Camping & Hiking

There are two public campgrounds on Madeline Island, Big Bay State Park and Big Bay Town Park. Both campgrounds have electric sites, flush toilets, showers and firewood. Big Bay State Park features 60 campsites total, with 15 electric sites and 7 walk-in, tent-only sites. Big Bay Town Park features 61 campsites total, with 22 electric sites and 6 remote sites located on the Lagoon Ridge Trail.

The two parks sit on either end of the Madeline Island’s Big Bay Beach, which has been named “The Best Beach in Northern Wisconsin.” The 2.5 mile long sandy beach is perfect for swimming and picnicking. The Big Bay Lagoon, which is located directly behind the beach is accessible via canoe and kayak.

Big Bay State Park is 2,350 acres with 4 miles of shoreline and 7 miles of hiking trails. The trails explore various types of habitat, including old growth hemlock forests, bogs, barrier beach and sandstone sea caves along Lake Superior. The trails are open year-round and adaptive equipment is available for people with mobility impairment, including beach wheelchair. Usage fees apply.

Big Bay Town Park provides spectacular views of the Big Bay Lagoon, along with beach access and a trail that connects to Big Bay State Park. There is no usage fee.

The Capser Trail is a 2-mile, multi-use trail designed for recreation and education, owned and managed by the Madeline Island Wilderness Preserve. The entrance to the Capser Trail is on the south side of County H (Big Bay Road), across from the Fire Hall. Use the parking area in Forest Park. There is no usage fee.