27 November 2021 / Wisconsin

Rib Mountain State Park at Wausau, Wisconsin

Rib Mountain State Park at Wausau, Wisconsin

Back in 2015, my son and I took a trip to Wisconsin to visit family. It had been some time since our last visit. Up to then, we were mostly making trips to Wisconsin for funerals. It would be a nice change to go just for the sake of going. We stopped at several places on that trip. Today, I am sharing about our trip to Rib Mountain State Park. 

The decision to go to Rib Mountain State Park was to visit the tallest mountain in Wisconsin, which happened to be on our way to Superior, Wisconsin. I suppose this is the time to mention that our goal was to drive from one side of the USA to the other, which required us going to Superior. 

Not The Tallest Mountain in Wisconsin

We later discovered that Rib Mountain is not the tallest mountain in Wisconsin. The honor goes to Timms Hill, which is not even called a mountain. Oddly enough, from the top of Timms Hill, you can see Rib Mountain. But, visiting Timms Hill would only get us an extra 9 feet of elevation. It wasn't worth the detour. 

Rib Mountain State Park plaque
Rib Mountain State Park plaque

Going Up The Mountain

As you might expect, going up a mountain involves a steep incline. The road to the summit, fortunately, is mostly straight from the park entrance. Driving a Prius, you can expect to mostly go up on engine power. Near the top, you must find a parking space to walk to the observation tower. 

The trail from the parking area to the observation tower is wooded with some large stones along the way. This is itself is rather scenic and worth exploring. If we had more time, we could have walked some of the trails. 

Father and Son Portrait
Father and Son Portrait

We were fortunate that another visitor offered to take a photo of us together. Despite what you might see in the news about Wisconsin, most of the people are compulsively nice like Canadians. 

Fortunately, the lookout tower is not difficult to find. The trail is well marked. And, the tower is obviously at the top. 

Rib Mountain Observation Tower
Rib Mountain Observation Tower

Going up the observation tower involves going up some flights of wooden stairs. In order to peer over the tree tops, this is the only way to go up. The structure is made up almost entirely out of wood. 

At the top of the tower, you can expect to see all around the mountain. They even have binoculars to see things in the distance. 

Magnus taking a break from the climb
Magnus taking a break from the climb
Magnus looks through binoculars on the observation tower
Magnus looks through binoculars on the observation tower
Rib Mountain View Description
Rib Mountain View Description
View below the Rib Mountain observation tower
View below the Rib Mountain observation tower

About Rib Mountain State Park

The Rib Mountain State Park is a beautiful place to visit. It offers many trails for walking and picnics. There is an amphitheater and playgrounds. This is one of those great places to spend a summer day with the family. In the winter, there is even hunting and trapping. It would be worth a return visit at a more leisurely pace. 

From what I could see, the north side of Rib Mountain offers a view of ski slopes. Our family doesn't know about skiing. There isn't much call for that in South Texas. But, from the tower, you can see the ski lifts. 

If ever we do visit Wisconsin again, it may be worthwhile to visit Wausau and Rib Mountain State Park at a more leisurely pace. 

Descending Rib Mountain

In order to reach Superior before sunset, we could not stay too long at Rib Mountain. So, our descent from the tower was swift. Walking back to our car was a bit more leisurely. Driving down the mountain does require that you put your vehicle in first gear, or "B" on a Prius. You don't want to overheat your breaks going down. 

Recommendation

If you love nature and hiking, I do recommend Rib Mountain State Park in Wausau, Wisconsin. With over 100 acres, there is plenty for a family to see and do. 

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