Pedestrian / bike bridge, Rail bridge and ducks bobbing

“Bridgerton” Wingra Creek 2022

This paddle is fun because there are oh so many bridges! You name it – bike bridges, train bridges, pedestrian bridges and road bridges. So a different perspective on Madison.

The put-in / take-out

Olin-Turville Park has a launch just for paddle craft which is on Wingra Creek. There is a separate big concrete ramp for power boats on the lake next to the mouth of the creek. We usually do this paddle annually. See other posts for more information: Wingra Creek Paddling.

Water level check before launch:  We typically park the car at 599 W Wingra Drive, Madison, while one of us crosses the pedestrian bridge to the bike path and walks along the creek to check out the water level / muck / deadfall situation. We look at the area where the creek flows under the first arched stone bridge.  If there is going to be trouble (low water, high water, blockage), it’s going to be there.

The Paddle

Round trip for the two of us was about 1 3/4 hours. Usually we paddle all the way to the Lake Wingra dam but due to time (Deb wanted to go to her tai chi practice that evening), we turned around just before St. Mary’s Hospital. Also up ahead  were a lot of lily pads, which is typical, and can be a slog so we circled back.

Since Lake Monona was calm and no big boats in sight, we “said hello to the lake” for a few minutes before disembarking.

We were glad to see that the creek was mostly free of trash, and there was not a lot of algae or duckweek to paddle through.

The Wildlife

We saw ducks, muskrats, red-winged blackbirds, lots of dragonflies.

The Pictures