Portage, WI Cross Country Skiing Trails and Maps

277 Reviews

Looking for the best Cross Country Skiing trails around Portage?

Find the top rated cross country skiing trails in Portage, 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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Activities
Length
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Type
16 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

Bannerman Trail

7 mi
State: WI
Dirt, Grass, Sand

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

33.8 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

Hillsboro State Trail

4.3 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Mascoutin Valley State Trail

21 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone, Grass, Gravel

Military Ridge State Trail

40 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Northwestern Trail

2.8 mi
State: WI
Dirt, Grass, Gravel

Omaha Trail

12.5 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Gravel

Southwest Commuter Path

5.6 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Starkweather Creek Path

3.1 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

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
The Bannerman Trail is open but largely unimproved between the communities of Redgranite and Neshkoro on a former Chicago and North Western Railway corridor. The dirt, grass and sand surface might...
WI 7 mi Dirt, Grass, Sand
Utter darkness is as much a part of the scenery along the Elroy-Sparta State Trail as the views of the rolling hills and farmland. That’s because visitors pass through three hand-dug railroad tunnels...
WI 33.8 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
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 Mascoutin Valley State Trail is divided into two segments along a former corridor of the Chicago and North Western Railway. The eastern section runs 10 miles between Fond du Lac and Rosendale. The...
WI 21 mi Crushed Stone, Grass, Gravel
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 Northwestern Trail begins near the public library in downtown Ripon, a charming small town in eastern Wisconsin. History buffs may want to head a few blocks south from this endpoint to explore the...
WI 2.8 mi Dirt, Grass, Gravel
The 12.5-mile Omaha Trail passes through a wonderland of towering buttes, mesas, and pinnacles that seem more at home in an arid desert than in fertile farmland. The steep sandstone formations, some...
WI 12.5 mi Asphalt, Gravel
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
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

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...

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....

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

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...

Northwestern Trail

WI - 2.8 miles

The Northwestern Trail begins near the public library in downtown Ripon, a charming small town in eastern Wisconsin. History buffs may want to head a few blocks south from this endpoint to explore the...

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...

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

WI - 33.8 miles

Utter darkness is as much a part of the scenery along the Elroy-Sparta State Trail as the views of the rolling hills and farmland. That’s because visitors pass through three hand-dug railroad tunnels...

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...

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 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...

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...

Omaha Trail

WI - 12.5 miles

The 12.5-mile Omaha Trail passes through a wonderland of towering buttes, mesas, and pinnacles that seem more at home in an arid desert than in fertile farmland. The steep sandstone formations, some...

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...

Northwestern Trail

WI - 2.8 miles

The Northwestern Trail begins near the public library in downtown Ripon, a charming small town in eastern Wisconsin. History buffs may want to head a few blocks south from this endpoint to explore the...

Mascoutin Valley State Trail

WI - 21 miles

The Mascoutin Valley State Trail is divided into two segments along a former corridor of the Chicago and North Western Railway. The eastern section runs 10 miles between Fond du Lac and Rosendale. The...

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...

Accordion

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...

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...

Bannerman Trail

WI - 7 miles

The Bannerman Trail is open but largely unimproved between the communities of Redgranite and Neshkoro on a former Chicago and North Western Railway corridor. The dirt, grass and sand surface might...

Omaha Trail

WI - 12.5 miles

The 12.5-mile Omaha Trail passes through a wonderland of towering buttes, mesas, and pinnacles that seem more at home in an arid desert than in fertile farmland. The steep sandstone formations, some...

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...

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...

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...

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

WI - 33.8 miles

Utter darkness is as much a part of the scenery along the Elroy-Sparta State Trail as the views of the rolling hills and farmland. That’s because visitors pass through three hand-dug railroad tunnels...

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...

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...

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...

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....

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...

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

WI - 33.8 miles

Utter darkness is as much a part of the scenery along the Elroy-Sparta State Trail as the views of the rolling hills and farmland. That’s because visitors pass through three hand-dug railroad tunnels...

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...

Mascoutin Valley State Trail

WI - 21 miles

The Mascoutin Valley State Trail is divided into two segments along a former corridor of the Chicago and North Western Railway. The eastern section runs 10 miles between Fond du Lac and Rosendale. The...

Accordion

Bannerman Trail

WI - 7 miles

The Bannerman Trail is open but largely unimproved between the communities of Redgranite and Neshkoro on a former Chicago and North Western Railway corridor. The dirt, grass and sand surface might...

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...

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...

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...

Northwestern Trail

WI - 2.8 miles

The Northwestern Trail begins near the public library in downtown Ripon, a charming small town in eastern Wisconsin. History buffs may want to head a few blocks south from this endpoint to explore 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....

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...

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...

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...

