General Rules And Information
- Renters must be 18+ years.
- A valid ID must be presented, including government issued ID card, UW-Madison student ID card, or Wisconsin Union membership cards.
- If renting equipment for a group, the individual renting equipment is responsible for all equipment as indicated on the contract and any late, lost, repair or cleaning fees.
- Rentals are first-come, first-served unless otherwise designated.
- No pets allowed on or in any rental items.
- Payment in full is required for all off-site rentals.
- All rental equipment is to be used as intended by the manufacturer. Customers are encouraged to request a demonstration in the proper use of all equipment rental items.
We are able to accommodate individuals and groups. Contact us to discuss your group rental needs.
Late/Cleaning/Damage Fees and Cancellation Policy
All cleaning, damage or late fees are assessed and due at the time of equipment return. Renters are responsible for returning gear in a condition that is similar to the time of pick-up.
Late Fees: Rentals are due by 7pm the following day if taken out Sunday-Thursday. Rentals are due by 2pm the following day if taken out on Friday and Saturday. An extra night will be charged if rentals are not returned on time.
Cleaning Fees: A $15 cleaning fee will be applied if equipment is returned dirty, wet or stained.
- Equipment should be returned in reasonable condition, not outside of the normal use of rentals. All damage fees are assessed by the Outdoor UW staff and due at the time of return or shortly after and will account for repair cost and time. Any unpaid charges will be sent to a collections agency.
- If equipment is returned in unusable condition or if it is lost or stolen, the full replacement value of the equipment will be charged
Cancellation Policy: While we want each customer to have the best experience, it is the responsibility of the renter to prepare for poor weather conditions. We will not refund for time lost during an individual rental session. We require at least a 24-hour advance notice for group cancellations to receive a credit with Outdoor UW for the deposit.
Rental Information & Forms - General Information, Rules and Regulations
Group Rental Forms - Please read rental information below. Must be completed and signed by every participant in the group.
To be documented and submitted in case of injury/accident:
Logistics And General FAQs
How Do I Find Outdoor UW?
We are located on the lower level of Memorial Union, on the Lake Mendota shoreline, just west of the Memorial Union Terrace.
What if I've never camped before?
The Outdoor UW staff can offer tips and tricks and some advice on how to make your first camping trip a success. And make sure to watch their Camping 101 video to help you determine if you're ready for a night in the great outdoors.
What Should I Wear?
Dress for the weather and wear layers. Since the weather can quickly change in the winter, layering with a wicking-base layer, a warm mid jacket, and a protective outer shell will provide the best coverage and warmth while also providing the ability to lose a layer if you become too warm. Insulated and water protected boots with a wool or synthetic sock to help manage foot moisture are highly recommended.
What Should I Bring?
For any type of rental, remember to bring money and your ID! If you are camping or hiking, we recommend you bring...
- Water bottle with clip
- A snack and plenty of food depending on the length of your trip
- Plenty of warm clothes
We have some items for sale, such as sunscreen, snacks and beverages, water pouches, and lip balm.
Are Lockers Available?
Yes! There are coin-operated lockers located in the hallway right before the boathouse. If you do not have quarters, we can break a dollar. (Sorry, we cannot accept debit/credit payment in exchange for quarters.)
What If I Am Not 18 Or Want To Take My Child Out?
We apologize for any inconvenience, but off-site rentals are only available to those 18+ years old.
Lake And Weather Conditions
All Outdoor UW camping rentals are subject to the discretion of the renter. We advise proper planning when taking equipment, which includes examining weather reports and preparing in the case of bad weather or conditions. Lake Mendota, as well as other bodies of water with significant depth that freeze over, are inherently dangerous and travel on frozen bodies of water is at the risk of the renter.
Need to make a campsite reservation in a Wisconsin State Park? Check out this site.
Ready to take your outdoor adventuring to the next level? Want to be part of a close community of other outdoor enthusiasts, from novice to experts? The Wisconsin Hoofers clubs might be just the thing you're looking for. With six different clubs catering to all kinds of different outdoor activities, the Wisconsin Hoofers have something for everyone. To learn more about these clubs or to become a member, please visit the Wisconsin Hoofers page.