Hiking Devils Lake West Bluff


Prospect Point at Devil's Lake
Prospect Point at Devil's Lake

Devil's Lake State Park keeps company with the Midwest's greatest scenic and recreation areas including Starved Rock in Illinois and Turkey Run in Indiana. These state parks surely would have been national parks had they not already been protected and preserved for the enjoyment of the people. Devil's Lake in Baraboo WI has always been considered a natural wonder and a playground for outdoorsmen.  The park offers camping, fishing, two beaches, expansive picnic areas, rock climbing, bouldering, scuba diving, boating and sailing, and some of the finest hiking in the Midwest.

The West Bluff trail is similar to the East Bluff trails, a bit easier, but no less spectacular. The return trip of the loop route described here is much easier, flat, paved, and follows along the shoreline. This makes half of your hike very easy, but the climb to the Prospect Point on the West Bluff is a level 4 rated mountaineering climb. Overall, this route which combines the West Bluff trail with the Tumbled Rocks trail is a complete loop that spans approximately 3.5 miles from your starting point at the parking lot. It will take about 1.5 hours to complete - more if you take time to enjoy the panoramic views from atop the bluff. So, bring a bottle of water and enjoy the trail.





Recommended Trail Route



West Bluff Trail - Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trailhead
Enter from Devil's Lake at the main entrance (North Entrance) or Baraboo side. Park at the main beach and waterfront parking lot. Walk west from the parking lot through the picinic areas. You will note that there are two paved paths running parrallel to the beach  - one is closer to the beach and the other is set further back in the picnic area. You will miss the trailhead to the West Bluff trail if you take the path closer to the beach, while the one set further back will lead directly to the trail head. The one closer to the beach leads to trailhead for the Tumbled Rocks trail.



Tumbled Rocks Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
Tumbled Rocks Trail

Proceed to ascend on the West Bluff trail. You will have a steep climb to the upper parking lot. The trail becomes steeper from here. From your start point till you reach Prospect Point you will climb continuously for approximately 3/4 of a mile. This is a level 4 rated mountaineering climb. Prospect point is located about half way along the bluff and you will immediately begin to descend after reaching prospect point.

The West Bluff trail ends at a T-intersection with S. Lake Drive and a dirt road. Follow the dirt road towards the lake. You will pass by a few cottages on the lake front. Keep going and you will end up on the Tumbled Rocks trail. This trail is an easy paved and mostly flat trail following the lake front.

You will have completed a 3 1/2 mile loop at end of the Tumbled Rocks trail.


Devil's Lake State Park




West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trail
Another beautiful day at Paradise Pond ... Paradise Pond? So the quote goes, if this place was named Paradise Pond no one would have come. The devil in the name Devil's Lake was a tourist luring gimmick.

You might be inspired to spin your own yarns about Devil's Lake. It's just that kind of a place. There isn't a straight tree to be found among the tumbled bluffs overlooking the Devil's Lake. It's knotted, and ancient, and impressed with laughing colors. You'll find rocks and crags of every shape, and if your imagination is lively you'll be able to see all sorts of pictograms emerge as you gaze down from perches aloft.


West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park



Directions and Trail Map




Admission: State Parks Vehicle Sticker

Address for your GPS: S5975 Park Rd, Baraboo, WI 53913
| coordinates: 43.434496, -89.739531 |

From Milwaukee2 Hours
From Madison45 Minutes
From Green Bay2.5 Hours
From Wausau2 Hours
From Minneapolis3.5 Hours
From Chicago3 Hours


Photos



West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park

Tumbled Rocks Trail - Devil's Lake State Park
Tumbled Rocks Trail - Devil's Lake State Park

West Bluff from the North Beach at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff from the North Beach at Devil's Lake State Park

West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park


West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park

West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park
West Bluff Trail at Devil's Lake State Park






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