Wyalusing State Park

Wyalusing State Park

This article is about our second visit to Wyalusing State Park. Sadly, I don’t have the pictures I took on our first visit. (Or, if I do still have them, I can’t find them.) Those pictures included a shot of the confluence of the Wisconsin and Mississippi rivers.

These do not.

This second hike was our second of the day – the hike in Nelson Dewey being our first. It came after a long day of driving and walking, so if the sights are less than spectacular, you’ll have to forgive us.

We only walked part of the Sand Cave trail. And I’m sure we didn’t even get to the Big Sand Cave.

Sand Cave Trail

If you want to hike the Sand Cave trail, you have to arrive at the trail head at just the right time. That is, you have to be lucky enough to find an open parking space in the “lot” by this Nature Center (which didn’t appear to be open…no surprise there).

Wyalusing Nature Center

The “lot” only has spaces for half a dozen vehicles or so. We were fortunate to find an empty space upon arrival.

Just to the east of this parking area is the Sand Cave trail.

Sand Cave Trail sign

There’s not much to note along the way, but we did see a little shelf fungus that was interesting enough for me to take its picture.

Shelf fungus on Sand Cave trail

One other feature to note is that much of the first half of the trail goes downhill. Remember that you’ll be going uphill on the return hike.

Just a few yards down the path, you do have the option of taking the Walnut Springs trail to the south. We didn’t.

Sand Cave and Walnut Springs trail split

There are some stone steps – not difficult ones – along the Sand Cave trail. Since I was searching for something to photograph, I took a picture of them.

Steps on Sand Cave Trail

The trail map (see below) seems to say that, when the trail makes a sharp left turn, you should be at the Big Sand Cave. I think this is deceiving.

We were tired by the time we reached the turn, and I realized the return trip was going to be uphill, so we stopped here and headed back to the car.

I think we were close, but I’m sure (based on other pictures I’ve seen) this isn’t what they call the Big Sand Cave.

Not the Big Sand Cave

I’m fairly sure we’ll return to Wyalusing another day. We really liked the views on our first trip, and I sure would like to see at least the Big Sand Cave, if not the Little Sand Cave too.


Nearest City

Wyalusing, Wisconsin (3 miles)

Nearest Emergency Facility

Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin (11 miles)


6:00 AM to 11:00 PM, year-round


Vehicle admission sticker required

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