Historic House with Modern Conveniences, Twenty Minutes from Spring Green.

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Last updated: 07/21/2016
Check availability
23 Available
21 Unavailable
22 Today
23 Selected dates
  • Minimum stay:2 nights
  • Internet:Yes
  • Pets considered:Yes
  • Wheel chair accessible:Yes

Property description

Two of the perpetual joys of visiting southern Wisconsin are the scaled-down pace and the sheer beauty of the surroundings. Bear Valley Vista is in Wisconsin's Driftless Zone, an area of rolling hills that were not touched by the last two glaciations.

Our ‘stone’ house was built in 1915 and updated in 2005 with all modern conveniences. Upstairs are 4 bedrooms and1½ baths. Both bathrooms are accessible to all bedrooms and the full bath has a jacuzzi tub. A twin Aerobed with bedding is available by prearrangement, to accommodate a maximum of 9 people.

Downstairs are a bedroom/den with a futon that converts to a double bed and a second full bath with a level-in shower. Access to full-house broadband Internet (including WiFi-5G) is at the built-in desk. The dining room table expands to seat 10. The living room has a recliner chair and other comfortable seating for 6 and a satellite TV with DVD player and ROKU. The kitchen's built-in banquette has a rotating table for easy access. There is central air conditioning and heating, plus an energy-efficient washer/dryer.

The back of the house is a large two-level screened porch, with plexiglass windows in cold weather. The upstairs level has a gas log fireplace, a recliner and other comfortable seating, plus lots of books, toys and games. The lower porch has a pass-through kitchen window shelf and a dining table for convenient outdoor meals on warm days. A charcoal BBQ is just outside.

The front porch with its Amish glider and Adirondack chairs is a perfect place from which to see birds and other wildlife. The house is set in an acre of professional landscaping with large grassy areas for outdoor games. There is a fire pit in the east yard. Our manager next door offers a wheelbarrow of wood for $10 to start you off.

Across the street is the 750-acre Bear Creek Sedge Meadow State Natural Area, which is protected public land with nesting Sandhill cranes and other species of birds plus a good trout fishing stream. The valley is perfect for hiking and biking. Five miles away is White Mound County Park with a 100-acre lake for swimming and boating when it's warm, and cross-country ski trails when there's snow. Our Lady of the Fields Shrine is near the park's entrance.

Ten minutes east is the Cedar Grove Cheese Factory in Plain. Oakwood Fruit Farm is 10 minutes southwest and open in the fall. 20 minutes north near LaValle is the Carr Valley Cheese Factory. Ten minutes north on St Hwy 154 is an Amish community with a general store and other shops, plus a summer roadside stand with picked-that-day fruit and veggies.

Area attractions within about a 30-minute drive include: American Players Theater, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesen, Unity Chapel and Hillside School, the Spring Green Art Fair, the lower Wisconsin River, Global View, the Fall Art Tour, House on the Rock, Gov. Dodge State Park, Natural Bridge State Park, Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue, and the Mid-Continent Railway Museum. Spring Green is 20 minutes south via County Rd G.

Other area attractions include: Mineral Point, Baraboo, the Circus Museum, Devil's Lake State Park, the International Crane Foundation, the Wisconsin Dells, Mt Horeb, New Glarus, Wollersheim Winery, Cave of the Mounds, Dr Evermor's Sculpture Garden, Gays Mills, Kickapoo River, and Viroqua. Madison is 50 minutes east via Hwy 12.

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Property Type

  • House
  • 2100 sq. ft.

Accommodation Type

  • Vacation Rental


  • Guests Provide Their Own Meals


  • Long-Term Renters Welcome
  • Minimum Age Limit For Renters:

    one person who is 25 to make financial arrangements and to be there during the entire stay....moreless

  • Children Welcome
  • Non Smoking Only
  • Pets Considered:

    Maximum of two dogs...moreless

  • Suitable For Elderly Or Infirm
  • Wheelchair Accessible:

    Through downstairs screened porch to first floor only....moreless

Bedrooms: 4 Bedrooms, Sleeps 9, Beds for 9

  • Bedroom 1: 1 king


  • Bedroom 2: 2 twin/ single


  • Bedroom 3: 1 twin/ single


  • Bedroom 4: 1 double


  • Bedroom 5: 1 double


  • Upstairs are 4 bedrooms and 1 1/2 baths. A bedroom/den and a 2nd full bath are downstairs. There is one single Aerobed with bedding available at no extra charge, if needed. ...moreless

Bathrooms: 2 Bathrooms, 1 Half Bathroom

  • Bathroom 1: toilet, shower


  • Bathroom 2: toilet, combination tub/shower, jetted tub


  • Bathroom 3: toilet


  • All upstairs bathrooms ( 1full bath with jacuzzi tub and shower and one 1/2 bath) are accessible to all bedrooms. Downstairs full bath with level-in shower is off the bedroom/den....moreless

