Attractions Near Sparta Wisconsin

Map Of Area Attractions (click on orange map icons to learn more)

Bring the whole family and make Justin Trails Resort your home base. Within 30 minutes of the resort and cabins, there are plenty of activities to enjoy such as riding the Elroy-Sparta State Bike Trail, shopping in Downtown Sparta, or kayak the Kickapoo River. Nestled in a quiet, peaceful, hilly 200-acre coulee Justin Trails Resort & cabins offers guests a relaxed, dog-friendly country getaway in the heart of Wisconsin’s Driftless Region. The Resort and cabins in Wisconsin are located 30 miles East of La Crosse, 13 miles Southwest of Fort McCoy, 5 miles South of I-90 Sparta Exit 25 and 6 miles from the Elroy-Sparta State Bike Trail.

Water Activities

Make a Splash

Boat Rentals There’s no better feeling than riding the waves of our outstanding lakes and river waters! If you are cruising for the day or just a few hours, these top rentals have all the accommodations you need for the perfect boating experience.

Paddlewheel boat cruises La Crosse Queen Step back in time when you come aboard their replica paddlewheel river boat. See the historical sites and local wildlife of the beautiful Upper Mississippi River. Choose from their tasty brunch, lunch, pizza, and dinner buffet-style cruises.

Swimming The City of Sparta Family Aquatic Center features a 6-lane, 50-meter competitive pool that is used for a variety of activities including classes and competitive swim meets. The water park features a 290-foot inner tube slide that enters into a 57,000-gallon lazy river. The children’s area has a zero-level entry, with other water features including a waterwheel-like tipping bucket and walking pads with ropes to swing from above. 

Wisconsin Water Sports Some of the best ways to explore our waterways up-close are by canoeing, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding. You can also go rafting or tubing along our rivers and streams. Bring or rent a tube and float down rivers and streams like the La Crosse River near Sparta or the Kickapoo River in Ontario. 

Fly Fishing

Folks fly in from all over the world to fish the Driftless Area’s thousands of miles of spring creek trout streams. During the last ice age, glaciers surrounded the Driftless Area but never plowed up and deposited materials (known as drift). Water percolates through limestone and sandstone into the ground and is filtered, cooled, and given an excellent PH level. The water then comes out as springs and gives us the incredible and abundant trout fishing here. 

Much of our water is public either through public access via bridge, or through conservation easement partnerships between private land owners and the Wisconsin DNR. Take a look at the Wisconsin DNR Trout Maps for more information on specific streams. We have more water than you can fish in a lifetime! Check out the DNR Website for more fishing information. The Wisconsin season runs from the first Saturday in January to October 15th.  Catch and release is the first Saturday in January to the first Saturday in May.  The first Saturday in May through October 15th is regular season.

Driftless Angler located on the historic main street in Viroqua is a full-service fly shop and guide service. Whether you are a beginner, seasoned veteran, casual angler, or even limited mobility, their guide staff will work with you to improve your skills and give you tools that you can use on future trips to the area. Their guide staff don’t do this as a hobby, they are full-time and dedicated guides who live and work in the Driftless! 


Fishing in the La Crosse Area

Near La Crosse, the Upper Mississippi sprawls well beyond its main channel, creating hundreds of tiny islands, channels, and deep pools that harbor more species of fish than any other temperate-climate river in the world. Walleye is king in these waters, but you can catch just about anything here: sauger, northern pike, shovelhead sturgeon, large and smallmouth bass, perch, sunfish, bluegill, crappie, gar, channel and blue catfish.

The La Crosse and Black Rivers, which join the Mississippi in the area, are home to many of the same species. A few miles north of La Crosse, the Mississippi opens into the 8,000+ acre Lake Onalaska, which features seven boat landings and is chock-full of panfish, northern, and bass, and the area also offers myriad cold-water streams rife with brown, rainbow, and brook trout.

Another popular lake fishery is Lake Neshonoc located in West Salem. It has a maximum depth of 11 feet. Visitors have access to the lake from public boat landings, a public beach. Fish include Panfish, Largemouth Bass, Northern Pike, and Catfish. 

