Midday detours were complete and I was back at Interstate State Park for part 2 of my visit. Goal for the afternoon was to hike all the remaining trails which I was able to complete minus one or two small connecting paths.
Eagle Peak Trail
Starting from my campsite, I walked through the parking area to the Eagle Peak trailhead (directly adjacent to campsite 69 – nice!). The trail is a short 0.8 miles to the top and not very difficult. Views are “nice” but mostly just dense forest this time of year.
Once at the top you can get an obstructed view of the river valley, but again brush is very thick and green right now which limits what you can see.
Eagle Peak Trail ends at the Pines Group Camp parking area (same spot where the Silverbrook Trail begins that I hiked this morning). From here you can also take the Skyline Trail which is the direction I continued my loop. Lots of neon green foliage here. Doesn’t seem as many hikers use this trail so if you are looking for solitude this is the place.
Spotted what looks to be a 2-year-old whitetail doe trying to figure out if I was Samsquanch or not.
The Ice Age National Scenic Trail crosses over with this path nearest the visitor center and is marked by the customary yellow blazes.
The path here is well maintained and tunnel views make the trail look like it goes on forever (wishful thinking).
Horizon Rock Trail
From the visitor center, the trail hooks back west on a short 0.5 mile connector called Horizon Rock Trail. Still running along the Ice Age Trail here.
The trail runs along a finger atop the ridge. The sun today was bright but only playfully shown through the canopy in small bursts.
Once at Horizon Rock you are treated to fantastic views down to the St. Croix River valley. Would be an excellent spot to check out fall foliage colors.
Lake O’ The Dalles Trail (Southern Half)
Continuing along the loop, I hooked back up with the southern section of the Lake O’ The Dalles Trail. The sun was starting to drop on the horizon casting dramatic shadows and contrast everywhere.
Lake O’ The Dalles was very calm at this part of the day with nearly no wind. Looking back across the lake towards the swimming area was almost mirror still.
Didn’t quite time the sunset right for my journey but colors were starting to pop.
Finally at the end of my loop was the road leading into the campgrounds. Time for dinner & rest for tomorrow’s adventures.
Here’s a short compilation video from Interstate. Definitely plan to shoot more for 2019 so I can make these longer than 2 minutes.
Looks more impressive on the map than it really is, but still a nice 4.5 mile loop. I broke my trip into 2 separate parts but you could make it all in one shot if you wanted to. Would gladly do it again!Lat = 45.3912163 , Long = -92.6560287 -- Show at Google Maps