When the snow melts in Wisconsin, the water courses gather strength. Spring is also known for rainfall, so that increases the flow even further. Wisconsin is a state in the mid-west with coastlines on two of the great lakes – Superior and Michigan.
Many people, when they think of Wisconsin, think beer and motorbikes; the Harley Davidson Museum is in the state’s largest city, Milwaukee. In fact, it is also a state full of forest and farms.
Get to the 15 amazing waterfalls in Wisconsin in the spring because, in late summer, some of them may just be a trickle.
1. Amnicon Falls, South Range
Amnicon River is a waterfall lover’s dream.
It is filled with waterfalls and rapids at every turn.
Covered bridges are gems in themselves, and the one between the upper and lower falls is a great place for a photograph.
You are almost within touching distance of the spray when you take a selfie.
Elsewhere, it is worth checking two others on the river – Snake Pit and Now and Then, which are impressive in the spring.
It is a great place for camping, with the chance to see raccoons and coyotes.
2. Potato River Falls, Gurney
The upper falls and the lower falls on the Potato River drop 40 feet and 50 feet respectively, they are amongst the highest in Wisconsin.
You can get a decent view from the parking lot but there is also a trail with steps that lead to a gorge.
Another observation deck offers further views.
Spring is a great time here, but so is fall, when the leaves are turning to different shades of yellow, orange and brown.
Whatever the season, this is a great place for rustic camping.
3. Upson Falls, Upson Town Park
There are several waterfalls in this region – known as Iron County – in the north of the state, and the appeal of this waterfall is that it is 50 feet wide.
The drop varies between 9 and 15 feet.
Upson Falls are located on the Potato River in Upson Community Park; the nearby campsite is on a first come, first served basis.
You are likely to be lucky if you want to go camping here because they are never too busy.
Take care and don’t get too close to the drop, because you may not have anyone else around to assist you if you fall.
4. Manitou Falls, Pattison State Park, Douglas County
The tallest waterfall in Wisconsin is an impressive 165 feet high.
Manitou Falls are on the Black River, just a dozen miles from Lake Superior; you can see them from two positions at the head of the gorge.
Like many of the falls in Wisconsin, they are at their best in spring.
They are as high as Niagara and, although slim, they are spectacular.
While you are there, head upstream a short distance; a 30-foot waterfall, Little Manitou, makes for another great photograph; at times, there are two plumes of water.
5. Lost Creek Falls, Cornucopia
If you love waterfalls and want a place that is likely to be fairly quiet, then Lost Creek on Bayfield Peninsula may well be the place for you.
The falls are just 15 feet high and follow a series of cascades.
They are found in a lovely gorge with the water falling off a mossy ledge.
You are able to wade across the creek and stand behind the falls themselves.
The trail that you take to reach the waterfall is a pleasant 2.2 miles long, although the falls come near the beginning.
6. Siskiwit Falls, Cornucopia
Siskiwit Falls are located just before the river enters Lake Superior.
They are easy to find and can be seen from the bridge above, but the best view is most certainly from a short distance upstream.
While the land itself is private, the Siskiwit River is entirely for public use, so there is nothing to prevent you from taking off your shoes and socks and making the journey upstream by wading.
The falls drop around 20 feet in four different stages.
By the summertime, the flow is fairly weak, so pick your season.
7. Copper Falls State Park, Mellen
Copper Falls State Park has some lovely trails which lead to two waterfalls, Copper and Brownstone, both of which are around 30 feet high.
If you are in the park, you have to see the stunning gorge on Bad River.
The park is open all year round but the concession stand is closed in the winter.
Your dog is welcome, as long as he or she is under control on a short leash.
You need a license to fish and camping is available.
Swimming, cycling, and hiking are popular with visitors.
8. Interstate and Peterson Falls, Hurley
The Montreal River has two waterfalls close to each other – Interstate and Peterson – both of which are very impressive in the spring.
Confusion often occurs about which is which.
The river forms the border between Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Once summer comes, the flow drops markedly and the volcanic rocks are exposed.
The views are certainly better from the Wisconsin side than the Michigan side, but the drawback is that the land is private.
9. Willow Falls, Willow Falls State Park, Hudson
Willow Falls are at their strongest in the spring.
The attraction in the summer comes from the fact that as water levels drop, there are some nice pools on the multi-tiered waterfalls that just invite you in.
In terms of viewing, there are platforms above and below the falls and a bridge across the Willow River.
The water was diverted by a dam in the 1920’s but it was restored in 1992, making the 100-foot wide falls.
The impressive gorge is a fine sight, although it is a steep walk down to that gorge.
10. Cascade Falls, Osceola
Cascade Falls was one of the reasons behind the town’s development; they once provided the power for both a brewery and a mill.
They are located right in the center of town, 25 feet high with steps that lead down to the gorge and falls.
An added attraction is that you can actually go behind the cascade.
On a hot day, the misty spray is supremely refreshing.
The source of the falls is Osceola Creek, with the water flowing through the Osceola Mill and into the St. Croix River.
11. Fonferek Falls, Ledgeview, Green Bay
These falls are certainly impressive in the spring because you can hear the power of the cascade that drops 30 feet.
This is farming country but the Falls are found in Fonferek’s Glen.
It is 74 acres of geological wonder with a stone archway, limestone cliffs and the falls on Bower Creek in Ledgeview.
Some of the park is farmland that has been allowed to return to prairie, as it originally was before agriculture started to develop.
You can go to an observation point to get the best views of the waterfall.
12. Wequiock Falls, Brown County, Green Bay
Wequiock is found in an exposed section of the Niagara escarpment.
They are easy to find, and once there, if you go down the stone steps, you will get a close-up view.
Undoubtedly, they are best in the spring or after a spell of heavy rain.
An alternative photograph can be taken on the bridge above the falls.
They are fed by a small creek and by mid-summer may just be a trickle until the rains return.
Visitor facilities include a picnic area and restrooms.
13. Long Slide Falls, Marinette County
One of the prettiest waterfalls of the many in Marinette County is the Long Slide Falls, which slides – as its name suggests – and drops some 50 feet on the Pemebonwon River.
You can park close by and there are some trails that allow you to see them from both above and below.
They are fairly narrow at eight feet but nevertheless, they are an impressive sight, enhanced by the lovely rock formations.
You can climb down to them but you need to be careful – there are no fences or railings.
14. Dave’s Falls, Marinette County
Marinette County has several waterfalls on its four rivers – the Pike, Thunder, Peshtigo and Menominee Rivers.
Dave’s Falls, just south of the town, are popular because of their location, but also because there are excellent tourist facilities, including a picnic area and restroom.
Located on the Pile River, you can wade to cool off, and children will certainly enjoy the playground.
The upper falls drop just a few feet into a calm pool but you will hear the lower falls, which are slightly larger, as their waters thunder through a narrow chute.
15. Granite Quarry Falls, Montello
While the quarry is known for providing the stone for the Tomb of Ulysses S. Grant in New York, today it is a quiet place.
The waterfalls and rapids of the Montello River were once the source of power but now they are there to enjoy.
They fall into the quarry – which is flooded for safety reasons – and what a sight they make.
Fences keep visitors away from the edge but you can still get some lovely photographs of this manmade setting.
Located in the center of town, park up and enjoy the setting.