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Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve in Grafton

Activities: Birding, Hiking, Hunting, Wildlife Viewing

Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve and Ulao Waterfowl Production Area


View of Lake Michigan from the bluff

Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve is a 73-acre Ozaukee County Park along the Lake Michigan Shoreline. The natural area, which has remained untouched since before European settlement in Wisconsin, is considered an “ecological jewel.” This Preserve is one of the last undeveloped stretches of bluff land running along the shoreline of Lake Michigan between Mequon and Port Washington.


The Park has ½-mile stretch of cliffs reaching 100 feet overlooking the shoreline. Hiking trails thread throughout the preserve.


Identified as an ebird hotspot with 230 species recorded.  During the peak of spring migration, you are likely to see nearly 20 species of warblers, and throughout the boardwalk, you may see species such as rail, least bittern, green heron, piedbilled grebe, and ring-necked and wood ducks.


Adjacent to Lion’s Den lies Ulao Waterfowl Production Area, a 44-acre wetland complex, which is owned and operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. An observation deck overlooks a large pond. Scoters, loons and most species of ducks can be seen here at different times along with dozens of species of other birds.


Lion’s Den Gorge and Ulao share an entrance and parking lot.


Lion’s Den Gorge is closed to all except gun deer hunters from Nov. 18 to 26. Bow deer hunting is allowed Nov. 27 to Jan. 7. The park is not closed then, but appropriately visible clothing is recommended.


For more information, go to Lion’s Den Gorge and/or Ulao Waterfowl Area.


Gallery (click to enlarge)


511 High Bluff Dr.
53024, Grafton, WI , US