Other Amenities

  • Washer and dryer are in the basement laundry; detergent is provided. Broadband internet access is via wireless; ethernet cable provided; WiFi-equipped (5G) . Wheelchair/walker access is through the downstairs screened porch to the first floor. Driveway parking for 6 or more vehicles. Free long distance in the US from home phone. Fire-pit is in the yard just east of the front door; yard chairs are on the front porch. ...moreless


  • Audio Tape Player
  • Books:


  • Books For Adults
  • Books For Kids
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player:

    DVD players on both TV's, up and down....moreless

  • Game Room
  • Games:

    Lots' of board and other types of games on upstairs porch....moreless

  • Games For Kids
  • Music Library
  • Radio
  • Satellite / Cable:


  • Stereo:

    On upstairs porch shelves....moreless

  • Television:

    (2) Downstairs is a large high definition TV with satellite connection. Upstairs is a smaller TV with a built-in DVD player....moreless

  • Toys:

    Mostly upstairs porch....moreless

  • VCR
  • Video Library:

    DVDs down, cassettes up....moreless


  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions


  • Autumn Foliage
  • Botanical Garden
  • Caves
  • Churches
  • Cinemas
  • Coin Laundry
  • Festivals
  • Forests
  • Library
  • Live Theater
  • Museums
  • Playground
  • Recreation Center
  • Restaurants
  • Theme Parks
  • Water Parks
  • Winery Tours
  • Zoo

Local Services & Businesses

  • ATM/Bank
  • Fitness Center
  • Groceries
  • Hospital
  • Laundromat
  • Massage Therapist
  • Medical Services

Leisure Activities

  • Antiquing
  • Bird Watching
  • Boating
  • Eco Tourism
  • Gambling Casinos
  • Horseback Riding
  • Miniature Golf
  • Photography
  • Scenic Drives
  • Shopping
  • Sight Seeing
  • Sledding
  • Walking
  • Wildlife Viewing

Location Type

  • Mountain View
  • Rural

Sports & Adventure Activities

  • Basketball Court
  • Cross Country Skiing
  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Fly Fishing
  • Freshwater Fishing
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • Rafting
  • Scuba Diving Or Snorkeling
  • Snowboarding
  • Snowmobiling
  • Spelunking
  • Swimming
  • Tennis

Communication / Internet

  • Fax


  • Dining:

    Table seats 10 using all leaves which are stored in the table, and there are 10 chairs in the dining room....moreless

  • Dining Area
  • Seating for 10 people


  • Activities Guide
  • Air Conditioning:

    Central air conditioning serves both living floors of house. Basement with laundry is 65 degrees year-round....moreless

  • Alarm Clock
  • Basic Soaps
  • Bottled Water
  • Broadband Access
  • Ceiling Fans
  • Clothes Dryer:

    Extra large...moreless

  • Filtered Water
  • Gas Fireplace:

    LP stove makes upstairs sleeping porch usable all year around....moreless

  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating:

    Central healting...moreless

  • Internet:

    Whole-house broadband internet at desk in bedroom/den + Wifi (5G)...moreless

  • Iron & Board
  • Laundry Soap
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room:

    Comfortable couches and a recliner chair seat 6 people. ...moreless

  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Mobile Phone:

    reception in Bear Valley is very limited. Wifi allows access to programs such as Skype and iMessaging from an iPhone. Free long distance calling to continental US...moreless

  • Paper Towels
  • Parking:

    Maximum of 6 cars in driveway; no parking on lawn or street...moreless

  • Parking Off Street
  • Parking For RV/Boat/Trailer
  • Shampoo
  • Telephone:

    Free long distance calling for U.S. from home phone....moreless

  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided:

    White towels stay in the house. Extra 'outdoor' towels are above the toilet in the 1/2 bath upstairs...moreless

  • Washing Machine:

    New energy efficient model uses less water and has a fast spin cycle so linens dry quickly....moreless

  • Water Cooler
  • Wireless Internet


  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Blender
  • Coffee Grinder
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils:

    as complete as possible...moreless

  • Dishes & Utensils:

    There is everyday dinnerware for 12 in the kitchen. There is also 'special occasion' dinnerware for 12 in the dining room buffet....moreless

  • Dishwasher
  • Ice Maker
  • Kitchen:

    Fully supplied. Area on shelves to left of basement stairs has additional kitchen supplies. ...moreless

  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator:

    Has an in-door ice/water dispenser....moreless

  • Stove:

    Flat surface slide-in model with cast iron grate and oven. ...moreless

  • Toaster


  • Beach Towels
  • Binoculars
  • Deck / Patio
  • Large Cooler
  • Lawn / Garden:

    acre lawn has Plenty of room for games plus a fire pit with a $10 wheelbarrow of wood....moreless

