CamRock County Park

Between Cambridge and Rockdale, both of which are roughly 20 miles southeast of Madison, is CamRock County Park. It’s a nice park that’s actually bigger than nearby Lake Kegonsa State Park and has three main loop trails you can hike. On 4/22/24, after our second visit to Lake Kegonsa SP, we hiked the trail attached to Shelter #2.

CamRock Park sign
Entrance to one area of CamRock

Since we had hiked a trail at Lake Kegonsa in the morning and it was now approaching noon, we first ate our lunch under the shelter.

Shelter #2 at CamRock
Shelter #2

Behind the shelter is something you might only see in Wisconsin, or at least, in the Midwest.

Horseshoe pitch
Horseshoe pitch (BYO)

I wonder how often it gets used.

The official trailhead for what I’ll call Trail #2 was back near the entrance sign, but you could pick it up at several locations around the loop. In fact, you can see a section of the trail just behind the horseshoe pitch above. And this is close to where we actually did start our hike.

Just like in state parks, county parks can have dedicated benches too.

Dedicated bench
Bench dedicated to someone’s memory

And then you also can have more unusual bench configurations. Think about this one for a minute.

Double bench
Back-to-back bench

There wasn’t much natural color along this trail, but there was some.

White violets
Perhaps Viola canadensis

Sections of the grasslands near the trail had obviously been subject to controlled burning fairly recently…which made this Prairie Planting sign seem rather curious. (Note: I could be all wrong about the burning idea.)

Prairie Planting
Prairie Planting since 1974

Other points of interest along the trail included these two (and only two) poetic signs.

Nature poem
Poem by Addie
Brown poem
Poem by Ivan

I’m sorry, Addie and Ivan, but if you were told to write a haiku, you missed the mark. Just free verse…I guess. I wonder how old these poems / signs are. I also wonder why only two?

All three trail loops in CamRock connect to the 2.4-mile long (not a loop) CamRock Trail that runs north-south through the entire park and essentially connects Cambridge and Rockdale. Here’s the bridge over Koshkonong Creek that connects Trail #2 with the CamRock.

Bridge over Koshkonong Creek
Bridge over the creek

We didn’t cross the bridge, but I hopped onto it to take a look at the creek.

Koshkonong Creek
Koshkonong Creek to the north

Later on we came to a most unexpected feature of Trail #2 – a little lending library.

Little lending library
Lending library

To be fair, it was in someone backyard, but it was facing the trail, not a street. (We didn’t borrow any of the books.)

At the “end” (based on where we had started) of Trail #2 is a playground. I always wonder how often these things get used too. Apparently this one does see some use as someone forgot their shoes here.

Playground
Playground
Treehouse
Treehouse
Pink shoes
“Mom, I can’t find my shoes!”

Thus ended our day of hiking at Lake Kegonsa and CamRock. But it wasn’t over completely.

We still went to one more park, Lake Ripley, but just to see an historical marker about Ole Evinrude.

Then we drove back home.

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