Take a walk through Middleton’s beautiful natural spaces—without leaving the couch. We know now is not the ideal time to travel, so we’re bringing the travel to you. Join us as we take a virtual tour of some of Middleton’s most scenic spots (and keep these places in mind when you’re ready to hit the road again).
This is the jewel of Middleton’s natural spaces. This 550-acre protected natural area on the northeast side of the city contains a mix of oak savanna, restored prairie, marsh, lowland forest and mixed woodlands. In the spring, summer and fall, it’s a popular destination for walking, biking and birdwatching.
On the northern side of the conservancy you’ll find Frederick’s Hill, which offers a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside (and even the city of Madison across the lake). There are also several Native American mounds atop Frederick’s Hill.
Pheasant Branch Creek Corridor Trail (pictured)
Head southwest out of Pheasant Branch Trail (across Century Avenue/Highway M) to find these pretty tree-lined trails that follow Pheasant Branch Creek west toward Highway 12/18. These trails are not only scenic, but it’s a great place to bring your pup (dogs must be leashed, however).
This area is home to Teideman’s pond—a 25-acre glacial kettle pond named after the family who once farmed land—and is a restored wetland and conservancy area. Tiedeman Pond Conservancy Area can be reached via the pedestrian/bike trail off South Avenue, which follows the west edge of the pond to Woodside Heights Park. A nature trail follows the pond along the east shoreline.
A wildlife viewing platform on the west shore of the pond offers great opportunities to see native wildlife, including muskrats, herons, ducks, geese, egrets, frogs and more.
Pope Farm Conservancy
Located in the town of Middleton, Pope Farm Conservancy is 100-plus acres of beautiful scenery that sits atop the convergence of three watersheds. Look to the east and you’ll see Lake Mendota and the state Capitol, look north and you’ll see the Black Earth Creek Valley, and look south to see the terminal moraine.
The conservancy is home to six different prairie restorations and seven different crops, including an ever-popular field of sunflowers. Interpretive signage tells the story of the land: how it was formed, the Native American influence and more. The conservancy also features 8 miles of walking trails and several picnic areas.