Gas Tank Getaways: Nature on Display at Bong State Recreation Area
Explore and learn about nature while having fun at this state facility in Kenosha County.
Roam through 4,515 acres of grassland, savanna, wetlands and woodland at Richard Bong State Recreation Area. There are 41.1 miles of trails for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, ATV and dirt bike riding, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing. Fish off the pier, launch an electric/non-motorized boat or swim on the 200-foot beach.
Visitors to the recreation area can also take advantage of special use zones to fly model airplanes, rockets, hang gliders and hot air balloons, and has space to train hunting and sled dogs, train falcons, ride horses and ATVs, and hunt in season.
Want more than a day? There are 217 campsites and six group campsites, as well as a cabin for people with disabilities.
Where: Richard Bong State Recreation Area is 8 miles southeast of Burlington on State Highway 142. The entrance is about one mile west of the intersection with State Highway 75. 26313 Burlington Road, Brighton, WI
When: Open year-round, 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Anglers and hunters allowed in at 5 a.m.
How much: Vehicle pass required for entry. Wisconsin vehicles pay $7 per day; an annual pass is $25. Campground rentals are extra.
Special Treat: The wetlands at Bong Recreation Area attract migrating sandhill cranes in the fall. Head to the park before dusk to catch these majestic birds as they glide in to rest for the night. An observation platform offers great views. Read about the cranes' annual stop in this article from The Journal Times.
Phone: (262) 878-5600
Take a virtual walk through Bong Recreation Area in this April blog post from Wayne Nelson.
Wisconsin Outside featured the many activities available at Bong Recreation Area in a May article.
Bong Recreation Area has fabulous birding opportunities, providing visitors the chance to glimpse the short-eared owl, bluebird and waxwing. Read about birding the recreation area in this article from Chicago Wilderness Magazine.