  • Outdoor Grill:


  • Patio
  • Porch / Veranda:

    Front porch is the width of the house and overlooks 750 acres of public land across the street...moreless

  • Screen Porch / Veranda
  • Small Cooler
  • Unscreened Porch / Veranda

Pool / Spa

  • Whirlpool
  • Whirlpool


Write a review 5
from 44 traveler reviews
Rental basis: Per property
Dates Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
All Season
Jul 11 - Dec 31, 2016
2 night min stay

Rates are based on 3 guests; add $10 per night, per additional guest

All Seasons
Jan 1 - Dec 31, 2017
2 night min stay

Rates are based on 3 guests; add $10 per night, per additional guest

My Standard Rate
2 night min stay

Additional information about rental rates


  • Refundable Damage Deposit $200
  • Pet Fee $70
  • Cleaning, 1-9 people $95


$135/night up to 3 people, plus $10/person/night up to 9 people (4 people = $145, 5= $155, etc, up to 9 = $195/night). Nov to Apr = stay 6 nights and get 7th night free, except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. Security deposit can range from $100 to $300, depending on the number of people and number of nights; $200 is an average security deposit. Cleaning is $95 for up to 9 people; if cleaning costs are less, I will refund the difference. Dogs are no extra rent but we add an extra $20/dog cleaning and $50/dog refundable security deposit, a total of $70. Maximum is 2 dogs

Owner's cancellation policy:

Policy available by contacting owner when booking

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Last updated: 07/21/2016
Check availability
23 Available
21 Unavailable
22 Today
23 Selected dates


50 Miles
Nearest Airport
0.5 Miles
Nearest Barpub
25 Miles
Nearest Ferry
10 Miles
Nearest Golf
30 Miles
Nearest Train
25 Miles
Nearest Motorway
10 Miles
Nearest Restaurant
0.1 Miles
Nearest Ski
5 Miles
Nearest Beach

Car: Necessary


Owner info

Year Purchased: 2004

About the owner: Jonathan and Lee live in the San Francisco Bay Area. Lee is a retired librarian who grew up in PA. Jonathan is a community college math teacher from Chicago with family in Sauk County.

Why the Owner Chose Plain, WI, USA:
We bought our Wisconsin home in 2004 so we could spend part of each year near our Midwest family. We did extensive remodeling the first year: we designed and replaced the existing kitchen and bathroom, and added an additional bath and a half, as well as the two-level porch. Much of the house is original: the woodwork, floors, staircase, doors and hardware, dining room buffet, cut glass windows and front porch. It may look like stone outside but the formed “stones” were made from fine grained cement poured on site by local workmen in 1915. Neighbors tell me that it is a Sears kit house. I have begun research to see if that is true, and I have learned that it probably is. As the house was 100 years old in 2015, we had a little celebration during the summer. We added the front sidewalk and fence, as well as the back patio and stone wall. We planted more than 70 trees and shrubs.

The Unique Benefits at this House:
Relaxation is easy in this house: beautiful views from every window give a strong sense of connection to the land and its seasons, terrain and wildlife. Bear Valley Vista has plenty of space inside to gather together, as well as lots of places for time alone.

Contact us

Speaks: english

Guestbook comments from the owner

1 of 12


  • House and garden

    House and garden

  • Dining Room

    Dining Room

  • Kitchen banquette

    Kitchen banquette

  • Downstairs bedroom: futon converts to a double bed

    Downstairs bedroom: futon converts to a double bed

  • Bedroom with two twins

    Bedroom with two twins

  • Bedroom with double bed

    Bedroom with double bed

  • Fireplace in upper sleeping porch

    Fireplace in upper sleeping porch

  • Front porch view looking east

    Front porch view looking east

  • Moonrise before Sunset, from our front porch

    Moonrise before Sunset, from our front porch

  • House and yard in winter

    House and yard in winter

  • Staircase and buffet in dining room

    Staircase and buffet in dining room

  • Living Room

    Living Room

  • Bedroom with king

    Bedroom with king

  • Bedroom with twin and TV off upper porch

    Bedroom with twin and TV off upper porch

  • Upstairs full bath

    Upstairs full bath

  • Downstairs screened porch

    Downstairs screened porch

  • South view from front porch of public land across the road

    South view from front porch of public land across the road

VRBO #362474

This listing was first published here in 2009.

Date last modified - Wednesday, July 27, 2016

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  • Reviews
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Member since: 2009
Speaks: english
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  • Response time Within 12 hours
  • Response rate 100%
  • Calendar last updated 07/21/2016

(510) 235-5729 (California, USA)
If email problems - OK to call 10 am to 9 pm PCT

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Historic House with modern conveniences, twenty minutes from Spring Green.

Plain, WI, USA #256094ha

4 BR  2.5 BA  Sleeps 9

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