Buffalo Creek Trail Loop is a 3.6 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Lake Zurich, Illinois that features a lake. The trail is rated as moderate offers a number of activity options. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
cross country skiing
Four miles of crushed-gravel trails are open to hikers, bicyclists and cross-country skiers. Much of this preserve is managed for flood control, as evinced by a dam on Buffalo Creek and the reservoir that results. Careful and creative design of the reservoir has created a natural-looking wetland.
These trails were carved out of farmland. Buffalo Creek was then used as a flood retention area to create the lake that now encompasses the forest preserve center.
The parking lot is at the top of the trail. Unfortunately, so is the placement of the rest rooms. On a warm summer day or a prevailing south wind, you will not need a visual to know where you are. After that olfactory treat, the first part of the trail drops 30-40 feet and proceeds to flatten out. While the trail is generally level, there is a gentle incline in the center at Schafer Rd. The second half of. the trail is largely circular and flat with few trees and mostly grasses and wildflowers.
The whole walk clocks in at just under 4 miles. If you stop at Schafer road and turn around, your mileage will be 2-2.5 miles.
There is a short .7 mile pathway that goes to the left of the parking lot that skirts the spillway area and then just dead ends at Lake Cook and Arlington Heights Rd.
It is busy in the summer-especially during weekend and holidays. Great biking loop on the section west of Schafer Rd.
There is a Llama/Alpaca "farm" adjacent to Buffalo Creek on Checker Rd.
4 stars instead of 5 per abovementioned washroom placement.
My favorite place to go for a good 5k+ run on an afternoon after work. Can get quite busy on eastern half near the parking, but almost always nearly empty on the western half. Also sounds like there's some good fishing here near the dam, though I haven't tried it yet. Probably come across deer right near or on the path one in five times out here. Great for a walk with the kids as well since the paths are nice and wide. There's also a few hidden ponds that are fun to explore.