Elroy-Sparta Trail still a Wisconsin gem, but Gibraltar Rock fun too
By Steve Hill
Now is the time to begin fall leaf-viewing trips, and Gibraltar Rock, one of Wisconsin’s best places for scenic vistas, is just over an hour’s drive away.
Just northwest of Lodi and almost due south of the ferry crossing to Merrimac on the north shore of Lake Wisconsin, this state natural area is heavily visited. That’s because of its 200-foot cliffs topping a butte that is 1,234 feet above sea level and is an outlier of the Magnesian escarpment, one of three major north-south escarpments in Wisconsin.
Those heights provide spectacular views, and because Gibraltar is an outlier of the larger escarpment, it offers them in several different directions.
Along with hiking buddy Chris Sadler, I made a September trip to the rocks as part of our longer trek from Lodi to the ferry parking lot. We did run into plenty of folks on Gibraltar, but saw few on the rest of our five-hour, 11.7-mile trip, part of our continued efforts to see as much of the Ice Age Trail as we can.
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