Badger State Trail

Trail Map

Description Suggest an Edit

The Badger State Trail runs from the Illinois border to the southern neighborhoods of Madison. The first 34 miles from Illinois to Purcell Road near Fitchburg have a crushed limestone surface, while the remaining 6 miles into Madison are paved. Snowmobiling is only permitted on the southern, unpaved portion.

The trail offers a wide variety of scenery, including farmland, forest and rolling hills. Trail users will also experience small town charm in the communities of Clarno, Monroe, Monticello, Exeter, Belleville and Basco.

Between Monticello and Belleville, the trail goes through the 1,200-foot-long, nearly 120-year-old Stewart Tunnel. Flashlights are recommended for going through the tunnel and cyclists must walk their bikes.

The Badger State Trail connects to a number of other trails along the way. At the Illinois state line, the trail meets the Jane Addams Trail, which extends along the same former rail corridor south to Freeport. In Monroe, the Cheese Country Recreation Trail passes close to the Badger State Trail, while in Monticello, the Sugar River State Trail intersects it on another former rail corridor.

Farther north, the Badger State Trail connects to the Capital City State Trail, Cannonball Path and Military Ridge State Trail south of Madison. At the northern trailhead, the trail continues into Madison as the Southwest Commuter Path.

Trail users should be aware that all inline skaters and cyclists age 16 or older need a Wisconsin state trail pass to use the trail.

Parking and Trail Access

Parking for the Badger State Trail is available at a 12-car parking lot at Dawley Park on Seminole Highway in Fitchburg. Take the Capital City State Trail a short distance northwest to join the trail. A small parking lot can also be found where the trail changes surface at Purcell Road.

In Belleville, park at Liberty Park on S. Vine Street. In Monticello, parking is available at the rest area on Pratt Road, near where the Badger State Trail meets the Sugar River State Trail. In Monroe, park at Twinning Park on Park Drive.


Nice ride!

   July, 2016 by bks444

We rode a portion of this trail on July 3, 2016. We hopped on near New Glarus and rode roundtrip to Belleville which included the tunnel. The trail was flat and lovely with trees and farmland. We walked through the cave which is about 1/4 mile long. It more

Flat Weekend Trip

   September, 2015 by jknmdn

We started in Freeport, IL and bike the Badger State Trail from the Illinois/Wisconsin State line to Madison. Although most of the view was the path lined with trees or farmland, the trail itself was nicely kept. Even with a little rain to start the trip, more

Enjoyable ride

   July, 2015 by smk

Rode from Monroe to Monticello in mid July. Enjoyable ride through farm land. Foliage along the trail keeps it cooler on hot summer days. read more