Walkin’ in Wausau – River Edge Parkway

I started a series called, Walkin’ in Wausau to share local parks and trails where I take my kids to burn energy when our yard becomes boring or when we need to get OUTside. You can check out the first post here

These outings are mostly about keeping the kids active (within reason), but sometimes, playgrounds become boring for our oldest two so we load up our bikes and find places to ride. Today, we are exploring River Edge Parkway this is a beautiful area to explore on bike or on foot. The kids bring their bikes while I follow along with the stroller. 

River Edge Parkway runs along the Wisconsin River. If I read the link correctly, it is about 1.75 miles from Winton Street to Oak Island Park. 

Our “homebase” for this section of trail is the parking spaces along River Dr.– just a bit past Wausau on Water’s (WOW) building. I think of this area as the midpoint of the trail — and I like the ease of parking here. 

You can see these chairs from the parking area. One day, I’d like to hang out with my friends, hubby, or kids and soak in that view — or maybe just hang here by myself.  

Or maybe, I’d hang out here. Ok, enough sitting. Time to get moving. 

 Image credit: Google Maps

If you decide to venture North (aka under the Bridge Street bridge), the paved trail (brown line — only visible in second picture, but does exist along the river) will take you past Thrive Foodery, and ends/merges on to Winton St. 

And they’re off.

The kids usually ride ahead of me. We have a system where I point ahead to a landmark, that is still in my sight, and they ride there and wait for me to catch up.

You won’t see much of the water on this section of trail, but it is beautiful. If you decide to go in the other direction or your kids’ are still in good spirits and have more energy to burn …

You can check out the south part of the trail (from WOW to Dudley Tower). The path does continue along the River behind WOW, the map does not show this — When we explored this area, work was being completed.

You will find a dock and a pedestrian bridge. If you continue further, you will find another pedesterian bridge to take a tour of Barker-Stewart Island Park (gravel, dirt trail) or you can cross the train tracks and head towards Big Bull Falls Park. 

If you feel brave enough to cross Washington Street with your kids, you can continue on to Wausau Whitewater Park, and/or Oak Island Park. 

Checking out the view from bridge #1.

Another fun area to check out near the bridge pictured above. I love the work done here. 

Heading to Barker-Stewart Island and checking out the view along the way. 

Exploring Barker-Stewart Island, I won’t share many pictures. You can discover the area for yourself. 

Walking along the train tracks toward Big Bull Falls Park. 

Checking out the view from bridge #3. 

The kids were blown away by this statute, or maybe they were excited about the water coming off the statue.  

If you decide to skip Barker-Stewart Island, you’ll end up here (behind the Wausau Library). We rode from Winton St to here and back to our ‘homebase’ this was our celebatory picture. 

That’s it for this tour. Next week, I’ll share another place we like to visit. 

Where are your favorite Wausau area places to visit with your kids? 

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