The area features several boat landings, marinas, and beaches, as well as fishing floats and piers, guides, and numerous outfitters. The US Fish & Wildlife Service has put together some fantastic maps of the Mississippi River, with boat landings, walk-in access points, and more. You can find information regarding licensing, rules, and regulations at Wisconsin fishing regulations at the Department of Natural Resources website.

Spring & Summer Fishing

Spring is a time when many anglers in La Crosse County turn their eyes to walleye. Shortly after the ice leaves the river, walleye are running, and the catching can be spectacular. On the Mississippi, many anglers head to the dams where large numbers of walleye congregate. However, there’s often great fishing downriver as well. As waters warm in the spring, panfish action starts picking up, particularly in the flats and backwaters of the Black River, Mississippi River, and Lake Onalaska which tend to warm faster than the moving waters near the river’s channel. The warming waters also make northern pike fishing pick up.

Late spring, and early summer can be an excellent time to catch nearly every species of fish, but bass fishing really stands out. Both largemouth and smallmouth can be found in the river system around La Crosse. Look for smallmouth in the main river channels in spots that protect them from the heavy current, such as rocks, downfalls, and wing dams. Largemouth bass is plentiful in the shallow backwaters. Fishing for catfish during the warmest months of the year can be an exciting affair, with both channel cats and flatheads providing some of the best catfishing in the Midwest.

Fall & Winter Fishing

The cooling temperatures of fall bring wonderful color to the woodlands and bluffs. Fall also brings some of the year’s best fishing. Fish are aggressive as they heavily feed in preparation for the cold winter months ahead. Cooler water temperatures congregate the fish and dissipate recreational boat traffic, leaving more water for you to enjoy without dealing with the crowds. Walleye begin to move again in the fall, and while the fall walleye run tends to be less lively than in the spring, the fall run tends to be more predictable and can provide steady action right up until the lakes, pools, and waterways freeze over.

The first areas to catch the attention of ice anglers are the area’s many backwaters. As ice creeps out from the shores of Lake Onalaska, so do intrepid ice anglers looking for some of the best panfishing of the year. As ice covers a wider area, ice anglers begin moving further out to deeper water in search of walleye, yellow perch, and northern pike.

Biking Around

Bike 4 Trails

Bike 4 Trails includes 101 miles of connected Wisconsin biking splendor on the Great River State Trail 24 miles, La Crosse River State Trail 22 miles, Elroy-Sparta State Trail 32.5 miles, and the “400” State Trail 22 miles. 

400 State Bike Trail Wetlands, wildlife, sandstone bluffs, rolling croplands and pastures are just a few of the sights you can enjoy on the 400 State Trail as it repeatedly crisscrosses the Baraboo River. The entire length of the 22-mile trail follows along the river valley from Elroy to Reedsburg.


Elroy-Sparta State Bike Trail Considered the first rail-to-trail in the world, the Elroy-Sparta State Trail the “granddaddy of them all” remains one of the most beloved trails in the country. With three rock tunnels and five small towns along its 32.5-mile route, the trail is a favorite Wisconsin bicycling destination. Traveling between Sparta and Elroy, the trail stretches through the communities of Norwalk, Wilton and Kendall, passing by wetlands, prairies, farmland and unglaciated areas.


La Crosse River State Trail The 22-mile La Crosse River State Trail has been developed from the abandoned Chicago and Northwestern Railroad between Sparta and La Crosse. The trail is open to walkers and bicyclists spring through fall and snowmobiles in winter. Packed-limestone screenings provide a smooth surface for bicycling. Mileage markers are posted every half mile on the 7-mile section between La Crosse and West Salem.


Great  River State Trail This 24-mile trail travels through prairies and backwaters of the upper Mississippi River valley. Built on an abandoned Chicago-Northwestern railroad line, the trail has a finely crushed limestone surface suitable for walking and bicycling for much of the year and snowmobiling, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in winter. The Great River trail is within a larger area called the Mississippi Flyway and passes through two National Wildlife Refuges. The Great River State Trail links to the La Crosse River State Trail via a short road route in the city of La Crosse.


Backroad Bicycling

The area’s picturesque hillsides, riverlands, and quiet country highways make for some of the best road and mountain biking in the world. 

