Madison Cross Country Skiing Trails and Maps

300 Reviews

Looking for the best Cross Country Skiing trails around Madison?

Find the top rated cross country skiing trails in Madison, whether you're looking for an easy short cross country skiing trail or a long cross country skiing trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a cross country skiing trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.

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  • Length
Activities
Length
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Type
17 Results
Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type

400 State Trail

22.3 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Badger State Trail

40 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Cheese Country Recreation Trail

47 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Glacial Drumlin State Trail

53.4 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Gravel

Glacial River Trail

55.8 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Jane Addams Trail

18.9 mi
State: IL
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Military Ridge State Trail

40 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Pecatonica State Trail

10 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Rock River Parkway Trail

2.4 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Concrete

Southwest Commuter Path

5.6 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Starkweather Creek Path

3.1 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Stone Bridge Trail

5.8 mi
State: IL
Crushed Stone

Sugar River State Trail

22.7 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Wild Goose State Trail

34.4 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Grass

Wingra Creek Path

1.9 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Wolf Run Trail (WI)

2 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone
Trail Image Trail Name States Length Surface Rating
Traveling the 400 State Trail is a numbers game. The trail’s name refers to the old Chicago and North Western Railway’s “No. 400” passenger train that zoomed through here between Chicago and St....
WI 22.3 mi Crushed Stone
Rail-trail fans know that Wisconsin’s Elroy-Sparta State Trail is famous for its three tunnels. The Badger State Trail, which heads south from Madison to the Illinois state line (where it connects...
WI 40 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
If you’re looking for an invigorating motorized-trail experience, the Cheese Country Recreation Trail (aka the Tri-County Trail) won’t disappoint. If you’re on foot, hoof, or self-propelled two...
WI 47 mi Crushed Stone
The 53-mile Glacial Drumlin State Trail between Cottage Grove and Waukesha provides a glimpse into the past when glaciers bore down on southeastern Wisconsin in the last Ice Age. Those gigantic sheets...
WI 53.4 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Gravel
The Glacial River Trail provides bikers, pedestrians, and in-line skaters with a 55.8-mile off-road/on-road rural route winding through farmland, prairie, wetlands, and woodlands as it passes through...
WI 55.8 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
There’s no debating the historical significance of the Jane Addams Trail. Not only is it named for a Nobel Peace Prize-winning social activist who grew up nearby, but the trail also passes the site of...
IL 18.9 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Military Ridge State Trail finds the high ground as it rolls across 40 miles of idyllic farmland from the outskirts of Madison to the historic mining town of Dodgeville. It follows an American...
WI 40 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Pecatonica State Trail is never far from water as it takes the easygoing Bonner Branch Valley through the rolling hills and rocky bluffs of southwest Wisconsin’s Driftless Area, a region that the...
WI 10 mi Crushed Stone
The Pelishek-Tiffany Nature Trail runs for 6 miles along an abandoned railroad corridor, between the towns of Allens Grove and Clinton. The trail is open to snowmobiles, cyclists, horseback riders and...
WI 6 mi Dirt
The Rock River Parkway Trail in Janesville runs between Rockport Park and S. Jackson Street bridge on the north side of the river. Here, at the trail's eastern terminus, you can easily link to Spring...
WI 2.4 mi Asphalt, Concrete
All it takes is a short ride on Madison’s 5.6-mile South  west Commuter Path to understand the critical role it plays in getting people around town. Not only does it pass within a mile of the State...
WI 5.6 mi Asphalt
The Starkweather Creek Path traces the waterway north from the Capital City State Trail through Madison’s eastern neighborhoods of Starkweather, Worthington Park, Eken Park and Carpenter-Ridgeway. The...
WI 3.1 mi Asphalt
Built on a former rail bed dating back to the 1850s, the Stone Bridge Trail provides a crushed limestone pathway through rural countryside. A highlight of the trail is passage on Stone Bridge over the...
IL 5.8 mi Crushed Stone
If you can’t make it to Switzerland, then you can do the  next best thing: take the Sugar River State Trail to “America’s Little Switzerland,” New Glarus, Wisconsin. Settled in 1845 by a small group...
WI 22.7 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Wild Goose State Trail is a premier rail-trail, spanning approximately 35 miles in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties. If you are looking for a peaceful and beautiful place to visit, this trail has it...
WI 34.4 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Grass
The Wingra Creek Path—also known as the Wingra Bike Path—runs along the winding waterway in Madison. The trail provides a critical link from the neighborhoods south of downtown Madison to the Capital...
WI 1.9 mi Asphalt
The Wolf Run Trail supports a wide variety of users on its two miles of crushed gravel, situated on the outskirts of Mazomanie in northwestern Dane County. Heading southeast from the charming...
WI 2 mi Crushed Stone

