It's all about the Ice Age! (and no...not the film). The Ice Age happened more than 12,000 years ago (that’s a really long time!) and a huge flow of glacial ice sculpted an incredible scene across Wisconsin.
The Ice Age National Scenic Trail is over 1,000 miles of trail which follows the edge of this ancient glacier, What's very cool, is that the trail is entirely in the state of Wisconsin, and really highlights how our planet is sculpted and changed to what we know today.
No - this isn't just a path through the woods to follow. It's an incredible place where kids can learn about geology, geography, and natural wonders of this world. Families come to hike and snowshoe the trail, and it's a place where you can even backpack and cross country ski!
Make sure you plan your journey before you start! There are a number of different places to start the trail, but more than 600 miles are segments, and more than 50 miles are unmarked.
There are some great day hikes you can do, and great camping trips too if you want to extend your experience.
Along the way, you'll experience amazing sites like runnel channels, lakes, kames, ice-walled-lake plains...and a whole bunch of geographic features you might not know about now, but will be experts on by the end of the trip!
It really will take you back in time, with sandstone rock outcrops up to 550 million years old, 1.6 billion year old quartzite and deposits left from up to 25,000 years ago. A great history lesson out in nature!
Have a look at the Ice Age Trail Atlas and the Guidebook which really help with trails, starting points, and great tips for your experience.
Take lots of things for energy, and lots of water!
There are hundreds of trailheads and access points located along the 1,200 mile route of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. Some of these are located near established communities, state and local parks with facilities. Access points are generally located every few miles, however, in remote areas they can be more than 10 miles apart.
The whole trail is an education! They assist with one-on-one classroom projects, school presentations, and really help students in learning all about this incredible history.
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Ice Age National Scenic Trail