Local Shopping

Ample opportunities to enjoy a country drive, shop at Amish farms, window-shop, browse, and indulge in a little retail therapy abound within an hour of Justin Trails Resort. Some of our favorites include:

Amish-Made Goods The area near Justin Trails Resort is home to the largest settlement of Amish in Wisconsin with 350 families. Enjoy the winding roads and beautiful scenery as you make your way to Amish farms where they sell goods onsite. Just look for a sign at the end of their driveway listing what they sell. If you’d like an unforgettable shopping experience stop by Trail’s End Amish Walmart.

Sparta  – 8 miles. Sparta is known as the “Bicycling Capital of America” as the Elroy-Sparta State Bicycle Trail was the first rail-to-trail conversion in the world. Sparta is also known for a variety of stores and restaurants that welcome dogs. A few of our favorites are Cotton + Birch, Sparta Floral, KEPS Naturals, District 7 Decor & Design, Search and Find, Second Season, Biederman Jewelers, Gamer’s Sanctum, Big Rooster Firearms, and Granny’s Goodstuff Resale. If you like quilting, the Quilt Corner is for you!

Lunch Stops: Ginny’s Cupboard, Dorine’s Family Inn, Matsumoto Ramen House, Kazoku Bistro, El Caporal, La Herradura Restaurant, or Don’s Super Restaurant. 

La Crosse 30 miles. The La Crosse Region is home to the largest shopping district in nine counties.  If you like big-name shopping centers, you can find all the largest commercial retailers in La Crosse and Onalaska. Or if you prefer to support independent, local businesses, Historic Downtown La Crosse has a vibrant shopping district full of the region’s finest specialty shops. Bargain hunters have their work cut out for them, with dozens of thrift and consignment stores to choose from, not to mention one of the largest antique malls in the state.

Galesville 44 miles. The centerpiece of the beautiful downtown square is the gazebo-style bandstand built in 1912. Shop til you drop in some of our favorite stores: Sunset Gardens Greenhouse, Treasure Chest, Coulee Boutique, White Buffalo Thriftery, Common Market, Jade Willow, Craft Barn, Queen Bee Quilts, BJORN Naturals, The Happy Gift Shop as well as Lylli & Ivi Cakes and Sweet Treats. 

Lunch Stop: Garden of Eatin’

Village of Stoddard 30 miles. This charming village of 815 became a river town in 1937 when the pool created by the construction of Lock and Dam #8 flooded 18,000 acres of bottomland and brought the river to its doorstep. The Mississippi River was originally one mile west of Stoddard. Stoddard was one of the few communities along the Mississippi River that was never a trading post or a riverboat stop. Not-to-be-missed stores: Moon Child Collective housed in a former gas station is a women’s clothing and accessories mecca, Gracie’s Hutch features local artisans, home decor, jewelry & punch needle supplies, and Hood Scoops Ice Cream Shop. 

Lunch Stop: The Thirsty Turtle

Village of Coon Valley 18 miles. Wooded ridges, towering up to 500 feet, surround this secluded valley settled almost entirely by Norwegians in the 1850s. In 1933, the Soil Conservation Service selected the Coon Creek watershed for the very first project designed to combat the effects of erosion. In those days, the hillsides were intensively farmed and tons of topsoil ended up in the creek. The watershed project promoted contour farming; the project was successful and soon people came from many miles to see it. Water quality improved and land became increasingly productive. Today anglers take advantage of the many public access points to pristine Class 1 trout streams. Shop at Sweet Valley Artisans is a 9,000 sq. ft. Artisan Mall offering handmade crafts, collectibles, furniture, paint, fudge & more. Valley Market is a Mennonite-run store with bulk items, fresh flowers, plants and seasonal produce. 

Lunch Stop: The Stockyard Grill & Saloon

Westby 20 miles. Westby has a rich heritage steeped in Norwegian culture. The first immigrants came to this area from Biri, Norway in 1848. Stop by Dregne’s Scandinavian Gifts, Westby Cooperative Creamery & store, and Treasures on Main. Don’t miss The Big Old Red Shed an enormous 2 story building that spans a full block selling vintage “old school collectibles” and junque. 

