La Crosse Trails and Maps

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Find the top rated trails in La Crosse, whether you're looking an easy walking path or a long bike trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.

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Activities
Length
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10 Results
Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type

400 State Trail

22.3 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

32 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Great River State Trail

24 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

18 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Hillsboro State Trail

4.3 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone
Accordion

La Crosse River State Trail

22 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Omaha Trail

12.5 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Gravel

Paint Creek Trail (IA)

2.5 mi
State: IA
Dirt

Root River State Trail

42 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Trout Run Trail

11 mi
State: IA
Asphalt, Concrete
Trail Image Trail Name States Length Surface Rating
The 400 State Trail travels between Reedsburg and Elroy on 22.3 miles of old Chicago and North Western Railroad line. The trail's curious name has an obvious origin. It is named for the train—Number 400—that ...
WI 22.3 mi Crushed Stone
The history of the Elroy-Sparta State Trail is almost as fun as the ride. In its prime this section of the Chicago and North Western Railroad supplied markets in Chicago and Madison with goods from Minnesota, ...
WI 32 mi Crushed Stone
The Great River State Trail follows the shores of the Mississippi River in western Wisconsin. The trail meanders through 24.4 miles of river marsh, thick hardwood forests and bucolic farmland. It is a ...
WI 24 mi Crushed Stone
The Harmony–Preston Valley State Trail runs 18 miles on a north-south line between the town of Harmony and the Root River State Trail, which it meets between Lanesboro and Fountain. The paved trail is ...
MN 18 mi Asphalt
The 4.3-mile Hillsboro State Trail will make you feel instantly at home. Easy and flat, this gravel trail will take you on a short excursion from Hillsboro to Union Center. But this trail is more of a ...
WI 4.3 mi Crushed Stone
The La Crosse River State Trail is a link in a chain of rail-trails that connect more than 100 miles. This 21-mile trail leads you from the industrial river community of La Crosse to Sparta, the self-proclaimed ...
WI 22 mi Crushed Stone
This 14-mile limestone trail is a gorgeous offshoot from a 100-mile continuous trail corridor that includes the Great River State Trail, La Crosse River State Trail, Elroy-Sparta State Trail and the 400 ...
WI 12.5 mi Asphalt, Gravel
Accordion
Iowa's Yellow River State Forest contains a sprawling network of hiking, equestrian and bicycle trails. The Paint Creek Trail, which occupies a segment of an abandoned railroad corridor, is the only rail-trail ...
IA 2.5 mi Dirt
Along much of its route, the Root River State Trail follows the winding course of its namesake river for 42 miles through the Minnesota towns of Fountain, Lanesboro, Whalan, Peterson, Rushford, and Houston. ...
MN 42 mi Asphalt
Trout Run Trail forms an 11-mile loop around Decorah, providing access to many of the area's natural treasures and views of beautiful Iowa countryside. Although there are many places to hop on the trail, ...
IA 11 mi Asphalt, Concrete

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Trails by activity

400 State Trail

WI - 22.3 miles

The 400 State Trail travels between Reedsburg and Elroy on 22.3 miles of old Chicago and North Western Railroad line. The trail's curious name has an obvious origin. It is named for the train—Number 400—that ...

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

WI - 32 miles

The history of the Elroy-Sparta State Trail is almost as fun as the ride. In its prime this section of the Chicago and North Western Railroad supplied markets in Chicago and Madison with goods from Minnesota, ...

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

MN - 18 miles

The Harmony–Preston Valley State Trail runs 18 miles on a north-south line between the town of Harmony and the Root River State Trail, which it meets between Lanesboro and Fountain. The paved trail is ...

Hillsboro State Trail

WI - 4.3 miles

The 4.3-mile Hillsboro State Trail will make you feel instantly at home. Easy and flat, this gravel trail will take you on a short excursion from Hillsboro to Union Center. But this trail is more of a ...

Accordion

Hillsboro State Trail

WI - 4.3 miles

The 4.3-mile Hillsboro State Trail will make you feel instantly at home. Easy and flat, this gravel trail will take you on a short excursion from Hillsboro to Union Center. But this trail is more of a ...

