Ask Abe: Walking around the Campus

Chris L '05

If I walked the contiguous outline of campus, how far would I walk?

Abe

This one made us sweat! The university boasts 936 acres of “main campus” (this excludes the Arboretum), which includes what most people probably think of as campus — roughly bordered by Lake, Dayton, and Monroe Streets, Breese Terrace, and everything north to the lakeshore — but also the UW Hospital and Clinics campus — bordered by Campus and University Bay Drives — plus all of Eagle Heights and Picnic Point. So, how far is that, really? Well, lace up your shoes and grab some water. If you walk the outline of campus on designated footpaths, sidewalks, and roads, you’re looking at a 10.5- to 11-mile trek. But if you live by “where we’re going, we don’t need roads” (which we can’t recommend, because pedestrian safety is important), you can expect a shorter — but much more strenuous — hike: just under 10 miles. We should note that neither of these includes walking out and back on each of the piers and boat launches along Lake Mendota. If you want to include those, add about .03 miles for each out-and-back, and pack some extra snacks.