High Cliff Escarpment, SNA #176 (176/675)

High Cliff Escarpment features a more than one-mile long exposure of the Niagara Escarpment, a limestone cliff that extends from Waukesha County through Door County and then on into Canada and New York.  This natural area is found within High Cliff State Park along the northeastern shore of Lake Winnebago and is accessible via the Lime Kiln trail with a parking area at the northern edge of the site.  It is one of two SNA’s in Calumet County and marked my first visit to one there.

A stop at High Cliff Escarpment was the first natural area visited on the way to Door County II, my second excursion to Door County’s natural areas.  The Lime Kiln trail passes by the ruins of an old lime kiln as then through the forest at the base of the ledge in roughly the northern half of the natural area.  The partially overlapping Red Bird and Forest Management trails follow the western edge of the natural area on top of the escarpment and give you a different perspective.  There are no breathtaking vistas of the lake since the forest surrounds you and the cliff rises only approximately 25-feet above the landscape, but being surrounded by green in the warmer months is a nice compromise.  Were I to return, I would spend a bit more time exploring the nooks and crannies of the escarpment as these tend to be very botanically interesting.  Previous blog posts featuring the Niagara Escarpment include: Oakfield Ledge, Ellison Bluff, and Bayshore Blufflands.  Those and future Escarpment posts can be found by clicking on the ‘Niagara Escarpment’ tag near the bottom of this post.

More of my photos (and full-res) from High Cliff Escarpment can be viewed here.

Additional Information

SNA # 176
County Calumet
Natural Communities / Geology Cliff, Niagara Escarpment
Size (Acres) 124
Parking Parking Areas (paved)
Trails Yes
Easy to Find Yes
Best Seen By Foot
Marked Boundaries No
Ownership Wisconsin DNR
Located Within High Cliff State Park
Dates Visited  8.14.10

Calumet County

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