CALS Wellness Committee tip: Popular bike trails in the Madison area

The summer months in Madison, Wisconsin are a great time to get outside and get on your bike! Did you know that Madison offers 200+ miles of trails!? We are fortunate to have so many different options to choose from. Here’s a list of popular bike trails to check out this summer if you are looking to go on a joy ride or try something a little bit more challenging.

  1. Lake Monona Bike Loop. The Lake Monona Bike Loop is one of Madison’s most popular bike routes! It is a 12-mile loop around Lake Monona, and it offers some stunning views of the lake, the Madison skyline, and some of the surrounding neighborhoods. Around mile seven you will find Monona Bait & Ice Cream store which is the perfect place to stop on a warm summer day! More info:
  1. Arboretum Loop. The Arboretum Loop is 6.2 miles, and it goes through the entire Arboretum. You will start near Henry Vilas Zoo and bike alongside Lake Wingra. This loop is perfect for all skill levels, and you will see a lot of wildflowers throughout your ride. The UW-Madison Arboretum offers many other hiking trails you can pick from as well such as: the Wingra Woods Trail, Grady Tract Trail, and the Gardner Marsh Boardwalk Loop. More info:
  1. Lakeshore Path. Lakeshore path is made up of two trail segments: the Howard Temin Path and the Lake Mendota Path. If you want to go biking the recommended trail for you is going to be the Howard Temin Path that extends from North Park Street to Oxford Road. This is a beautiful ride that goes along University Bay, and you will also see many parts of campus. This is a 4.2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail. If you want to go on a walk/run, we recommend the Lake Mendota Path that brings you to Picnic Point. More info:
  1. Badger State Trail. If you are looking for a longer ride the Badger State Trail may be for you! The Badger State Trail is a 40-mile rail trail that starts just south of Lovell Lane in Madison, Wisconsin and heads all the way down to the Wisconsin – Illinois state line. You will end up passing through Fitchburg, Belleville, Monticello, and Monroe. Make sure to bring plenty of water and snacks on this ride! More info:
  1. Military Ridge. The Military Ridge State Trail is a 40.4 mile moderately trafficked trail that starts in Fitchburg, Wisconsin and goes all the way out to Dodgeville, Wisconsin. You will end up traveling through Verona, Mount Horeb, Blue Mounds, and Ridgeway. This trail is perfect for all skill levels and it’s great for hiking, walking, running, and road biking. The trail is partially paved and then the rest is crushed gravel. The views near Mount Horeb are beautiful year-round. More info:
  1. Capital City State Trail. Capital City State Trail is a popular recreation and commuting trail connecting Verona and downtown Madison. The trail is 17 miles long linking the Military Ridge State Trail and a lot of Madison and Fitchburg bike trails. Throughout this ride you will have views of Nine Spring E-Way and the Capital Springs Centennial State Recreation Area. Parking for Capital City State Trail can be found at 3121-2901 Lake Farm Rd, Madison, WI 53711. More info:
  1. Quarry Ridge. If you are into mountain biking, you may want to check out the Quarry Ridge Trail System. It offers more than three miles of off-road trails, and it provides access to both the Military Ridge and Capital City State Trails. What is great about this trail system is that it is for all different skill levels offering both easy and advanced options. The Quarry Ridge Trail System is located in Fitchburg, Wisconsin and their parking lot can be found at 2740 Fitchrona, Rd, Fitchburg, WI 53711. More info: