- Contact information
- For information, contact:
S91 W39091 Highway 59
Eagle, WI 53119
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)
Rebecca Peiffer, 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)
Kettle Moraine State Forest—Southern Unit Current conditions
Conditions as of Friday, November 6, 2015:
Attention: A dam that formed the trout pond at Paradise Springs has failed and the pond has drained. DNR dam safety staff inspected the structure and determined significant repairs or replacement of the structure is needed to refill the pond. DNR staff will continue to evaluate options for the dam, including temporary repair, replacement or abandonment.
Hunting season has begun and many areas of the state forest 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.
Hiking trails within the Southern Unit that are closed to hunting:
- Paradise Springs Nature Trail - 0.5 miles paved
- Scuppernong Springs Nature Trail – 1.5 miles
- Rice Lake Nature Trail – 1 mile
Other nearby trails that are closed to hunting:
- Glacial Drumlin State Trail – This is a gravel trail on an old railroad bed. It stretches from Waukesha to Cottage Grove. It is not a looping trail.
- Lapham Peak Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest – 21 miles of hiking trails
The mountain bike trails can close if we receive rain. Keep an eye on the weather and call the Trail Information Line, 262-594-6202, for up-to-date conditions.
Pets, as long as they are on a leash 8 feet or shorter, are welcome on hiking trails with the exception of nature trails.
See the DNR Events Calendar for a list of events at the Southern Unit and other state parks.
Ottawa Lake campground and the Ice Age Trail backpack shelters are open year-round.
Closing dates for other Southern Unit campgrounds are:
- Pinewoods Family campground – closed for the season
- Horseriders’ campground – closed for the season
- Pinewoods Group campground – Nov. 15, 2015.
- Hickory Woods Group campground – closed for the season.
- Whitewater Lake campground – closed for the season.
Don't move firewood!
Due to the potential of carrying harmful tree pests and diseases, Wisconsin has restrictions for moving firewood.
The clean and rinse water at the dump station are closed for the season. You can still use the dump station, but there will be no rinse water.
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.
About 95 percent of the state forest is open to public hunting during established open seasons. Some seasons may be subject to change. Consult the Wisconsin Hunting and Trapping Regulations before going hunting. Target shooting is prohibited in all areas of the forest, except at the McMiller Shooting Range.
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).