590 feet above the town of La Crosse, Wisconsin is a greenery-covered mesa. It stands to the East of the town, as though watching over its citizens, timeless and unchanging. Grandad Bluff has indeed stood over the La Crosse area through the ages as it’s almost as old as the Mississippi itself. In fact, its formation may have directly impacted the Mississippi’s course as we know it.

Any timeless monument makes a mark on the people who live around it, or who visit the area. Mark Twain, for one, thought the bluff significant enough to mention in Life on the Mississippi. Grandad Bluff is significant because it embodies both the stoic beauty of a mountain and the exotic visual appeal of a mesa.

Mesa formations are characterized by their flat, table-like tops. Sheer cliff walls reach skyward, ending abruptly at the tabletop. Atop Grandad Bluff are a multitude of trees, which gives the mesa a look befitting its namesake: a grizzled, noble grandad.

One of the best things about any mesa is the uninhibited view they afford those with the gumption to climb them. Atop Grandad Bluff you will enjoy views of La Crosse, the University of Wisconsin and the Mississippi River weaving through the land.

For the city of La Crosse, Wisconsin, Grandad bluff has become a beacon of community pride. Many of the area’s festivals and gatherings take place in its shadow. Through snow and sun and rain, Grandad Bluff stands, watching the life of the citizens of La Crosse decade after decade.

In 1912 they opened Grandad Bluff Park. Here you can enjoy covered picnic areas, hiking trails and, of course, the spectacular views.