Ultimate Guide to Copper Falls State Park – Wisconsin

Guide to Copper Falls State Park - Image of beautiful falls surrounded by green trees

Located 30 minutes south of Ashland, Copper Falls State Park is a scenic Wisconsin state park featuring great hiking trails, beautiful waterfalls, and picturesque campsites. It’s the perfect park to spend a few days relaxing or to visit during a Northern Wisconsin roadtrip.

This guide to Copper Falls State Park details all you need to know to plan the perfect outing. 

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Visiting Copper Falls State Park 

Park Location 

Address: 36764 Copper Falls Road, Mellen, WI 54546

Guide to Copper Falls State Park - Image of woman posing next to state park entrance sign

Copper Falls State Park is located in northern Wisconsin in the city of Mellen. The park is about 30 minutes southeast of Ashland. 

Park Hours

The park is open daily from 6am until 11pm.  

Park Admission 

Copper Falls State Park requires a daily admission fee or annual WI State Park Pass. If you plan on visiting several WI state parks throughout the year, I recommend the annual pass, which is $28 for WI plates or $38 for out-of-state plates. Passes can be purchased at the park entrance gate or online at the DNR website.

The cost to purchase a day pass is $8 for WI plates or $11 for out-of-state plates.

Things to Do in Copper Falls State Park 


Hiking is a popular activity at Copper Falls State Park, offering 17 miles of trails that take you through beautiful forest, past waterfalls, and to several overlooks. 

The most popular trail in the park is the Doughboys Nature Trail which is a 1.7-mile loop that provides views of Copper Falls, Brownstone Falls, and Tyler Forks Cascades. This is the trail I’d start with if it’s your first visit to the park. It not only provides views of two falls, but also showcases the foliage of the park. There’s a little bit of incline and some stairs, but overall, the trail is easy to moderate.

Hiking trail in Copper Falls State Park, Mellen, WI
Brownstone Falls in Copper Falls State Park - Guide to Copper Falls State Park
Young woman at overlook to cascades in Copper Falls State Park

NOTE: A section of this trail is closed during winter (but re-routed so you can still view both waterfalls), and dogs are not allowed on any portion of the Doughboys Nature Trail. 

Another hiking highlight is the North Country National Scenic Trail, which runs the entire length of the park. The trail itself runs from Vermont to North Dakota, with four miles traveling through the state park. 

For views of a third waterfall, explore the 2.5-mile Red Granite Falls Trail, which leads to Red Granite Falls. Pets are allowed on this trail. 


Mountain bikers can enjoy two one-way trails (also open to hikers) as long as they are not snow-covered. Both Takesson and Vahtera Trails have routes for mountain bikes, totalling just over four miles. 

Loon Lake

During the warmer months, enjoy the 300-foot sand beach at Loon Lake. Along with sun bathing, the lake is the perfect spot for canoeing and kayaking. You can rent both at the park office. 

Where to Stay Near Copper Falls State Park


Camping at Copper Falls State Park is very popular, especially during the summer months. Campsites must be booked in advance through the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website. 

There are several campsites near the state park, including 32 sites in the north campground and 23 sites in the south campground. Additionally, the state park offers six plowed campsites during the winter season. 

In addition to the traditional campsites, Copper Falls State Park has a rustic accessible campground available along with one backpack campsite. 

There’s also a concession stand available during the peak season that sells food, supplies and firewood. 


If camping is not your cup of tea or you’d simply prefer lodging with a bed, there are several hotels near Copper Falls State Park. Ashland is nearby and is a fun city filled with outdoor activities (check out the complete Ashland guide). Consider the Cobblestone Inn and Suites or the Best Western The Hotel Chequamegon.


While it’s impossible to choose the most beautiful Wisconsin State Park, Copper Falls State Park is certainly at the top of my list. I love the tranquility of the waterfalls combined with the beautiful hiking trails surrounded by trees found only in Northern Wisconsin. Happy Exploring!



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