Wisconsin is known for it’s outdoor recreation and the Wisconsin Dells, Baraboo, Reedsburg and La Valle area offer visitors a variety of recreational opportunities to choose from.
Fishing is one of the most popular outdoor sports activities in the Wisconsin Dells area, as well as ice fishing in the coldest months of the year.
Some of the best lake and river fishing can be found in and around the communities of Lake Delton, Baraboo (Devil’s Lake), Reedsburg (Baraboo River) and LaValle (Lake Redstone & Dutch Hollow Lake).
See our Wisconsin Fishing Page for more information.
In the spring, summer and fall, biking on the 400 State Trail and the many trail systems that run throughout the region, is another Wisconsin activity favored by many outdoor sports enthusiasts.
Camping, hiking and boating are favorite outdoor recreation choices for visitors to Devil’s Lake in Baraboo. (with skiing and snowboarding at Devil’s Head Ski Resort in Baraboo during the winter)
Wisconsin skiing and snowboarding at the Dells area ski resorts and ski hills is just as popular with all age groups and snowmobiling ranks as a top family-favorite winter recreational activity. (along with Wisconsin Dells indoor water parks and theme parks)
Devil’s Head, Cascade Mountain and Christmas Mountain Village are the preferred destinations for skiing enthusiasts during the winter season.
See our Ski Wisconsin Page for more information.
Wisconsin fishing hot spots in and around the Wisconsin Dells area include: Lake Redstone, Dutch Hollow Lake, Wisconsin River, Lower Dells, and the Castle Rock Dam to Nekoosa Dam (Castle Rock and Petenwell Lakes)
Wisconsin Lake Maps-
- Lake Redstone- LaValle, WI MAP
- Dutch Hollow Lake- LaValle, WI MAP
- Castle Rock Lake, WI- MAP
- Petenwell Lakes- MAP
For Wisconsin Fishing Guides see resource list below. Be sure to read our fishing articles written by Wisconsin Dells area fishing guide and expert, Mike Lobenstein.
Wisconsin Fishing Guides, Bait Shops, Fishing Licenses & Supplies-
- Hiking, Biking & Snowmobiling
Before jet airliners and divided highways, riding the 400 was the fast way from Chicago to the Twin Cities. The streamlined train made the trip in under 400 minutes, at times hitting 100 miles per hour. Today, the 400 is one of four interconnected rail bed trails that form a virtually continuous route more than 100 miles in length.
From the 400 trailhead in Reedsburg, you can connect with the Elroy-Sparta, the La Crosse River and the Great River State Trails, ending near Marshland on the Mississippi River. That’s 101 miles of rail/trail cruisin’.
The scenic 400 route is sprinkled with frequent small town rest stops. If you like to camp, you’ll find campgrounds at Lake Redstone County Park near La Valle, at Legion Park in Wonewoc, and at Schultz Park south of Elroy.
At Union Center, you can turn west on the Hillsboro State Trail 4.3 miles of more easy riding. As you pedal the 400 you’ll cross the sinuous Baraboo River eleven times. In places you’ll travel through a micro-climate of white pines that cling to rocky bluffs. Snowmobiles use the trail in the winter months. A unique feature of the 400 trail is a 7 mile horse trail which parallels the bike trail between Wonewoc and LaValle.
Address- 240 Railroad St., Reedsburg, WI 53959 (Chamber of Commerce)
Contact Information- Phone: 608-337-4775 Toll Free: 800-844-3507
- Devil’s Head Wisconsin- Devil’s Head Ski Resort in South Central Wisconsin attracts skiers and snowboarders of all skill levels because of its 500 vertical feet of excitement. Devil’s Head has a variety of perfectly groomed ski runs that sit on top of one of the highest mountains in Wisconsin. Winter vacationers visit this Wisconsin ski resort because it also offers a variety of day and night recreational outlets for all ages. Devil’s Head also has very comfortable ski/in-ski/out accommodations for just the right winter getaway. Downhill & Cross Country Skiing and Snowboarding. Skiing Info: 260 skiable acres on 500′ vertical Specs: Summit elevation: 995′; Base elevation: 495′. 16 Lifts: 3 quads, 1 triple, 6 doubles, 5 surface, 1 magic carpet. Longest Run: 8245′. Season: usually late November to mid-March. Night skiing 7 days. Rentals & Lessons.
- Cascade Mountain- One of our favorite wintertime Wisconsin attractions is Cascade Mountain, WI. Cascade Mountain Ski Resort features the Midwest’s only automatic snowmaking system, which allows for a mid-November opening. Great for the skiing enthusiast that can’t wait to get out on the slopes! Cascade is conveniently located between Madison, Wisconsin and Wisconsin Dells. Located off I-90/94 Exit 106, about 30 minutes north of Madison, Cascade Ski Resort has 27 runs on 160 acres. It’s visibility just off the freeway makes it a popular Wisconsin travel destination for outdoor winter recreation.
- Horseback Riding
- Natural Attractions
- Science & Nature Centers
- International Crane Foundation-
The only place in the world where you can see all 15 species of cranes. Guided tours, multi-media presentation, an amphitheater, and 100 acres of restored prairie. See whooping cranes – the rarest crane in the world. These beautiful and inspiring birds – some of the most ancient and endangered on earth – are set amidst acres of restored tall grass prairie, colorful wildflowers and tranquil wetlands. A must for nature enthusiasts of all ages as your visit supports ICF’s wetland and grassland conservation efforts. ADA accessible trails, guided & self guided tours, new African crane exhibits, family activities, interpreted walking trails, education center, and gift shop.
The I.C.F. is open daily from April 15th to October 31st, 9am-5pm
Address- E11376 Shady Lane Rd., Baraboo, WI 53913 View Map Here
Contact Information- Phone: 608-356-9462
Opened in 2007, the Leopold Center is the quintessential “green” building extolling the heritage of conservationist Aldo Leopold. Activities include guided tours of the Leopold “shack” and farm and tours of the Leopold Center’s “green” design and features.
The Leopold Center is open from May through October. Call for winter tour dates. Mon-Sat 10am-5pm
Wisconsin Deer Park-
Established in 1952. Set out on a family adventure to explore the Wisconsin Deer Park, enjoy a 4 block stroll through a 28-acre forest setting. Feed with your own hands many varieties of deer and wildlife. Since the animals are in various stages of their life cycles, you’ll be able to see them from very young to full maturity. The Wisconsin Deer Park not only offers a great deal of fun and relaxation but provides an educational opportunity as well.
Open May 5th – October (Call ahead)
Address- 583 Hwy 12, Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965 View Map Here
Contact Information- Phone: 608-253-2041 Website: www.wisdeerpark.com
Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue & Educational Center-
This center gives these cats a chance at a peaceful and happy life, and a chance for the public to learn about them, and the abuse that they endure elsewhere in captivity. Admission: $8 for adults; Seniors $6; $4 for children(6-12). We will be closed if it is raining, chance of storms, or extreme heat 90 degrees or higher.
Open from 10am-5pm daily during season.
- Boating & Canoeing
- Horseback Riding
- Natural Attractions
- Golf Courses
- Scenic Tours & Boat Tours
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