Eau Claire Fall Color Routes
The Chippewa Valley is the perfect place to visit to surround yourself in the colors of fall and experience all the seasonal activities you wait all year to do. Matter of fact, Travel Awaits named Eau Claire and our neighboring city, Chippewa Falls, as places for "the most scenic Wisconsin fall foliage road trip". The third week in October is typically the best time to view the fall colors in our neck of the woods. Before you start the engine to your car, take a look at the Fall Color Report to know when the exact peak time is. Locals are so grateful for the beautiful fall scenes that transform Eau Claire and we want you to experience it all at the best time. To help guide your trip, we recommend the following routes throughout our area:
- Highway 37 toward Mondovi | Google Map
- Highway 85 toward Durand | Google Map
- Highway 93 toward La Crosse | Google Map
- Highway 178 and 64 toward Cornell | Google Map
- Highway 12 toward Augusta | Google Map
- “Rustic Road” in Chippewa County – County Hwy E between Chippewa Falls and Holcombe | Google Map
- A rustic road is a lightly traveled scenic highway that is beautifully landscaped. You can seek beautiful countryside and farmland on this route while you admire the fall colors.
- "Rustic Road" in Meridean, WI - County Hwy O off Highway 85 | Google Map
- This Rustic Road follows the Chippewa River and takes you down wooded areas, under canopies, and leaves you with breathtaking fall sights to take in.
When it's time to stretch the legs and you feel like exploring by foot, there are several spots throughout Eau Claire and the surrounding areas that offer scenic views worth seeing during the fall. Plus, just driving by and looking through the window does not give the fall scenes found in the Chippewa Valley Justice. While you make your way down these roads, pull over and grab your camera to capture Eau Claire transitioning into a whole new season of life.
Mt. Simon is nicknamed "The Top of the World" in Eau Claire because that's exactly how you feel after you've hiked to the top. Needless to say, the view from above the treetops gives you a clear look at all the yellows, oranges, and reds that have consumed the leaves.
UW-Eau Claire prides itself on being known at Wisconsin's most beautiful campus. You can find pretty sights from several angles of campus. When you stand at the top of the hill on upper campus, it feels like you can see all of Eau Claire. Putnam Trail runs through the campus as well and the path is always turned into different shades of yellows and oranges in the fall. There's lots to fall in love with at UWEC (no pun intended).
Say, "Hello" to fall at River Prairie! Between the trail along the river that gets coated with leaves and the hanging lights throughout the park that dim the park when the days get shorter, you get the perfect little fall sanctuary. River Prairie is also home to the annual Ginormous Pumpkin Festival that gets people in that fall mood by late September. No doubts that you'll get your fall color fix here!
Dells Mill in Augusta, WI
Buena Vista Scenic Overlook in Osseo, WI
Osseo also has a few sights up its sleeve to see. The Buena Vista Scenic Overlook gives you the perfect window of Wisconsin's farmlands and rolling hills. You can even see the treetops of Trempealeau County at the horizon. This is a great place to come appreciate the four seasons the Midwest gets each year.
No one said that experiencing fall in Eau Claire can only be done by foot or by car. Bike works too! For the people that want to see the colors of fall while pedaling, the Chippewa River State Trail has 30 miles worth of fall foliage for you to gawk at. Plus, the Old Abe State Trail adds another 28 miles if you just can't be-LEAF what you see!
Town of Union Conservancy
There is no view in Eau Claire quite like the one from the Town of Union Conservancy. With a little hike through the woods, you'll find yourself surrounded by warm-colored trees standing above the Chippewa River with leaves falling to the ground around you. Sit back on the bench and soak it all in; time goes by fast and before you know, the trees will be bare and winter will come knocking on our door.
A hike through Carson Park will give you those fall feels you've been searching for. Bundle up in your coziest boots, sweaters and scarves because the crisp fall air greets you here. The leaves and pine needles fall to the ground and sun peaks in between tree branches leaving Carson Park looking like a scene from your favorite fall movie.
We've mapped it all out for you. Fall in Eau Claire awaits you!