Parfrey's Glen is Beautiful. We first visited in winter and found it breathtaking. We had to walk across an icy stream to reach the glen and waterfall, but it was worth the trek. We have since returned in warmer weather and although possibly even more difficult to reach, more than worth it. Of the hikes we have done with children on our backs, this is one of the more challenging. It is possible, but recommended only for more confident hikers. There is some creek crossing and some brief rock climbing. Again, nothing super challenging or we would not have tried it with infants on our backs - but not just a walk on a path. When travelling with little ones, it is especially important to make sure that everyone is appropriately dressed for the weather. The hike took us about an hour with a break at the waterfall to stare in awe and give the kids a chance to get out and move a bit.
Directions: There is no exact address, but these directions got us there. From the intersection of Highways 78 and 113 in Merrimac, go north and west on 113 about 4.8 miles, then east on County DL 2.1 miles to a parking area on the north side of the highway. Keep your eyes open - it is a tiny lot with a little sign. A trail leads north into the glen. Cost: WI State Park Pass is required. Need to stop at Devil's Lake State Park Ranger's Station to buy one. Note: The only bathroom is an outhouse next to the parking lot.
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