Milwaukee pups don't need to travel far to be able to enjoy the outdoors. Just 20 minutes northwest of downtown, Havenwoods State Forest is a reclaimed natural space where doggos and their humans can reconnect with nature right within the city. As the only urban state forest in Wisconsin, Havenwoods is a uniquely puptacular spot that you will want to check out with your pooch!
Located in the northern part of the city, Havenwoods State Forest comprises almost 240 acres of woods, wetlands, grasslands, and gardens. Over 6 miles of trails wind throughout the forest, allowing hikers, runners, and four-legged visitors to explore the site's various natural habitats. Some trails and areas are off-limits to furry guests, however, so be sure to pick up a map at the nature center before you and your dog set off. Not to worry, though. There are still miles of trails for Fido to tackle!
One suggested hike is the 2.5-mile Pet Trail, which begins at the parking lot. This route will take you and your adventurous pooch past the Environmental Awareness Center, over Lincoln and Intermittent Creeks, and beside the Wisconsin and Southern Railroad. Most of the trail is paved limestone, with a couple of grass and woodchip sections. Make sure your canine pal stays on an 8-foot leash at all times, and do clean up after them. Since there are no garbage bins in the forest, visitors are asked to carry out all waste and recyclables. Be sure to have clean-up bags on hand, and water to share with your thirsty pup.
After all that walking, it's time to share a packed lunch with Fido. Picnicking is allowed anywhere in Havenwoods, and you will find picnic tables in the Urban Arboretum and beside the parking lot. Dogs are not permitted in the arboretum, though, so you and your pup will have to snag a table in the latter location.
For an unfurgettable nature experience in Milwaukee, head on over to Havenwoods State Forest!