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Trails by activity

Wild Goose State Trail

WI - 34.4 miles

The Wild Goose State Trail is a premier rail-trail, spanning approximately 35 miles in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties. If you are looking for a peaceful and beautiful place to visit, this trail has it...

Wolf Run Trail (WI)

WI - 2 miles

The Wolf Run Trail supports a wide variety of users on its two miles of crushed gravel, situated on the outskirts of Mazomanie in northwestern Dane County. Heading southeast from the charming...

Rock River Parkway Trail

WI - 2.4 miles

The Rock River Parkway Trail in Janesville runs between Rockport Park and S. Jackson Street bridge on the north side of the river. Here, at the trail's eastern terminus, you can easily link to Spring...

Southwest Commuter Path

WI - 5.6 miles

All it takes is a short ride on Madison’s 5.6-mile South  west Commuter Path to understand the critical role it plays in getting people around town. Not only does it pass within a mile of the State...

Accordion

Wingra Creek Path

WI - 1.9 miles

The Wingra Creek Path—also known as the Wingra Bike Path—runs along the winding waterway in Madison. The trail provides a critical link from the neighborhoods south of downtown Madison to the Capital...

400 State Trail

WI - 22.3 miles

Traveling the 400 State Trail is a numbers game. The trail’s name refers to the old Chicago and North Western Railway’s “No. 400” passenger train that zoomed through here between Chicago and St....

Jane Addams Trail

IL - 18.9 miles

There’s no debating the historical significance of the Jane Addams Trail. Not only is it named for a Nobel Peace Prize-winning social activist who grew up nearby, but the trail also passes the site of...

Starkweather Creek Path

WI - 3.1 miles

The Starkweather Creek Path traces the waterway north from the Capital City State Trail through Madison’s eastern neighborhoods of Starkweather, Worthington Park, Eken Park and Carpenter-Ridgeway. The...

Glacial River Trail

WI - 55.8 miles

The Glacial River Trail provides bikers, pedestrians, and in-line skaters with a 55.8-mile off-road/on-road rural route winding through farmland, prairie, wetlands, and woodlands as it passes through...

Glacial Drumlin State Trail

WI - 53.4 miles

The 53-mile Glacial Drumlin State Trail between Cottage Grove and Waukesha provides a glimpse into the past when glaciers bore down on southeastern Wisconsin in the last Ice Age. Those gigantic sheets...

Military Ridge State Trail

WI - 40 miles

The Military Ridge State Trail finds the high ground as it rolls across 40 miles of idyllic farmland from the outskirts of Madison to the historic mining town of Dodgeville. It follows an American...

Badger State Trail

WI - 40 miles

Rail-trail fans know that Wisconsin’s Elroy-Sparta State Trail is famous for its three tunnels. The Badger State Trail, which heads south from Madison to the Illinois state line (where it connects...

Stone Bridge Trail

IL - 5.8 miles

Built on a former rail bed dating back to the 1850s, the Stone Bridge Trail provides a crushed limestone pathway through rural countryside. A highlight of the trail is passage on Stone Bridge over the...

