View Full Version : Section Hike Kettle Moraine North this weekend

06-11-2018, 22:53
Going to get out this weekend. Think we are going to start at Butler Lake and Flynn's State Natural Area and walk south to Paradise Road Trail head over 2 1/2 days. About 30 miles.

Anyone know if there are any restrictions to overnight parking at either trail head?

06-17-2018, 12:13
To answer my own question, Yes there are restrictions...

Our plan was to leave a vehicle at the Paradise Road trail head at the south end of West Bend and then drive up to Butler Lake and Flynn's Spring trail head north of Kewaskum to start the hike. No overnight parking sign at Paradise road meant our plan had to change. No parking on the city streets in that area, but about .5 from the trail head is a Walmart. The Walmart had signs prohibiting RV and Tractor Trailer parking so we went in and checked at the service desk to make sure we were ok. They were more than happy to let us park there and the service manager said that if we left them the license number, she would check on it.

We parked, transferred gear to the other vehicle and headed north. The Butler Lake and Flynn's spring trail head is a state forest use area with a fee of $5 a day, I have a state park and forest admission sticker that covers me. $25 a year gets you into any state forest or park.

We started off around 4:30 and hiked the 6.5 miles to the Mauthe Lake campground. The trail dumps into the sites with no RV hookups and there were a few open sites so we setup camp across from the pit toilets. We built a fire in the fire ring and made dinner. Its was beautiful cool night. Next morning we got up around 5:30 to clear skys and made breakfast, then packed up. Getting ready to hit the trail about 6:30 and we noticed some dark clouds to the west which prompted me to check the weather on my phone. Radar showed that a storm front was going to hit soon. We walked for two hours before it hit, and because we were undercover of the forest canopy, none of the rain made it to the ground for about 20 minutes. Rain eventually soaked the canopy and then us. we walked 2 hours in a steady but light rain and took refuge at trail shelter #1 and had lunch. It stopped raining and temps dropped so changed shirt and put on a fleece. We didn't see anyone on the trail.

Nothing was going to dry and with the cool temps, we headed out the 4 miles to the Otten Creek Distributed Camping Area. The coolness didn't last, the sun came out and so did the humidity and we stripped off the fleeces and rolled up sleeves. Temps went up about 10 degree's. The forest was a sauna. We made it to the camping area around 3:00 and setup camp. The breeze picked up and helped us dry out. Temps were very comfortable for the evening. The weather report indicated 40% chance of rain, but sky looked clear and nothing on the radar. We did not see anyone on the trail the whole day. We hit the sack about 8:30 and about 10:00 the storms hit, Thunderstorms all night kept me awake. I slept soundly between the lighting and thunder fronts but did not get much sleep Friday night.

We had 11 miles to go on Saturday and the temp was supposed to hit the 90's so planned to get up at 5:00 and beat the heat. 5:00 came way to early but we got up packed the wet tents and got going. after about .5 miles, we had a 2.5 mile roadwalk. The country roads were mostly north south and lightly traveled so we were in the shade and made quick work to the next trail section. The next section follows the powerlines east west, and the west end, where we entered was overgrown and due to the high grass and from the rain the night before, we got soaked from foot to hip. So much for the dry socks I had put on this morning. We made it to the Glacial Blue Hills recreation area, a West Bend city park north of the city. It is a gorgeous area with hiking and mountain biking. A beautiful walk in the woods. We passed some hikers and trail runners in this park, the first people we have seen on this hike. Hike the two+ miles to the Culvers restaurant were we filled up on water using their garden hose. I had hoped to arrive when they were open, but we were almost 2 hours early.

A short road walk took us to the next 4 mile section through the Ridge Run County park and the Paradise road trail head. We walked the last .5 to the truck parked at Walmart. Great weekend and great hike.

Midwest Mike
06-17-2018, 16:26
Thanks for the report. i love the northern unit.

06-17-2018, 21:54
My pleasure, Really enjoyed the hike through the beautiful forests.