Indian Lake County Park
At 483 acres, Indian Lake is one of Dane County's largest parks. The main entrance to Indian Lake County Park is located in the town of Berry on SH 19 about two miles west of USH 12. A winding trail leads to a historic chapel built in 1857, located on a hilltop that provides a breath taking view of the lake and surrounding valley. A trail has been developed around the entire lake, and miles of cross-country ski and nature trails in the wooded hills provide many recreational opportunities and access to a log cabin warming house. The park also has a pet exercise area located adjacent to the small boat launch of USH 19 at the entrance on the west side of the lake.Â Boats using gas motors are prohibited on Indian Lake - electric motors are allowed.
Indian Lake County Park is a solid option for various outdoor activities if you are in the Madison area. It has a range of hiking trails, from easy to fairly strenuous, and you can tailor a hike to suit any time you have available. The park is dog friendly if your dog is leashed (there is a use fee if you bring a dog), and there is actually a dog park on the west side of the park. The dog park is near the boat launch, which is a solid launch for paddling or any other boating activities. The lake is shallow and usually choked with algae and weeds as you get into the summer. It's okay for a quick paddle to work out the kinks, but there are far better paddles near Madison. They are redoing it right now, but there is a shelter and fire pit that my outdoor group likes to use for bonfires in the fall and spring. Hopefully that work will be done soon.
I've visited Indian Lake many times. It has really nice trails which aren't hard, but they also aren't easy. The park has its topographic ups and downs to keep the trails interesting both to a slow and steady hiker and a trail runner.
Its a nice place, with a staircase. Good for a hike nearby Madison. I like the poems posted on the trail, great feature.
This is our favorite, quick getaway from Madison. The trails are wonderful with varied terrain (rolling hills, fields, prairie, fields, lake, woods) during the non-snow seasons. Perfect for both quick and longer hikes, with and without the dog. The west-side of the park is a great off-leash dog park and the lake doesn't allow gas motors, so it's usually nice and quiet. We keep on getting drawn here more than any other park in the area. Perfect for sunsets too.
Historical site with dog park and serene hiking! Sign at trailhead reads: For several hundred years Indians camped at the southwest end of the lake. During that period, the slopes on the hills above you were quite open and covered with prairie grasses and wildflower. Missed the little church, but across the road from Indian Lake County Park is a dilapidated historical structure to check out. One of coolest hikes around Madison area :)