Milwaukee to Effigy Mounds National Monument

Welcome to Milwaukee, Wisconsin! Home to the Brewers, cheese curds and beer.

There is a lot the city has to offer including a great downtown river walk and plenty of delicious restaurants. I used my downtime between work meetings to explore a lot of the area. A variety of art and monuments line the walkways and open spaces throughout the city. Even on a chilly spring day, folks were out enjoying all there was to see. The city is very easy to get around. So bring a good pair of walking shoes. There is a lot to explore!

The Art Museum is beautifully lit at night. Since my hotel was right across the street, I got to see the building slowly turn colors over the course of the night. I did not have the opportunity to go in and see the inside, but I guess that is a reason to go back and visit again!

Now, if you are a baseball fan, a visit to Miller Park should definitely be on your list. I was lucky enough to cover Opening Day in Milwaukee during my trip. Even though it was the first week of April, it snowed. However, that did not stop the excitement for Opening Day. Fans were still outside tailgating and celebrating the start of the baseball season. If you do plan to visit Miller Park, be prepared to use a ride sharing service if you don’t have a car. The stadium is not near downtown.

The first thing I do when I find out I am heading to a new city is to see how close national parks are located. Yes, a true national park nerd here! While Milwaukee itself doesn’t have any national parks close by, there are several that are within a few hour drive. My first stop was in Madison to hike part of the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. From there, a two hour drive west led me to the Iowa border and the beautiful Effigy Mounds National Monument.

Nestled throughout the cliffs along the Mississippi River, Effigy Mounds NM offers quite the variety of activities. I spent the day hiking along the miles of trails throughout the park. While the park does offer incredible trails and views, the historical significance is also worth exploring. Effigy Mounds NM is home to around 200 Indian burial mounds. Many take the shape of animals, as you will see in the photos below.

These mounds range in size and are scattered throughout the park. One such mound is Little Bear Mound. Can you see the outline of the bear in the photo below? While bears and birds are the more popular of the mount shapes you will find, other common shapes include deer, bison, turtles and lynx.

The view from the burial mounds at the end of the trail. This is not a bad view to have for eternity.

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Follow along the journey


Follow along the journey.


Follow along the journey