Hello and welcome back readers from holiday break. I hope everyone had a great Christmas and New Year. I know the weather was a real challenge for many of us and my heart goes out to all the families that lost loved ones. The stories were just heart-breaking. Our weather got super cold, but we never developed the winter storm that was forecast. However, the cold weather really affected our holiday plans. We weren't able to leave the house for a week, so we didn't make our annual trip to Irvine Park to see the holiday lights, nor did we attend any church service. Our daughter and son-in-law's car had a major mechanical failure due to the extreme cold, so they were delayed in getting back home by a day and a half, and had to spend $1,400 for towing and repairs. Yet, despite it all, it was a wonderful Christmas and we had a great time together. The whole experience reminded me of the ending of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". Even though a lot of things were taken from us, it could not keep Christmas from coming. Jesus was still born, and we as a family were still celebrating His birth together.
Now, onto this week's travel post. After finishing my North Shore Travel Series, I have been going back and sharing some fall hiking adventures. Right before break, I shared our stop at The Devil's Punchbowl, and this week I will show the amazing views of Wildcat Mound.
Wildcat Mound is a peak in Clark County, Wisconsin that is surrounded by thick forests and has plenty of rocky, sandstone cliffs. You drive up to the second parking lot, and then take a long series of steps (about a 100 yards) to the top of the mound.
Once you reach the top, the trail forms a semi-circle on top of the mound. There are so many other-worldly, amazing sandstone formations!
Unfortunately teens (or maybe adults, who knows) have ruined the natural beauty with graffiti. It just makes me sick. But, there are also some old, very weathered petroglyphs, so perhaps cultures really never change.
There's some rock scrambling to be done on this trail, especially if you want to see unobstructed, panoramic views.
Fall is the best time of year to hike this trail!
Wildcat Mound got its namesake from the iron stains in the rocks which resemble leopard spots and tiger stripes.
This scenic trail is an easy 1.8 mile loop with an elevation gain of 272 feet. It takes an average of 47 minutes to complete. I think we took a good two hours because we kept stopping to gawk at those views!
There were times I couldn't believe I was still in Wisconsin, just a few hours from my house. The place reminded me of the Black Hills of South Dakota.
And did I mention how incredible it was to be there during peak fall foliage?
The trail is one of Wisconsin's best kept secrets. You will encounter very few people on this trail. It is very poorly marked but it's hard to get lost as there is usually a clear path to see. At one point, we had to rock scramble to get back down to the trail, so I'm not sure if we missed the trail somewhere, or that was just the way it was supposed to be. It is also a dirt or sandy trail, so walking sticks really come in handy, especially for the rock scrambling!
The crazy boldness of this son of mine. He scares me half to death every time we go hiking. I told him he should take up rock climbing as a hobby, but he doesn't seem interested in that.
We were absolutely blown away by our visit to Wildcat Mound and we couldn't believe we lived in the area for 25 years and had never been there before. But apparently, most people in my area had never been there before either, because when I posted the photos to Facebook, everyone asked "Where is that?" I have no idea how they kept this magical place a secret for so long.
Have A Great Day! Amy
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