I’ve compiled a list of my favorite fall photography destinations. The links go to additional photos on my website.
Blue Hills – Drive through the back roads of the Blue Hills east of Rice Lake and you will find beautiful fall colors.
Crex Meadows – In October and November you will find thousands of migrating Sandhill Cranes.
Devils Lake State Park – Beautiful fall colors.
Devil’s Lake State Park
Gibraltar Rock – Overlooks the Wisconsin River valley.
Gile Flowage – An often overlooked gem. The fall colors turn in the Hurley area early.
Gile Flowage Sunrise
Parfreys Glen – A beautiful walk up a small stream through giant boulders.
Pewits Nest -The best of the Wisconsin State Natural Areas.
Parfrey’s Glen is Wisconsin’s first State Natural area and is the most visited state natural area. We have visited the area a number of times. In the 90’s the area was accessible using wood covered trails and bridges. These were washed out in the flood of 2010 and have not been replaced. Several times when we stopped at the area it was closed. It is now a more natural area with the bridges and trails gone.
In my earlier visits I could never see why people were so excited about the area. The man made trails seemed to end at a viewing platform which didn’t provide much of a view. The best part of the Glen was beyond the viewing platform.
My wife and I had driven past the area the day before but it was packed with cars so we moved on. The next morning was very foggy so we decided to drive back and found the parking area deserted. We had the place all to ourselves.
This time we came prepared with our knee boots that would allow us to traverse the stream the runs through the glen. Hikers wishing to make to the waterfall at the upper end of the glen must navigate a stream and climb over the large boulders that populate the bottom of the glen.
On this particular morning the glen was spectacular with the fall colors and green moss. The heavy fog provided more of an even light that as opposed to the harsh light on a sunny day. The trail was a bit of a challenge with the frequent crossing of the stream and the large boulders.
When we reached the waterfall we still had the place to ourselves. Just as we were finishing up another person arrived. I mentioned to my wife that this was a popular area for the University of Wisconsin. I had just finished mentioning it when the first of about fifty geology 101 students appeared. They were ill prepared for the rugged trail.
More photos from the day can be found on my website.