- Contact information
- For information, contact:
Ottawa Lake Visitor Center and Campground
Camping Open All Year
S59 W36530 County ZZ
Dousman, WI 53118
262-594-6220 (Memorial Day to Labor Day)
Amanda Kutka, Visitor Services
Pinewoods Campground Campers must check in at Ottawa Lake Visitor Center
W830 Little Prairie Rd.
Palmyra, WI 53156
Whitewater Lake Visitor Center and Campground
W7796 Kettle Moraine Drive
Whitewater, WI 53190
262-473-7501 (Memorial Day to Labor Day)
S91 W39091 Highway 59
Eagle, WI 53119
Kettle Moraine State Forest—Southern Unit Current conditions
Conditions as of Wednesday, October 22, 2014:
Please call the Trail Information line for up-to-date conditions, 262-594-6202.
Remember, a state trail pass is required for anyone ages 16 and older to use the mountain bike, bridle or cross-country ski trails. No trail pass is required for hiking. A vehicle admission sticker is required in all fee use areas.
Hiking trails are open. Pets as long as they are on a leash 8 feet or shorter are welcome on hiking trails with the exception of nature trails.
Attention hikers: Many areas of the Kettle Moraine State Forest – Southern Unit are open to hunting. Blaze orange or other bright colors are recommended for all users to increase visibility. You may borrow or purchase a blaze orange vest from most Forest offices.
2014 Gun Deer Seasons (Blaze orange or other bright colors recommended)
November 22 - November 30
December 24 - January 1
Other hunting season occur within the Forest from September – January.
Questions? Contact the Kettle Moraine State Forest – Southern Unit at 262-594-6200.
Hiking trails within the Southern Unit that are closed to hunting:
- Paradise Springs Nature Trail - .5 mile paved
- Scuppernong Springs Nature Trail – 1.5 miles
- Rice Lake Nature Trail – 1 mile
Other nearby trails that are closed to hunting:
Glacial Drumlin Bike Trail – This is a gravel trail on an old railroad bed. It stretches from Waukesha to Cottage Grove. It is not a looping trail.
- From the Southern Unit, go north on Hwy 67, go west (left) on Hwy 18 .5 mile to Main Street. Go south (left) on Main Street .75 mile to the trail.
- Lapham Peak Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest – 21 miles of hiking trails
- Go north on Hwy 67 then east (right) on I-94. Follow I-94 to Hwy C. Go south (right) on Hwy C about 1 mile to the Lapham Peak entrance on the east (left) side.
See the DNR Events Calendar for a list of events at the Southern Unit and other state parks.
Fall colors are starting to show.
All of the Forest Campgrounds are open for the season. The Ottawa Lake Contact Station is open 7 days a week for registering for the Ottawa Lake and Pinewoods Campgrounds. The Whitewater Lake Contact Station is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Self registration is required at all campgrounds when the Contact Station is not open. Click on the ‘Camping Information’ tab on the right side of the screen for more details on our campgrounds.
The Whitewater Lake, Hickory Woods and Pinewoods Campgrounds are closed for the season.
The toilet and shower building at the Horseriders' Campground is closed for the season. Drinking water is available next to the pit toilet in the 500 loop.
The water, flush toilet, showers and fresh water at the dump stations will stay on as long as possible at Ottawa Lake. If overnight temperatures are predicted to be below freezing, all water may be shut off for the season to prevent pipe freezing. Flush toilets and showers will not be available after October 27th.
Don't move firewood!
Due to the potential of carrying harmful tree pests and diseases, Wisconsin has restrictions for moving firewood.
Ice Age Trail has three backpack shelters open year-round. A camping permit is required and you must camp at a designated shelter campsite. We allow one camping party, maximum of 10 people per shelter per night. Everything is backpacked in and out. Reservations are strongly recommended for backpack shelter camping on weekends. If you do not have a reservation, we recommend calling ahead to determine availability for first-come, first-served backpack shelter camping. For more information, call 262-594-6200.
Do you want to help protect Wisconsin’s natural resources for future generations? Do you have a skill that could benefit the forest? The Southern Unit is looking for volunteers. If you are interested in being notified of opportunities, sign up for our volunteer email list by emailing Amanda Kutka or calling 262-594-6200.
Volunteer opportunities at the Southern Unit throughout the year.
- Pull invasive garlic mustard. April to June.
- Collect seeds from native plants. August to October.
- Remove invasive buckthorn trees. Fall and winter.
- Adopt-A-Trail. The forest needs trail tenders to fight invasive plants on some sections of trail, especially along:
- Stute Springs Nature Trail
- All loops of the Nordic skiing and hiking trail
- Plant surveys to be completed annually to analyze the benefits of invasive plant removal (need to have strong knowledge of plant communities to complete this task).
- Bird house monitoring.
The forest headquarters, museum and trading post is open Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The office phone number is 262-594-6200. Stop by and learn about our glacial and cultural heritage.
For the most up-to-date information, call the Trail Information Line 262-594-6202 (available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week).