Friday, May 13, 2016

Camping at Hartman Creek State Park

Why do we return to camp again and again at Hartman Creek State Park? The park provides a great launch point for hiking the Hartman Creek Segment of the Ice Age Trail and canoeing on the Waupaca Chain O' Lakes. The park also has some nice trails for mountain bikes. The park is located west of Waupaca on Hartman Creek Road, south of State Highway 54 and north of State Highway 22. Due to our hectic work schedules and to much to do, we had only one night to camp and enjoy the fresh air.

Arriving on a Saturday afternoon, we set up camp and headed down to Allen Lake to take our daughter fishing. For the first time ever there were no fish around. She quickly became disappointed and tried a new spot. There, she caught her line in the tree and cracked her fiberglass fishing rod when she gave it a good tug. With a shorter fishing pole in tow, we headed back to camp to build a fire and roast some hotdogs and marshmallows.  Dad decided to put up his hammock, so she of course took it over as her school reading spot until sundown. We enjoyed the fire and a great night of sleep in the fresh spring air.

In the early morning, I walked from the campground to the Ice Age Trail and headed south to hike part of the Hartman Creek Segment. Not much for new miles to record, mostly
backtracking over previously hiked turf. Anyhow, the nice thing about heading south on this stretch of trail, the trail runs downhill, the backtrack runs uphill. If you are shuttling the Hartman Creek Segment, do yourself a favor and start at the North end of the segment.

When I returned to camp, I cooked a nice Mother's Day breakfast of eggs, onion bagels, and bacon. Our daughter ate oatmeal. What a nice surprise, my family had a nice gift waiting for me - a camp stove to replace my 20+ year old stove with the gas nozzle plugged with corrosion and a microwave dish zapping bacon in place of frying it. After a nice walk to look at the water and swing on the swings, we packed up camp and headed down the highway for a Mother's Day visit with Grandma.


Trail Conditions -  Partly sunny, 41°F (5°C) but warmed later in the morning.

Difficulty - Moderate rolling hills.

Location - Campground at the Hartman Creek State Park near Waupaca, Wisconsin south of State Highway 54 and north of State Highway 22.

Highlights - Saw several deer on the Ice Age Trail, a number of blue jays, and many wood violets.

Total Official Ice Age Trail Miles Completed to Date - Total official Ice Age Trail distance completed 156 miles (250 km). 

Trip Menu:

Dinner: Carrots, grapes, fire roasted baked potatoes and hotdogs

Breakfast: Bacon, eggs, bagels, oatmeal, clementines

Snacks: Cashews, beef jerky, marshmallows, fruit

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