La Crosse River State Trail

WI - 22 miles

The La Crosse River State Trail is a link in a chain of rail-trails that connect more than 100 miles. This 21-mile trail leads you from the industrial river community of La Crosse to Sparta, the self-proclaimed ...

Omaha Trail

WI - 12.5 miles

This 14-mile limestone trail is a gorgeous offshoot from a 100-mile continuous trail corridor that includes the Great River State Trail, La Crosse River State Trail, Elroy-Sparta State Trail and the 400 ...

Root River State Trail

MN - 42 miles

Along much of its route, the Root River State Trail follows the winding course of its namesake river for 42 miles through the Minnesota towns of Fountain, Lanesboro, Whalan, Peterson, Rushford, and Houston. ...

Trout Run Trail

IA - 11 miles

Trout Run Trail forms an 11-mile loop around Decorah, providing access to many of the area's natural treasures and views of beautiful Iowa countryside. Although there are many places to hop on the trail, ...

400 State Trail

WI - 22.3 miles

The 400 State Trail travels between Reedsburg and Elroy on 22.3 miles of old Chicago and North Western Railroad line. The trail's curious name has an obvious origin. It is named for the train—Number 400—that ...

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

WI - 32 miles

The history of the Elroy-Sparta State Trail is almost as fun as the ride. In its prime this section of the Chicago and North Western Railroad supplied markets in Chicago and Madison with goods from Minnesota, ...

Great River State Trail

WI - 24 miles

The Great River State Trail follows the shores of the Mississippi River in western Wisconsin. The trail meanders through 24.4 miles of river marsh, thick hardwood forests and bucolic farmland. It is a ...

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

MN - 18 miles

The Harmony–Preston Valley State Trail runs 18 miles on a north-south line between the town of Harmony and the Root River State Trail, which it meets between Lanesboro and Fountain. The paved trail is ...

Accordion

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

MN - 18 miles

The Harmony–Preston Valley State Trail runs 18 miles on a north-south line between the town of Harmony and the Root River State Trail, which it meets between Lanesboro and Fountain. The paved trail is ...

Hillsboro State Trail

WI - 4.3 miles

The 4.3-mile Hillsboro State Trail will make you feel instantly at home. Easy and flat, this gravel trail will take you on a short excursion from Hillsboro to Union Center. But this trail is more of a ...

La Crosse River State Trail

WI - 22 miles

The La Crosse River State Trail is a link in a chain of rail-trails that connect more than 100 miles. This 21-mile trail leads you from the industrial river community of La Crosse to Sparta, the self-proclaimed ...

Omaha Trail

WI - 12.5 miles

This 14-mile limestone trail is a gorgeous offshoot from a 100-mile continuous trail corridor that includes the Great River State Trail, La Crosse River State Trail, Elroy-Sparta State Trail and the 400 ...

Paint Creek Trail (IA)

IA - 2.5 miles

Iowa's Yellow River State Forest contains a sprawling network of hiking, equestrian and bicycle trails. The Paint Creek Trail, which occupies a segment of an abandoned railroad corridor, is the only rail-trail ...

Root River State Trail

MN - 42 miles

Along much of its route, the Root River State Trail follows the winding course of its namesake river for 42 miles through the Minnesota towns of Fountain, Lanesboro, Whalan, Peterson, Rushford, and Houston. ...

Trout Run Trail

IA - 11 miles

Trout Run Trail forms an 11-mile loop around Decorah, providing access to many of the area's natural treasures and views of beautiful Iowa countryside. Although there are many places to hop on the trail, ...

400 State Trail

WI - 22.3 miles

The 400 State Trail travels between Reedsburg and Elroy on 22.3 miles of old Chicago and North Western Railroad line. The trail's curious name has an obvious origin. It is named for the train—Number 400—that ...

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

WI - 32 miles

The history of the Elroy-Sparta State Trail is almost as fun as the ride. In its prime this section of the Chicago and North Western Railroad supplied markets in Chicago and Madison with goods from Minnesota, ...

Great River State Trail

WI - 24 miles

The Great River State Trail follows the shores of the Mississippi River in western Wisconsin. The trail meanders through 24.4 miles of river marsh, thick hardwood forests and bucolic farmland. It is a ...

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

MN - 18 miles

The Harmony–Preston Valley State Trail runs 18 miles on a north-south line between the town of Harmony and the Root River State Trail, which it meets between Lanesboro and Fountain. The paved trail is ...

