This was our first hike of the year that felt more like a hike... rather than a walk. Madeline Island isn't very big, but does have a number of trails to explore and it's worth going there just for that. We decided to start with this one as it was close to the ferry when we arrived and we wanted to get our feet to the ground right away. The trail is only about 2 miles round trip - perhaps slightly longer if you take the Nucy Meech spur (as we did on the way out, but not on the way back).
Hike #: 6
Trail: Capser Trail
Location: Madeline Island, WI
Trail surface: dirt
While I've been counting paved trails as hikes so far as part of my 50 hikes, my brain really considers a trail made of earth to be a legitimate hike. While Torrey Pines was an earth surface, it was crowded with people. This trail was not, although we did see a couple other people and the local school kids.
Speaking of the local school kids, apparently they use this trail a lot and even built a little village with houses made of stone and tepee's made of branches and bark. We almost missed it, but you can find it near the start of the trail on the left by the benches that are in a circle. We spent quite a bit of time there with our 8 year old imagining all the fairies that must live there. We hiked down to the overlook and back and saw a couple deer, and smaller critters along the way. I was surprised how one deer stayed somewhat close to us, but I suppose they are used to people on the trail.
While this trail was fairly short and easy (great for kids), it made my heart sing. I really felt like I had escaped and was truly out in nature. The village houses and wild animals were all bonuses to the walk.
Check out my Madeline Island post to read more about our weekend camping trip here.