Wisconsin Bicycle Routes
Bicycle Route Notes
I. East-West Routes
A. State line route. This route runs from Genoa City west, joining the Wisconsin Bikeway route around Fontana. The route starts in Illinois but gradually works its way up to Wisconsin. The roads are very small with low traffic, more like private country lanes than public roads.
B. Wisconsin Bikeway. This route continues east and south from Twin Lakes to Genoa City. (A dirt trail south from Genea City connects to the Prairie and Hebron trails in Illinois. The Prairie Trail that leads south to McHenry, Illinois, and connects to the extensive Fox River Trail system. They are both part of the Grand Illinois trail system.) It then follows Cobblestone Road across the southern part of the county. There are numerous north-south cross roads allowing connections to Lake Geneva.
C. Routes southeast of Lake Geneva. There are several good routes between Twin Lakes, Genoa City, and Lake Geneva. (After researching these I downloaded several maps from a northern Illinois bike club that used most of these roads for club rides.)
1. County H. The former route 12, this is the most direct route, but probably the least attractive, between Genoa City and Lake Geneva. Although traffic is fairly fast, bicycles can use the smooth shoulders. The Lake Geneva bike trail system starts at the intersection of county H and route 120.
2. Pell Lake Route. Another route is to go north and west from Twin Lakes, skirting Powers Lake on the south, and following the north shore of Pell Lake, joining County H before arriving in Lake Geneva.
3. Bloomfield Road. The third route continues the Silver Lake route described in the Kenosha county section above. It skirts the northern shore of Powers Lake. (There is a scenic ride along the west shore of Powers Lake connecting to the Pell Lake route) The route then takes Hafe Rd to Bloomfield and Lake Geneva.
D. Warren Rd to Lake Geneva. This is a continuation of the Karcher Rd route described under Kenosha County. It passes through a very picturesque, hilly section, with numerous other rustic roads on both sides. Take Warren to Knob (south), Steele (west), South Rd (south), and Townline Rd into Lake Geneva. There are numerous opportunities for loop rides in this area.
E. Lake Geneva bike trails. Lake Geneva has recently constructed a series of bike trails running southeast from the city center. One is a rail-trail that runs from downtown to the intersection of Bloomfield and highway 120 (first part unpaved, rest paved) with jogs on streets. Another follows the recently rerouted Highway 120 bypass of Lake Geneva. Another trail parallels Townline Rd.
F. Big Foot Beach State Park. The service road runs the length of the park from county H to the lake shore (closed to motor traffic). Parking (with sticker), water, restrooms, camping.
G. Lakes Geneva and Como. Restrooms and water are available at several places in Lake Geneva, including the public library and the building housing the chamber of commerce. Free parking is available on Lake Geneva streets away from the lake.
1. Lake Geneva South Shore. South Lake Shore Drive runs from the city of Lake Geneva to Fontana, with a bike lane on much of the south side. Parts are hilly and traffic can be heavy (but not fast). Fairly heavy bicycle use.
2. Lake Como South Shore. From the city of Lake Geneva, go west on Dodge St (climb), then McDonald Dr (passing a park with rest rooms) to the Como shore. After following the shore, cross over to Williams Bay (parking, restrooms, and water), and continue to Fontana (off the map). This is a very hilly route.
3. Snake Road. A winding, hilly, and very scenic route through estate county north of Geneva Lake. Start as with the Como South Shore route, but go south on Forest St, crossing highway 50 to pick up Snake Rd. At the end of Snake Rd, cross highway 50 and use the Como South Shore route to either return to Lake Geneva or continue on to Williams Bay and Fontana.
H. White River Bike Trail. This runs from Spring Valley Rd on the western outskirts of Burlington to Elkhorn. The surface is crushed gravel. In Lyons, a very nice general store on the trail is a great place for snacks (hamburgers, soups, etc.). Further along, in Springfield, the Pedal & Cup rents bicycles (262-249-1111 or www.pedalandcup.com). This trail can be combined with several of the very scenic local roads for loop trips. Parking at the trailhead in Elkhorn and in Springfield and Lyons. Limited parking at the eastern trailhead.
