As the natural landscape colors begin to brighten and then fade, it is the perfect time to get your family out into nature to enjoy all of the beautiful transformations that accompany the change of seasons. There is no better classroom, playground, or toy chest than nature itself. The Mosquito Hill Nature Center in New London offers exceptional opportunities outdoors and indoors to explore and learn about our local ecosystem. From stargazing to snowshoeing to an accessibly-paved hiking trail through the prairie, Mosquito Hill Nature Center is an idyllic nearby destination to step into the adventure of the natural world this season.
Mosquito Hill Nature Center
- Address: N3880 Rogers Rd, New London
- About: Mosquito Hill Nature Center focuses on environmental education, natural history, and outdoor recreation. The Center includes over 400 acres of woods, prairie, and shoreland along the Wolf River. They offer a wide variety of events and educational programs for children, families, and adults throughout the year.
- Hours: The Office and Interpretive Building are open Tuesday-Friday from 8 am-4:30 pm and Saturday-Sunday from 10 am-3 pm. The building is closed on Mondays. Also note, the outdoor hiking trails are open daily during daylight hours, but they are CLOSED during gun deer hunting season. Check their website for up-to-date COVID19 policies and specific gun deer season trail closings.
- Pets: No pets are permitted on the property.
- Tips To Enjoy Your Visit: If you come during peak mosquito season, you will not survive the trails without bug spray containing DEET. Trust us! Make sure to dress in layers for fall & winter hikes. Good trail shoes, long pants and long sleeves, a walking stick, some water/trail snacks, and a change of clothes are always a good idea when engaging with nature. If you have younger walkers, consider a hiking backpack (or stroller on the accessible trail!) for when they need a rest break. Consider a hiking pack for each child—kids love to be independent, and it gives your back a break, too!
Outdoor Recreation Opportunities
- Hiking Trails: Mosquito Hill Nature Center offers over 3 miles of developed hiking trails that meander through prairie, woods, and up Mosquito Hill, one of the highest points of elevation in the area. They even have an accessible trail, The All People’s Trail, that will allow you to enjoy the prairie lands. Check out the trail map to plan your hiking adventure.
- Natural Playscape: Located in what used to be a quarry along Rogers Road, as you enter the Nature Center property, you’ll find this natural ‘playground’ including a whimsical treehouse, climbing boulders, crawling tubes, and more! The Playscape opened in 2016.
Love natural playgrounds? Don’t miss Heckrodt Wetland Reserve’s Above Your Feet Children’s Canopy Walk
- Astronomy: Just behind the Nature Center building, you’ll find an observatory that is used during some astronomy events throughout the year.
- Picnicking: Scattered picnic tables are available surrounding the Interpretive Building.
- Snowshoeing: Visiting in the snowy months? Check out the Snowshoe Trail Map to find the three marked snowshoe trails, including one that brings you to the summit of Mosquito Hill. Read more: 4 Places to Snowshoe with Your Family
Indoor Educational Offerings
- Nature Center: The Mosquito Hill Nature Center Interpretive building is home to a library, a gift shop, natural history displays, an auditorium, and classrooms.
- Restrooms: Available indoors during building hours. Otherwise, you can use the porta-potty just outside the front of the building when it is closed.
- Events and Classes: The Nature Center offers numerous educational and recreation classes and activities throughout the year. Check out their events calendar to secure tickets and learn about upcoming autumn and winter events, such as the Halloween Pumpkin Hike!
Nearby Coffee, Ice Cream & Fun
- Familiar Grounds, 206 N Pearl St, New London
- One of our favorites! Sipping coffee or wine while your children enjoy the play area means everyone is happy. They also offer a great breakfast/lunch menu and The Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream.
- Kist Kandies and Ice Cream, 414 E Cook St, New London
- Enjoy a variety of treats, including ice cream, candies, fudge, chocolates, coffee, and sodas in this 100+-year-old soda bottling facility.
- Cuff Farms, N229 Ledge Rd Hill Rd, Hortonville
- A local farm offering you-pick chemical-free strawberries and a pumpkin patch & play destination in the fall. Check out our review for all of the details!
- New London Murals
- Over 45 outdoor mural masterpieces await you in New London! Read more >.
Looking for more opportunities for family fun in the greater New London area? Check out our guide to Exploring the Area West of the Fox Cities.