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Interstate State Park, Wisconsin’s first state park, AMERICA’s first state park. Yup, this one started it ALL! The scenery is similar to the dells of the Wisconsin River, this is known as the dalles of the St. Croix River.
Again, this is a northern wonder and a bit of a trip to get to, but it’s absolutely worth it.
Most of this drive is on 94, and I love camping around my alma mater (UW-Eau Claire). Gives me an excuse to visit, see the changes, get a new sweatshirt.
So, similar to Copper Falls, there’s not a lot of places to go nearby, but there’s a ton to do. It was this park that taught us to hike in the parks, it’s worth it! The gorge of this river, the banks and the different formations are super cool.
I did love it here, I especially loved our campsite along the river, granted it’s half of a double site, the rare, picturesque electric double site that doesn’t often exist. Luckily, the first night the other half was empty. The second night a Mercedes camper van came, it was gone before we woke up the next morning. The third and forth day, a small motorhome occupied the space, we never saw them come out of it, that was a little weird.
This was also over the weekend of our 5th anniversary, so it was a special trip. It was great, but thank God for the heater in our camper. It might not be comfortable to sleep in, it might smell like grandma, but it has heat, thank God! But I’ve learned that my favorite camping sites are electric, close to water, especially rivers.
This is a jewel of the Wisconsin State Park system. It’s also the Western Terminus of the Ice Age Trail, which has ends at Potawatomi State Park and Interstate State Park and snakes as far south as Whitewater and just further north than St. Croix Falls.
Again, this is a long haul but worth the drive. I wanted to check out Minnesota’s equivalent Interstate Park, but Kyle didn’t want to pay for a Minnesota single day park pass. Next time, I would. Interstate State Park also makes it into the running for favorite state park.
This park really does have a lot of great hikes, we did one on the south end of the park that ends up in the woods were this big house once stood. It’s a little creepy, but kind of cool and leads to a waterfall. Another thing about this park, the campground is fairly quiet, the south camp is quieter, but is all non-electric. The north camp is mostly electric, but super close to a highway over the river. The were constant semi-trucks engine braking across the bridge at all hours…including the middle of the night.
Despite this, I really enjoyed Interstate State Park. It’s the first American state park for a reason.