Boat Launches

Boat Launch

Launch your watercraft or ATV!

Madison Parks maintains a number of sight-seeing and boat launch piers throughout the city's lakefront parks. The piers are put in during the springtime and removed again in late fall.  

Permit (Ordinance 8.215):
  • A daily or annual Lake Access Permit is required year-round for launching a motorboat, sailboat, iceboat, canoe, kayak, or ATV from a designated lake access parking lot.
  • The permit is valid for the issue year through March 31 of the following year at designated launch sites in Madison, Monona and Dane County (see brochure map).
  • The permit should be displayed on the inside driver's side windshield.
  • The City of Madison's designated launch locations include:
    • Law
    • Marshall
    • Olbrich
    • Olin
    • Spring Harbor
    • Tenney
    • Warner
Launch Area Parking Rules and Tips (Ordinance 8.16):
  • Long stalls are for parking vehicles with trailers only. 
  • Regular-size stalls are for parking vehicles with no trailer only. 
  • Parking on the grass is prohibited.
  • When the launch parking lot is full, you must find an alternative launch site
  • Violators are subject to a citation. 
2018 Closure Notices:
  • Olin Park boat launch will be closed 10:00pm on Friday, August 10 through 4:00am on Sunday, August 12 due to the Great Taste of the Midwest event.
  • Olin Park boat launch will be closed 4:00am to 3:00pm Saturday, August 4 due to the CrossFit Games. Raindate, with the same times: Sunday, August 5.  
  • Warner Park boat launch parking lot will have limited availability beginning in late August and continuing through the end of the season. Boaters should consider using alternate locations if possible. 
  • Visit Park Projects for more information. 

  • Cherokee Marsh - South Unit (School Road) - Boat Launch

    Park: Cherokee Marsh - South Unit (School Road)
    Lake Access Permit Required: No

    Notes: The Upper Yahara River above Hwy 113 is all slow, no-wake at all times. Launch is best for canoe/kayak access.
  • Law Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Law Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes

    Notes: Parking is very limited for this location with no trailer parking available.
  • Marshall Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Marshall Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes
  • Olbrich Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Olbrich Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes

    Notes: 3401 Atwood Ave.
  • Olin Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Olin Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes
  • Spring Harbor Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Spring Harbor Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes
  • Tenney Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Tenney Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes

    Notes: 1601 Sherman Ave.
  • Vilas (Henry) Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Vilas (Henry) Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: No

    Notes: No trailer parking available.
  • Warner Park - Boat Launch

    Park: Warner Park
    Lake Access Permit Required: Yes

    Notes: 1201 Woodward Drive
  • Wingra Park and Boat Livery - Boat Launch

    Park: Wingra Park and Boat Livery
    Lake Access Permit Required: No

    Notes: No trailer parking available.