County-wide Ice Fishing Competition

In late January and February when most people are looking out the windows with cabin fever, sportsmen’s clubs across Trempealeau County brave the cold and host ice fishing events on frozen community lakes. These events are a great way to try your luck for a variety of fish, grab a bite to eat from food prepared by a local youth or civic organization as a fundraiser, compete for raffle prizes, and spend time with friends and family. With sometimes multiple generations on the ice and some events that have been held for over half a century, ice fishing is well rooted in Trempealeau County.

With so many great ice fishing experiences across the County, this year there is an opportunity to not only win one event, but to become a county-wide champion. Utilizing a point system, participants are awarded one point for participating in each ice fishing event in the County. Those placing in the top three of each event’s categories win 30 points for first place, 20 for second, and ten for third. At the end of the season when the points are tallied, the winner will receive a trophy, media attention, and some serious bragging rights!

For more information about the Trempealeau County Ice Fishing Champion Competition, contact the Trempealeau County Economic Development and Tourism office at 715-538-2311, Ext. 251.

“I’ll be Home for Christmas”

It’s predicted that approximately 90 million Americans will travel home for the holidays. If you’re heading back to Trempealeau County to spend time with family and friends, here’s a top ten list of things to do:

1.) Have an “old fashioned” Christmas at one of the area’s supper clubs

2.) Check out the view of the Mississippi River Valley from the Trempealeau Mounds that are located on a bluff that was modified by prehistoric people who lived in the current day Village of Trempealeau

3.) Visit a dining or drinking establishment in one of the County’s historic downtowns

4.) If the snow cover allows, try out a set of cross country skis or snowshoes at Perrot State Park or on some of the public lands in the County

5.) Experience fat tire biking at Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge

6.) After a snowstorm, check out snowmobile trail conditions on the Wisconsin Department of Tourism to explore over 200 miles of snowmobiling trails in the County

7.) Visit one of our unique and locally owned retail establishments

8.) Experience the offerings of a local winery or brewery

9.) Cruise a stretch of the Great River Road

10.) Take selfies at the Buena Vista overlook south of Osseo on HWY 53, which commemorates the story of a wealthy young man who rejected conventional life to live in the, then, wilds of Trempealeau County.

“Seize the Season”

“Occupandi temporis” is the Latin phrase for “seize the season.” With thousands of acres of publicly accessible lands, hundreds of miles of snowmobile trails, soon to be iced over lakes full of fish, and scenic routes that provide stunning snow covered vistas; how will you take advantage of the tremendous winter outdoor recreation opportunities that Trempealeau County has to offer?

One way to explore the wilds of the area is through “Silent Sports.” Perrot State Park offers nine miles of classic groomed cross country skiing trails, in addition to over a mile of skated groomed trails. The park also features a number of trails overlooking the Mississippi Valley that are perfect for snowshoes. In 2016, a “fat bike” trail opened at the Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge near Perrot State Park, providing approximately 12 miles of groomed snow trail to operate a “fat tire” bike on.

Well maintained snowmobile trails provide over 200 miles of routes through woods, valleys, and fields. Take a break from the trails and warm-up with friends and family in our unique locally owned dining and drinking establishments.

Ice fishing tournaments take place on many of the community lakes in the County. Compete for prizes or spend time on the ice to create memories, and maybe a fish story or two.

Scenic driving routes traverse the County, providing vistas of winter landscapes that are perfect for photographers or those wishing to explore the outdoors while enjoying the warmth of a heated vehicle.

Whatever your interests are, take time in Trempealeau County this winter to experience outstanding outdoor recreation opportunities and “seize the season!”

On the Hunt

This time of year an event steeped in tradition takes place that transcends generations, cultures, and millennia in Trempealeau County: the fall deer hunt. For thousands of years, people have hunted the same valleys, hillsides, and creek bottoms in this area; although the technology has changed from hunting with an atlatl, to a 30.06 rifle.

While this landscape has been the site of countless deer hunts, you don’t need to own land to experience a quality deer hunt in Trempealeau County. There are a large amount of public lands available throughout the County for hunting deer. Take a look at this map to see where public hunting areas are located.

If you’re looking for the fun and camaraderie of deer camp, but lack a deer cabin, Pietrek Park will be offering camping space for hunters until the end of November. There is a heated shower building at the park and there are campsites that provide electrical access for RV’s and tent camping. A stack of firewood is available on the grounds as well. Visit the park website to learn about the camping rates.

Whether you’re a long-time sportsman or if this is your first hunt, there are a number of great places to hunt, and lodge, in Trempealeau County while taking part in the tradition of deer hunting.

