Hiking Trails In Wisconsin Summary

Wisconsin is one of the most scenic states in the United States and one of the best spots for hiking. These trails are ideal for you to get started and you should be able to have some fun on your next hiking journey. Let us know in the comment section if there are any other trails that we might have missed that you might like.

Lee G.

I love the outdoors! Everything from hiking, climbing, rappelling, and caving.

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