Hike #4: Point Beach & Trout Springs Winery

PREFACE: Sorry this post took a week to get published.  Life happened, and Bekki and I were swamped with work and family things. But better late than never!  – Buffy

 

Well, it’s been another week and another adventure for us in Backpacking for Brews!

Bekki and I have slowly begun to wear out the closest hikes in the book, so this week we worked our way north of Sheboygan.  We chose the Point Beach hike and prayed for some normal weather. This hike was a good step up in distance, without the terrain being too difficult. And true to Wisconsin nature, there was still snow on the ground for us to enjoy while we hiked!

Point Beach is located in Two Rivers, WI just north of Manitowoc along the shore of Lake Michigan.

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The Lake was in rare form because of the wind; I almost forgot we weren’t on a coastline there were so many waves!  Even though it was windy and overcast, it was only 40ºF, which is beautiful winter hiking weather.

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This week’s hike was a loop…although in the book it is a reverse lollipop course. As is our slowly budding tradition, we did not do the exact hike laid out in the book. Instead, we cut off the tail end of the lollipop, making it a simple loop. This cut the hike from 8.9 miles down to 6.5…ish miles.

The hike was decent. It weaved in and out of the forest and dunes, over a marsh and included some small, rolling inclines (a bit too small for me to call them hills).

The book lists the hike as moderate, but I’m pretty sure that’s due to the length of the suggested route, not the terrain. Like I said, perfect hike if you need to up your distance without being too strained!

 

Overall, Point Beach seems very versatile. It is hikable and good for Cross-country skiing in the winter, and I think it would be a cool place to camp at or hang on the beach during the summer.  They have cabins for camping and lots to pitch tents.  It is a State Forest, so you will either have to pay the daily fee (plus an additional fee if you are going to stay and camp) or you must have the annual registration.

It is very dog-friendly. And if you have a energetic pup, you can always do the long hike anyways and then relax while they burn some energy in the water!

Inside the state park was the Rawley Point Lighthouse. It was awesome! It was erected in 1995, and people still privately live on the property! I think it’d be pretty sweet to live with the lake at arms reach, and to have so many trails at your disposal every day.

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After the hike, Bekki and I headed west over to Trout Springs Winery for some after adventure drinks. The winery was quaint, and as always it was definitely local. There was not much to the winery aside from their vine fields and a simple, but classy tasting room displayed their bottles that were for sale.

As I’m beginning to discover, not all wineries use the same grapes or even the same processes, so why should I expect the same types of wine? The simple answer is I should not. Where Wollersheim Winery had some flavors more similar to the store-bought wines I’m used to, Trout Springs was certainly more unique! Unique, here, is not a bad thing.  I didn’t like every wine I tried, but that’s too be expected if they make truly diverse wines. I did enjoy most of the wines I tasted, which was seven by the way.

Seven tasters for $5.00. That is money well spent! The lady pouring our drinks was one of the owners, and she was full of great information on the winery. Bekki and I were meeting some friends for the tasting, so we got to spend some time just hanging out and chatting with the owner. She was really down the earth.

Bekki and I ended up buying a bottle of the Autumn Rouge Reserve.  It was a little pricey, $20.00, but Bekki and I had both tasted it, and agreed it was the best wine out of the ones we tried.

As always, here’s to the next one!

Looking Ahead: Our next post brings a surprise addition to Backpacking for Brews!

 

THE HIKE

Pros

  • Versatile park – use during all seasons
  • Well marked and maintained trails
  • Lots of possible variations of loops

Cons

  • Pretty flat – it is not going to be even a slight challenge for more seasoned hikers

Rating: 4/5

TROUT SPRINGS WINERY

Pros

  • Unique wines
  • Cool Atmosphere – very down to earth
  • Decent priced tastings

Cons

  • There weren’t any “common” wine tastes, which makes it hard to recommend for people who like specific types of wine
  • The bottles were a little more pricey than expected

Rating: 3/5

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