Discover Madison, Wisconsin’s Best Bike Trails

person sitting by a river in nature with bikes parked near by

Madison, Wisconsin offers a wealth of exhilarating bike trails that cater to a variety of cycling preferences. Whether you thrive on the twists and turns of singletrack trails, seek the thrill of conquering steep hills, or prefer the smooth ease of flat, paved pathways, there’s a trail in this picturesque city waiting to be discovered by cyclists of all skill levels.

In this guide, we’ll unveil a curated selection of our favorite bike trails in and around Madison, Wisconsin, handpicked by our knowledgeable staffers. Whether you’re a local looking to explore new routes or a visitor seeking the best cycling experiences in the area, we’ve got you covered. From scenic lakeside paths to challenging off-road adventures, each trail offers a unique cycling experience, promising breathtaking views and unforgettable rides.

Join us as we delve into the diverse biking landscape of Madison, Wisconsin, and discover the perfect trails that will inspire and excite every cyclist. Whether you’re an avid mountain biker, a road cycling enthusiast, or a leisure rider, there’s a trail here that’s tailor-made for you. Let’s embark on a cycling journey through Madison’s finest bike trails!


Below are some of our favorite trails around Madison—but first we want to introduce you to Ride Spot. Ride Spot is an app you can download for FREE on your phone that features easy-to-follow local routes with on-screen navigation and/or audible turn-by-turn directions. It’s a great resource to find fun rides in your area, connect with other riders, and even begin logging your favorite rides to share with friends.

We have curated routes from our staff on Ride Spot made for all different ride levels. Simply search for and follow “ERIK’S – MADISON” to see our local shop-created rides.

And now here are the top Madison, Wisconsin trails to go check out…

Blue Mound State Park

Gnarly, rocky trails with plenty of climbing and descending. This trail system will test your skills, fitness, and mental fortitude. Be sure to bring plenty of water, Band-Aids, and flat-fix equipment. If you’re able to ride a complete loop without dabbing, you’ll be rewarded with an overwhelming sense of accomplishment!

Learn more about Blue Mound State Park.

Quarry Ridge

Quarry Ridge Mountain Biking Trails

An awesome mix of climbs, descents, drops, gap jumps, twisty singletrack, and more. An amazing use of terrain, the trails total four miles, but the network rides so much larger due to the variety. The park is located just minutes south of Madison in Fitchburg, WI, and can be easily accessed from the Military Trail.

Learn more about Quarry Ridge and see pictures!

Capital City Bike Loop

A fully paved bike path looping through downtown Madison, the Southwest Commuter Trail, and Lake Mendota. Scenic and well-maintained, riders are treated to a 17-mile loop that has easy access to many restaurants and coffee shops for those who would like to make a stop or two during the ride.

Learn more about the Capital Loop.

Military Ridge Trail

The Military Ridge Trail is a 40-mile link between Dodgeville and Madison. It is a rail bed conversion, so you never have an incline steeper than 5°, which makes it ideal for beginners or anyone looking for a fairly flat trail that allows them to enjoy a relaxed, scenic ride. The trail runs along the southern borders of Governor Dodge and Blue Mound State Parks, passing by agricultural lands, woods, wetlands, and prairies.

Learn more about the Military Ridge Trail.

Badger State Trail

The Badger State Trail is 40 miles long, running between Madison and the Wisconsin-Illinois border. Riders will have the pleasure of taking in the scenic meadows, farmlands, rolling hills, and prairies of the Midwest. There are many small communities to stop off at along the trail to grab a bite to eat if you wish.

Learn more about the Badger State Trail.

400 State Trail

Considered one of the best bike trails in the region, beginner and avid cyclists alike will love this fun route that runs through the Baraboo Valley in Central Wisconsin. One of the things that makes the 400 Trail so amazing is the scenery. The Baraboo River winds through the countryside and the trail follows its course. Sandstone bluffs, marshes, and river views provide multiple opportunities to appreciate nature.

Learn more about the 400 State Trail and see pictures!

Let’s Go Ride!

Looking for more biking adventures in the Madison area? Don’t miss out on the Ride Spot app, where you can explore and follow “ERIK’S Bike Shop – Madison” to discover routes curated by our store staff. Whether you’re seeking scenic trails or thrilling bike paths, Ride Spot has you covered with our favorite rides.

When you’re ready to hit the trails, drop by one of our Madison locations, Madison East or Madison West, to gear up for a safe and enjoyable ride. Our expert staff will ensure you have everything you need, from bike rentals and accessories to expert advice on trail conditions. Not in the Madison area? You can also shop all our bikes online!