SUBSCRIBE | NEWSLETTERS | MAPS | VIDEOS | BLOGS | MARKETPLACE | CONTESTS
TRY BACKPACKER FREE!
SUBSCRIBE NOW and get
2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.
CLICK HERE TO LAUNCH FULL SCREEN MAP

Apostle Islands, WI: Ice Caves

wi

Star Star Star Star Star

Distance: 3.0 miles


If the lake is frozen, go explore amazing sandstone caves covered with ice.

A glimpse of the Apostles’ iconic shoreline caves and sandstone arches usually comes from a kayak—and from a distance, as Lake Superior’s rollicking waves make it risky to paddle too close. But from late January to March, the lake sometimes freezes enough to allow up-close exploration as ice transforms the dramatic features. Depending on conditions, you might see the rust-red landforms draped in bulbous white sheets, hung with hundreds of ribbed icicles, or wrapped with glassy tentacles of ice. Get your fix on a six-mile hike (out-and-back) from Meyers Beach to the mainland’s best stretch of caves (call the park’s Ice Line first to check conditions: 715-799-3397, ext. 3). Trekking poles and mini-crampons (or skis or snowshoes after a storm) are a must. The caves begin a mile east of the trailhead and wind for two more. You’ll see everything from hands-and-knees tunnels that twist behind the sheer cliff face to 60-foot-high caverns like The Garage at mile 1.8, one of the largest. Go after an extended subzero spell to see the most intricate ice sculptures, and time your trip for sunset to catch the cliffs splashed in their most vibrant reds and yellows.

Note: There is a year-round daily parking fee at Meyers Beach and reservations and a permit are required for camping. Make reservations and check trail (and ice) conditions with the Park Service at (715) 779-3397 or www.nps.gov/apis.

-Text by Elisabeth Kwak-Hefferan. Mapping help from Gary Jean http://photo.garyjean.com/kayak

Post a comment

ADD A COMMENT

Your rating:
Your Name:

Comment:




Go
View all Gear
Find a retailer
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
City:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
State:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions