Old Wagon Road Trail (Part 2 of series)

Old Wagon Road Trail

(Google Maps)Originally built to carry wagons from the bluff tops to Walnut Eddy. This heavily wooded trail starts across the road from the basketball/tennis courts..*
*Previous description from: Wyalusing State Park Visitor Newspaper, 2010

Following is an unofficial trail description.
Trail Rating Guide:
  • 1=walking on a level paved road.
  • 10=Walking on an unmarked trail up a bluff, covered with leaves, poison ivy, tree roots and boulders the size of a house.
Old Wagon Road Trail

Distance: 1.6 miles (modified loop)
Time: 30-60 minutes
Difficulty: 2.5-6.5
Bathrooms: located at Wisconsin Ridge Campground.
Parking: lot across from the tennis courts.

The Wagon Road Trail partially follows a wagon road once used by pioneers. The original wagon road began at a small village, Walnut Eddy, located on the south side of the Wisconsin River. Historical information can be found in Wyalusing History, The Park, the People, the Land by Paul Kosir. Purchase the book at the Park Visitor Center.

This trail is the last one to be reworked by the Wisconsin State Trail Crew since the heavy rains of July, 2008. The trail was placed back into commission in late fall of 2010.

Description:

Terminus - Old Wagon Road
The trail head, across from the tennis courts, is marked by a large wooden sign. The dirt covered trail is a long gradual slope to the Wisconsin River Valley. This part of the trail is a little over 0.1 mile long. It was, and still is, wide enough for farm wagons. After a rain, the trail can be slippery. Mosquitoes are plentiful in late summer. A barricade marks  the end of this segment old wagon road. Prior to 2008, Wagon Road Trail continued towards the Wisconsin River.

Cross the small ravine on flat rocks. During rains, a small stream flows between the rocks. The flat rocks were placed across the ravine by the Wisconsin trail crew.

The next segment of the trail is a narrow foot path covered by rocks and, occasionally, tree roots. This segment follows the path of Wyalusing State Park's older foot trails. The trail is relatively steep. Difficulty level is 5.0. This segment of the trail continues an ascent to Yellow Thunder Point. Standing on the ledge of Yellow Thunder Point, one looks over the Wisconsin River, east, towards the highway 18 bridge.


Looking toward Yellow Thunder Point
From Yellow Thunder Point, the trail turns west and continues to climb. The trail tread is loose rocks. In the fall this segment is covered with leaves which can be slippery after a rain or early morning dew. The trail end is marked by a rock picnic shelter, called The Knob. Difficulty level 5-6.5

From The Knob follow either of the Wisconsin Ridge Campground roads past the concession stand.

Continue following the road back to the tennis court parking lot.

If walking the trail in the reverse direction (starting at the eastern end of Wisconsin Ridge Campground), be very careful of the descent from The Knob to Yellow Thunder Point. Slippery leaves or loose rocks may be difficult.

Additional Photos