Sugar River State Trail

WI - 22.7 miles

If you can’t make it to Switzerland, then you can do the  next best thing: take the Sugar River State Trail to “America’s Little Switzerland,” New Glarus, Wisconsin. Settled in 1845 by a small group...

Jane Addams Trail

IL - 18.9 miles

There’s no debating the historical significance of the Jane Addams Trail. Not only is it named for a Nobel Peace Prize-winning social activist who grew up nearby, but the trail also passes the site of...

Wolf Run Trail (WI)

WI - 2 miles

The Wolf Run Trail supports a wide variety of users on its two miles of crushed gravel, situated on the outskirts of Mazomanie in northwestern Dane County. Heading southeast from the charming...

Glacial River Trail

WI - 55.8 miles

The Glacial River Trail provides bikers, pedestrians, and in-line skaters with a 55.8-mile off-road/on-road rural route winding through farmland, prairie, wetlands, and woodlands as it passes through...

Pelishek-Tiffany Nature Trail

WI - 6 miles

The Pelishek-Tiffany Nature Trail runs for 6 miles along an abandoned railroad corridor, between the towns of Allens Grove and Clinton. The trail is open to snowmobiles, cyclists, horseback riders and...

Accordion

400 State Trail

WI - 22.3 miles

Traveling the 400 State Trail is a numbers game. The trail’s name refers to the old Chicago and North Western Railway’s “No. 400” passenger train that zoomed through here between Chicago and St....

Sugar River State Trail

WI - 22.7 miles

If you can’t make it to Switzerland, then you can do the  next best thing: take the Sugar River State Trail to “America’s Little Switzerland,” New Glarus, Wisconsin. Settled in 1845 by a small group...

Rock River Parkway Trail

WI - 2.4 miles

The Rock River Parkway Trail in Janesville runs between Rockport Park and S. Jackson Street bridge on the north side of the river. Here, at the trail's eastern terminus, you can easily link to Spring...

Badger State Trail

WI - 40 miles

Rail-trail fans know that Wisconsin’s Elroy-Sparta State Trail is famous for its three tunnels. The Badger State Trail, which heads south from Madison to the Illinois state line (where it connects...

Cheese Country Recreation Trail

WI - 47 miles

If you’re looking for an invigorating motorized-trail experience, the Cheese Country Recreation Trail (aka the Tri-County Trail) won’t disappoint. If you’re on foot, hoof, or self-propelled two...

Pecatonica State Trail

WI - 10 miles

The Pecatonica State Trail is never far from water as it takes the easygoing Bonner Branch Valley through the rolling hills and rocky bluffs of southwest Wisconsin’s Driftless Area, a region that the...

Stone Bridge Trail

IL - 5.8 miles

Built on a former rail bed dating back to the 1850s, the Stone Bridge Trail provides a crushed limestone pathway through rural countryside. A highlight of the trail is passage on Stone Bridge over the...

Wild Goose State Trail

WI - 34.4 miles

The Wild Goose State Trail is a premier rail-trail, spanning approximately 35 miles in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties. If you are looking for a peaceful and beautiful place to visit, this trail has it...

Military Ridge State Trail

WI - 40 miles

The Military Ridge State Trail finds the high ground as it rolls across 40 miles of idyllic farmland from the outskirts of Madison to the historic mining town of Dodgeville. It follows an American...

Starkweather Creek Path

WI - 3.1 miles

The Starkweather Creek Path traces the waterway north from the Capital City State Trail through Madison’s eastern neighborhoods of Starkweather, Worthington Park, Eken Park and Carpenter-Ridgeway. The...

Glacial Drumlin State Trail

WI - 53.4 miles

The 53-mile Glacial Drumlin State Trail between Cottage Grove and Waukesha provides a glimpse into the past when glaciers bore down on southeastern Wisconsin in the last Ice Age. Those gigantic sheets...

Wingra Creek Path

WI - 1.9 miles

The Wingra Creek Path—also known as the Wingra Bike Path—runs along the winding waterway in Madison. The trail provides a critical link from the neighborhoods south of downtown Madison to the Capital...

