Ice Age Trail, Hike-a-thon on National Trails Day

To celebrate National Trails Day, as well as to commemorate my final days in Wisconsin, I agreed to a 20+ mile hike along the Ice Age Trail. From Brooklyn State Wildlife Area to the Ice Age Junction Area (off McKee Rd), I traversed the edges of the last ice age.

The Ice Age Scenic Trail is a 1,000 mile path within the state of Wisconsin that highlights the glacial ice flow that sculpted a landscape across the state about 12,000 years ago. As the colossal glacier retreated, it left behind a variety of unique landscape features. These Ice Age remnants are now considered among the world’s finest examples of how continental glaciation sculpts our planet.

To be honest, I was a bit nervous at first. I had been years since I had completed a “long” hike like this. My wife and I did a 75 miler on the Appalachian Trail (West Virginia and Maryland) and I did a 50 miler in Escondido’s Daley Ranch. Both of which were spread out over multiple days. In turn, I am not the best “hiker” – I am a stroller, a wanderer, I like to get off the trail and look around. On this hike, I did so 4-5 times and had to pay the price to run and catch up to within sight of the group. As usual, I also came out with some cuts, some bugs, etc.

The hike was cool and sad as the miles went. There were some new places that I had never been which were cool to see, and other spots that I remembered from previous hikes which were sad to leave behind again. Special places that probably only mean something to me: Bridge 32, the Badger State Trail rock cliffs, alot of the geocache hides along the way (picked up three more during this hike).

As with any long hike, there was uncomfort and a bit of pain. I thought I would be able to fall and roll to the end. But once there, I remembered how good it felt to just lay in the grass, tired and sore, with a beer in my hand.

Thanks to all of the Ice Age Trail folks who volunteered to lead and support this event, as well as to the other 30ish folks who supported the Ice Age trail with 20+ miles on their legs. Here are some of the trail photos I took along the way …

Brooklyn State Wildlife Area


Montrose Segment


Badgers State Trail

Prairie Moraine Park


Verona Segment



About blpawelek

Dad, hiker, writer.
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