We’re experiencing 70 degree weather in November? Sign us up! Just when we thought the brisk air was here to stay, a burst of warm weather came knocking at our Wisconsin door. On this particular weekend we decided to drive 20 miles outside of Madison to Indian Lake County Park. Let’s just say we weren’t the only ones who had this idea. The weather was so tremendous that so many came to explore with their kiddos as well.

Indian Lake County Park Location & Hours

Hours: 5am- 10pm

Shelter 1: 8183 State Highway 19 – Cross Plains, WI

Boat Launch/Dog Exercise Area: 8381 State Highway 19 – Cross Plains, WI

This was our very first visit to Indian Lake. With so many cars in the parking lot, we thought it was going to be a crowded experience; but to our surprise, we saw that there was so much room for everyone to spread out and enjoy. We learned that Indian Lake is over 500 acres and is one of the largest parks in Dane County.

The park offers a shaded pavilion as well as a firepit with gorgeous views. The day we came, there was a mini birthday celebration at the pavilion and boy were they lucky. A warm outdoor celebration in November here in the Midwest seems like the ultimate treat.



Once we started on a path, we quickly realized why so many loved this county park. Who wouldn’t be a fan of beautiful waterfront views with lots of space? Our little ones loved having open fields to frolic through. The hilly terrain allowed my kids to run up and down along the way making them completely tired. Another win for us!

Another thing we enjoyed about this park is that you’re close enough to Madison but yet it feels quite remote. The trails are also pretty well groomed and clearly labeled. On our way back we saw a lime green butterfly and the most fuzzy caterpillar.

Dog Park & Boat Launch

Not only is this a great place to bring the family, but dogs will absolutely love it as they can run off leash in the unfenced dog park. Nearby is a boat launch for non gas motored boats. This is a great area to come relax, fish, and kayak.

Historic Site

While visiting, you can also view the ruins of the 1800s Matz farmhouse as well as the St. Mary of the Oaks Shrine built in 1857.

This definitely won’t be the last time we come to Indian Lake. In fact, we have plans to come during the winter for some sledding fun with the family. This is also a great spot for some cross-country skiing as you’ll have access to a log cabin warming house. If you’re looking for a mini day getaway without going too far, we highly suggest Indian Lake. You won’t regret it!

Jacqui' is a stay at home mom to two curly boys. Her background is in culinary arts and childcare. She is a Robert Morris University alumni with a degree in culinary arts. She helped to open a restaurant in Bozeman Montana and then ran a daycare for three years before moving back to the Midwest. Jacqui' enjoys cooking delicious meals as well as planning parties, exploring new trails, and running her blog mymodernmom.com. You can also find her on Instagram @jacqui_rubsam


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