Southwest Commuter Path

WI - 5.6 miles

All it takes is a short ride on Madison’s 5.6-mile South  west Commuter Path to understand the critical role it plays in getting people around town. Not only does it pass within a mile of the State...

Sugar River State Trail

WI - 22.7 miles

If you can’t make it to Switzerland, then you can do the  next best thing: take the Sugar River State Trail to “America’s Little Switzerland,” New Glarus, Wisconsin. Settled in 1845 by a small group...

Jane Addams Trail

IL - 18.9 miles

There’s no debating the historical significance of the Jane Addams Trail. Not only is it named for a Nobel Peace Prize-winning social activist who grew up nearby, but the trail also passes the site of...

Rock River Parkway Trail

WI - 2.4 miles

The Rock River Parkway Trail in Janesville runs between Rockport Park and S. Jackson Street bridge on the north side of the river. Here, at the trail's eastern terminus, you can easily link to Spring...

Southwest Commuter Path

WI - 5.6 miles

All it takes is a short ride on Madison’s 5.6-mile South  west Commuter Path to understand the critical role it plays in getting people around town. Not only does it pass within a mile of the State...

Accordion

Wingra Creek Path

WI - 1.9 miles

The Wingra Creek Path—also known as the Wingra Bike Path—runs along the winding waterway in Madison. The trail provides a critical link from the neighborhoods south of downtown Madison to the Capital...

Glacial Drumlin State Trail

WI - 53.4 miles

The 53-mile Glacial Drumlin State Trail between Cottage Grove and Waukesha provides a glimpse into the past when glaciers bore down on southeastern Wisconsin in the last Ice Age. Those gigantic sheets...

Cheese Country Recreation Trail

WI - 47 miles

If you’re looking for an invigorating motorized-trail experience, the Cheese Country Recreation Trail (aka the Tri-County Trail) won’t disappoint. If you’re on foot, hoof, or self-propelled two...

Military Ridge State Trail

WI - 40 miles

The Military Ridge State Trail finds the high ground as it rolls across 40 miles of idyllic farmland from the outskirts of Madison to the historic mining town of Dodgeville. It follows an American...

Starkweather Creek Path

WI - 3.1 miles

The Starkweather Creek Path traces the waterway north from the Capital City State Trail through Madison’s eastern neighborhoods of Starkweather, Worthington Park, Eken Park and Carpenter-Ridgeway. The...

Pelishek-Tiffany Nature Trail

WI - 6 miles

The Pelishek-Tiffany Nature Trail runs for 6 miles along an abandoned railroad corridor, between the towns of Allens Grove and Clinton. The trail is open to snowmobiles, cyclists, horseback riders and...

Wild Goose State Trail

WI - 34.4 miles

The Wild Goose State Trail is a premier rail-trail, spanning approximately 35 miles in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties. If you are looking for a peaceful and beautiful place to visit, this trail has it...

Glacial River Trail

WI - 55.8 miles

The Glacial River Trail provides bikers, pedestrians, and in-line skaters with a 55.8-mile off-road/on-road rural route winding through farmland, prairie, wetlands, and woodlands as it passes through...

Stone Bridge Trail

IL - 5.8 miles

Built on a former rail bed dating back to the 1850s, the Stone Bridge Trail provides a crushed limestone pathway through rural countryside. A highlight of the trail is passage on Stone Bridge over the...

400 State Trail

WI - 22.3 miles

Traveling the 400 State Trail is a numbers game. The trail’s name refers to the old Chicago and North Western Railway’s “No. 400” passenger train that zoomed through here between Chicago and St....

Badger State Trail

WI - 40 miles

Rail-trail fans know that Wisconsin’s Elroy-Sparta State Trail is famous for its three tunnels. The Badger State Trail, which heads south from Madison to the Illinois state line (where it connects...

