Summerlike temperatures and a blue sky…the day just begged for us to hike!
Start in the Middle
The Ice Age Trail Parnell segment is a loooong at 13.9 miles according to the Ice Age Trail Guidebook. Last time we started from the southern end at Mauthe Lake and headed north. To explore a different section, we started in the middle of the segment this time. Early on I saw tons of different wildflowers including a pink Trillium! Interesting greenery on the forest floor kept my eyes looking all around. There was so much new growth and I was trying to take it all in.
Smells Like Summer
We meandered through more lush forest and Kurt declared it “Smells like summer”. Scents of wildflowers, grasses, and other plants filled the air. As we passed by some small lakes, we were lucky the bugs weren’t out yet. I made a mental note to bring bug spray next hike.
Felt like Summer
After a few up hills and down hills we were feeling the heat more. Maxie was slowing down and we needed to start looking for a place to take a break. The woods opened up to a small area of Wild Geranium. They hugged the path on either side making it the perfect photo spot for Maxie.
Pop a Squat
The trail climbed a bit higher and we felt a subtle breeze in the air while keeping our eyes peeled for a log or clearing to pop the blanket down and refuel. Maxie has come to love hiking at lunchtime because she gets a bit spoiled with snacks. But hey, she is hiking too and needs the fuel! Interestingly enough, we have figured out she loves orange, yellow, and green peppers (but not red..too funny)!
The Way Back
On a new trail, the way out is always so interesting and I continuously wonder what will be around the next bend. But, on the way back I noticed things I hadn’t before. I looked down and saw a black and yellow millipede called a Pleuroloma flavipes. So cool to see it crawl across the rock. Wondering how I knew the name? You guessed it…I got a new app! The Picture Insect App works the same as the plant identifier by just taking a photo.
Cheese and Inventions
Driving home, we stopped at one of our new favorite stores, Cedar Valley Cheese Store. Their string cheese is amazing, sounds a little weird to be so excited about string cheese, but it’s just great quality. We’ve tried a few other kinds of cheese too and they have been delicious. What goes great with cheese….beer! I had heard of a brewery in Port Washington, near Lake Michigan and somehow our vehicle veered a wee bit east to go check it out. Inventors Brewpub exceeded my expectations. We walked up and so many folks were outside enjoying the beer and sunshine. It was such a chill atmosphere and Maxie got to meet a few other dog friends. I had the Witbier Von Braun and Kurt had the Edison IPA, which was so good we went back for one more!
And that, my friends, is today’s Tail from the Trail.
Trail: Mix of dirt and rock
Trail type: Out and Back (we did about 3 miles each way for a total of 6)
Parking: no sticker required
The parking lot is tucked away in trees and we missed the first time we drove by. There is not a sign. Once you park, walk to the road and head east. It is just about ¼ mile down the road to the trail. The Ice Age Trail goes north and south from the road and we chose to go north (left) to see new areas of the segment.
Bathroom facilities: Nope, just nature’s wide-open spaces.
Dog Friendly: Yes, must be leashed at all times. BYOB Bring Your Own (Poop) Bag! I did not see any bag dispensers. Please carry out your dog’s poop!
Dogs are allowed outside in the beer garden.
Inventors Brewpub has a picturesque location across from a park and Lake Michigan just on the other side of the park. The building itself is historical. In 1847, Lakeside Brewery opened one year before Wisconsin became a state. Other breweries used the location and finally, the American Legion took it over. Find out more history on the website. We did not eat that day but the food looked amazing. They even have poutine, basically fries with gravy or other toppings. YUM!