Friendship State Trail

Wisconsin

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Friendship State Trail Facts

States: Wisconsin
Counties: Calumet, Winnebago
Length: 18.4 miles
Trail end points: County Rd. M (Larsen) to Plank Rd. and Oneida St. (Menasha); Fox River State Trail (Forest Junction) and Center Rd. and S. Glenview Ave. (Brillion)
Trail surfaces: Asphalt, Boardwalk, Crushed Stone
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 7358774
Trail activities: Bike, Inline Skating, Wheelchair Accessible, Horseback Riding, Snowmobiling, Walking, Cross Country Skiing

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Friendship State Trail Description

The Friendship State Trail will eventually run between Stevens Point and Manitowoc in eastern Wisconsin. Currently, two disconnected segments of the trail are open for use.

In the east, a 4-mile stretch joins the small towns of Brillion and Forest Junction along US 10. The crushed stone pathway offers scenic woodland and rural countryside views from a former Chicago and North Western Railway corridor. Biking, walking and horseback riding are permitted year round, as well as snowmobiling in the winter.

The trail's southeastern end is not far from the Brillion State Wildlife Area, which offers hiking trails through a mix of marsh, forest and prairie habitats. From its other endpoint, trail-goers can connect to the Fox River State Trail, which continues 25 miles north to Green Bay.

A longer stretch of the Friendship State Trail is open farther west between the eastern limits of Menasha and Clayton in rural Winnebago County. The trail begins by paralleling Plank Road/State Route 114 but quickly turns south at the edge of the Heckrodt Wetland Reserve. Along the Lake Winnebago waterfront, the paved pathway runs through Jefferson Park, which features ball fields, picnic pavilions, open space and a public pool.

An on-road route leads from the park to the stunning Friendship Trestle. The 1,600-foot long converted railroad bridge over Little Lake Butte des Morts is the longest pedestrian bridge in Wisconsin. A unique, short lift bridge over the Menasha Lock allows boats to pass under the trail at the trestle’s eastern end.

In the Town of Menasha on the western shore of the lake, the trail runs along Jacobsen Road to US 10. The trail is never far from the highway for the rest of its trek westward, and the surface changes from asphalt to crushed stone. Between Pioneer Road and Hickory Avenue, the trail intersects the Wiouwash State Trail, which travels south to Oshkosh and north to Hortonville. The Friendship State Trail currently ends at County Road M, awaiting a future extension westward.

Parking and Trail Access

In Brillion, a large parking lot and restrooms are available just south of the trail at Peters Park; from the trail's southern endpoint, you can continue south on the sidewalk along S. Glenview Avenue about 0.5 mile to reach the park. Additional parking is available less than a mile east of the trail in Brillion at Horn Park.

In the City of Menasha, parking is available at Jefferson Park on 3rd Street and at the eastern end of the Friendship Trestle on Broad Street.

In the Town of Menasha, park at the western end of the trestle on N. Lake Street. Farther west, park in the dedicated lot at the southern end of Umland Road in Larsen.

Friendship State Trail Reviews

Started at the Umland Road parking area. First few miles were crushed stone. A few areas required some caution, especially the downhill, cause of slight water damage to the trail. Very enjoyable ride. Was surprised how few people were on the paved section of trail. Really enjoyed the Trestle Bridge

I thought this segment of the trail was a very good trail. Well marked in Brilllion. Although, there were some portions of the trail that had small weeks growing through, I thought I was well maintained. I hope they are able to connect the segments soon.

Struggled to find trail in Menasha. The trestle bridge is nice, really nice. But both sides of the bridge, not so nice. Won't do it again.

Accordion

beautiful, safe and effective way to get to fox river trail in forest junction. Packed gravel. Neat old buildings in Forest Junction.

The trail extends along hwy 10 nearby Larsen, and continues all the way to the Trestle Bridge in Menasha. Although the trail is soft in places, it offers some hills, beautiful scenery, and the main attraction-the bridge! Plan on about a 12 mile ride one way.

Convenient trail along highway 10 linking Brillion to Fox River Trail

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