Wolf Run Trail (WI)

WI - 2 miles

The Wolf Run Trail supports a wide variety of users on its two miles of crushed gravel, situated on the outskirts of Mazomanie in northwestern Dane County. Heading southeast from the charming...

Pecatonica State Trail

WI - 10 miles

The Pecatonica State Trail is never far from water as it takes the easygoing Bonner Branch Valley through the rolling hills and rocky bluffs of southwest Wisconsin’s Driftless Area, a region that the...

Recent Trail Reviews

Military Ridge State Trail

Lovely between Madison and Verona

August, 2018 by wilsonae

Took a road bike from Dawley's Sanctuary on the Capital City Trail east. Took several tries to find the right path through Chicory Hills and I stumbled onto the Cannonball Path at the southeast corner of the Arboretum. Signage is indeed awful here. So many trails and offshoots and no idea where to go! But I headed west on Cannonball until I got the to hub where all the trails come together. I decided to keep going west and did the Military Ridge Trail. It's lovely and paved the first 3 miles, as noted, and the next crushed gravel part is fine for a road bike in dry weather... until about 2 miles past Verona when it becomes much more sandy at Sugar River Wetlands, where I turned around. Next time I will take a hybrid!

Cannonball Path

A gem of a trail but no signs!

August, 2018 by wilsonae

Rode from Dawley's Sanctuary on the Capital City Trail east. Took several tries to find the right path through Chicory Hills and I stumbled onto the Cannonball Path at the southeast corner of the Arboretum. Signage is indeed awful here. So many trails and offshoots and no idea where to go! But I headed west on Cannonball until we got the to hub where all the trails come together. I decided to keep going west and did the Military Ridge Trail until about 2 miles past Verona when it became sandy at Sugar River Wetlands, where I turned around. I rode all the way back and took Cannonball into some residential neighborhood near Rosecommon Park and had to use my Spidey sense to fine my way to home base. Cannonball is in great shape, easy ride, shady and lovely. Great for a road bike. Wish it were longer. Probably the best part of the ride.

Jane Addams Trail

Lovely trail. Fine for road bikes if path is dry.

July, 2018 by wilsonae

Took my road bike to Tutty's trailhead in Freeport. Paved trail is well marked. Ramp out over railway tracks so you have to carry your bike over, but this seems to be in the process of being fixed. End of pavement leads to limestone trail (TURN RIGHT; signs very confusing). This is the best part of the trail. You can still see some railway tracks imbedded in the dirt at crossroads (which are mercifully few). Perfectly lovely trail, lots of trees for cooler ride, straight flat packed earth. Only one person passed by me in 16 miles; no walkers, runners, dogs or other bikes. Peaceful solitude and beautiful rural countryside. The trail was fine for my road bike, but I would not ride here if it were wet or muddy. Can't wait to do the whole thing.

Accordion

Pine River Trail

In Terrible Condition

July, 2018 by dianewien

What a mess! The trail is basically packed (and loose) dirt with so many weeds growing through it in some places that you literally have to ride through the grass. I would not call this a bike trail at all. The paved area is great, but the rest is almost impossible to ride.

Wolf Run Trail (WI)

Pleasant trail

June, 2018 by jo turner

Nice short ride along Black Earth Creek between Mazo and high school. Lots of benches and signage along the way. Good for “new riders” (kids).

Military Ridge State Trail

Poorly maintained but lovely

June, 2018 by catslave

As others have noted, this trail really needs some upgrading. We road our gravel bikes 50 miles from Gov. Dodge State Park to Mt. Horeb and back and the first thing I would say is NO ROAD OR COMFORT BIKES. Substrate ranges from paved (in the park) to packed gravel to areas (like outside barneveld) where the trail has been reduced to a loose sand Arroyo that is walking only. Some areas that once were paved are weeded over. This is all sad because this trail goes thru some lovely countryside and has some of the nicest scenery of all the rail trails in the state. If you start at gov. Dodge, please be aware that the path to the Military Ridge though paved, is very steep and those not in good physical shape will have to walk a ways or join the trail somewhere else. Folks with hybrids should be able to manage the shifting terrain but be careful of soft spots and deep gravel. It is well worth the ride but this is a sadly neglected resource .

