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Wisconsin Bicycle Routes

Mississippi River to Green Bay
This section suggests a possible route from the Mississippi River and the Illinois state line to Green Bay. It makes use of several bike trails along the way, including the Military Ridge Trail, the Glacial Drumlin Trail, the Wild Goose Trail, and the Fox River Trail. Much of this route is based on a review of maps rather than personal scouting, so the rider should use discretion. I would appreciate reports--pro and con--from those who have ridden sections of the route. For the first part of this trip, I strongly recommend riders carry of copy of the Mississippi River Section of the Wisconsin Bicycle Map. For the portion after Madison, they should carry a copy of the Southeastern Section.

The route follows a short stretch of the Great River Road from Dubuque. It leaves the route of the Great River Road by continuing on county H and then local roads towards Cuba City (see the Grant county map).

In Lafayette county, the route follows a series of county roads to Belmont. It then follows county G west and county Q north towards Mineral Point. (West of Belmont, the Pecatonia Trail crosses the route, but I am not certain the surface is suitable for road bikes. I would appreciate reports from those who have ridden it.)

Mineral Point is a former mining town and quite scenic with numerous buildings from the Cornish lead mining days. The State Historical Society runs the Pendarvis historic site.

From Mineral Point, the route follows county routes QQ and Q north (see Iowa county map) north and county CH west to Dodgeville, where it picks up the Military Ridge Trail. The trail surface is generally good crushed limestone. East of Verona, it is paved.

In Fitchburg (a suburb of Madison), the bicyclist picks up the Capital City Trail. One can either take this trail around the south side of Lake Monona or switch to the Southwest Bike Path into downtown Madison. Since there are numerous possible bike routes in the Madison area, I suggest that riders obtain a copy of the Capitol Cities map or one of the free maps put out by the city or Dane county.

From Madison, the rider should pick up the Glacial Drumlin Trail (see my discussion of the Winona-Milwaukee route for a possible connection). Take this trail east to Switzkie Road. Follow this road north towards Watertown. These strip maps can be used to travel from from Johnson's Creek to Fond du Lac, either entirely on back roads or using the Wild Goose Trail. For more on this section, see the description of the Rockford-Fond du Lac route.

See this map of Fond du Lac for possible routes through the city. Leave the city on the trail that follows the east shore of Lake Winnebago towards Peebles. The maps of Fond du Lac and Calumet counties show the route north along the east shore of Lake Winnebago, using back roads. Go east on Calumet county B through St John. Just after crossing highway 32/57 is the southern end of the Fox Valley trail. This trail is crushed limestone in Calumet and most of Brown counties, becoming paved just south of DePere. Click here for a map of the northern part of the Fox River Trail.