As our economy becomes more of a challenge, we as citizens need to rethink our place in this beautiful state. Price County has a unique place upon the map. Some might say we are in the middle of nowhere. Some might say we are so fortunate to be in the middle of the hub between Ashland, Minocqua, Hayward, and Medford/Marshfield/Wausau. I prefer the more optimistic of the two. It's all a matter of seeing the glass half full or half empty, folks!
Let's focus on our lucky fortune to offer travelers a respite, a quiet, natural wonder in the middle of those more bustling areas. To be sure, they have things to offer we do not, but we have our treasures as well — pure rivers and lakes, jumping fish, drumming partridge, lumbering bear and graceful deer, the whisper of pines and the rustle of maple. Paths amid the forests and ATV and snowmobile trails in abundance over hills, through valleys, and along placid creeks that gurgle and rush. Our land is a gift waiting to be shared.
Back in elementary school, the first time I saw Price County on a map, I remember feeling quite superior that we lived in this perfect rectangle, smack dab in the middle of the northern half of the state (sort of). And the name. It has a nice ring to it, doesn't it? Price County. Like only very important people live here. And we do!
Price County has it's gems. Have you ever been to Big Falls County Park outside of Kennan? If not, you have to go. It's a trek to get there, through rolling forest and farm land, but so worth it. The Jump River cuts through massive rock formations that will take your breath away. And get this, last time I checked camping was only $10 per night. The next time you have a free afternoon, take a drive to Big Falls. You won't regret it. I promise!
Timm's Hill, at an elevation of 1,951.5 feet is the highest point in Wisconsin. Located between Ogema and Spirit, climbing the observation tower will make you feel like you are truly on top of the world. The park is home to hiking, snowmobile and ATV trails amid forests and lakes with a swimming beach and picnic area. We have yet to make it there in autumn, but I can imagine the view must be spectacular.
And then there's Solberg Lake Park by Phillips. Our family has spent many happy days at this wonderful campground, beach, playground and picnic area. A true jewel of a place! And when thinking of Phillips, I also have to mention Fred Smith's Concrete Park. This man was a treasure. Take the time to stop, walk among his statues and discover a true Wisconsin artist.
Lastly, Park Falls, sprawling along the mighty Flambeau River, is perfect for fishing, canoeing, kayaking or taking a cooling dip. Head north of town to pristine waters and forest teeming with wildlife and fish. One of my fondest memories is tubing from Holt's Landing to town. For the most part, the trip was serene, but there's one part that, depending on water height, can get a bit hairy. But such fun! And I can't forget Smith Lake campground just west of town off of County EE.
Take a day and peruse this county we call home. Get to know it better. There's so much more to our perfect rectangle of a county. I wish I had room for it all.