Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area Article

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Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area
Gibraltar Rock.JPG
Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area is located in Wisconsin
Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area
TypePublic, State
Location Lodi, Wisconsin
Coordinates 43°20′56″N 89°36′02″W / 43.348929°N 89.600484°W / 43.348929; -89.600484
GIBRALTAR ROCK STATE NATURAL AREA Latitude and Longitude:

43°20′56″N 89°36′02″W / 43.348929°N 89.600484°W / 43.348929; -89.600484
Area68 acres (28 ha)
Created1969
Operated byWisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Visitors73 [1]
A winter photo of a leather leaf bog from Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area in Wisconsin.

Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area is a natural area in southern Wisconsin, United States, [2] which is 68 acres (28 ha) in size, and is located along the 1,000-mile-long (1,600 km) Ice Age Trail.

Location

Located in Columbia County, Wisconsin, Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area is 68 acres (28 ha) in size. [1] The Wisconsin River Valley and Lake Wisconsin are located within view of the higher-elevation points in the natural area. [1] The Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area is located along the Ice Age Trail, which is a thousand miles long. [3] It is located 1.2 miles (1.9 km) from the intersection of Highway 113 and County Highway V in the town of West Point. [4] [5] Wisconsin County Road V runs past the area, with a parking lot located off the road that allows access to it. From there, a walking trail leads off to gain access to Gibraltar Rock. [3]

History

Early on, the Van Ness family owned the land and had a house on the property. [3] Other early families living in the area includes the Richmond family. [4] During the 1920s, Wisconsin landscape architect Jens Jensen started efforts to protect the area. Forming a group at the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1920, the group was able to acquire the land in 1927. [4] They named the area Richmond Park. [4] The Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area became a Wisconsin-designated natural area in 1969. It was originally owned by the county until 2007, [6] when they transferred ownership to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR). [1] [4] A celebration was held following the transfer of ownership. [3]

Background

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources manages the Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area. [3] Howard Van Ness made several paintings depicting the area prior to its designation as a state natural area. [3] Friends of Gibraltar Rock exists and does "biological indexing of the flora and fauna in the area." [3] The views from the natural area are a major tourist draw. [4] The 1.4-mile (2.3 km) track for the area does not have wheelchair access. [4] People are not allowed to climb the rocks in the park, though this has not always been the case. [4]

Geology

The natural area is located on the outer part of the Magnesian Escarpment [1]/ Black River Escarpment, [7] with the soil for the area being glaciated sandy loams, which sit on top of the Galena- Platteville dolomite cap and St. Peter sandstone. [1] Inside the natural area is a 200-foot-tall (61 m) flat-topped butte called "Gibraltar Rock." [1] [8] It sits 1,246 feet (380 m) above sea level and is the highest point in Columbia Country. [3] There is a 0.75-mile-long (1.2 km) trail leading up to the Rock. [3]

Wildlife and fauna

Cliff goldenrod, columbine, ferns, pale corydalis and red cedar, little blue-stem, side oats grama, prairie drop-seed, blue-eyed grass, bird's foot violet, bergamot, pasque flower, leadplant, aster, whorled milkweed, and prairie smoke are located within the natural area. [1]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Gibraltar Rock (No. 73)". Wisconsin State Natural Areas Program. Retrieved 28 October 2012.
  2. ^ "Gibraltar Rock State Natural Area". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i AP; Lyn Jerde (June 6, 2008). Associated Press News Service, ed. "Wisconsin Weekend Package, ADV07-08, WI". Portage Daily Register.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Kevin Revolinski (28 May 2008). 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Madison: Including Dane and Surrounding Counties. Menasha Ridge Press. pp. xvii, 92–95. ISBN  978-0-89732-794-7.
  5. ^ Wisconsin Department of Transportation, Columbia County, Wisconsin map
  6. ^ "Gibraltar Rock County Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  7. ^ Wisconsin Natural Resources. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. 2005.
  8. ^ "Gibraltar Rock (pillar)". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.