Accordion

Hillsboro State Trail

WI - 4.3 miles

The 4.3-mile Hillsboro State Trail will make you feel instantly at home. Easy and flat, this gravel trail will take you on a short excursion from Hillsboro to Union Center. But this trail is more of a ...

La Crosse River State Trail

WI - 22 miles

The La Crosse River State Trail is a link in a chain of rail-trails that connect more than 100 miles. This 21-mile trail leads you from the industrial river community of La Crosse to Sparta, the self-proclaimed ...

Omaha Trail

WI - 12.5 miles

This 14-mile limestone trail is a gorgeous offshoot from a 100-mile continuous trail corridor that includes the Great River State Trail, La Crosse River State Trail, Elroy-Sparta State Trail and the 400 ...

Paint Creek Trail (IA)

IA - 2.5 miles

Iowa's Yellow River State Forest contains a sprawling network of hiking, equestrian and bicycle trails. The Paint Creek Trail, which occupies a segment of an abandoned railroad corridor, is the only rail-trail ...

Root River State Trail

MN - 42 miles

Along much of its route, the Root River State Trail follows the winding course of its namesake river for 42 miles through the Minnesota towns of Fountain, Lanesboro, Whalan, Peterson, Rushford, and Houston. ...

Trout Run Trail

IA - 11 miles

Trout Run Trail forms an 11-mile loop around Decorah, providing access to many of the area's natural treasures and views of beautiful Iowa countryside. Although there are many places to hop on the trail, ...

Recent Trail Reviews

La Crosse River State Trail

First time on trail

November, 2016 by kjacquart1

My wife and I rode the trail at the end of July 2016 and encountered no issues. In fact, we had an awesome ride and the little bar/restaurant in Rockland was very welcoming. The active rail line makes it even more special.

Great River State Trail

Late November

November, 2016 by superterv

Rode from Onalaska to Trempealeau on a gorgeous late fall day. It was very quiet and peaceful, lots of pretty marshland. One of the bridges was super neat. The trail was in better shape than others have reviewed- fine for a hybrid bike pulling a puppy in a bike trailer.

Great River State Trail

Nice fall ride

November, 2016 by jvonberge

Went from Trembeleau to past Lytles Landing (the long Black River Bridge). About 12.2 miles round trip. This section of the trail, while a little rough and frequent broken branch fragments, was not as bad condition as others have described in their reviews. I probably wouldn't want to ride it with one of those skinny tired bikes. Was very peaceful, not many bikers (maybe the trail conditions keep them away). There is a nice spur to an overlook platform with telescope to scan a large backwaters area.
I would definitely go to this trail again, interested in trying out other segments.

Only complaint and advice to others is to buy your passes (if you don't have an annual pass already) ahead of time. There is not a self-pay station at either parking lot trailhead (neither end of the leg we did). We got our bikes off, rode over to the post that we thought would have self-pay, only to read it tells you locations of businesses in Trembeleau and somewhere else you can buy a pass. Fortunately one gas station is only a short jaunt back into Trembeleau. I can only guess that there is a lack of funding for someone to come and empty the payboxes regularly.

Accordion

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

Just a great trail!!

October, 2016 by cubfan0213

Went on a 2-day ride the first weekend in October. Started in Wilton and went east to Sparta on Saturday (about 40 miles) and west to Elroy on Sunday (about 30 miles). The 3 tunnels are really cool. The grades are not steep. It's a great trail for casual or beginner riders!! Already looking forward to riding it again next year!!

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

Still worth it

October, 2016 by kevinkaren

I first rode this trail around 1990 and have been back at least 3 times since then, more or less evenly spaced over the last 25 years. In my opinion, the granddaddy of all rail-trails is still worthy of "bucket list" status.

I was surprised to read the strong negative opinions about trail maintenance posted here. Unless my memory is failing, the condition of the trail has not changed a great deal over that period, but neither does it live up to current standards in trail construction. Rather than deteriorating much, time has overtaken it.

I rode west-to-east from the depot in Sparta to the Elroy Commons, and met my ride there. This adds a little on each end of the official trail, making an even 34 miles. Hypothetically I had a 194' elevation gain going that way, but you go uphill to each tunnel and downhill afterward, and prevailing winds are usually from the west.