Lunch Stops: KOS – A Gastropub or Borgen’s Cafe

Viroqua 27 miles. Viroqua is a premier four seasons destination, offering events, outdoor recreation, and outstanding hospitality year-round. Whether you’re an avid cross country skier, fall foliage enthusiast, live music lover, or spring forager, Viroqua has something for everyone, all year long.  Downtown  Gary’s Rock Shop, Driftless Books & Music, Bluedog Cycles, Buzzy’s Home Furnishings, Driftless Angler. Ewetopia Fiber Shop – Promoting local sheep and shepherds one skein at a time. Viroqua Public Market – Charming, historic indoor market square.

Lunch Stops: Driftless Cafe or Viroqua Food Co-Op

Tomah 23 miles. Tomah is filled with interesting shops and boutiques like Stars Boutique, All Things Amish & More, J & R Variety LLC, R&R Boutique LLC, Sacred Space, Natural Connection, Humbird Cheese Mart and Main Street Does It!

Lunch Stop: Murray’s on Main

Area Parks

City of Sparta Parks

Sparta Parks & Recreation (SPR) manages a 258-acre park system of over 11 parks and extensive natural areas throughout the City of Sparta. Also providing athletic fields, play areas, specialty gardens, and more than 20 miles of trails, the Sparta Parks System offers outdoor recreation for all. Most parks within the Sparta Parks System have shelters for rent, grills and restrooms. For a complete list of the Sparta Parks see the website below. SPR also manages many facilities, including the Barney Family Community Center, River Run Golf Course, Sparta Family Aquatic Center, Senior Center, Fitness Center, ten outdoor shelters, and much more.


Nearby State Parks

Black River State Forest Two forks of the Black River flow through this 68,000-acre forest comprised of pine and oak woods under high sandstone abutments. This central Wisconsin property offers many recreational opportunities, including camping, canoeing, hunting, hiking, skiing and ATV riding. Visitors may even see elk roaming the forest. Elk were released in 2015 and 2016 after being absent from the area for over 125 years.


Perrot State Park 1,200 acres are nestled among 500-foot bluffs where the Trempealeau and Mississippi rivers meet. Enjoy breathtaking river views from the hiking trails in this park, known for its natural, archaeological, and historical resources. There is direct access for bicyclists from the campground to the 24-mile Great River State Trail. There is also a marked canoe trail in Trempealeau Bay. Canoes can be rented at the park in season.


Wildcat Mountain State Park Located on a ridge rising steeply above the Kickapoo River, Wildcat Mountain State Park offers camping for families, groups and horseback riders. Twenty-one miles of scenic hiking, nature and equestrian trails meander through the park. An observation point and picnic areas overlook the Kickapoo Valley. The Kickapoo River is popular for paddling and rentals are available in the village of Ontario.

Kickapoo Valley Reserve

The Kickapoo Valley Reserve is an 8,569-acre tract of land located between the villages of La Farge and Ontario in southwestern Wisconsin. Partnership for Dark Sky Designation: The Kickapoo Valley Reserve, Wildcat Mountain State Park, and Mississippi Valley Conservancy are working together to designate the 13,300 acres of KVR, Wildcat, and Tunnelville Cliffs as Wisconsin’s second International Dark Sky Park. The International Dark-Sky Association awards this distinction to “land possessing an exceptional or distinguished quality of starry nights and a nocturnal environment that is specifically protected for its scientific, natural, educational, cultural heritage, and/or public enjoyment.”


La Crosse City Parks

There might not be a better place in the world to explore on foot than the La Crosse Region. With wooded bluffs topped by craggy sandstone outcroppings, vast marshes teeming with wildlife, pristine prairies and meadows, and rivers, lakes, and streams everywhere you turn, there’s a whole world to explore in this quiet little corner of the Upper Midwest. And with hundreds of miles of designated, well-maintained trails, you won’t need a compass to do it. Whether you prefer leisurely strolls along wide, level paths, or heart-pounding climbs up steep, rocky trails, you’ll find your hike in the La Crosse Region.

