Pet friendly lodging includes places to hike on public lands as well as at the 208 acre inn. Hiking in west central Wisconsin is abundant in public lands. There are five major blocks of land with thousands of acres all with specific geological interest: Black River Falls State Forest in Jackson County, Wildcat Mountain State Park in Vernon County, Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge and Perrot State Park both in Trempealeau County and Necedah Wildlife Refuge at Necedah. It is possible to spend weeks discovering all the treasures in these public lands. This is an undiscovered part of Wisconsin. The Refuge has only 60,000 visitors in a year.
Wild Cat Mountain State Park is located in the bluff area with steep rock outcroppings, Kickapoo River, the “crookedest” river flowing through the park with trails for hiking or horseback riding. A State Park day or season pass is required.
The county roads wind through miles of hills, rivers, farms, and quaint towns. Many Amish people with their horse and buggy life style live in this area. The night sky is very clear, and one can view many more stars on Wildcat Mountain than at other parks. Satellites and the Milky Way are very visible, showing up as a pretty pale blue band across the night sky.
Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge is free and open to the public with a viewing area to watch migrating birds on the Mississippi River, an interpretive center and the Great River Bicycle Trail runs through the Refuge.
The Refuge was established in 1936. It lies within the Mississippi River Valley in west-central Wisconsin. Land was isolated from the Mississippi and Trempealeau rivers by levees built in 1911 to provide refuge for a variety of habitats including sand prairies and marshes. The Refuge is an important area for waterfowl and other migratory birds and provides habitat for bald eagles, osprey, black terns and pelicans.
Perrot State Park at Trempealeau includes an island mountain and miles of trails for hiking. The Great River State Bicycle Trail runs through a small part of the park. A State Park day or season pass is required.
There is a great description of the geology of the area in which Trempealeau National wildlife Refuge and Perrot State Park.
Hixon forest in La Crosse offers bluffside hiking.
Norskedalen offers hiking on this non-profit Norwegian Immigrant settlement.
The Black River State Forest was established in 1957 which includes approximately 67,000 acres in Jackson County. The area is unique among the state forests mainly because of its geological features. The Forest lies on the edge of the glaciated central plain east of the rough coulee region or driftless area of Wisconsin. If you hike the nature trail to the top of Castle Mound, one can observe what was once the bed of glacial Lake Wisconsin. Unglaciated buttes, sandstone hills, and castellated bluffs such as Castle Mound dot the vast forest landscape. Black River State Forest is at the edge of the Wisconsin glacier. A State Park day or season pass is required.
Sparta, WI is a fantastic area to use as home base to hike miles and miles of scenic wonderland known as “God’s Country” in G. Heilman Brewing Company’s advertising campaigns of the 1970s and 1980s. Justin Trails Resort is the perfect Wisconsin lodging option for your hiking adventure. Hike 15 miles of trails on-premise. Try your skill at disc golf course. There are loaner discs in the Lodge for your use.
Sometimes late in the evening
Traveling down County Trunk J
From a ball game returning home,
One evening I said to my son
This is really good material for a poem.
Their silhouettes in the moonlight
Dogs on leashes with their master in charge.
A nice end of day story to tell
There was a real bond here
Heading home and all is well.
Man’s best friend oh yes,
Indeed they say is your dog.
But in this case, dogs there are two
Yes, two beautiful Siberian huskies
Let me introduce them to you.
Heidi and George most beautiful canines
Very well mannered and trained
With their fur as white as snow
Who live in a happy environment
With their masters who love them so.
I had a chance on Saturday
To see them up close and personal
As I had never seen this type of dog before
So exciting and fun for me,
As they came bouncing through the door.
I really love dogs, have one of my own,
But I realized then and there
I knew nothing about this breed
I asked Donna
a few questions
It was very interesting indeed.
Her guests all asked questions
Such as could these dogs,
Really pull a sled.
A small sled she replied
I was sure interested in all she said.
I guess it kinda took me back,
To my love of books and pictures
When I was a very young child
Remembering the phrase “On You Huskies”
from Jack London and “Call of the Wild”.
One thing I observed as I sat there,
Then I heard a bark from one.
Donna said this is my cue, it’s time to eat
She put out their dishes, they had table manners,
I thought this was real neat.
From the dogs I first saw along the road,
I know now a little better,
So interesting in every way
Nice to meet you Heidi and George
Hope I can visit you again some day.