Lapham Peak-Kettle Moraine State Forest

Lapham Peak-Kettle Moraine State Forest, Delafield and Hartford, WI

Located near Delafield, 1 mile south of I-94, Lapham Peak features a 45 foot observation tower on the highest point in Waukesha County.

The glaciated topography provides for a beautiful glacial remnant landscape of kames, kettles, and eskers; an excellent hiking and cross-county skiing. More than 1,000 acres of this hilly terrain are within the Lapham Peak boundaries.

The trail winds through wooded hills and open meadows. Abundant bird life and wildlife can be observed from all trails, and guided bird hikes and held each spring. There are several prairie restoration sites and a butterfly garden. The park entrance is two miles (3 km) north of the Glacial Drumlin State Trail. The mountain bike trails are located across (West) county road C.

The Pike Lake Unit is on the eastern side of 446-acre Pike Lake. It is located on state Highway 60 in between Slinger and Hartford. The park offers camping, hiking, biking and swimming, and has an observation tower overlooking the park and lake.

History Timeline:

  • 10,000 Years Ago- Lapham Peak was formed by a glacier
  • 1851- Charles Hanson erects a 20 foot tower on Lapham Peak as a tourist attraction
  • 1870- Increase Lapham proposed a creation of a national weather service, the first weather observations were issued and published from Lapham Peak
  • 1939 & 1940- 50 acres of land was turned over to the Conservation Department for use as a park,
  • a year later in 1940 a 45 foot tower was erected, also constructing trails, picnic grounds and benches.

The park includes three picnic areas, birdwatching, a butterfly garden, a prairie restoration area, an amphitheater, over 25 miles (40 km) of dirt and accessible paved nature trails, enclosed shelters, 14.5 miles of hiking trails, 5 miles of off-road bicycle trails, 12.6 miles of cross- country ski trails, backpacking, XC skiing on lighted trails, ice skating, in-line skating, and bridle trails. A backpacking campsite located beside a four mile (6 km) segment of the Ice Age Trail is also in the park. There is a 5-mile (8.0 km) multi-use trail for horse riding, mountain biking, snowshoeing and dog sled training. Over 20 miles (32 km) of trails are open in the winter for cross-country skiing and other nearby attractions such as the Glacial Drumlin Nature Trail and Holy Hill.

During the winter, when snow is present, Lapham Peak is one of the busiest park in the Wisconsin State Park System. Known for its challenging terrain and excellent ski trail grooming, the park enjoys a regional reputation that draws large numbers of skiers from the Milwaukee and Madison metro areas, as well as from Chicago and northern Illinois. Lapham Peak State Park contains nearly 17 miles of cross-country ski trails groomed for both skate and classical stride skiing. Ranging from easy to challenging, the trails take skiers across nearly 800 acres of undulating terrain, woods and prairies, kettles and kames. Two and one-half miles of trails are lighted for night skiing. Snow shoeing trails are available on the west side of County Highway C, as well as along the Ice Age Trail that winds through the entire park.

Located two miles southeast of Waukesha on the corner of Racine Avenue and Sunset Drive, Minooka Park has six miles of well-groomed cross-country ski trails, which cross the 580-acre park. From beginner to advanced, these trails provide all levels of skiers a great winter spot for quiet repose and good exercise. And, believe it or not, this is just an ink-ling of what awaits outdoor explorers in Waukesha County.

Check out the historic Gothic architecture of St. John Chysostom Church at the top of the hill on county road C (Lakeland Drive), or tour Hawks Inn, a restored stage coach stop to the east on county road DR (Main Street). For bike stuff, there is Wheel & Sprocket to the east at I-94 and WI 83 or the Bicycle Doctor to the west on I-94 and 1.5 miles north on route 67.

Bring your horse (or borrow someone's) and ride on grassy trails with rolling hills. These trails have been ridden and are great for all types of riders. Activities included 3 Picnic Areas, Birdwatching, butterfly Garden, Over 25 miles of paved nature trails, Horseback Riding, Mountain Biking, Snowshoeing and dog sled training, Cross Country Skiing(20 miles of trails).

Map Of Lapham Peak-Kettle Moraine State Forest
Friends of Lapham Peak-Kettle Moraine State Forest
Private Campgrounds and Camping Reservations


Lapham Peak-Kettle Moraine State Forest in the City of Delafield (south of Delafield) and Hartford (eastern side) - Waukesha County (Southeast WI).


Kettle Moraine State Forest - Pike Lake Unit (south of Delafield
W329N846 County Road C (Near Delafield, WI just South of I-94, West of Hwy 83)
Delafield, WI 53018
United States
Kettle Moraine State Forest - Pike Lake Unit (eastern side)
3544 Kettle Moraine Road
Hartford, WI 53027
United States
262-646-3025, Hotline: 262-646-4421, Office: 262-646-3025

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