Granddad Bluff has become not only a destination point for thousands, but also a symbol of the Coulee Region. The 600-ft high bluff overlooks the city of La Crosse. The view of the Mississippi River Valley includes the three states of Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa. Wisconsin Trails readers voted this “the most scenic view in the state.” The park features a shelter house, coin-operated binoculars, picnic areas and is the site of the annual Skyrocker`s New Year`s Eve Fireworks Show.


Hixon ForestNearly ten miles of hiking and multi-use trails crisscross the wooded bluffs on the eastern edge of La Crosse. Four designated parking areas provide convenient access to the trails, which can also be reached by bike or on foot via connecting trails from Myrick Park, or even downtown La Crosse via Riverside Park. The Hixon Forest Trails offer access to the popular Grandad Bluff Park and its stunning views of the city and river valley, as well as four other designated vistas. Hikers and mountain bikers can also connect to Human Powered Trails at the top of the ridge (across County Hwy FA). Visit the City of La Crosse’s Parks, Recreation, & Forestry website for trail maps.


Myrick Park is La Crosse’s oldest park and features everything a family needs to have a fun, exploratory day. This large park connects to numerous trails, from easy to hard, featuring scenic views of the marsh and surrounding bluffs. In the winter months, enjoy snowshoeing or connect with the area’s cross-country ski trails. The Myrick Park trail system connects to more than you think. Bunny trails will take you to the Hixon Forest trails which connect to the top of the bluff and the human-powered trails. Or, follow the Myrick trails on a bike out of the park, connect to the state trail system, and ride all the way to Trempealeau in the north or Reedsburg to the east. Explore a unique ecosystem in the middle of La Crosse. The marsh acts as a natural watershed of the Mississippi.


Riverside Park At the confluence of three rivers, Riverside Park is designed for active lifestyles and for those who want to relax and watch the river slowly pass by. The park is just blocks away from Historic Downtown La Crosse’s restaurants and shopping stops. Riverside Park is both a signature sight and a prized jewel of the La Crosse Region. At the north end of the park, guests enjoy strolling through the Riverside International Friendship Gardens. Featuring an intimate coy pond, unique plants from all over the world, sculptures, a water wheel, and views of the Mississippi River, the garden is a must-see when wandering through the renowned park.


Hidden Gems

Any season you could stay at Justin Trails Resort for a whole week and still not experience all the fun our area has to offer. Here are a few of our favorite hidden gems in alphabetical order: Apple Orchards, Cheese, Coulee Region Craft Beverage Trail, Cranberries, Historic Homes, Hunting, Museums, Salon & Spas, Ski, Snowboard, Snow Tubing & Cross Country Skiing, Used Book Stores & Records, and UTV Rentals.

Apple Orchards

Have some down-on-the farm family fun while picking fresh apples and pumpkins at area apple orchards. You’ll find a wide range of farms offered near La Crescent Minnesota which is less than 5 miles from La Crosse. 


Wisconsin is the # 1 cheese-producing state, making 26% of the country’s cheese. Wisconsin cheesemakers use about 90% of Wisconsin’s milk supply to make more than 2 billion pounds of cheese every year. Wisconsin has 1,290 licensed cheesemakers–more than any other state. Create a driving tour to different cheese factories. Two of our favorite spots to buy cheese are Nordic Creamery and Pasture Pride Cheese. Be sure to try batter fried cheese curds at local restaurants. 

Coulee Region Craft Beverage Trail

Known as the local, drinkable bucket list, the Coulee Region Craft Beverage Trail sheds light on all of the Region’s wineries, breweries, and distilleries. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a beer sommelier to savor these famous beverages! Are you ready to sip on some new favorites in historic downtowns, among the bluffs, and alongside vineyards?


Take a short drive to the Westby/Viroqua area and experience local wine with a view at Vernon Vineyards. Nearby Branches wines range from dry, oak-aged reds and crisp whites to sweeter, fruity whites, a blush, and rich dessert wine treats.

DnA Vintners on the North Side of La Crosse try flights of award-winning Cranberry Wines. We sell their wine in our gift shop at Justin Trails Resort. 

Elmoro Vineyard one of our favorite wineries….looks like Napa Valley is located 33 miles northwest of La Crosse near Trempealeau, WI. This family-run vineyard offers excellent Wisconsin wines and a beautiful setting in which to enjoy them. 

