Dane County has over 100 miles of bike trails that connect communities, parks and natural resource areas. With a variety of routes and terrains, there is something for everyone.
In 2015-16, Dane County Parks in partnership with the Madison Area Transportation Planning Board contracted with Toole Design Group to develop a county wide Bicycle Wayfinding Manual (PDF). The manual provides guidelines for communities to use for designing and implementing a uniform wayfinding and information sign system for the bicycle network throughout Dane County.
The project also included the development of six bicycle wayfinding plans for:
Dane County offers many opportunities for mountain bikers. CamRock County Park has over nine miles of excellent mountain biking trails for riders of all skill levels. These trails were developed with help from Capital Off-Road Pathfinders. Beginning riders can develop their skills on the easier trails at Badger Prairie County Park or the Seminole mountain bike trails in the Lewis Nine Springs E-Way. For mountain bike trail conditions, maps and information regarding closures, please visit www.madcitydirt.com.
Capital City Trail
The Capital City State Trail, developed by Dane County, is one of the most popular shared-use bicycle/pedestrian trails in the county. The paved trail connects to the Military Ridge and Badger State Trails. Cyclists who use the Capital City Trail primarily for commuting may be eligible for a subsidized pass. Review the Commuter Use Statement (PDF) for more information.
Dane County Parks is undertaking the first major upgrade to the Capital City Trail since its completion in 2000 by repaving 9.5 miles of trail from Nob Hill Road to Verona Road to improve both ride and safety. To view documents and materials related to the planning process, visit the project page below.
Glacial Drumlin to Capital City Connector Trail
Dane County, the Village of Cottage Grove, Wisconsin Department of Transportation and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources are beginning plans to complete the last segment of the Glacial Drumlin State Trail beginning at the I-90 bridge in Madison and extending east to the existing Glacial Drumlin Trail Trailhead in the Village of Cottage Grove. To view documents and materials related to the planning process, visit the project page below.
Lower Yahara River Trail
Dane County Parks opened Phase 1 of the Lower Yahara River Trail on August 27, 2017. This nearly 2.5-mile trail provides an off-road trail connection between the City of Madison and the Village of McFarland that didn’t previously exist. It extends from the Capital City Trail near the Lussier Family Heritage Center to the western shore of Lake Waubesa and includes one of the longest boardwalk bridges constructed solely for non-motorized transportation in North America.
In May 2019, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi and County staff met with bicycle advocates and representatives from local units of government for the annual Bike Dane meeting to share plans and give updates on bicycle improvement projects. To learn more, review the presentation (PDF) from that meeting.