Monroe County, Wisconsin

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Sites listed here without GPS coordinates are featured in our printed Travel Guide.  The guide includes GPS and has more detailed route instructions.


Alderwood Ripples:
Latitude: 44.08668   Longitude: -90.65957
The picture shown at left is a satellite image of Alderwood Lake as seen from Google Earth.  This site is located on the Fort McCoy Military Base NE of Sparta.  When I visited there in 2017, in an attempt to get video of the spillway/rapids, I was informed that the Alderwood area is now a training area, that the area was designated a "secure area", and that photos were not allowed.   I was informed that the dam and lake has been removed and that there are no falls or spillway remaining.  I was told that there are some very minor "ripples" in the stream downstream but no significant rapids!


Angelo Spillway:
Latitude: 43.96839   Longitude: -90.77567
This spillway is in the La Crosse River just north of Sparta.  Go east 1.9 miles on Route 21 from the northeast corner of Sparta and you will find the spillway just north of the Route 21 bridge over the La Crosse River.  Uninteresting spillway with only a trickle flow so no video was taken (I have visited this spillway numerous times and have never seen more than a trickle).

Big Creek Millpond Spillway:  View Video
Latitude: 44.09132   Longitude: -90.84284
This spillway is in
the NW corner of downtown Cataract one block west of Highway 27 just north of Casper Street.  A lot of water over this 15 foot spillway but we could not find a way downstream to get a better view. 

Cascade Creek Falls:  View Video
Cascade Creek Falls is in Northwestern Monroe County.  Our Wisconsin Waterfalls Travel Guide provides detailed directions of where to find the falls along with GPS coordinates of the site.  When needed the travel guide also provides parking availability information, walking trail details and other information about the site.

Perch Lake Spillway:  View Video
Latitude: 43.94241   Longitude: -90.80276
This spillway is in Sparta on the La Crosse River... from the Sparta I-90 exit, go north 1.3 miles on Route 27 to Route 71, go east 0.9 miles to East Ave and turn left... the spillway will be on your right in 0.1 miles.  You can park on the street or in a park that borders the south side of the spillway.  Best time to visit is in the early afternoon when the sun shines on the spillway. 

  Squaw Lake Spillway:
Latitude: 44.02316   Longitude: -90.70887
This small spillway in the La Crosse River is adjacent to the Fort McCoy Army Base northeast of Sparta.  From Sparta go 6.4 miles on Route 21 from the northeast corner of Sparta to Buckley Road, then 0.7 miles west on Buckley, then 0.9 miles north on 13th, then east on F to 1st left.  Cannot get downstream to get a decent picture of this spillway and it is a quite uninteresting spillway so no video was taken.  Don't waste your time on this one... it's more like a road culvert.

  Water Mill Spillway:
Latitude: 44.05554   Longitude: -90.46231
This spillway is on private property about 6 miles NE of Tomah.  Domino Road is a public road running north from County G... However, 200 yards north of County G there is a gate across the road and a sign indicating that the road is private beyond that point.  We could not obtain video of the spillway but we did learn that the spillway makes a 9 foot drop from Water Mill Pond as it drains into Mill Creek.  The spillway is actually under a bridge (so it's more like a culvert under a bridge) over Mill Creek.  DO NOT TRESPASS!  Trespassing charges are taken seriously by the County Sheriff. 

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Links & Helpful Hints...
Before you visit a waterfall it is helpful to know the surrounding landscape... we use two free internet services to help. provides free topo maps which can be enlarged and printed.  Access Topoquest and then click "find maps" on their website, put in GPS from our data (without the minus sign), click "search", then click on the first USGS map that has a DRG name, click on the map itself and select zoom level.  To navigate the area... if you want to look at an area left of the map, click on the left edge of the map, etc.  Below each map will be a listing of features shown on the map... a little work and you will learn their system (sometime clicking on the edge will not take you to an adjacent map).
We also use Google Earth.  It is a free service you can download at  Like Topoquest, you put in GPS data (or city, or county and state) and it will "fly" you to the location requested. 
There are lots of internet sites that list facts about Wisconsin... one of the best is the Wisconsin DNR site which has all kinds of info.  Another good site is

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