Stone Face Trail is a 3 mile lightly trafficked point-to-point trail located near Harrisburg, Illinois that features a great forest setting and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
The Stone Face Trail Hike up to the Stone Face rewards you with scenic vistas and of course a view of Stone Face.
Don't expect a lot here! It's just a short out and back. And the "Stone Face" isnt all that spectacular. But want an adventure? Hang a left at the top of the climb. Stay left till you can cross the creek. Stay left along the bluff line. No real trail for this route but easy to hike and the views offer a great reward!
See my GlenO to Stone Face route for a nice hike.
Went on mostly sunny 88 degree day so it was warm but not too bad. I mistakenly thought the Rock outcroppings you can see from Garden of the Gods to the northwest is Stoneface but it is not. It is in the same direction which is why I thought this. We did find the parking are even though it is hard to find and not well marked. The road to get there is called StoneFace Rd. so stay on until you get to StoneFace Lane and take a right. Never did see the Stone Face but now that I have seen the pictures I know what to look for. Hiking up to the overlooks is fine then just backtrack to the car and leave. We went on because it looked like the trail circled back on some map we had but it did not. We kept going South and it goes down the bluffs. It came out on Shawnee road about 2 miles from car so we had to hike a total of 5 miles. The hike down is not good. The trail is overgrown with poison ivy everywhere. Toward the very end the trail is muddy. That part was not fun at all. This site says the trail ends at Glen Jones Lake but that is the other direction so not sure how those connect but I will take their word for it.
Trail is in the Shawnee National Forest which is state run, yet little to no maintenance on the trail itself. We visited Nov 7 on a gorgeous fall morning about 60 degrees with low humidity and no haze. You could see for miles!
The outcropping rock formations in some spots are spectacular (for southern Illinois). Unlimited places to climb and perfect for children learning basics of rock climbing.
The trail itself is in rough shape, though. The time of year we visited, the trail was covered with fallen leaves which hid many of the natural rock underneath and made it difficult to get a good footing. The trail is not marked well except the main entrance and few very small blue arrows.
My wife's cousins were our guides because they're from the area had been hiking the trail for decades. That alone made our experience memorable due the stories and history.
If you're in the area it's worth a stop if just for a couple hour hike up and back. Peaceful, serene, and great views.
Nice trail which winds up to a large outcropping of rock. Good views from the top.
I wouldn't go here looking for something to find at the end. It was a decent hike but a big let down on finding the "stone face" that the description promises.
Below average trail, not marked well and hard to follow.
With the directions given we were couldn't find the trail
Stone face trail is average, actually below average for the area, but not a bad hike. The trail was under maintained. Did have some nice rock formations.