Portage, WI Running Trails and Maps

275 Reviews

Looking for the best Running trails around Portage?

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

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Activities
Length
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28 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

Blackhawk Path

2.3 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Cannonball Path

3.9 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Capital City State Trail

17 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

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

Great Sauk State Trail

11.75 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Hillsboro State Trail

4.3 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Lower Yahara River Trail

2.5 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Boardwalk

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

Pheasant Branch Conservancy Trail

4.2 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Pine River Trail

14.3 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Accordion

Southwest Commuter Path

5.6 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Starkweather Creek Path

3.1 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

US Highway 12 Path

10.9 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Upper Yahara River Trail

2.9 mi
State: WI
Asphalt, Boardwalk

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

Yahara River Bike Path

0.9 mi
State: WI
Asphalt
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
Blackhawk Path offers a convenient way to traverse Shorewood Hills, a western suburb of Madison nestled along Lake Mendota. Increasing its value as a commuting corridor are plans to extend the trail...
WI 2.3 mi Asphalt
Madison’s Campus Drive Pedestrian and Bicycle Path is a short trail linking the city’s west side with the University of Wisconsin’s agricultural facilities. Both the heart of the university and the...
WI 0.8 mi Asphalt
The Cannonball Path runs on a railbanked Union Pacific corridor from near downtown Madison to Fitchburg, a southern suburb. A majority of the paved trail is complete between Madison's...
WI 3.9 mi Asphalt
The Capital City State Trail contributes to the impression that you’re never far from a bike path in the Madison area. The paved trail meanders for 17 miles from the suburb of Fitchburg in the...
WI 17 mi Asphalt
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 Great Sauk State Trail spans nearly a dozen miles connecting the communities of Sauk City, Prairie du Sac, and Merrimac. Built along the former Union Pacific Railroad, the smoothly paved...
WI 11.75 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
Dane County's Lower Yahara River Trail offers an incredibly scenic experience in the Madison area. On its western end, the 2.5-mile paved pathway connects to the Capital City State Trail near the...
WI 2.5 mi Asphalt, Boardwalk
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
The Pheasant Branch Conservancy Trail forms a loop within the scenic Pheasant Branch Conservancy, a natural area containing a marsh, meadows, forest and hills. The area is home to a vast array of...
WI 4.2 mi Crushed Stone
The Pheasant Branch Creek Corridor Trail follows a lush wooded creek through Middleton, a northwestern suburb of Wisconsin’s state capital. Its east end is anchored by the beautiful Pheasant Branch...
WI 1.4 mi Asphalt
The Pine River Trail winds on an abandoned railroad corridor between Richland Center and Lone Rock in scenic Richland County. Trail users are treated to stunning views of river bluffs, marshland and...
WI 14.3 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Accordion
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 US Highway 12 Path offers a convenient, non-motorized alternative to traveling on the highway. The paved pathway begins in Middleton and heads northwest paralleling the roadway, separated from...
WI 10.9 mi Asphalt
In south-central Wisconsin, the Upper Yahara River Trail connects the communities of DeForest and Windsor along a beautiful wooded waterway. Buffered by neighborhoods, the trail offers residents an...
WI 2.9 mi Asphalt, Boardwalk
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
The Yahara River Bike Path, on the northeastern side of Madison, is anchored by Tenney Park on one end and the 17-mile Capital City Trail on the other. From one recreational amenity to the other, the...
WI 0.9 mi Asphalt

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Trails by activity

Recent Trail Reviews

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! :-)

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.

Accordion

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!

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.

Elroy-Sparta State Trail

A long time ago

July, 2018 by okpilak20061

I rode this trail, and much more as part of a several hundred mile bicycle trip in the early 1970's, and again just this portion several years later. I did not dismount going through the tunnels, just kept my ears sharp listening to the dripping water to maintain my center of the trail; no flashlight either. The tunnel that makes the bend was the real challenge. I remember that a farmer had put a soft drink machine at the edge of his farm along the trail, and I wondered how much the electric cable must had cost him.

It was easy pedaling and the best part was it was free. Seeing now that there is a charge, and not a trivial one, I would never return. The surface seemed mostly packed shale.

The businesses at each end of the trail were just getting started then and there was very little traffic on the trail. There seemed a hint that they expected snowmobiles to be the biggest draw at that time, with winter use being the major use.

The second time I rode it was in the Fall, and the colors were amazing, and it was a wonderful time.

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