Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Need to Know
There is parking available on the south end of the trail on the right side of Highway K as you are going north.
There is also a parking lot on Emerald Drive that you can use to connect with the trail via a side trail. It is located about a mile south of the northern end of the trail.
This is a moderately trafficked trail that travels through a nice variety of ecosystems. There is a great deal of exposure on this trail while traveling through prairies, so on a hot or rainy day this might not be the best choice.
The southern end of this trail starts where the Monches segment ends at the busy intersection of County Highways Q and K. The first section of the trail starts in a pine forest, a rarity in southeastern Wisconsin. You then plunge down and hike alongside a wide and still section of the Oconomowoc River.
After a short incline, you hike along the perimeter of a prairie and then through a short stretch of more pines. The trail then joins with Emerald Drive, a quiet scenic highway. Take a right at the junction and follow the road for about 0.5 miles. The trail starts again on the right side of the road where a brief climb leads you to more prairies and a view of Holy Hill.
The wildflowers here in the late summer are truly spectacular. You are taken through the woods for a while, and then travel along Emerald Drive for a second time for about 0.2 miles. The rest of the trail mostly travels through rolling prairies.
There are a few junctions with other trails at this point-keep an eye out for the yellow IAT blaze and you'll be fine. After switchbacking up a forested hill, this section ends on Emerald Drive about a mile from where the Holy Hill segment begins.
Shared By: Brian Bizub