A Delicious Tradition of Local Food

This month marks one of the deep rooted traditions in America, honoring Thanksgiving by dining with friends and family. For centuries this tradition centered on locally grown and raised food, just like the original Thanksgiving in 1621. However, for the past few decades the availability of food from across the nation, and the globe, have altered the tradition of Thanksgiving for many Americans.

Thankfully, in Trempealeau County and the surrounding area there are a number of food producers providing opportunities to continue the tradition of dining on local food for the holiday. As you plan your Thanksgiving meal consider a homemade pie from one our orchards, meat from local livestock, cheese or milk from a regional dairy operation, wine from area vineyards, and ingredients grown in the scenic landscape of Trempealeau County.

This year be thankful for the variety of local food producers in Trempealeau County that provide delicious and healthy food, while contributing to our economy.

An Old Fashioned Experience

It’s a bit of nostalgia that is felt when you experience a supper club in Wisconsin. For generations these have been the place to enjoy a great meal with friends and family, along with maybe an Old Fashioned or two. A recent revival of interest in these quintessential Wisconsin dining establishments has been bringing new faces into supper clubs across the state from both near and afar. The Wisconsin Department of Tourism has even played this television ad in surrounding states, causing cravings for visiting the Badger State, and prime rib.

Make plans to visit one of the unique supper clubs nestled in the scenic landscape of Trempealeau County to experience fine dining that might include a relish try, a fish fry, and almost certainly an Old Fashioned.

“Into the Wild” in Trempealeau County

If you have seen the film, or read the book: “Into the Wild,” you know the story of a wealthy young man who in the 1990’s went to live in the Alaskan wilderness, after rejecting conventional life. Over a century before, Trempealeau County had a person of a similar spirit once arrive in the, then, wilderness near Osseo in 1865. His name was Nicholas Bourlier De La Chavelle and despite being well educated and from a wealthy family, he left society and began living in a cave. Check out the monument to him and the surrounding landscape at the Buena Vista overlook on the west side of Highway 53, about 5 miles south of Osseo. In addition to a monument that was erected in the 1930’s, a stone interpretive panel was recently installed at the site through a joint partnership between the Osseo Historical Society and the Pigeon Falls Lions Club. Both of these communities are great places to visit for a bite to eat or for shopping at a locally owned establishment. After checking out the Buena Vista overlook, you can step “into the wild” at many of the public recreation lands in Trempealeau County!

Flavored by Trempealeau County

From its rich soil, Trempealeau County has a tradition for creating some of the iconic tastes of autumn: apples and freshly pressed cider. The first recorded apple harvest in the County took place before the Civil War in 1858, and in the decades since, the art of growing the perfect apple varieties for Trempealeau County’s climate has been accomplished!

Today, there are three commercial orchards in Trempealeau County. All three offer unique experiences that can create lasting memories to enjoy with your friends or family.

Create a tradition with your friends or family of making a fun weekend trip to enjoy a taste of Trempealeau County!


The Magic of Autumn Bonfires

There’s something about an autumn bonfire. Maybe it’s the contrast of a fire’s warmth to the cool crisp fall air, or perhaps the smell of wood smoke pairs well with turning leaves and freshly harvested fields.

For the month of October you’re invited to experience your own autumn bonfire at Pietrek Park, for free! This is a perfect weekend activity for friends, family, or groups to come together to roast marshmallows or hot dogs, tell scary stories, and enjoy the outdoors of Trempealeau County.

All we ask is that you clean-up after yourself, put out your fire when you’re finished, and leave the park by 10:30 p.m. to be respectful of those camping on the grounds.

The best spots for autumn bonfires at the park are in the metal fire rings in the group campsites across the road from the Lower Shelter building and down in the lower campground area by the river. Free campfire wood is available from the stack just north of the main shower/bathroom facility.

Create fun autumn memories with your friends and families around a bonfire at Pietrek Park!

“See fall leaves, before fall leaves.”

It’s only a short period of time that the hills, bluffs, and valleys of Wisconsin are ablaze in autumn color. During this brief time of year, Trempealeau County’s beautiful landscape provides a wonderful opportunity for activities like hiking, bicycling, canoeing, motorcycling, classic car cruising, and photography. For 2017, some experts predict that the fall color change may happen slightly earlier than usual.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Tourism’s Fall Color Report, an estimated 30% of trees in Trempealeau County have already changed color. The peak color week is anticipated to be the third week of October, but be prepared for it to sneak up fast.

To experience the autumn colors, consider planning an outdoor outing that will provide an opportunity to enjoy the beautiful views that the season offers in Trempealeau County. It could be something as simple as a car ride through the countryside, or you could create a series of afternoon activities to do with friends and family- such as hiking at one of the parks in the County, stopping by one of our orchards, and then going to eat at a unique locally owned dining establishment.

The autumn color season doesn’t last long, so follow this advice from the Wisconsin Department of Tourism: “See fall leaves, before fall leaves.”