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The White River State Trail is composed of two separate segments: a 12-mile stretch that runs between Elkhorn and just west of Burlington in Walworth County, and a 7-mile section that connects the unincorporated community of Kansasville near Eagle Lake to downtown Burlington in Racine County.
In Racine County, the eastern endpoint begins at Vandenboom Road in Kansasville, where a stretch of unused rail corridor is clearly visible from the parking lot on the east side of the road. Heading west toward Burlington, riders will be treated to classic Wisconsin farmland along a gentle grade, crossing bridges and passing by scenic vistas and wetlands along the way. Football fans will recognize Burlington as the hometown of NFL quarterback Tony Romo. Chocolate fans will be welcomed by the strong scent of chocolate chip cookies as they approach Burlington from the east, due to the ongoing production of a Nestlé plant in town (Burlington hosts its annual ChocolateFest every Memorial Day weekend).
The trail is open to snowmobilers, cross-country skiers, and snowshoers; however, note that the trail is not groomed. A separate trail for horseback riding runs between the towns of Springfield and Lyons (Walworth County).
After passing through Bushnell Park—which offers sports fields, walking trails, picnic facilities, a playground, and restrooms—you’ll cross the Fox River and remain on an off-street section that parallels Calumet Street. Just south of Adams Street, the trail continues on city sidewalks. You’ll continue for several blocks and then head right onto Fox Street and enter Wehmhoff Jucker Park, where the trail connects with the Seven Waters Bike Trail and proceeds north toward the Village of Waterford.
The 12-mile western segment in Walworth County begins on the western outskirts of Burlington where Spring Valley Road meets the Burlington Bypass in Walworth County. Lake Geneva is located approximately 5 miles south of the trail after passing the historic villages of Lyons and Springfield. The scenic trail then rolls through the glaciated landscape of southern Wisconsin, featuring woodlands, farm fields, creeks, and its namesake White River.
NOTE: A State Trail Pass ($25 annually/$5 daily) is required for bicyclists and horseback riders ages 16 and older. Snowmobilers must display either a Wisconsin registration or a snowmobile State Trail Pass. For information, go to dnr.wi.gov /topic/parks/trailpass.html.
To reach the eastern endpoint in Kansasville from I-94, take Exit 340 toward SR 142/Burlington. Head west onto SR 142, and go 8.4 miles. (Parts of this road may be closed at certain times or days.) Make a right onto WI 75 N., heading north. After 2.1 miles, turn left onto First St./County Line Road, and go 1 mile. Turn right onto Vandenboom Road, and go 0.8 mile. Turn right into the parking lot just across the street from where the trail begins.
To reach the Burlington trailhead from the intersection of Milwaukee Ave. and SR 36/WI 83 heading south (about 0.3 mile after crossing the Fox River), take a slight right onto Milwaukee Ave., and go 3.2 miles. Turn left onto Maryland Ave., and go 0.3 mile. Turn right onto Congress St., and make an immediate left into the trailhead parking lot.
To reach the Spring Valley Road trailhead from I-43, take Exit 29 toward SR 11/Elkhorn/Burlington. Head east on WI 11/Wisconsin Trunk Hwy. 11 E. for 10.5 miles, and take the exit on the left to get on WI 36. Turn right onto WI 36, and go 0.4 mile; then turn right onto Mormon Road/Spring Valley Road and go 0.6 mile. Turn right into the small trailhead parking lot.
To reach the western trailhead in Elkhorn from I-43, take Exit 27A for US 12 E. toward Lake Geneva. Follow signs for County Road NN/Elkhorn for 0.2 mile, and turn left onto County Road NN/E. Geneva St.—note the signs for Gateway Tech. After 0.2 mile, turn left (south) onto County Road H, and go 0.7 mile. Turn left into the trailhead parking lot.
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