Explore Illinois - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Illinois Map
VIEW FULL MAP

What a great app indispensable out in the Shawnee. Simply pick a trail and it links up with googl to get you there!

Arrive early (by 10am?) on weekends so you can park at the main parking lot. We had to park in the overflow area and it was an extra mile hike across a sunny field to get to the Dells area.

The Dells were beautiful!

hiking
9 days ago

Most of the trail was blocked by fallen trees. Trail is not well marked. Pretty much just got to see the rock formations from the trailhead.

10 days ago

beautiful trail

Fun trail but has little in the way of signs. We took a wrong turn and ended up on another trail. The whole area was beautiful!

This park is amazing with caves you can walk through and waterfalls galore! We did seem to go on a trail that led to a equestrian trail and not the loop, but there are signs that say which way to stay on the hiking trail loop. Overall great experience, even though it absolutely down poured during our visit.

Trail is closed -

hiking
1 month ago

My Wife and I hiked this a few days ago. Very beautiful scenery and for the most part a well maintained trail. Disclaimer to those afraid of getting off the beaten path: there were a few areas where trees had fallen across the trail, one that required you to walk about 30 yards through thick woods to get around. That wasn’t an issue for us as we hunt and are used to that but for those that may not be crazy about it, that is a possibility. That being said, they could’ve fell the night before and no one had a chance to clear them. All in all very beautiful we would definitely hike it again. FYI our GPS said it was 3.3 mi. This rates it at I believe 2.2 and their website says 1.7.

hiking
1 month ago

I enjoyed hiking this trail it offered some challenges due to the slippery rocks and stream crossings. It started out easy enough until you come to the first stream crossing and the rocks. It was somewhat a task to get back up to the trail. Good traction shoes are a must here. The trail than get obscured a little after the stream crossing and one can find themselves gone astray from the trail, that happened to me. I found the trail again and the rest of the hike was no issue.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice trail. It's marked easy. I'd say it's on the high side of easy but we're in our 60's so :). Several rock crossings some of which are probably water covered at times. Some stairs. Very nice though - quiet and peaceful.

hiking
1 month ago

PLEASE BE CAREFUL HERE. Witnessed a woman fall off the edge because she got too close and slipped. She did not survive her injuries. ALWAYS stay away from wet/slick rocks, wear shoes with good traction and give yourself a few feet from the edge to ensure your safety. VERY DANGEROUS - there are no guard rails, signs or anything to warn of the dangers here.

It wasn’t what I expected. The hike itself was okay. To many people and a lot of steps.

hiking
1 month ago

This was my favorite hike while my husband were staying in Shawnee. You can see the top of the falls from the parking lot and I was like "this is it?". But the trail takes you down and around and then you can see how cool the falls really are. We were there the day after a good thunderstorm so it was flowing pretty well. You can climb over the rocks at the bottom of the falls to get a better view. There are signs on the road telling you "Burden Falls --->" but the parking lot was not marked. We even had a truck stop us on the way back and ask where it was. Google Maps leads you right there!

Easy peasey. Some stairs an alright overlook. Trees need to be trimmed in some parts of the lookout for a better view.

Grrrrr, Arrrrh, Urrrrr!

Great alternative to Starved Rock! While still getting a decent amount of hikers, Matthiessen is just as spectacular as nearby Starved Rock and much less crowded and noisy. Although there’s many waterfalls, my personal favorite is Lake Matthiessen’s Dam Waterfall. It has one large waterfall you can climb and then a lower waterfall with a nice pool where you can swim and picnic.

Good little morning hike, very short but worth it to see the rock formations.

Look in the creek on the first mile and tell me that tree doesn’t look like a huge duck

rock climbing
2 months ago

This walk/hike was really nice. Once you get down to the bottom of the stairs, instead of going to the right as the trail presumes, go immediately to your left, not around the curve, but through the water. Follow that shortly and you will find two waterfalls that you can climb and a tunnel you can walk through. This part of the hike was the best for us.

on Sentry Bluff Trail

hiking
2 months ago

I hiked this trail solo last weekend. I would personally rate it as moderate. It was a lovely hike, but it had just rained and the trail was wet and muddy. I would make sure you wear shoes with a really good grip, as there are a few stream crossings and other sections that got very slippery.

Easy hike. Waterfall is beautiful when leaves are green. be careful and don't climb on the waterfall it is very slippery.

This is a great little trail that leads to a beautiful waterfall. I went a day after heavy rains and it seemed to be the right time to go.There are 2 ways to start this trail, there is a moderate trail head by the campsites and an easy trailhead by the picnic areas. Both leading to the same place. If you start from the Picnic areas it is graveled/ dirt path to the waterfall, pretty flat, but there are numerous trails that go up into the rocks and waterfalls along the way. the main trail I do not believe is 2 miles, but I did a little exploring on the extra paths which made it longer. Very doggo friendly,my doggo loved it. through out the park and other trails I went on, not many trail heads,but more then likely you will always find a good path that will lead the way.

hiking
2 months ago

Giving this one a 4 star rating only because it is not 100% dog friendly. The falls were beautiful and the rock climbing to get up to the top at the end of the trail was a lot of fun and a big hit with everyone in our group. Except our poor dog who did not love being lifted over some of the rocks. The trail is well marked and easily accessible for dogs except for the last tenth of a mile which requires you to climb up a few rocks to get to the top of the falls and the parking lot. You could always turn back and walk back up the trail to the parking lot but the rocks were much shorter and a whole lot more entertaining. Well worth the drive out and such a fun hike to do. Recommend you be prepared to hike 2 miles or

It sure doesn't feel like 0.3 miles. It feels like 0.1. This would be a great place to go hang out and have lunch. It's more of an exploration area than a hike. The area is amazing. I recommend taking the left trail at the split. You will see the bridge in no time and it looks impressive from this angle.

hiking
3 months ago

This little trail is a hidden gem. Growing up in the area i had never took the time to walk this trail until here mid-March. I was happily surprised by its small water falls and bluff views.

3 months ago

The trail is very short so it's nice to go and let the kids explore and play at their own pace. The bridge is very cool, my kids enjoyed playing in the creek.

on Burden Falls

hiking
3 months ago

It definitely earns it's name. But totally worth it

Well-maintained path. Perfect for an easy walk. The waterfall was beautiful today.

hiking
3 months ago

Easy trail. Very pretty walk thru valley with rock walls. Waterfall was very pretty and running strong when we saw it. Worth the walk.

It was an amazing last min. trip idea for spring break. Very muddy today but totally worth it and my 10yr old son and mom had a blast.

Load More