La Crosse River Trail Prairie State Natural Area

This property is located along the La Crosse River State trail east and west of Rockland. It features two stretches of dry to dry-mesic sand prairie in a former railroad right-of-way that total 56 acres. These long, linear remnants lie on a sandy terrace of the La Crosse River and are indicative of the once vast prairie and savanna complex that covered this part of the state. Prairie meadows are in bloom from early spring to the last hard frost of October, attracting numerous species of butterflies and many species of grassland birds. This segment of the trail is drier than the La Crosse segment to the west, but you will want to walk or ride your bike and enjoy the beautiful landscape.

Directions:From the trailhead in Sparta, bike or hike west to reach this SNA in Monroe and La Crosse Counties.

La Crosse River Trail Prairie State Natural Area map

Gazetteer: Page 41, A-4 (prior to 10th edition). | Page 75, A-5 (10th edition).

Phone: 608/785-9000 (La Crosse WDNR).

Web site: WDNR La Crosse River State Trail | WDNR La Cross River Trail Prairies

Signature species: Black and Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Chimney Swift, Least Flycatcher and Eastern Kingbird.

Rare species: Red-headed Woodpecker, Acadian Flycatcher and Purple Martin.

Seasonality: Open all year.

Parking: Parking lots.

Nearest food & lodging: Sparta.

Fees: Bike trail fee.