Cherokee Marsh Southern Unit

Madison, WI
Length: 1.30 mi.
Type: Loop

About This Trail

[Total: 1    Average: 2/5]

Cherokee Marsh is the largest wetland in Dane County, Wisconsin. The marsh is located just upstream from Lake Mendota, along the Yahara River and Token Creek. The Southern unit has a few miles of unnamed trails that are usable year round, but note in the winter they are groomed for skiing.

Starting facing toward the access road, you’ll see the trailhead to your left. There are several points to take the trail farther back or on the other side of the parking lot. Be sure to have map handy to navigate around the unit. Overall the trail is a big loop on this side with several lollipop side trails along the way. There is a little pond and the trail has gently rolling terrain. This is a good trail for kids of all ages and offers beautiful views of the wetlands. A carrier could be helpful for earlier walkers, but isn’t a necessity.

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Trail Features

Seasons Fall, Spring, Summer, and Winter
Surface type Dirt
Elevation gain 65 ft.
Stroller friendly No
ADA accessible No
Water fountains No
Bathrooms No
Cell reception Excellent
Pet friendly No
Nearby convenience store Yes
Camping Nearby No
Emergency support
within 5 miles

Trail highlights

Creek / River, Fishing, Shaded Hike, and Wildlife Viewing

Trail wanders through Cherokee Marsh wetlands. Gentle terrain makes it a great trail for the whole family.

Fee & Parking Details

Fee : $0.00

There are two parking lots, one right when you enter, and if access road is open there is one all the way at the end near the boat launch.

Trail Contributor

[Total: 1    Average: 2/5]

Hello, I’m Abby, one of the Branch Ambassadors for the Madison, WI Hike it Baby branch. I’m a mom to 3 kiddos ranging from baby to school aged. I’m from Cincinnati, Ohio and have lived in several states over the past few years including Indiana, Ohio, Florida and now Wisconsin! We’ve lived here since May 2017 and have absolutely fallen in love with the area and LOVE to explore all the outdoor areas around us. Hike it Baby quickly became part of our lives and has built an amazing community for our family. Looking forward to continue helping families explore and love the outdoors one hike at a time! Can’t wait to see you out on a hike!


Trail Head


Trail Map

Getting There

Heading north on Northport Drive/HWY 113, turn right on School Rd. Where the road curves right onto Wheeler Rd. take an immediate left into Cherokee Marsh Conservation Park. Park in the small lot along the street or follow the gravel road to the boat landing and additional parking.

Address is 5002 School Road, Madison, WI 53704