This past weekend, our family visited Marinette County, in Northern Wisconsin. What a beautiful area! It was kind of a blessing in disguise that the cell service was almost non-existent. It allowed us to truly “unplug” and focus solely on taking in all of the beautiful sights and sounds of the Northwoods.
We stayed in a family cabin just off of highway 8 outside of Dunbar, WI. This was a perfect centralized location to take in some of the 14 waterfalls which are primarily located within the county park system. We decided to start our tour at 18-foot falls. This waterfall is located a little off the beaten path, but was easy to find when we followed the signs. Once we parked our vehicle, the falls was just a short 300-yard hike. You can choose either the extreme or moderate route. We went with the moderate since we had 5 kids doing the hike with us!
The falls were lovely- with great views from both the top as well as the bottom. If you choose to view any of these falls, please use caution- especially if bringing children along with you. The water is moving very fast and dangerous drop-offs and cliffs are abundant.
A short drive from 18-foot falls we found 12-foot falls. This waterfall is located within one of the Marinette County parks, and required a $5 fee to enter. Make sure you bring cash! The fee is paid by putting the money in an envelope, and filling out the required information. 12-foot falls is located right next to the parking lot in a park-like setting. It was easy for us to view from many different angles! We were also able to view 8-foot falls by hiking up the trail 250 yards. It was a hot day, and many people were getting in the water below the falls to cool off. What a unique experience!
We decided that our next stop would be Dave’s falls- which is also a part of the Marinette County Park system, and was only about a 20-minute drive from where we were. We were pleasantly surprised to learn that the $5 fee that we paid to view 12-foot falls also covered Dave’s Falls County Park. Once you pay the fee, it is good at all county parks the same day.
Dave’s Falls County Park was absolutely breathtaking. From the parking lot, it was just a short hike to view the main falls. We cannot stress enough again to use caution and make sure that you have your children supervised when visiting this park. There are many dangerous areas. Dave’s Falls Park offers some great rugged-terrain trails that you can hike to take in some scenic views. Our kids also enjoyed wading in the water below the falls. Make sure you check out the footbridge while you’re there, it is a must see!
Our last stop was Long Slide Falls County Park- about a 25-minute drive North up 141. Again part of the county park system, there is no need to pay the $5 fee again as long as you visit within the same day. This was our favorite falls of them all. There are two falls about a mile and a half apart- Long Slide Falls, and Smalley Falls. Both were breathtaking, but be sure to wear your hiking shoes! The path going to the bottom of Long Slide Falls is especially steep!
Overall, we would recommend all of these falls in Marinette County. They are a great way to go off-grid and really take in nature. Even though we visited on a weekend, none of them were that busy! While you visit, please be sure to respect the parks and take your trash with you, so others can enjoy as well!
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