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“Great overlooked National Monument”

Effigy Mounds National Monument
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: 29 Of This Park's 191 Mounds Are In The Shape Of Animals.
Reviewed July 8, 2012

This whole area is overlooked for campers and hikers. This is a very interesting National Monument with great hiking trails that take you out to many different mounds and up onto the top of the bluffs overlooking the river. There are several different overlooks that are well worth the hike. The building is nice with great friendly Park Rangers and a movie explaining about the mounds. I highly recommend watching the video. The Gatorade for sale was very much appreciated after we hiked over 6 miles in extreme heat (temps got over 100 that day). We set out to just do the 2 mile hike so we didn't take our water. But once we were up on the bluffs, we just had to go see more. Moral of the story - bring a water bottle with you, in case you decide to hike farther than planned. Mostquitoes were not an issue. No cost to get in, but they have a donation box.

For those with mobility issues, you can go right out the lodge to see 3 mounds. Otherwise you do need to be able to do some easy/moderate hiking to see the rest. There is a bit of a steep climb up to where you plateau and most of the hiking after that is not very steep.

Thank Kathryn_in_MN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (173)
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147 - 151 of 173 reviews

Reviewed July 4, 2012

The site is as advertised. The attractions are burial mounds that are over 1000 years old. The interesting question is why the mounds suddenly stopped being built. As mentioned in other reviews it is about a 15 minute strenuous walk to get to the top of the bluff. We visitied when it was hot and carrying water was a necessity. Once you get up it is a level walk along the trail past the mounds.

The visitor center is interesting, but there is not much information about the mounds.

I visited Wyalusing State Park in Wisconsin two years ago. The mounds in that park were much easier to get to and the signs were just as informational. I view of the Mississippi were less obstructed @ Wyalusing State Park.

Thank Bob2198
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 3, 2012

We came to Effigy on one of the hottest days of the year. The ranger was very friendly and recommended the two mile hike to see the mounds. She seemed a little disappointed that we didn't want to watch the video. We went back to the car to get our canteens and binoculars for the hike. We counted well over two dozen bird species in our short walk...including many woodpeckers. The two mile hike takes you past several conical and effigy mounds. The placards were very informative and it was easy to connect the mound activity to the history presented in the placards.

The 2 mile hike has a very strenuous start with several switchbacks, However, the trail is well maintained and mostly flat once one gets to the top of the ridge.

Thank FollowingHistory
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 15, 2012

I first went here on a school trip and was really impressed. Fast forward a few years and I took my daughter to visit. Its hard to describe, and maybe I am a nerd, but I've always liked history and this place is really cool.

Thank Jeff T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 28, 2012

If you are new to indian mounds you may be dissapointed. The thing that makes these unique are the animal shapes that are found. The problem is it is very hard to make out the shapes and I found just about impossible to capture in a picture. I was glad I went because of the historical significance and the unusual shapes. I thought the marching bear group in the south unit allowed for some of the best photos and views of the bear mounds. Don't miss the Founders Pond Overlook for a serene viewpoint. I personally found the bear shape just to the right of the path to Founders Pond Overlook to be one of the best defined. Another reviewer mentioned the bear shape at the Pike's Peak state park. This is one of the best angles to photograph a bear mound. Also no bathroom facilities on the trails and very few benches on the south unit. North unit has a good number of benches.

Thank nomad21k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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