Cheese Country Recreation Trail

Easy ride

May, 2018 by bearsfans51

Easy ride from Monroe to Mineral Point. Weekends on trail are too busy. Plenty of places to get gas and/or supplies approx every 5-7 miles. DNR and Sheriff always on trail. Trail can have some serious jagged rocks so bring repair kit or spare. Watch out for erosion some serious wash outs in places.
Most of the small towns are very welcoming to atv/utv except Mineral Point (most Mineral Point businesses only take cash) experienced rude and unwelcoming town folk / businesses and an atv route that does not let you drive or park in the business area. You have to park on the atv route which runs on the outskirts of town then just stops at a gas station..you park blocks away and walk in. Most businesses closed during the week in Mineral Point..think they would want, need and welcome the revenue...guess they don't. Bring cash if you decide to visit. Check out Leftys and Ponchos in Monroe great food and people!

Great Sauk State Trail

Great Sauk Trail

May, 2018 by megaman

I rode this trail this May. It is a smooth asphalt paved trail from beginning to end. There are some slight grades but they are easy.

This trail has 15 road crossings in its 5 miles. Most of those being in Sauk City. There is one particular road crossing that really concerns me. And that is crossing U.S. 12 in Sauk City. There are two lanes going in each direction, with a turn lane in the middle. This is a very busy highway. Push button pedestrian warning lights are placed there, but the traffic will not stop unless you are actually out in the crosswalk. And to me that is a danger to someone with small children. Regular stop and go lights should have been placed there. Maybe it's just because the trail is so new that drivers aren't used to having to stop for people. I actually crossed this road 3 times to see if the first time or two was an aberration, but it didn't seem to be so.

There is only one restroom easy to get to, other than Culver's near the trail. That is Fuch's park near the south end. And it looks like that restroom is seasonal. If you difficulty climbed a short steep hill then don't park at Veteran's Park, use city streets.

However out in the country and especially near the Wisconsin river this is a beautiful trail. I can't wait for it to extend north to Devils Lake state park.

Badger State Trail

bager state trail

November, 2017 by stuff6

Rode south out of fitchburg. About 5-6 miles south this turns into a limestone path. I rode it in november so maybe its better in the summer but its no skinny tire road bike route. Was nice until then.

Capital City State Trail

capitol city trail

November, 2017 by stuff6

Trail is ok. They really need to fill some cracks. Its pretty rough. Of course it could be that they do this in the spring. I rode it in November. I suspect its a really good trail in the warmer months. It gives you great access to the downtown area pubs and restaurants.

Glacial Drumlin State Trail

Nov. 5-6 overnight ride

November, 2017 by stonegreg3

From Waukesha to London and back to Lake Mills DNR camp. Awesome bacon burger trail side in Mills! Forget the name of the bowling alley bar joint. More dog walkers then bikers this trip, if you don't pick it up kick it off to the side of the trail! worse then those darn potholes that have been mostly filled in. Would rather look for deer then dog #*!+! One lady complained about bathrooms being closed at the Mills trail head with no port-a-potty. Blah Blah Blah! Great ride, love to see the folks walking the pups out there.fff

Pine River Trail

Not suitable for road bikes, recumbents, etc.

October, 2017 by 4csmiley

Even though this is supposed to be a groomed trail, it is in very poor overall condition. There are several very deep holes and washouts along with ruts left by someone driving farm implements down the trail. Many of these ruts are full of water and mud. There are also a few sandy areas that are deep enough to cause problems . One of the many bridges has approaches that must have washed out and are being reworked. You will have to carry your bike across this. Scenery is farmland mostly and you will likely get up close and personal with a cow occasionally. There is an outhouse and a very friendly dog with a limp at Twin Bluff Drive. I think he belongs to the Farm implement place. This could be a really nice trail if it was not in such poor condition.

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