Road Trip Part II: Amnicon Falls State Park

On the third day of my road trip I arrived at Amnicon Falls SP, and it is now one of my favorite parks. Situated on the Amnicon River in Douglas County, this is the smallest state park I visited along my way. That might be part of why it was my favorite stop for a few reasons.

This is not a high-traffic park, at least compared to ones like Devil’s Lake or Copper Falls. Walking around, I did not have to worry about walking into the frames of several photos, even during the busy times. By the waterfalls I was always guaranteed that I would be able to find a place to sit by myself.

With the park being so small, all the falls are within walking distance of each other. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a good hike, but it’s neat having a park where everything is, well, right there when you come in. I really mean that when I say it: the park lobby is next to a decent set of rapids. I was briefly distracted by them before I went inside to purchase a site.

The three biggest waterfalls are Upper Falls and Lower Falls on the north channel and Snake Pit Falls on the south channel. Between the two channels is a rocky island that allows good views of all the falls (though the views of Upper and Lower Falls are also great from the other side of the river). What I liked about the setup at Amnicon Falls is that you can get as close to the river as you want. There are no guard rails and it is very easy to walk out to it. I could do things like eat lunch by the rapids or take a seat by Lower Falls and just watch the water rush by with a roar. Getting into the river itself is technically not allowed, but that didn’t stop another visitor from entertaining me with his cliff-diving feats at Snake Pit Falls. I wouldn’t recommend diving, and I didn’t do it myself, but I can’t say I wasn’t impressed.

Lower Falls
Lower Falls from a different angle
Snake Pit Falls with a diver
Upper Falls

Out of these three falls, Snake Pit was my favorite, and not just for the name or the diver. It does not have the volume of the other two falls, but its twists and turns captivated me, as did the deep, bowl-like pit and narrow gorge it flows into. Snake Pit was the hardest to get a decent look at from all angles, which made it the most intriguing. What goes on in the narrows? The cliff diver might know but I do not.

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