Horicon National Wildlife Refuge | Ternpike Auto Tour

 © Photographed April 18, 2015
Horicon National Wildlife Refuge
Waupun, Dodge County, Wisconsin

National Wildlife & Refuge
Auto Tour & Trails

The entrance to the Horicon National Wildlife Refuge | Tempike Auto Tour is located on eastbound Wisconsin Highway 49, about three miles east of the Wisconsin Highway 151 exit, Waupun, Wisconsin 53963.

NOTE: Look for the above sign at the entrance to Horicon Marsh; it's impossible to miss.

"Horicon" -- a Mohican word meaning pure, clean water.

A couple of notes from my experience on the auto tour:
  • The auto tour road is narrow and one way. There is generally nowhere to pull over, so if another vehicle comes up behind you, you will have to move along.
  • The interpretative sign pullouts provide a means for letting others pass; however, you cannot park at these locations, as this would block egress from the pullout.
  • There is parking half-way through the tour at the Egret Trail Boardwalk. From this location there are several paths leading to several of the pullouts on the auto tour.
  • There is also parking at the end of the tour, which is the hiking trails are accessed.

This colorful 7-page PDF booklet provides lots of information about the Refuge and a map
Over 32,000 acres in size, Horicon Marsh is the largest freshwater cattail marsh in the United States. The marsh provides habitat for endangered species and is a critical rest stop for thousands of migrating ducks and Canada geese. It has been recognized as a Wetland of International Importance, a unit of the Ice Age National Scientific Reserve, and both a Globally and State Important Bird Area. Only 22 of these types of wetlands exist in the world, and we've got one right here in wonderful Wisconsin!

The northern two thirds of Horicon Marsh is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as the 22,000 acre Horicon National Wildlife Refuge. The southern third of the marsh, 11,000 acres, is managed by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources as the Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area. Visitors enjoy many activities at the refuge.

Photos from the Auto Tour Loop begin here:

The tour starts here!

 This amazing floating boardwalk that takes you out into the middle of the marsh.

Duck Stamp Dollars at Work

Horicon Marsh / Horicon National Wildlife Refuge

Theater of Seasons

Wildlife Viewing Tips

 These Canada geese didn't flinch when I pulled up alongside them.
They must know how safe they are at Horicon . . .

 Loads of bird watchers at the time of my visit. Check out the size of
that guy's lens. Oh, I'd love one of those some day!
Horicon National Wildlife Refuge Auto Tour and Walking Trails
( the auto tour is the circle of red dots)

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