Emma Carlin

County: JEFFERSON

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Nearest City: Palmyra
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Annual Fee: $15.00
Daily Fee: $4.00
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Emma Carlin is located south of Palmyra off of County Highway Z in the Southern Kettle Moraine State Forest. Excellent facilities are located on site, including a paved parking lot, pit toilets, and drinking water.

This trail is made of fast track with some technical spots which include a sweet little rock garden. Beyond the connector trail head on the green loop, the trail becomes more technical with some very tight switchbacks riddled with rocks, roots and even a couple of low leaning trees to duck under. There are more than a few steep challenging climbs constructed of limestone shavings that are meant to increase the stability of the trail and reduce erosion. If this loose footing and steepness of the climbs don't slow you down, the additional erosion control measures just might. You'll find 3"-4" high rubber strips, spaced about 50 feet apart, the width of the trails on the steepest sections. If you're a pessimist, you'll find these obstacles to be a pain in the ass. If you're an optimist, you'll find these obstacles to be just one more challenge along the way.

All-in-all it's a great trail system, not the most technical trails in the state, but the climbs will challenge all riders. There are a total of 8.4 miles of trails in the system so you may want to do a couple of laps, or take the connector to John Muir for a great ride of over 20 miles. You can expect similar terrain on both trails with the connector giving riders a bit more variety such as sand, rocky climbs and descents. These trails aren't as heavily used as John Muir, so if you want to get away from the crowds, Emma Carlin is the place to go.


  • Overall Trail Difficulty: 3
  • Overall Aerobic Difficulty: 4
  • Overall Trail Rating: 3

Ratings based on a scale of 1-5 • 5 Being the highest •