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Hillsboro serves as the trailhead for a new rails-to-trails bikeway – The Hillsboro Trail. The seven-mile route follows the West Branch of the Baraboo River and crosses several times on wooden bridges. The trail links up with the 400 State Bicycle Trail in Union Center, which also connects with the popular Elroy-Sparta bike trail. Cyclists arriving in Hillsboro will find easy access to Vernon County’s vast network of scenic, paved town and county roads.
Round Barns, which include truly round and many sided, can be found in many parts of the USA. The largest concentrations of this style of barn are found in the midwest (Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin). Vernon County here in Wisconsin boasts more round barns than any other county in the USA. Some of these unique barns are being preserved and taken care of while others are deteriorating and falling apart. Most round barns are built with a silo in the center of the barn. The round shape was supposed to make work in the barn, i.e. feeding or milking cows, more efficient. Another possibility for their construction: the round shape provided no corners for evil spirits to hide in.
Hunting, fishing and snowmobiling are also popular recreational pastimes. A busy farmers market appears downtown every Saturday during the summer. A state historical marker tells the story of “Cheyenne Valley”, the largest rural African American settlement in Wisconsin. Craftsmen from this community built most of Vernon County’s historic round barns. The Hillsboro area is home to at least eight round barns, some are still in service. The progressive Hillsboro City government actively promotes housing and commercial development with a municipal industrial park and residential sub-division. Over 120 businesses are located in and around the city, creating a thriving local economy. So when you’re exploring the beautiful hills and valleys of eastern Vernon County, be sure to visit the scenic city of Hillsboro.