The trail from Elroy to Kendall is flat, level, and has the newest surface. The remainder west to Sparta is more hard-packed dirt than stone, with small but manageable bumps and ruts, and a very few bigger ruts to watch out for. Par for the course when you ride stone trails. It was dry when I rode, so I don't know if the trail becomes slippery in a rainshower.

Regardless of the weather you will get wet in the tunnels, although they are not particularly cold. The first one traveling east is the longest and wettest. And the suggestion to bring a light is best heeded. Walking straight down the middle of the trail without one in the two shorter tunnels is just barely possible if you look carefully at each wall (I tried it), but in the long tunnel there's no way to stay centered without help. If you lose your way and drift too close to a wall, you or your bike will fall into the gutter where water drains out of the tunnel. Riding through the tunnels with a bright light is possible, but I wouldn't risk running into the back of someone walking without a light. Been there, almost done that on another trail years ago.

Scenery is typical Wisconsin rolling farmland, which is nice but the tunnels are the main attraction. There are stops in communities along the way; the young woman at the Kendall depot was very friendly; they sell snacks & T-shirts along with trail passes. Sparta depot was open when I started my ride, and Elroy Commons has not only the concession sales, but also showers. It's a great amenity if you park there on a hot summer day and have a long drive to your next destination.

$5 to ride an historic trail is not bad, and it seems more worthwhile than paying that much in tolls to drive around Chicago or on the Turnpike to access one of the very nice "free" Pennsylvania rail trails. And you can fill out your weekend with a ride on one of Minnesota's paved and mostly free trails!

400 State Trail

Lake Redstone is a red herring

October, 2016 by flarosa7

I set out on this trail expecting to go six miles to Lake Redstone and then come back, as the text suggests. But there are NO SIGNS for Lake Redstone on the trail and NO WAY TO GET TO IT via bike trails. I had gone more than two miles past it before I realized this.

As far I can tell, the only way to get to Lake Redstone is to turn off on Highway V, which has no bike lanes and looks very dangerous for bikers. I decided not to bother with it.

Otherwise, the trail is not bad. Very flat and the cross streets are few and far between, except for a few close together right at the beginning.

400 State Trail

Best Trail in the series of 4

September, 2016 by 4csmiley

I would rate the 400 trail as the best of the (4) connecting trails for the natural beauty and ease of ride. I rode the 4 trails on a 3 wheel recumbent which is probably not the best choice for these trails as some have killer potholes due to ground squirrels digging them up. The 400 has abundant wildlife such as Geese, Deer, ducks, squirrels, turtles, snakes and a variety of birds. The bluffs and marshlands are picture worthy scenery.

Great River State Trail

Trail is in rough shape

September, 2016 by 20prospect

Not really a bike trail, so much as two tire tracks. Grass is overgrowing the trail, and the tracks are muddy and rutted in many places. bridges are getting pretty rough too.

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

C'mon Wisconsin, spend some money on maintenance

September, 2016 by 20prospect

As several other comments have noted, the trail is really getting to be in rough shape. It's apparent that nothing has been done to keep up the surface. It's getting overgrown, and rutted. Why Wisconsin requires everyone to pay $5 to ride it, and spends nothing on maintenance is beyond me. These trails are a gem, but are being left to deteriorate by the state. Shameful.

Root River State Trail

Might be biased..

September, 2016 by ruthef

We live in the Preston area and moved here due to my husband's love of flyfishing. The Root River trail runs along the Root, but also along Camp Creek by Preston. It's lovely to walk or bike these trails, but those of you who like to fish can find some fairly good access to the streams as well!

Root River State Trail

Trail closed between Peterson and Rushford

August, 2016 by fluegel.becky

Scheduled closure until 9/2/16to repair/resurface.much needed repairs will make this trail awesome!

Root River State Trail

August, 2016 by fluegel.becky

Rode this trail 7/16. Beautifully smooth and scenic from Preston to Peterson. Rough trail to Rushford. Had a great burger at Shawnee's in Rushford. Nice bike stop in Lanesboro with bathrooms, water,air-this area is busier during the weekend so expect a bit more company in this area. There are several legs in this trail, all well marked. Just an exceptional trail.

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