Hike the Balanced Rock Trail at Devil's Lake

Devil's Lake Balance Rock Trail

Steep cliffs. Massive boulders. Gorgeous scenery. Experience it all on the Balanced Rock Trail at stunning Devil's Lake State Park in Baraboo, Wisconsin. 

Devil's Lake is one of Wisconsin's most visited and most beautiful state parks, offering many trails, activities, gorgeous scenery and more. There are various trails to explore in the park, including the East Bluff Trail and the Potholes & CCC Trail Loop, as well as camping that's offered.

The Balanced Rock Trail, however, is exhilarating, breathtaking, strenuous and a bit nerve-wracking when compared to the rest of the park. If that's what you're looking for, then step up to the challenge and begin your ascent.

The trail is named after a rock that seemingly balances near the top of the trail, on the side of the cliff that overlooks the lake. The trail begins at the bottom of the cliff, next to an abandoned railroad track that lines the lakefront. To get here, you can head down S. Lake Rd. where you'll find a parking lot near the lake.

A narrow path that's only marked by wooden posts every few hundred meters directs you up alongside the cliffs, towards the top of the bluff. Irregular steps have been fashioned out of boulders and rocks to help you ascend the trail. Be careful, though, as these steps are spaced unevenly and can be slippery.

Because of the narrowness of the trail, it can get crowded, especially during peak weekend hours. Continue slowly up the steep bluff side and make sure to take in the gorgeous views of the lake below.

Once at the top of the bluff, you'll be rewarded with one of Wisconsin's most beautiful views. From here, you can continue on to the East Bluff trail if you wish, or head back down the Balanced Rock trail. Whatever you choose, you're bound to have an incredible journey. 

Pack List

  • Walking stick
  • Hiking shoes/boots
  • Water bottle/Camelbak
  • Bandaids in case of emergency
  • Sunscreen and sunglasses
  • Backpack for additional supplies
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RT Distance 1 Miles
Activities Photography, Hiking, Rock Climbing
Skill Level Advanced
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Forest
Groups
Lake
Scenic

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Short And Rugged

Another feat trail at starved rock. I didn't get the photo opportunities that I was hoping but I also didn't have great hike. I suggest taking Starved rock up and Pothole trail down.

Heart Pumping!

Wear sure footed shoes for this vertical hike.


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