Omaha Trail

WI - 12.5 miles

The 12.5-mile Omaha Trail passes through a wonderland of towering buttes, mesas, and pinnacles that seem more at home in an arid desert than in fertile farmland. The steep sandstone formations, some...

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...

Recent Trail Reviews

Lower Yahara River Trail

Lake trail

January, 2019 by jfruhman_tl

The boardwalk along the lake extends for about a mile. After that is park space that has side trails for hikers, picnic spots,horseshoe pits and more.
For bikers this connects with bike paths that lead into Madison for extra mileage as the trail is fairly short for a bike ride.

Upper Yahara River Trail

suburban trail

January, 2019 by jfruhman_tl

Nice trail along the river with grades and curves to keep it interesting. Popular with dog walkers. Only downside is the ever present noise from the expressway.

Mascoutin Valley State Trail

Fall ride from Ripon to Berlin

November, 2018 by wojo58


We rode on October 22, sunny 45-50 degrees. We started in Ripon from the little lot off of County E. The trail was in good condition and there were plenty of benches but no Port-o-Potties. The first part parallels County E so you cross some driveways, but it's no big deal. After a mile or so you leave the road and head into the Wisconsin farmlands. There's even a Winery that you can visit along the way....not sure what that would do to my ride :-) Beautiful ride with a stop at Berlin for lunch at a very nice and tasty Mexican restaurant.

Couple of caveats: There's a landfill along the way that will get your noses attention, and a shooting range both of which you circumvent just south of Berlin. Just hope the sportsman didn't visit the winery beforehand! :-)

Accordion

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

Great Trail!

September, 2018 by hendrijoh

As of Friday, September 28, the Sparta to Norwalk portion of the Elroy/Sparta Trail, including the excellent tunnel #3, has reopened.

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

Closed in September 2018

September, 2018 by bruceamiller@comcast.net

This trail was closed in September by the Wisconsin DNR, due to mudslides and other trail conditions caused by heavy rains.

400 State Trail

Closed in September 2018

September, 2018 by bruceamiller@comcast.net

This trail was closed in September by the Wisconsin DNR, due to mudslides and other trail conditions caused by heavy rains

Omaha Trail

Muddy after heavy rains in August - September 2018

September, 2018 by bruceamiller@comcast.net

In September 2018 a friend and I biked north from Elroy to the tunnel, about 6 miles. The first mile was bumpy old asphalt, for which a hybrid or mountain bike would be more comfortable than our road bikes using 35mm tires. Then the trail surface became smoother with crushed limestone. Quiet ride, pleasant views. South of the tunnel was a "Trail Closed" sign due to mudslides from heavy rains. Dirt and gravel were over 3 feet high in places, with 2-inch-deep mud. We walked around these to the tunnel, which is clear. Due to time constraints, we didn't go further. Bottom line: if you're willing to get muddy and have 35mm or wider tires, it's a pleasant ride at this time. Also, the trail is maintained by Juneau County, not the state.

Lower Yahara River Trail

Not To Be Missed

September, 2018 by mednat2

We rode this trail in August, after discovering the trail around the city was closed. Turned out to be one of the highlights in our week long vacation of riding in the area. Walk, run, bike, etc. do not miss this very scenic experience. You won't be disappointed, I promise. Pa. Tandem Team (72 & 69 yrs. old)

400 State Trail

Being a Chicago &Northwestern railfan I enjoyed walking from county V to the town of Lavalle and seeing the bridges and scenery and the next day walking from County V two miles south on the trail had a beautiful time.

September, 2018 by stclaircarl

Being a Chicago &Northwestern railfan I enjoyed walking from county V to the town of Lavalle and seeing the bridges and scenery and the next day walking from County V two miles south on the trail had a beautiful time.

Capital City State Trail

Beautiful trail - being repaved!

September, 2018 by ajablonski03

About 1/2 of this trail is being repaved and some of it was puddled from the recent storms (see picture I loaded on this site for details). Wish there was someplace we would have known to look ahead of time we now know Dane county parks is the place to go for questions/updates. We bypassed “trail closed” signs where paving was was complete or not being worked on (ok’d by trail ranger) . Once paving is done it will be an even nicer trail to ride. Lake, forested, prairie, pretty easy ride with some minor uphill sections, lots of surrounding trails. Used google maps to get back home quicker.

400 State Trail

Walked from County V to Lavalle very nice walk enjoyed the walk took photos of the bridges and Lavalle nice small town very friendly people on trail. Next day walked from County V two miles south on trail had a ball saw 4 deer.

August, 2018 by stclaircarl

Walked from County V to Lavalle very nice walk enjoyed the walk took photos of the bridges and Lavalle nice small town very friendly people on trail. Next day walked from County V two miles south on trail had a ball saw 4 deer.

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!

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