River View Vineyard and Winery is nestled in the scenic bluffs above the beautiful winding Mississippi River Valley, north of La Crescent, MN, and just eight miles from La Crosse. Since 2003, River View has been producing wines with hardy cold-weather grapes developed specifically for their region. 

Seven Hawks vineyards, winery, and tasting room located in beautiful Fountain City on Wisconsin’s Great River Road, 40 miles north of La Crosse. All wines are made from 100% locally grown fruit. 

Tenba Ridge Winery produces Alsatian-style wines in small batches. These big, bold wines are full of flavor and great paired with food or just by themselves. The wine terrace overlooks thousands of acres of woods in rural Trempealeau County. 

Breweries just a few miles down Hwy 27 from Justin Trails Resort is Alchemy Brewing. They brew their own beer and serve super yummy eats. Ask what’s “not on the menu” to really get the good stuff. Drive a bit further to Melvina where Footjoy Farm and Brewing is an “experience.” Chad (a hippie in every good sense of the word) grows wheat for the pizza crusts, buns & beer he brews. He forages in the forest for unique yummies. He even has a record player and plays real records. Outdoor seating for your pups too. La Crosse is home to a ton of breweries, some with dog-friendly outdoor seating. Don’t miss  Pearl Street Brewery since 1999, they have produced award-winning ales and lagers. 


St. Mary’s Distillery is a family-owned craft distillery, specializing in craft spirits. Located on St. Mary’s Ridge in the heart of God’s country. St. Mary’s Ridge is known for its rolling hills, strip crop farms, and gorgeous sunsets. Their ridge farm sits on a beautiful 224 acres with 360-degree scenic views. Lady Bird Johnson even said so herself, “One of America’s most beautiful places.”

At La Crosse Distilling Co. they source their water locally from the region’s glacial aquifers, seek only the finest organic ingredients, and obsess over every detail; making each of their spirits a unique expression of a particular place, a farmer’s passion, and their careful work. Visit their geothermal-powered distillery and tasting room in downtown La Crosse where Genuine Wisconsin Spirit is captured in every sip.


Wisconsin was the top cranberry producer in the United States in 2022, at about 4.84 million barrels. Just a short drive to Warrens you’ll find logs of cranberry growers like Wetherby Cranberry Co. The Warrens Cranberry Festival is the largest arts and crafts festival in the U.S.

Historic Homes

West Salem Hamlin Garland, a Pulitzer prize winning author, was born in West Salem in 1860. The West Salem Historical Society has preserved and restored the Hamlin Garland Homestead to the time period of 1912-15. The house is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Don’t miss the Palmer-Gullickson-Octagon House, and the Palmer-Lewis-Octagon House.

La Crosse between the bluffs and Mississippi River was home to lumber barrons who built exquisite homes! Check out the Local Register of Historic Places. Take a self-guided architectural tour of Downtown La Crosse.

Sparta the Monroe County Local History Room is a great starting point to learn more about historic homes, the Wegner Grotto and WI Child Care Center/State School. The Old House Dreams website features several of Sparta’s historic homes like this 1875 Italianate.


The hunting in our region is as good as it gets anywhere in the Midwest, with great opportunities for hunting and trapping waterfowl, small game, and, of course, the ubiquitous white-tailed deer. Two great websites are the La Crosse public hunting grounds and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website.


Four not-to-be-missed museums are the Deke Slayton Memorial Space and Bicycle Museum in Sparta. Children’s Museum and Dahl Auto Museum in La Crosse, and Minnesota Marine Art Museum near Winona Minnesota. 

Salon & Spas

Cura Salon & Spa Everybody’s Welcome at Sparta WI’s Only Full-Service Salon & Spa. An Abundance of Services In One Beautiful Place…They not only pride themselves on being a market leader on fashion trends within the hair industry, but they also specialize in a variety of services: such as spray tanning, facial and full body waxing services, sugaring, manicures, pedicures. They are certified professionals in lash extensions and lash and brow tinting. Their wellness integration includes facials, body wraps, various selection of massage modalities, ear candling and Energy Sound Healing as well as healing stones and crystals and reiki sessions.


