Boat Launches

Boat Launch

Launch your watercraft or ATV!

You haven't seen Madison until you've seen it from a lake. As a city built on an isthmus, Madison is surrounded by over 15,000 acres of sparkling lakes. 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 (see below). Piers are in place early-mid spring through fall. 

FREE LAKE ACCESS DAY -  all day, no permit needed on Saturday, June 22 LEARN MORE

LAKE ACCESS 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 

DESIGNATED CITY OF MADISON LAUNCH LOCATIONS BY LAKE

LAKE MONONA
• Law
• Olbrich
• Olin

LAKE MENDOTA
• Marshall
• 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. 

2019 OLIN PARK BOAT LAUNCH CLOSURE NOTICE:  

  • Ironman 70.3: Sunday, June 9 (Limited Access)
  • Shake the Lake: Friday, June 21 - Sunday, June 30 (CLOSED)
  • Reebok Fitbarge: Tuesday, July 23 and Wednesday, August 7 (Limited Access) 
  • CrossFit Games: Thursday, August 1 - Sunday, August 4 (CLOSED)
  • Great Taste of the Midwest: Saturday, August 10 (CLOSED)

  • 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.