Our Wonderful Followers who come back again and again to read about us...

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Campground Review – Highland Ridge COE park in Eau Galle Rec Area, Wisconsin


(this is one of series of posts of various campgrounds we have been to over the years... I am going through my files in alphabetical order and posting past camping trips in my blog.... something to do over this long long upcoming winter---- sigh)



Well, since it’s a snowy cold winter here in Wisconsin, I will fill the blog up with more posts of campgrounds we have been to in the past.  Get some green trees and grass to look at instead of snow and ice and cold!

We went here in June, 2009, as Steveio had a business meeting at nearby UWStout campus in Menomonie, WI   So, instead of hotel and restaurant meals, we chose to take the motorhome and submit vouchers for campground fees and groceries!  Fine with his bosses, plus we got to get travel mileage reimbursement too. 

link to Highland Ridge information

The park is located on a huge reservoir from a dam run by the army corp of engineers

rec map of eau galle

With only 45 campsites, all set way back in the thick woods, it was a great setting for a campground.  The loops through the woods were interesting to walk through, and even more difficult to drive a big rig  through, but we made it!


highland ridge 2009 (27)_1

This is a very popular park, so we had to make reservations in advance.  (with recreation.gov)   Not often do we do that, but because of Steveio’s business meetings, we had better not take a chance on finding an empty site.  Good thing we did, because the park was totally filled by the time we got there.  We had been delayed with some turbo problems on the rig, but got them fixed at  the Cat dealer at 5pm on Friday before leaving town.  Rig drove great all the way there!


As we got set up on our site, we noticed the site next to us (not visible but was through the trees) had about 3 or 4 tents set up and they were unloading a bunch of musical instruments, amps, speakers, electric guitars etc.  They were a young bunch, so we are thinking they are gonna be NOISY…..  oh well, we know which site the campground hosts are on, so we can make a complaint if need be.

highland ridge 2009 (24)_1

This site was slightly dipped to the front, so we had no choice but to go up on blocks.   We never leave our tires in the air, but the blocks were sturdy enough for the weekend.  It was a tight squeeze to get into the site, with trees right across the road too.

highland ridge 2009 (60)_1

campground map We were all settled in and cozy on Friday night in our campsite.  It started to rain, so we hid out inside and watched movies and cooked potpies in the oven.   Saturday morning dawned rainy and wet and cloudy… so instead of taking the scooter over to the campus, we pulled stakes and took the whole motorhome!  Steve was able to arrive at his meeting, dry and clean in business clothing, while the dogs and I sat and watched college folks go to and fro from the windows.  I knit and watched tv and waiting for Steveio’s meetings to finish up.  By the time he was done, the sun was out again! highland ridge 2009 (16)_1

After his last meeting was done, we went back to the campground and got right back into our site. Since the sun was shining (finally) we took the scooter off the back and went to explore around the reservoir.   This is our Honda Helix  that we drive around to tour, pick up groceries, or just explore the areas we camp at.  Gets great mileage, rides 2 up, and has plenty of cargo area in the back trunk and rack for groceries. 

highland ridge 2009_1  The sun dappled roads through the park beckoned us to hop on and go for a ride!

highland ridge 2009 (4)_1 We drove down to the big lake, that is the earthen dam in the background on the far left….

highland ridge 2009 (5)_1 This grassy covered ridge in the middle of the picture is the dam itself… kinda nice compared to the big concrete monsters you see when you think of dams….

highland ridge 2009 (7)_1

After exploring a while, we came back to our campsite to relax….   pulled out the lawn chairs, took a snooze, and listened to the sounds of the woods around us.

highland ridge 2009 (3)_1

It was our anniversary weekend, so we brought along some steaks to grill out

highland ridge 2009 (25)_1


highland ridge 2009 (32)_1

See the cool picnic table in the picture?  We saw some like these in Florida too.  They are a heavy metal mesh and coated with a rubberized finish.  all the dirt and junk falls through, and no rotting or staining maintenance like wooden tables require.  Neato!


Interesting fire pits in this park… instead of the traditional ring of rocks, or a metal fire ring that you see in many campgrounds…. this was kinda a trough, and a flip up grid for cooking on.  We had never seen anything like this before….

highland ridge 2009 (45)_1

We relaxed for the rest of the evening, enjoying the peace and quiet.  Turns out the rain of the night before chased off the noisy tenters with their musical instruments, so their site next to us was now vacant!  LOL   Made for a peaceful evening for us.

highland ridge 2009 (11)_1

Sunday morning we woke up to more sunshine and warmth… i baked muffins and we had them with our coffee.    Then we hopped back on the scooter to check out the rest of the area.  Here are a bunch of shots.  It was amazing that they would dig and score their way though layers of bedrock and limestone to make a road down to the base of the dam for a rec area at such a great expense.  Our government dollars at work I suppose.  There were other roads that came around naturally and didn’t need such a direct route. 

We met the camphosting couple who were very friendly and talked to us about their previous lives.  He was a surgeon and found early retirement and camp-hosting to be more sensible than the high costs of malpractice insurance, keeping an office and staff, and all the stress… Now he and his wife and their dog were enjoying the high life in their custom built travel trailer…  hitting the northwoods in the summers and Arizona desert in the winters.

highland ridge 2009 (12)_1highland ridge 2009 (13)_1 highland ridge 2009 (15)_1highland ridge 2009 (33)_1highland ridge 2009 (17)_1highland ridge 2009 (26)_1  highland ridge 2009 (29)_1highland ridge 2009 (35)_1 highland ridge 2009 (36)_1highland ridge 2009 (40)_1  highland ridge 2009 (43)_1highland ridge 2009 (47)_1 highland ridge 2009 (48)_1highland ridge 2009 (49)_1 highland ridge 2009 (50)_1highland ridge 2009 (53)_1  highland ridge 2009 (62)_1highland ridge 2009 (64)_1


It was a wonderful weekend, and a nice anniversary to escape together to the woods. 

highland ridge 2009 (41)_1

1 comment:

  1. I'm taking the family there for memorial weekend. Your blog post brings me comfort in knowing we picked a good campground. Another great campground to check out is Nugget Lake County Park in Pierce County, WI. There's a private boat landing to Nugget Lake -- no motor boats allowed. The campsites are private and very clean. There's also plenty of hiking trails to explore the bluffs and peaceful meadows.

    Western Wisconsin


Thanks for taking the time to comment on my blog! I moderate all comments so it may take a little while for your comment to appear.