Brilliant Bodywork is dedicated to helping people in the transformative treatment of chronic skin conditions through the latest advances in scientific research including clinical strength acne treatments, and the highly skilled use of laser technology, which has become very effective and affordable for the cosmetic treatment of the effects of acne, aging and other damage to the skin. They help you revitalize and pamper your skin and body through invigorating massage, transformational skincare services, along with luxurious body treatments. 


Metropolitan Salon & Day Spa is located on the corner of Third and La Crosse streets in Downtown La Crosse, Wisconsin. As a Redken Elite Salon, their revitalizing Salon and Spa offers an extensive array of services including complete hair color and style services, hair extensions, body treatments, massage, water treatments, facials, makeup, waxing, lash lifts & extensions, manicures & pedicures, and seasonal services. They use the finest products for both hair and body, including Kerastase, Redken, Pureology, bareMinerals, Image Skincare, Baxter for Men, Farmhouse Fresh, and Good Earth.


Orange Pearl Salon & Spa is dedicated to delivering memorable experiences through their signature consultation ensuring all your needs and desires are met. Their team’s monthly continuing education ensures high-quality results in the latest techniques and treatments. Orange Pearl cares about the community they live in and donate to dozens of charities and benefits throughout the year and work with organizations like the Salvation Army and Boys & Girls Club to provide services to those in need. 


The Ultimate Salon & Spa is the Coulee region’s premier AVEDA Concept Salon and Spa. They were the first salon in the area to add the Urban Shoetique a full-service Shoe, Apparel and Accessory Boutique that offers an amazing level of quality products that match the superior level of quality service in our salon and spa services.


Sue Kolve’s Salon & Day Spa Voted the Best of La Crosse in seven categories including #1 Stylist, #1 Massage Therapist, Best Hair Salon, Best Spa, Best Nail Salon, Best Barbershop, and Best Onalaska Business, Sue Kolve’s Salon & Day Spa is one of Redken‘s Club 5th Avenue Black Elite Salons and was selected as a “Salon of Distinction” by Modern Salon magazine.  They are located on Main Street in Onalaska. They are dedicated to enhancing your appearance and well-being, by helping you relax, renew, and revitalize in a nurturing and professional environment. They offer a full range of salon services including haircuts, hair color, hair styling, blowouts, facials, body treatments, waxing, nails, and massage therapy. 


Ski, Snowboard, Snow Tubing & Cross Country Skiing

You’ll find a variety of Winter Sports options in our area. Check current cross-country snow conditions at the Travel Wisconsin Snow Report website. Here are our Top 3 snow sport destinations:

Black River State Forest has 20 miles of classic groomed and 14 miles of skate-groomed cross-country ski trails. The trailhead is near County Highway O in Jackson County and features a heated log warming shelter.

Mt. La Crosse since 1959 is a destination skiing and snowboarding resort for racers and families with 18 trails and the steepest vertical slope in Wisconsin. From gentle Mileaway, Wisconsin’s longest run, to Damnation! Mt. La Crosse Terrain Park (experts only) features a variety of creative and progressive jumps, bars, tubes, and boxes.

Whitetail Ridge Ski Area is located near scenic Fort McCoy and is open to the public. Ski Hill – Downhill Skiing & Snowboarding – Enjoy downhill slopes with a vertical drop of over 185 feet. A self loading T-bar serves the slopes where the longest run is 1,300 feet. Snowboarding your thing? Come check out the terrain park! Snow Tubing – Grab a tube and head down one of the 5 runs on this 800′ long slope. Cross Country Skiing – Ski over 5 miles of scenic country on our groomed trails.

Used Bookstores and Records

Driftless Books & Music, a must-visit for any book lover, began in 2004 with the purchase of Connecticut bookseller Robert Shui’s Torrington CT warehouse. That was their first 100,000 books — since then they have purchased 7 used bookstores in 5 states. The 1906 former tobacco warehouse hosts half a million books and pieces of related media. The bookstore features live musical performances and sells new, used, rare, and antiquarian books. Records and tapes, sheet music, and maps. You will find a beer can museum and art. 


Pearl Street Books in downtown La Crosse is housed in the historic J. Burgermeister Building, built in 1885. La Crosse’s locally owned used, new, and specialty bookstore. They have thousands of titles!


Deaf Ear Records – Fighting for Your Right to Rock Since 1978! They have the largest selection of LPs, CDs, DVDs, comics, and collectibles in the area! 


UTV Rentals

Bear Bogging Adventure Tours Strap yourself in for a UTV adventure in Warrens and Black River Falls, WI and grab the wheel of one of their 2023 Polaris four seat UTVs. Explore over 230 miles of trails with GPS to guide you. They offer full-day and half-day RZR rentals as well as custom-guided tours. Strap yourself in and take the wheel of one of their state of the art 2023 Polaris RZR 1000 XP 4-person Side x Side UTV’s for an exhilarating trip of a lifetime. Their tours will take you weaving in and around the trails of the Black River Falls State Forest. Trips are scheduled daily or they can customize one just for you. 


Area Bridges

Led by Reinhard Mueller, a UW-Madison-trained mechanical engineer, Jim Cook, and Jerry Kast built the Beaver Creek Covered Bridge as the first of many projects to improve the blighted area of Sparta. Kerry Schumann came on board to help build the Ben Bikin’ Bridge. Al Jenkins joined the construction of the Pointe Covered Bridge. One day Jerry and Kerry were pondering how a certain aspect of a project should be done and one said to the other, “Don’t ask me, I’m just a shovelman.” This is how the group became known as the Five Shovelmen.

Downtown Sparta Bridge Walk

Beaver Creek Bridge | 2009 An original design, the Beaver Creek Covered Bridge spans 48 feet with roof members produced by local Amish Sawyers. The covered bridge connects to Mueller Square, home of the Sparta Farmer’s Market and Kriskindlmarkt.

Love Lock Bridge | 2020 Located in downtown Sparta, the Love Lock Bridge replaced an existing bridge. With its two very graceful arches that come together this bridge is a hidden gem that includes wire cables on which couples can place padlocks to symbolize their love for each other. A great spot to commemorate a special occasion in a relationship. The babbling Beaver Creek in the background provides a romantic vibe and is absolutely breathtaking at night. 

Mary Morrow Covered Bridge | 2014  This traditional town lattice bridge spans Beaver Creek right next to the Morrow Home Community. This bridge connects the Morrow Home Community to the beautiful Evans-Bosshard Park across Beaver Creek using the Elroy-Sparta State Bike Trail. 

Pointe Covered Bridge | 2013 The Pointe Covered Bridge was the first covered bridge connecting the Elroy-Sparta State Bike Trail to Evans-Bosshard Park. This bridge is just feet from where Beaver Creek runs into the La Crosse River and is a popular spot to cool off in the water. The park itself has a playground and band shelter which hosts a summer concert series. This is also a place to fish for many types of freshwater fish. 

Ben Bikin’ Footbridge | 2011 This open trestle bridge is located in Ben Bikin’ Park and is where the term “Shovelmen” was coined. This well-maintained park is also famous for the statue of the World’s Largest Bicyclist. A site to see!

Bridges Outside of Downtown Sparta

Five Shovelmen Bridge | 2015 This suspension bridge spans 80 feet across the La Crosse River with a considerably longer ramp of 130 feet taking you from the flood level up to the height of the bridge. To view this unique bridge, take a stroll through Amundson Park on the southwest side of Sparta. Follow Hwy 16 toward West Salem, turn left onto Aspen Blvd then turn right into Amundson Park. This park also features plenty of walking trails, an 18-basket Disc Golf Course, a dog park, and trout fishing.

Child Center Bridge | 2023 The Shovelmen’s Seventh Bridge, located at the River Run Golf Course is built with love for Sparta. The Child Center was a big piece of Sparta history from 1885 – 1976 and was THE orphanage in the State of Wisconsin and played a major role in a lot of people’s lives. This bridge has concrete work they’ve never attempted before. It weighs 32,000 pounds, more than the bridge itself. Jerry made sure everything was perfectly braced. He prides himself on the concrete and the concrete finishing and everything turned out really well. 

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