I. Spring Valley Rd to Lake Geneva. There are numerous scenic roads in this area, including a number that have been designated as rustic routes. They can form a loop with the White River Trail. To go to Lake Geneva, take Spring Valley Rd, Buckby Rd, and Sheriden Springs Rd.
J. Burlington to Elkhorn. Follow Spring Valley Rd as above. To skip Lake Geneva and continue to Elkhorn, continue on Buckby Rd, which becomes Krueger Rd. Then go north and west on county NN to Elkhorn. Can be combined with the White River Trail.
K. Potter Road. This route runs west from Burlington or Rochester (in Racine county) on back roads. The countryside is very scenic (some rustic roads near Burlington) with some ridge views across the surrounding countryside.
L. County D. A somewhat faster alternative to Potter Rd. More traffic but shoulders. Route ends at Bowers Rd.
M. East Troy and Elkhorn. (Continuation of northern Racine county route) Go south west on County L to East Troy. Take county ES (traffic, with shoulders) to county A. Go south on Hodges Rd and Cobb Rd to Elkhorn.
N. Wisconsin Bikeway, northern section. The former Wisconsin bikeway from Milwaukee or Racine followed county ES from Mukwanago to highway J to connect with Bluff Rd. Traffic on county J can be quite heavy and fast and it has no shoulders for most of its length. I prefer Eagle Lake Rd. (Waukesha county LO–see Waukesha county section). Then take Eagle Rd south to Bluff Rd.
II. North-South Routes
A. Eastern Walworth route. This route starts at Genoa City (and could be part of a much larger route using Illinois bike trails, including the Prairie Trail whose northern end is at Genoa City). From Genoa City, take county U north. Follow Hafs Rd to Lyons Rd (later called South Rd) into Lyons. From Lyons, follow North Rd (later Lyons Rd) to Potter into Honey Lake Rd. Go north on DD, east on Potter Rd, and north on Bell School Rd. Continue north on Stone School Rd into Mukwonago. Alternatively,
1. Take county L northeast towards Big Bend.
2. Go west on Harmony Lane to Lake Beulah to join the following route.
B. East Troy route. From the Eastern Walworth route, go west (instead of east) on Potter Rd. Go north on Hargreaves, east on county D, north on Hammes Rd and Cave School Rd. Take highway 20 into East Troy (Trolley museum and old-fashioned soda fountain). At this point it is possible to either rejoin the Eastern Walworth route and to go north along the shore of Lake Beulah:
1. To rejoin the previous route, just before East Troy take county L to Stone School Rd.
2. From downtown East Troy go north on Division to Saint Peters Rd. Follow a short stretch of county ES (heavy traffic) to Army Lake Rd and the roads along the east shore of Lake Beulah.
C. Central Walworth route. From Illinois, take Hillside Rd to South Lake Shore Dr into Lake Geneva. Go north on County NN and follow Bowers Rd. At County D, the route splits:
1. Townline Rd. At D, go east one mile to Townline Rd. Follow Townline north to the Waukesha County line.
2. Nature Rd. Continue north on Bowers (county N) and Pickeral Lake Rd to county J. Go east on J (moderate traffic, no shoulders) to Nature Rd into Waukesha county. Nature Rd. goes through a hilly and wild section, including glacial wetlands owned by the Nature Conservancy.
D. Elkhorn north. Follow Cobb and Hodges north from Elkhorn. Go west on county A and follow some subdivision streets to highway 12. Take the highway 12 shoulder (heavy traffic, bad shoulder) about one mile to Pleasant Hill Rd (hilly and wooded), to Adams Rd, and into Waukesha county just north of Little Prairie. Except for the highway 12 segment, most of this route has little traffic.