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Eau Claire, Town Of La Fayette, Augusta, Fall Creek & Altoona

Tour 3 begins at a huge industrial factory and ends at a railroad boom town known by the nickname "Cinder City." But don't let those two fool you; this tour will take you to some of the most scenic destinations in the entire Chippewa Valley. Visit beautiful natural landmarks like Big Falls, charming buildings like Dell's Mill, and acres of glorious orchards in southern Chippewa County. If you're hoping to see iconic Wisconsin dairy farms, this is probably the tour for you. You'll even stop at a one-of-a-kind cheese factory in the town of Augusta. At every stop, you'll learn about the people who made history in all of these places.

Take The Tour

Photo: Gillette Rubber Company factory panorama, 1926

Gillette Rubber Company factory / Banbury Place

1. Introduction To Timber Trails - Play track 1 as your drive to site #1, Banbury Place. Park on Putnam Street between Galloway Street and Wisconsin Street.

2. Banbury Place #1 - Play track 2 once parked on Putnam Street near Banbury Place.

3: Banbury Place #2 - Drive 1/4 mile east on Galloway Street to the parking lot next to Banbury Place. Find a place to park facing the buildings and play track 3.

Photo: Fishing at Big Falls on the Eau Claire River, 1924-1926

Big Falls County Park

4. Directions to Big Falls, Pt. 1 - Play track 4 when you're ready to leave Banbury Place. Drive east on Galloway Street. Galloway becomes Birch Street and then North Shore Drive. Follow signs for Highway QQ.

5. Introduction to the Region’s History - Continue following all signs for County Road QQ. Play track 5 once you turn onto QQ.

6. Directions to Big Falls, Pt. 2 - Play track 6 once track 5 ends. You should still be driving east on QQ. Turn right on County Highway Q. Then turn right on County Highway UN, following signs to Big Falls County Park.

7. Big Falls - Play track 7 once parked at Big Falls County Park. Buy a County Park pass and head down to the falls.

Photo: Boy picking apples at Mcllquham's Orchard, Chippewa County, 2006

Orchard Country, Chippewa County

8. Orchard Country - Play track 8 when you're ready to leave Big Falls County Park. Drive north on County Road UN four miles to County Road OO. Turn right on County OO to drive through Orchard Country.

Photo: Beaver Creek Reserve

Beaver Creek Reserve

9. Directions to Beaver Creek Reserve - Play track 9 as you approach the intersection with County Road K. Drive four miles south to Beaver Creek Reserve. Turn in to the parking lot.

10. Beaver Creek Reserve - Play track 10 once parked at Beaver Creek Reserve.

Photo: Construction of Augusta Dam, 1936

Lake Eau Claire County Park

11. Directions to Lake Eau Claire County Park #1 / Weaver's Store - Play track 11 when you're ready to leave Beaver Creek Reserve. Drive south on County Road K four miles to Fall Creek. Turn left on Highway 12 and drive two miles to Weaver's Store.

12. Directions to Lake Eau Claire County Park #2 - Play track 12 as you approach Weaver's Store on your right. Turn left on Green Meadow Road, then right on County Road D. Drive two miles then continue straight onto County Road N. Drive two miles then continue straight onto County Road NL. Follow NL for three miles and turn right on Highway 27. Drive south on 27 for 2.5 miles then turn left on County Road SD. Turn left into Eau Claire County Park and find a place to park.

13. Eau Claire County Park - Play track 13 once parked near the clubhouse at Eau Claire County Park. Feel free to get out and walk down to the lake. This is a great spot for a picnic.

Photo: Dell's Mill

Dell's Mill

14. Directions to Dells Mill - Play track 14 as you leave the park. Return to County Road SD and Highway 27. Turn left on Highway 27 and drive two miles to County Road V. Turn right and drive 1/4 mile to Dell's Mill. Pull in near the historical marker.

15. Dells Mill - Play track 15 once parked next to the historical marker at Dell's Mill. Please do not get out of your vehicle. You may drive across the bridge for a view of the water wheel.

16. Optional side trip to Harstad Park - Play track 16 if you want to visit Harstad Park on the south shore of the Eau Claire River. Drive west on County Road V to County Road AF. Follow AF to County Road HHH and turn right.

Photo: The Bank Block, downtown Augusta, 1910s

Downtown Augusta

17. Directions to Downtown Augusta - Play track 17 when you're ready to leave either Dell's Mill or Harstad Park. Drive south on Highway 27 three miles. Turn left on Highway 12 (aka Lincoln Street). Drive 1/2 mile into downtown and find a place to park on Lincoln Street between Spring Street and Stone Street.

18. Downtown Augusta - Play track 18 once parked in downtown Augusta.

Photo: Gingerbread Jersey Cheese

Gingerbread Jersey Cheese

19. Directions to Gingerbread Jersey Cheese Factory - Play track 19 when you're ready to leave downtown Augusta. Drive west on Lincoln Street 3/4 of a mile. Look for Gingerbread Jersey's on the right; it looks like an old gas station.

20. Gingerbread Jersey Farmstead Cheese Factory and Shop - Play track 20 once parked at Gingerbread Jersey Cheese Factory.

21. Directions to Fall Creek #1 / Russell's Corner Co-op - Play track 21 when you're ready to leave Gingerbread Jersey's. Drive west on Highway 12 one mile to County Road R. Turn left on County Road R. Drive 1/2 mile and park on the right shoulder. After passing the Co-op, turn right on County Road O.

Photo: Simon Randall portrait drawing, 1860s

Fall Creek

22. Directions to Fall Creek #2 - Play track 22 once on County Road O heading west. Follow O seven miles to County Road KK. Turn right on KK and drive six miles into Fall Creek. Turn left on Highway 12, drive one block to Randall Park on the right side of the road. Park next to Randall Park.

23. Randall Park in Fall Creek - Play track 23 once parked at Randall Park.

Photo: Engine 377 at Altoona


24. Directions to Altoona - Play track 24 when you're ready to leave Randall Park. Drive west on Highway 12 eight miles. Turn right on County Road A. County Road A becomes 3rd Street and 3rd Street becomes Lynn Ave. Park near Altoona City Hall on Lynn Ave.

25. Altoona - Play track 25 once parked near Altoona City Hall.

26. Conclusion