Walnut Grove Park Singletrack Improvements

Last Updated: 05/31/2022

The Parks Division is proposing to construct a 1 mile section of bike optimized single track trail in Walnut Grove Park in 2022 or 2023. This trail was first identified for construction with the MadBAT planning project in 2020 and the proposed trail will run on the perimeter of Walnut Grove Park. Parks has hired IMBA Trail Solutions to serve as the design consultant on the project and project planning is currently underway.

Trail construction could best be described as Mountain Bike Optimized (MBO) Natural Surface Trail.

MBO Natural Surface Trail builds on Traditional Trail but uses rolling contour and lift and tilt design and construction methods. It uses a medium frequency of rollers, berms and table top and rollable gap jumps throughout construction with optional ride around routes for each feature. The tread will be natural surface constructed out of native materials such as dirt, stone, and wood. MBO trail also utilizes Technical Trail Features (TTF's) . TTF's are pre manufactured items constructed by a bike park feature manufacturer. These can include elevated trail, berms, and jumps with wood decking. All TTF's include an option to ride around the feature.

This project will not impact any existing field, court, playground or other use within Walnut Grove Park. It will cross the paved walking path twice. At both locations, the path is located in an open field and sight distances are such that both people walking and riding bikes will have the ability to see each other and react accordingly. In addition, design precautions will be taken to slow or stop the bike traffic at the crossings.

All disturbed areas not part of the final trail tread will be restored with a mix of native vegetation including a "short prairie" seed mix.

There are proposed tree removals as part of this project. Parks and Forestry Arborist staff evaluated all trees in and around the trail corridor. Several trees were identified for removal due to condition and safety concerns. This includes trees that are already dead, partially dead, contain structural defects such as holes or decay and pose a safety concern. There are also invasive species such as honeysuckle and buckthorn within the trail corridor that are proposed for removal. No mature healthy trees are proposed to be removed and all trees to remain are to be protected during construction. Care will be taken to protect all mature healthy trees during and after construction in accordance with the City's tree protection and "No Root Cut" policy.

Trail Users and Rules

The proposed trail will be open to all non-motorized vehicles. This includes bicycles, walkers, hikers, and trail runners. The trail will be open during normal park hours as long as the trail tread is dry. If people are leaving footprints or ruts in the dirt, it's best practice to stay off until the surface can dry. The trail will not have lights.

The proposed trail will cross the existing paved walking path at two locations and a hiking/walking trail near the park shelter once. At these locations, natural trail features such as boulders will be installed to slow riders as they approach the intersection. This allows a controlled crossing where both trail users have adequate visibility in all directions and can make appropriate adjustments.

Public Informational Meeting:
An online project kick-off meeting was held on:

Thursday, May 5, 2022, @ 5:30 pm.
Parks staff made a short presentation followed by a comment and question session.


If you were unable to attend and would like to comment on the project, please contact Madison Parks at parks@cityofmadison.com

Schedule and updates
Madison Parks has placed this project on pause and will provide updates to the design and schedule as they become available. This project may be bid in Summer or Fall of 2022 with construction taking place in either late 2022 or sometime in 2023. Project timeline and updates will be posted here as they become available

Below is a concept plan for the trail alignment:
Walnut Grove
Walnut Grove Single Track


A section of typical trail- City of Middleton


Wooden skill Technical Trail Feature