5 State Parks within 50 Minutes

Looking for outdoor adventures without straying too far from Plover? You're in luck! Within just a short drive, you can immerse yourself in the beauty of five stunning state parks. From scenic trails to historic landmarks, each park offers its own unique charm and opportunities for exploration. Here's a closer look at what awaits you:

Green Circle State Trail

The Green Circle Trail, including all spurs, stretches 31 miles through the Plover and Stevens Point area. It offers a picturesque journey along the Wisconsin and Plover rivers and winds through forests, wetlands, prairies, and quiet neighborhoods — showcasing the area's rich history and diverse landscapes. Don't miss the 4-mile spur on Hoover Road, which connects to the Tomorrow River State Trail in Plover. 

Tomorrow River State Trail

Traverse scenic glacial terrain and farm country along the 29-mile Tomorrow River State Trail. This rail trail takes you from Plover to just outside the village of Manawa in Waupaca County, passing through Amherst Junction, Scandinavia, and Ogdensburg. The Tomorrow River Trail connects to the Green Circle State Trail at Hoover Road in Plover.

Hartman Creek State Park

Nestled on the shores of the Chain O' Lakes, Hartman Creek State Park is a tranquil retreat in Central Wisconsin. Campers, boaters, swimmers, and outdoor enthusiasts flock to this natural gem for its pristine beauty and recreational opportunities. Explore the historic Hellestad House log cabin, hike scenic trails, or relax at one of the four picnic areas, including the idyllic Whispering Pines spot overlooking Marl Lake.

Rib Mountain State Park

Discover one of the oldest geological formations on earth at Rib Mountain State Park. This billion-year-old hill offers panoramic views of the Wausau area and Wisconsin River from its summit. Hikers can explore a network of trails, while picnickers can enjoy scenic spots and reservable facilities like the amphitheater and picnic shelters. In fall, don't miss the opportunity to ride the chairlift and witness the breathtaking spectacle of autumn foliage – a bucket list must for nature lovers! In winter, hit the slopes at Granite Peak Ski Area for downhill skiing and snowboarding fun. 

Roche-A-Cri State Park

Heading south, uncover the natural and cultural wonders of Roche-A-Cri State Park, home to a 300-foot-high rock outcropping adorned with Native American petroglyphs and pictographs. The park's name, meaning "screaming rock" in French, hints at its dramatic landscape and rich history. Explore hiking trails, visit the petroglyphs, and climb the stairway to the top of the mound for breathtaking views.

Whether you're seeking scenic hikes, historic landmarks, or serene picnicking spots, these five state parks near Plover have something for everyone. So grab your hiking boots, pack a picnic, and embark on an outdoor adventure right in your backyard! And don't forget a vehicle admission sticker is required for Rib Mountain, Hartman Creek, and Roch-A-Cri. Consider purchasing the annual admission sticker to utilize all year in all Wisconsin state parks.