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

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

May VaCay - Highland Ridge COE near Spring Valley Wisconsin

On Monday morning we moved on, heading further west. We didn't go too far because we had another campground on our radar. We've been to this one before, but it was years ago when Steve had something to do at the University nearby. So it was really a work trip and not really a camping trip. 

This is a Corp of Engineer Park In northwestern Wisconsin, near the town of Spring Valley. It is part of the Eau Galle flowage and dam system. The campground itself is called Highland Ridge.

Here is a link to their website for more information:

Highland Ridge Corp of Engineers campground

As we were heading further west, the sky got hazier and hazier. There are Canadian wildfires that are blowing down into Northern Minnesota and Wisconsin. Just figures! We leave to go on vacation and now we have to deal with smoke?

And road construction! 

The construction only lasted a little while because we turned off and got back onto country roads. 

We looked up the air quality warnings and it said things will start blowing off around 10:00 a.m. by the time we reached Highland Ridge, it was in pretty good shape and the skies were back to blue. 

We drove around until we found a nice campsite that was still available. Honestly though, almost every site in this park is sloped on an angle in one direction or another. It was quite difficult to get level. And not just this site, we noticed other people having difficulties and trying various sites as they pulled in. Ones that were already settled in had a lot of creative blocking and jacking underneath their tires and frames. I think we ended up with the most level site in the park?? #13 I think we had three blocks under one tire, two under another, and one under a third.

The campsites, which include electric, are $28 a night. With our America the Beautiful senior access pass, we get it for $14 a night. There is water nearby at the dump station to fill your fresh water tank before you park.

We did a little walk around the park and took a few photos for this review. The Corp of Engineer parks are known for their really nice bathrooms, and well kept conditions. Here is the relatively new shower and bathroom building. It is centrally located in the park so everyone can easily reach it. 

The inside is well kept and very clean. We did notice though while using the shower that the water flows outward from the shower stall and out towards the middle of the floor. Someone didn't slope it correctly when they did the tiling? Steve noticed the same thing in the men's shower area as well.  So be sure to not leave anything on the floor in the changing area of each shower stall, because it may get wet. They did have a big fan on the floor trying to dry things up.

The showers had originally been the pay type, but the mechanisms had been removed. Now they are free and the water was hot. Can't ask for more than that, can you?

The other portion of the restrooms were also clean and well kept. There was a bulletin board with local notices and information as well as an electric hand dryer. We noticed that all the hand dryers now are being changed that they only aim downwards. It used to be that you could swivel them upwards and use them to dry your hair! I guess the technology is changing, or they just don't want you wasting public electricity to dry your hair???

Across from the bathrooms, there's an interpretive center that holds programs throughout the summer months. The schedule is not yet set for this spring so there was nothing going on at this time. Next to it was a modern play area for the children with some really nice looking equipment.

On the bulletin board with some information about the area, including hiking trails and information about boating on the reservoir.

We enjoyed a very peaceful evening walking around the very quiet park. The wildfire smoke had cleared, and we had a pretty nice sunset, through the trees.

As we walked around, I snapped a few pictures of interesting things. This log was covered with the most unusual looking mushrooms. They went down the entire length of the log. Some were very large, like this one!

We saw this really strange face in this old tree. 
It reminded me of the scene in the Wizard of Oz...

We decided to only stay one night at this campground. Although it is a really nice place and we could have gotten out to explore some with the bikes, instead we decided to keep on moving west and head into 


76 miles traveled today
272 miles so far


  1. We work at a campground with the same type hand dryers. The danger with these is when a person tries to dry their hair with them by bending under them. We've had children and adults get their hair caught in the dryers.....not a good situation. So we warn people when we see them doing that.

    1. Oh my goodness, I would have never thought of that! Good explanation. Thank you!

  2. I can share a comment on the hot air hand dryers and why the air spouts no longer rotate to blow upward that would dry hair. A few years ago I was designing a new high school that used hot air dryers in all toilet rooms and shower rooms. School district personnel told us not to specify the dryers with spouts that rotate. Some pranksters were turning the spouts upward and then pouring urine in the upward turned spout. When the next person tried to use the hand dryer you know what happened to the urine in the spout, it sprayed all over everything! Don't know if that is the case in the campgrounds, but may be the reason for fixed air flow spouts?

    1. Oh my goodness! Now that is absolutely something I would have never thought of. Who would have ever thought of such a thing. Amazing.

      If teens put all that creativity to good use, they could come up with some positive advances instead of mischief and bathroom pranks.

    2. Would be so funny if someone came in, caught them doing it and pushed the button. Bet that would be the last time they did that.


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.