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Midwestern Wilderness High Points

RankWildernessStatePeak Elev-Ft Range (Level 4)Ascent Date
1.Black ElkSouth DakotaHarney Peak7242Black Hills 
2.Soldier CreekNebraskaSoldier Creek Wilderness High Point4740Central Great Plains 
3.BadlandsSouth DakotaBadlands Peak 31603160Central Great Plains 
4.Theodore RooseveltNorth DakotaPetrified Forest Summit2734Northern US Great Plains 
5.Fort NiobraraNebraskaFort Niobrara Wilderness High Point2667Central Great Plains 
6.LostwoodNorth DakotaLostwood Wilderness High Point2470Canadian Great Plains 
7.Boundary Waters Canoe AreaMinnesotaEagle Mountain2301Superior Upland 
8.McCormickMichiganMarquette County High Point1932Superior Upland 
9.SylvaniaMichiganSylvania Wilderness High Point1860Superior Upland 
10.Chase LakeNorth DakotaChase Lake Wilderness High Point1840Northern US Great Plains 
11.Blackjack SpringsWisconsinBlackjack Springs Wilderness High Point1820Superior Upland 
12.HeadwatersWisconsinHeadwaters Wilderness High Point1780Superior Upland 
13.TamaracMinnesotaTamarac Wilderness High Point1580Upper Mississippi Area 
14.Whisker LakeWisconsinWhisker Lake Wilderness High Point1560Superior Upland 
15.Porcupine LakeWisconsinPorcupine Lake Wilderness High Point1530Superior Upland 
16.Sturgeon River GorgeMichiganSturgeon River Gorge Wilderness High Point1411Superior Upland 
17.Isle RoyaleMichiganMount Desor1394Superior Upland 
18.Rainbow LakeWisconsinRainbow Lake Wilderness High Point1370Superior Upland 
19.AgassizMinnesotaAgassiz Wilderness High Point1147Upper Mississippi Area 
20.Gaylord NelsonWisconsinOak Island High Point1080Superior Upland 
21.Beaver BasinMichiganLegion Lake Peak1063Superior Upland 
22.Rock River CanyonMichiganRock River Canyon Wilderness High Point1033Superior Upland 
23.Big Island LakeMichiganBig Island Lake Wilderness High Point935Superior Upland 
24.Charles C. DeamIndianaFrank Grubb Ridge900Lower Peninsula-Heartland 
25.SeneyMichiganSeney Wilderness High Point827Superior Upland 
26.MackinacMichiganMackinac Wilderness High Point820Superior Upland 
27.DeliriumMichiganDelirium Wilderness High Point780Superior Upland 
28.Huron IslandsMichiganMcIntyre Island High Point755Superior Upland 
29.Nordhouse DunesMichiganNordhouse Dunes Wilderness High Point738Lower Peninsula-Heartland 
30.Horseshoe BayMichiganHorseshoe Bay Wilderness High Point690Superior Upland 
30.Round IslandMichiganRound Island High Point690Lower Peninsula-Heartland 
32.West Sister IslandOhioWest Sister Island High Point616Lower Peninsula-Heartland 
33.Michigan IslandsMichiganGull Island High Point605Lower Peninsula-Heartland 
34.Wisconsin IslandsWisconsinSpider Island High Point590Upper Mississippi Area 

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List Description

Wilderness areas are large tracts of land where resource extraction, roads, structures, and motors of any kind are forbidden. The only intrusion of man permitted is foot travel and low-impact camping. They represent the last sanctuaries of the primeval world left in our developed country, and most of them are in the high mountains.

This list shows the highest points in federally designated Wilderness Areas in the Midwestern states. Many of these wildernesses are small in size and located in wildlife refuges far from any real mountains, or on small islands in the Great Lakes. But they still offer oases from the human-managed landscape that covers most of country's heartland.

Note that the boundaries of many Wilderness Areas are indistinct and not always shown accurately on topographic maps. In addition, many Wilderness high points are "liners" or "slope points" located where a boundary is excluding a summit area that has road or tower development. So finding the exact point for many of these summits may be difficult, and being sure of reaching them may require independent research. In some cases, where a wilderness boundary came very close to a prominent undeveloped summit, that summit is assumed to be the wilderness high point even if the official boundary may be a few feet away.


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