Description - For more than a million years, in at least four major periods of glacial advances, ice covered much of Canada and the northern United States. These four glacial stages, Nebraskan, Kansan, Illinoian, and Wisconsinan, are named for their most southerly advances. The Wisconsinan covered much of the northern United States from the Atlantic coast to the Rocky Mountains as recently as 12,000 years ago. Nowhere is the evidence of the glaciers better preserved than across Wisconsin. The Ice Age National Scientific Reserve was established in 1971 to preserve select glacial landforms and landscapes. The Reserve, part of the National Park System, consists of nine units administered by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
Copyright: - US National Park Service
Ice Age National Scenic Trail
- The Ice Age Reserve consists of 9 units across Wisconsin. By car you can visit more than 1 unit in a day. Horicon Marsh, Kettle Moraine, and Campbellsport Drumlins; or Devil's Lake and Mill Bluff, for example.
The nine units of the Ice Age National Scientific Reserve include Two Creeks Buried Forest, Kettle Moraine, Campbellsport Drumlins, Horicon Marsh, Cross Plains, Devil's Lake, Mill Bluff, Chippewa Moraine and Interstate.
Two Creeks Buried Forest is located 12 miles north of Two Rivers featuring buried forest and Lake Michigan. It is not yet in operation. More information may be obtained by contacting Point Beach State Forest at 920-794-7480.
Kettle Moraine is approximately 20 miles west of Sheboygan featuring kames, eskers, kettles, and interlobate moraine. The Kettle Moraine State Forest offers an array of outdoor recreation from swimming and hiking, to picnicking and skiing. Call 262-626-2116 for specifics.
Campbellsport Drumlins is 3 miles west of Campbellsport. Drumlins (elongated gravel hill) is the glacial feature. It is not yet in operation. Scenic driving is enjoyed along the River Road Route (R-82). For more information about the unit call 262-626-2116.
Horicon Marsh is approximately 2 miles northeast of Horicon featuring extinct glacial lake, wildlife, canoeing, hiking, and nature programs. Call 920-387-7860 for a free brochure.
Cross Plains is located 3 miles east of Cross Plains in the Driftless Area; subglacially formed gorge. Hiking and nature study are available, however, the area is not yet in operation. More information may be obtained by contacting Governor Nelson State Park at 608-831-3005.
Devil's Lake is 3 miles south of Baraboo featuring , Devil's Lake, terminal moraine, and purple Baraboo quartzite. Full array of developed park facilities include camping, boating, and interpretive programs. Contact Devil's Lake State Park at 608-356-8301 for further details.
Mill Bluff is located several miles west of New Lisbon off Interstates 90 & 94. Glacial features include a unique 203-foot bluff that is flat-topped in nature and rises abruptly from surrounding flat, sand plain. Day and overnight facilities available at Mill Bluff State Park, 608-337-4775.
Chippewa Moraine is situated 6 miles north of Bloomer containing kettle lakes and ponds, stagnant ice terrain, and ice-walled lake plains. A variety of recreations may be enjoyed year-round including an impressive interpretive center with dozens of natural history displays such as mammal mounts, pelts, live fish tanks, beautiful nature photography, bird exhibits, fur trader's clothing, a glacial video, and much more. Call 715-967-2800 for details.
Interstate is adjacent to the City of St. Croix Falls, commonly called the Dalles of St. Croix, meaning cut by glacial meltwaters. Two hundred foot basalt sheer cliffs with huge rock resembling human profiles are the hallmark. The glacier carved Dalles includes Devil's Chair, Lion's Head and Turk's Head. Call Interstate State Park at 715-483-3747 for details including a schedule of interpretive programs.
Recreation - The study of natural history attracts millions to the Ice Age National Scientific Reserve. Hiking, camping, sightseeing, canoeing and auto travel are just of a few of the enjoyments possible at the 9 units.
Climate - Southwest Wisconsin has four distinct seasons with warm summers and long winters. January's average temperature is above 16 degrees F (-9 degrees C). Average July temperature is 85 degrees F (29 degrees C). During summer, temperatures can climb to above 90 degrees F (32 degrees C). The area's average yearly precipitation ranges from 32-34". Annual snowfalls in the Southwest Region can range from 20 - 40". Dressing in layers is a good way to remain comfortable in Wisconsin.
Ice Age National Scientific Reserve is located in Dundee, which is approximately 15 miles southeast of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.