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Wisconsin State Natural Areas Program Warnimont Bluff Fens (No. 352)

Warnimont Bluff Fens

Photo by E. Judziewicz



Within Warnimont County Park, Milwaukee County. T6N-R22E, Section 36. 37 acres.

Please see Chapter 47-Parks and Parkways in Milwaukee County's Municipal Code Ch. 47 [exit DNR] for approved recreational uses.



Warnimont Bluff Fens features highly unusual alkaline wetlands situated on 100' high clay banks along the Lake Michigan shore. Numerous groundwater rivulets run down the bluffs and into Lake Michigan and some of the larger rivulets have carved larger, micro gorges into the bluff. The moist, seeping bluffs support a variety of fen plants of considerable botanical interest including grass-of-Parnassus, lesser fringed gentian, Ohio goldenrod, swamp lousewort, and Kalm's lobelia. Other species include soapberry, elk and brittle-leaf sedge, field horsetail, and numerous rushes. Also present is white cedar, here at the southern limit of its range in Wisconsin. Of significance is the presence of a thriving population of a state-threatened plant. The bluffs are subject to erosion making the banks dynamic and continually changing. But the permanently moist parts are vegetated and stabilized. Warnimont Bluff Fens, being uniquely situated on steep Lake Michigan bluffs, are believed to be the only natural community of this type in the state. Warnimont Bluff Fens is owned by Milwaukee County and was designated a State Natural Area in 2002.


Driving directions

Public access is limited to research and education. Please see Chapter 47-Parks and Parkways in Milwaukee County's Municipal Code Ch. 47 [exit DNR] for more details.


Warnimont Bluff Fens is owned by:

  • Milwaukee County
Last revised: Monday, March 27, 2023