The ice cave at Wildcat Mountain State Park north-west of Devil’s Lake is quite a draw every winter. This time of year, the cave has turned to pillars that take on various shapes as the meltwater drops down from above to carve the ice into ever-changing sculptures.
Ice caves and seeps have become a popular winter outdoor attraction in Wisconsin over the last few years. They are a beautiful excuse to put on your snowshoes and go exploring. In addition to our local spot at Mirror Lake State Park, some of the more popular areas (Outside of the Apostle Islands of course!) are located in the Kickapoo Valley near the villages of La Farge and Ontario. Both the Kickapoo Valley Reserve and Wildcat Mountain State Park have some cool flows. Wildcat’s Ice Cave is easily the most accessible being at the end of a less-than-a mile-long-trail.
We had an opportunity to visit with our friends over at Wildcat State Park yesterday. (The park is about an hour drive from Devil’s Lake.) In addition to checking out the the overlooks and learning more about the trails for a future blog post, I took the opportunity to go see how the ice cave was doing. I’m glad I did. It’s actually pretty cool right now. If you let your imagination run wild, you can see all sorts of images in the remaining ice from dragons to witches to dinosaurs! Of course at the rate the water is dropping from above, I don’t expect the ice to be around much longer..
*Click image above to enlarge.
If you’re still looking for open campsites for summer you should check out Wildcat Mountain State Park. Located right next to the Kickapoo Valley Reserve, Wildcat Mountain has some amazing trails (For people and horses!) and spectacular vistas. They are located on the “family-friendly” Kickapoo River with 3 outfitters in nearby Ontario, WI. The park is also on the Elroy-Sparta Bike Trail.
I’m told they still have reservation openings this summer so if you are still looking… Reserve At Wildcat.
Oh and by the way, I’m told this old “wildcat” example of bad taxidermy is being retired. I don’t know, I think it should be the park mascot and placed in the main office. Poor thing deserves that much! Looks like a good excuse for a selfie to me!