Walking Trail

Everyone is welcome to enjoy the beauty and serenity of the Walking Trail.

The Walking Trail: for your enjoyment and good health

Take in the beauty of nature, clear your mind, exercise, eat lunch, meet friends, take a break. Whatever the reason, the Walking Trail is a scenic, peaceful retreat close to Gundersen Health System's main campus.

Established in 1995, the trail began as a short, unpaved path. Today the trail is paved for easy access for wheelchairs and strollers, and features a lovely gazebo, picnic tables and benches. The landscaping includes flowers and shrubs set against beautiful views of the river. Gundersen employees, visitors and patients, as well as our neighbors, have made the Walking Trail a popular destination.

The health benefits of walking

The Walking Trail offers many benefits...something different for everyone. But as the name implies, a favorite activity is walking. Walk alone for the solitude, or walk with a friend for encouragement and good conversation. Few exercises are as enjoyable and beneficial as walking. Walking:

  • Requires only a good pair of walking shoes.
  • Is affordable.
  • Requires no special training.
  • Is fun for people of all ages and fitness levels.
  • Reduces stress and fatigue, increases strength and endurance.
  • Clears your mind and rejuvenates you.
  • Strengthens your bones and heart.
  • Adds years to your life and life to your years.

If you begin your walk in the Hospital lobby, walk to the trail's end and return, you've walked 1 1/4 miles. Health experts recommend walking 10,000 steps a day, which is about five miles. To track your progress, pick up a pedometer with safety strap for $25 from the Nutrition Clinic (ext. 53447 or 2nd floor off the corridor linking the Clinic and Hospital) or Community & Preventive Care Services (ext. 54717 or 1st floor Support Services Building in Onalaska). Print a copy of the trail map.

Show your support of the Walking Trail

Everyone is welcome to use and enjoy the Walking Trail. Please remember to properly dispose of your trash and pick up after your pet.

Appreciation for the Walking Trail

"I love having the opportunity to walk on the trail during my lunch break. It is a quick, peaceful getaway that rejuvenates me for the rest of the day!" - Bethany A. Sauer, Medical Media

"With the water and trees and quiet solitude so close by, it only takes a moment to get away from my desk and be able to breathe in some fresh air. It is truly a blessing to have it right on campus." - Sue La Crosse, Quality Improvement

"I love watching the seasons change from the trail. I look forward to the birds and flowers of spring. Summer brings the heat and fishing boats on the water. Coolness, colors and the geese and swans flying south are highlights in the fall. In winter I enjoy watching people ice fishing, eagles soaring and the ducks swimming on the open water." - Carol Berra, RN, Employee Health Service

"Every day we hear that we need to fit regular daily exercise into our busy lives and routines. The Walking Trail demonstrates a commitment by Gundersen to healthy living for its employees and to the community. I am a regular user of the trail and greatly appreciate having it available for a midday healthy break!" - Greg Skolaski, Occupational Therapy

For more information, call Gundersen Community & Preventive Care Services at (608) 775-4717 or email wellness@gundersenhealth.org.

Love + Medicine

Every day, Gundersen Health System delivers great medicine plus a little something extra—we call it Love + Medicine.

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