The park is a small peninsula on the large peninsula jutting into Lake Michigan, home to eight miles of pristine shoreline and some of Wisconsin’s best beaches. But the place is also lousy with dozens of miles of path and gravel bike trail through the forest with gentle grades for running. Trot past yellowing birch and beech and crimson cranberry. Step more carefully on the rocky, rooted, 2-mile Eagle Trail, which courses along 150-foot limestone bluffs, with views of the lake.
WHEN TO GO: Foliage peaks in early October. Venture out during a Packers' (October 6, 13) or a Badgers' game (October 12) and you’ll have more of the trails to yourself.
ROUTE: Park at the Eagle Tower and link the Eagle Trail with the Minnehaha, Lone Pine, and Sentinel Trail for a 10-mile loop.
PACK IT IN: If Peninsula State Park is deserted during the football games, Husby’s, just north in Sister Bay, will be packed. Grab a spot on the patio of the Garage Bar, where there’s a Mexican food theme. Our pick: the locally caught whitefish tacos with homemade salsas. Wash them down with the Polka King Porter from nearby Door County Brewing Company.