Wednesday, March 30, 2016

New Hiking Guide from Rob Bignell

New guide details top Chippewa Valley hikes
More than 100 trails described in Day Hiking Trails of the Chippewa Valley

Day Hiking Trails of the Chippewa Valley, by Wisconsin author Rob Bignell, covers trails in Eau Claire, Chippewa, Dunn and Pepin counties. It was released March 28.

“The Chippewa Valley is chock-full of great trails and hidden wonders,” Bignell said. “You can walk beneath startlingly giant conifers and over nearly 2 billion-year-old rock. You can follow the scenic routes of old railroad lines along majestic rivers that feed the Mississippi. You can see waterfalls, pioneer sites, and rare butterflies.”

Two state parks, four major state trails, great city parks, and a variety of other public lands all are open to hikers, bicyclists and other outdoors lovers in the Chippewa Valley. Many are free while the others carry a nominal entrance cost.

Bignell grew up near Menomonie and has hiked many of the trails since childhood. 

The book provides a plethora of information about each featured trail, including:
 Driving directions to the trail
 Where to park and find the trailhead
 Course the trail takes
 Scenic points to look for on the trail
 Wildlife and flora you might spot
 Interesting tidbits about regional geology and history
 Best times to hike the trail

“These trails are perfect for families with children,” Bignell said. The trails run from a tenth of a mile to seven miles in length, with most only a mile to three miles long.

Day Hiking Trailsof the Chippewa Valley is the latest in several bestselling hiking guidebooks Bignell has authored. In January, Best Sights to Seeat America’s National Parks reached No. 1 on’s bestsellers list for Travel>Mountain books. Last year, his Headin’ to the Cabin: Day Hiking Trails of NortheastMinnesota, also hit No. 1 on that Travel>Midwest list.

More than three years of research went into the book. Bignell’s son Kieran accompanied him on a number of those hikes.

An avid backpacker and long-time editor, Bignell is uniquely qualified to write about hiking, especially for families. Bignell has served in the Army National Guard and taught middle school students in New Mexico and Wisconsin. A former newspaper and magazine editor in California, his journalism work has won several awards, from editorial writing to sports reporting. In 2001, The Prescott Journal, which he served as managing editor of, was named Wisconsin’s Weekly Newspaper of the Year.

This is Bignell’s 16th hiking guidebook, almost all of which focus on Wisconsin and Minnesota. He now lives with his son in western Wisconsin.

Book specs:
Day Hiking Trails of the Chippewa Valley
Publish date: April 1, 2016
Publisher: Atiswinic Press
ISBN: 978-0-9961625-4-8
Price: $9.95 (paperback), $0.99 (ebook)
Pages: 124 (paperback)
Cover: Paper (paperback)
Trim Size: 5.5 x 8.5 (paperback)

Day Hiking Trails of the Chippewa Valley author Rob Bignell and his son Kieran.
(Photo by Bryan Bignell)

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