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Old 04-07-2010, 12:48 PM   #1
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Open Campgrounds Friday in SE MN or SW WI?

I'm traveling up to Northeast Minnesota this Friday to pick up my daughter's Minuet & need to spend the night somewhere between there & home (NW Indiana) that night. I can't seem to find a campground near there & LaCrosse WI that's open yet. Does anyone know of one? I'm a little nervous about two women spending the night at a Walmart (my daughter & I). I'd prefer to drive within an hour or two of Rochester, MN.

Thanks to anyone who has a suggestion!
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Old 04-07-2010, 01:22 PM   #2
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Most of the state parks are open year around but won't have water yet. Frontenac should be beautiful this time of year, and is in the Rochester area.
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Old 04-07-2010, 01:42 PM   #3
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Thanks, I guess I'll look into a S.P. Their dump facilities are off too, but we'll take what we can get!
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Old 04-07-2010, 01:59 PM   #4
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Thanks again...I made a reservation at Beaver Creek Valley SP which is right on my way. Might even take my fishing pole--says they have trout in the stream!
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Old 04-07-2010, 02:09 PM   #5
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Beaver Creek is nice, although somewhat secluded and the facilities aren't as nice as some other state campgrounds.

It's going to be warm this weekend, otherwise I would recommend somewhere else. Beaver Creek is so far back in the woods and down in the hollow that it could be chilly at night. Not exactly sunny.

You'll need to cross a stream to get to the campsites. Call the ranger and make sure the water is low enough to ford the stream. Some of our creeks and rivers are still on the high side.
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Old 04-07-2010, 03:49 PM   #6
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I have to take the trailer across the stream?? Without a bridge?

And also, upon looking at my first post, I stupidly said NE Minnesota, when I meant South East Minnesota. I guess I didn't do too well in geography!
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:19 PM   #7
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I have to take the trailer across the stream?? Without a bridge?

And also, upon looking at my first post, I stupidly said NE Minnesota, when I meant South East Minnesota. I guess I didn't do too well in geography!
No, you GET to take your trailer through a stream! Kinda like a log flume.
I don't know if the creek will be high or not. It is fed from a spring about 1/4 mile east, so most of the flow may be just the spring. On the other hand, it's very steep hills so there may also be some runoff if it rains. I was concerned that if it rained while we were there we would be trapped. It has happened.

Understand about the NE Minnesota. I had a whole list of campgrounds up by the lake, but I figured you really wanted to be SE.
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:23 PM   #8
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I tried calling the ranger, but they're gone for the day. Now I'm nervous....steep hills, trapped....YIKES, I'm a South Sider!!! Maybe I'll eat the $24 and drive to the KOA in Madison! Much more metropolitan, I'm sure!
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Old 04-07-2010, 04:25 PM   #9
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I tried calling the ranger, but they're gone for the day. Now I'm nervous....steep hills, trapped....YIKES, I'm a South Sider!!!
If I were you I'd be nervous also. In fact I might rethink the place. Good Luck, Susan
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Old 04-07-2010, 05:03 PM   #10
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If you're considering KOA, the one in DeForest (just north of Madison) isn't bad. It's wide open, so no getting trapped in seclusion there! There should be plenty of SPs along your way, though.

Otherwise we have courtesy parking at our place! We're about 15-20 min. off the interstate east of Portage WI (N of Madison). You can hook up electric and are welcome to use water here; even the "facilities" if you don't want to bother with a black tank. You just have to get a bit used to the sound of the Amish buggies going by. Oh, and our very loud donkey who thinks she's a rooster at daybreak.

Consider it, and shoot us a PM if you're interested.
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Old 04-07-2010, 07:57 PM   #11
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If you're considering KOA, the one in DeForest (just north of Madison) isn't bad. It's wide open, so no getting trapped in seclusion there! There should be plenty of SPs along your way, though.

Otherwise we have courtesy parking at our place! We're about 15-20 min. off the interstate east of Portage WI (N of Madison). You can hook up electric and are welcome to use water here; even the "facilities" if you don't want to bother with a black tank. You just have to get a bit used to the sound of the Amish buggies going by. Oh, and our very loud donkey who thinks she's a rooster at daybreak.

Consider it, and shoot us a PM if you're interested.
Thanks so much for the offer! We're going to try to stay at a place with a dump station so we can do a good cleaning of the OP's (other people's) black tank on the way! You're right about the SP's. We'll find one along the way. They don't take reservations right now anyhow. It's very generous of you to offer, though! I love this place!
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:40 PM   #12
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Beaver Creek isn't real close to I-90. These aren't close to I-90 but Lanesboro and Preston will have many more private campgrounds to choose from.

I've stayed at Bluebird Campground at LaCrosse. LaCrosse is a nice small city. But Bluebird is a dive. Perrot S.P. near Trempeleau, WI, is a bit off your track but a nice place. Good small cafes in Trempeleau or Onalaska.

Better choices in MN might be Great River Bluffs S. P.; it will seem untended but you should manage the check-in just fine. It's okay for dry camping. It's small -- don't know that I recall any electric sites.

Much bigger is Whitewater S.P. east of Rochester on mostly dirt roads. But it is easily approached, has electric sites and has one of the largest visitor numbers of any state park in MN. I've tent camped at this time of year and recall water only at the main building. Do you have a plastic jerry can to tote water?

Of course you may have mixed results in finding open shower buildings.

Have a Woodalls or other camping guide?

Madison, WI? Dane County parks are great. Close in to downtown -- Lake Farm Park - Parks Division - Government of Dane County, Wisconsin. On the north side just before De Forest -- Token Creek Park - Parks Division - Government of Dane County, Wisconsin
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Old 04-07-2010, 11:44 PM   #13
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Sky High campground by Cascade Mountain, a few miles west of Portage off I 39 has winter water and sewer.
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:46 AM   #14
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Thanks, everyone, for all the suggestions. We wound up finding a place in NE Iowa (also on the way, just a different route home), that has water, electric, dump station & WIFI! It's on a farm, so we might be among cows, I don't know. But, to me, it's better than worrying about being stuck in a valley & forging a stream & going down really steep hills with a trailer that I just picked up! If anyone wants my site at Beaver Creek, just PM me. It's already paid for! Maybe I'll post some pix from the campground tomorrow night. Thanks again.....
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