Fall Colors at High Cliff State Park

By Kelly Ann Hekler, Convention Sales Manager

Fall colors are in full swing here in the Fox Cities and there’s no better way to enjoy them than a hike in High Cliff State Park.  Located along Lake Winnebago in Sherwood, it’s a short 20 minute drive from downtown Appleton.

High Cliff features spectacular scenery from the viewing tower near the Red Bird Trail and also at sea level on the Lime Kiln Trail.  As both a dog lover and a nature lover, High Cliff is perfect for my lifestyle!  I am able to take my dogs on long hikes along various trails, elevations, and scenery.  My personal favorite is the Lime Kiln Trail.  This trail starts where the old kilns are still standing and slowly winds down the lake.  My dogs are able to slip into the lake for a drink at various stops throughout the trail, making it perfect for them on a hot day.  This trail also features incredibly high ledge stone views that are just breathtaking!

Not the hiker?  Don’t worry, there’s still plenty to do!  With camping all over the park, a marina, playgrounds, and lots of paved roads… there’s something for everyone at High Cliff State Park!  The park is also full of old history.  For example, did you know that the whole park used to be a town?  It’s true!  Stop into the office at the park and the employees can tell you all kinds of stories with the pictures to prove it!  Even though I’m not much of a history buff, I found the stories fascinating!  There used to be a work horse there that would simply be let out of the stable in the morning and would walk the long trek up the hill to work and when the whistle blew at the end of the day, he would walk right back to his stable.  No one ever needed to take him, he knew the drill!  Also, the local bar burnt down in the town 3 times!  Car jumping was also a popular sport in the town.  People would come from miles around to watch cars fly over the high cliffs.  The stories about Chief Red Bird were also so interesting.  It is impossible to not appreciate the park once you’ve been there!

Visit http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/parks/name/highcliff/.  A $25 state park sticker would give you endless access to this and all other states around the country.  There are also very reasonable day passes available.  Head on out to High Cliff State Park and take in the beautiful fall colors before the leaves are all gone for the year!

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