Wisconsin Dells - 2004

Updated: 11/09/08

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w sidewalk.jpg (30817 bytes)Even the sidewalks in Wisconsin Dells are embossed with advertising for the main attraction - the river. Over the years a large number of water parks, resorts and restaurants have been  developed in Wisconsin Dells area. The waterparks close after Labor Day because they employ high school and college students making the number of tourists light for our visit.



We took the Dells Boat Tour on the Upper Dells  and the Original Wisconsin Ducks on the Lower Dells . The Upper Dells have the more impressive rock formations so the slower boat was a good choice. Meanwhile the duck was a fun change from the boat. The driver did stop the duck for some photo opportunities. We purchased a combination ticket at $31 each. Wear comfortable footwear with traction. A light jacket may be desired. We spent the major part of one day here.


Upper Dells


w our boat.jpg (56138 bytes)This is our boat waiting for us at one of the two stops it made along the upper river. The best viewing is from the top deck - so, get to the dock early for your departure time.



w boat wild thing.jpg (41400 bytes)If you want to move faster on the upper river, there are other options. This boat would not have been conducive to making photographs during the ride. 





It is interesting how trees and other vegetation can grow in rock. But, this rock is soft and their roots seek out or make gaps on the rock.

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The rock formations were very interesting and well worth the trip on the river. What follows is just a sampling of what we saw.  


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Some of the rock formations look like something ...

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A face with a big nose              A stack of pancakes



w water depth.jpg (62785 bytes)This rock is used to tell the depth of the water. It has been fully under water at times.




The first stop the boat made was at Witches Gulch.


w witches enter2.jpg (32543 bytes)The entrance to Witches Gulch was well hidden from view on the river.





After the boat docked, the walk into Witches Gulch was a little damp and cool. You do not have to leave the boat but the walk was along a beautiful path.

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At the end of the walk, you could purchase
snacks, postcards and other souvenirs.

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w stand dock.jpg (51905 bytes)The second stop was just across the river at Stand Rock. There were two docks. If you elected to take the short walk to watch the dog jump, then you return to the same dock. The boat was moved to the second dock to pick up those of us who made the circle walk. Neither were long walks, however you were warned not to double back on the longer circle walk.



The walk to Stand Rock was not as damp as the walk to Witches Gulch. A totally different feel - a more open feel.


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Demons Anvil



The main attraction at Stand Rock is the jump from land to Stand Rock. Originally, a boy made the jump. His father made the photograph you see on the left, the first stop action photograph. Today, two dogs take turns and all cameras have the stop action feature.

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The man ...                                  The dog ...



w river beyond.jpg (24683 bytes)The boat turns around here and heads back to the dock in town. This photograph shows how the river widens and is void of rock formations. The captain told us it is also too shallow for his boat to navigate.




If you weren't on the correct side of the boat for the photograph you wanted, now is your chance. They permit you to temporarily stand for the shot you want.


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Lower Dells


Our ride on the ducks was a fun activity. It was more the ride than the sights. However, we did see some fantastic rock formations.


First, the ducks ...

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The ducks travel on private roads through the woods and on the river and lakes. When we splashed into the lake, those seated in the back got a little wet. Our route traversed a dam by land and we exited one lake through a creek bed. 


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wd rock mag pic.jpg (47766 bytes)This is one of the most photographed rock formations in the lower river Dells. It has been on many magazine covers.




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