I have been missing the outdoors so much. I mean don't get me wrong, hunting is great and I really enjoy it, but the cold weather... not so much. That's what made this weekend at Governor Dodge State Park in Wisconsin such fun experience.

Credit: Tom Ehlers / Wisconsin DNR
Credit: Tom Ehlers / Wisconsin DNR

My family and I had never been through this state park. A relatively short trip out of Iowa provided a beautiful hiking area with some very unique views. Lost Canyon trail was an immediate favorite of the families and the spring rock house was a very cool experience, and history lesson.

Credit: Google Maps Just a short trip up Highway 151.
Credit: Google Maps            Just a short trip up Highway 151.

Governor Dodge State Park is a 5,270-acre Wisconsin state park outside Dodgeville in Iowa County. Named after Henry Dodge, the first governor of the Wisconsin Territory, the park contains geologic features indicative of the Driftless Areas throughout the Midwest.

The land is mostly oak and hickory forest with some sandstone bluff outcroppings and one named waterfall, Stephen's Falls. Common activities include hiking, boating (with only electric motors allowed), fishing, picnicking, and swimming on the park's two lakes, Cox Hollow Lake and Twin Valley Lake. There is a boat launch, dam, and swimming area at each of the lakes. Hiking trails can also be used for cross-country sking, mountain biking and there are horse trails as well. Seasonal activities in the area include hunting in the fall and snowmobiling in the winter. Wildlife is abundant in the area including; Deer, wild turkeys, ruffed grouse, red and grey fox, beaver, woodchucks and muskrats.

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The state park also offers naturalist led guided hikes and some evening nature programs at the park amphitheater. Governor Dodge also offers the Wisconsin State Parks Wisconsin Explorer programs for children age 3 and up. My family and I had a blast in Wisconsin and a day of fun is just a quick drive away. Check out more natural beauty along the trails below...

Photos: Governor Dodge State Park, Wisconsin

Photos: Early Spring In Governor Dodge State Park, Wisconsin

Check out some of my families' other adventures in the Midwest...

Photos: Michigan's Pictured Rocks National Lake Shore

See the beauty of Michigan's Pictured Rocks National Lake Shore

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