Krueger Pines (326/693)

Krueger Pines State Natural Area protects a mature northern dry-mesic forest with large red and white pines. The site is located within Council Grounds State Park, just northwest of Merrill across the Wisconsin River. The single parcel is bounded on the east by the park road, along which is a convenient parking area. The Blue…

Enterprise Hemlocks (325/693)

Enterprise Hemlocks State Natural Area protects a mature mesic forest, predominantly composed of hemlocks and associated ephemeral ponds and boggy areas. The site is located south of Rhinelander in the southeast portion of Oneida County. There are 3 parcels, the northernmost of which can be accessed from Zimmer Rd, west of CTH G, and two…

Spur Lake (324/693)

*experimenting with post format; bear with me* Spur Lake State Natural Area contains the eponymous lake as well as surrounding wetlands, including open bog, alder thicket, and a mixed swamp containing black spruce, white cedar, and tamarack. Located southeast of Three Lakes, the site can be easily accessed from Stella Lake Rd, west of USH…

Rice Lake (323/693)

*experimenting with post format; bear with me* Rice Lake State Natural Area contains the eponymous lake as well as surrounding wetland, sedge meadow, poor fen, and upland islands found within Thunder Lake State Wildlife Area in northeastern Oneida County, just south of Eagle River. The site can be easily accessed from a couple of Wildlife…

Karcher Springs (322/693)

*experimenting with post format; bear with me* Karcher Springs contains wetland and upland natural communities in southern Kenosha County. Located within Karcher State Wildlife Area, the SNA can be easily accessed from a Wildlife Area parking lot on the north side of CTH JB/31st St just west of STH 83. The west side of the…

New Munster Bog Island (321/693)

New Munster Bog Island State Natural Area contains a small hill, or knoll, surrounded by shrub-carr and tamaracks in southern Kenosha County.  I found the DNR prescribed access to be fairly straightforward.  From a State Wildlife Area parking area on the north side of 75th St, a rudimentary path leads to Palmer Creek.  I recall…

Peat Lake (320/693)

Peat Lake State Natural Area is headlined by its 42-acre namesake lake.  Haboring mainly non-native carp, the lake is not known for it fishery and is not particularly accessible for those purposes.  Such access is somewhat precluded by the extensive surrounding wetlands, composed of sedge meadow and cattail marsh. Located on the WI-IL border and…

Silver Lake Bog (319/693)

Silver Lake Bog contains a bog and northern wet forest situated in the far southeastern corner of the state in Kenosha County.  The site is owned by the Silver Lake Sportsmans Club and permission is required before visiting. The description of “open bog” refers to having <10% tree cover, per the WDNR's description of this…

Kingston Pines (318/693)

Kingston Pines features northern dry to dry-mesic forests as well as bog/fen areas situated on a rolling, sandy moraine near the Kingston Flowage. Access to the site is via Cranberry Rd to 4th St SW, the latter becoming a two-track into the forest.  I recall pulling off into a clearing and then walking further into…

Hog Island Tamaracks (317/693)

Hog Island Tamaracks is much as it sounds, islands of tamaracks within a sea of wetlands, minus the hogs, of course.  This Wood County-owned natural area consists of three parcels arranged in a loose N-S line in southwestern Wood and northwestern Juneau Counties.  Though the DNR website does not note this, the western portion of…

Spaulding Fen (316/689)

Spaulding Fen is a beautiful, seemingly endless expanse of fen and sedge fen within the Jackson County Forest in central Wisconsin.  The site is located just south of STH 54 at its intersection with Spaulding Rd.  My access was via Lone Pine Rd on the west side of the natural area.  As with previous posts…

Deer Island (315/689)

Deer Island in the Jackson County Forest contains the rare maple swamp natural community.  It is located amidst sandy, backcountry roads and cranberry bogs more or less right along Deer Island Rd south of City Point. My friend and I continued our tour of Jackson County SNA’s with a stop at 2 of the 4…

Bear Bluff (314/689)

Bear Bluff features a mixture of wet and dry forests and open wetlands in the Jackson County Forest.  Situated within the basin of the former Glacial Lake Wisconsin, Bear Bluff can be accessed via Goodyear Road north of CTH HH.  Note that at the time of my visit in 2013, this stretch of road was…

Meadow Valley Barrens (313/689)

Meadow Valley Barrens is aptly described in its name.  It is simply put, a barrens within the Meadow Valley State Wildlife Area.  The site exists in two parcels, both of which can be accessed via CTH H.  Further interior access to the larger southern parcel can be had via Eisefeldt Rd and 15th St SW….

Blueberry Trail (312/688)

Blueberry Trail preserves a floodplain forest along the slow, wide turns of Beaver Creek within the Meadow Valley State Wildlife Area in Juneau County.  The site can be accessed from Mulloney Road.  No parking areas are present, so this was another pull the car as far off the gravel road as possible situation. There are…