Explore SNF May 2017 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

SNF May 2017 Map
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This was during the shutdown and gates closed. Only adds 4/10’s of a mile to the hike. Took the upper left trail and came back up the lower right side. Don’t pass this one up if visiting Garden of the Gods!

Always good to see after a rain

Do not bring big dogs unless you plan on going the long way around. It was near impossible lifting my 90lb. dog up some very steep cliffs. Also this map is not as accurate for making your way down to the falls. Follow the trail markers.

Large parking lot that sometimes fills up. Very popular for good reason, great hike!!! Unless you go early (sunrise) or late ( sunset) there is a crowd. One of the best hikes in Shawnee and a “ must do”

An overlooked gem. This trail offers some spectacular views and opportunities to explore off the trail.

One of my favorite places to go. When you catch it at a good time, the waterfall is amazing. It’s a very easy walk (and short) to get to the back, and once you are there you will want to stay and enjoy it!

Some great views but the trail is not well maintained. Easily get lost. I took my dog with me and ended up removing at least a dozen of ticks.

Spend time camping in this area. Backpacking is good here, though I had trouble finding the primitive camping spots.... and the trails keep you moving and looking for more!
The sunsets are beautiful and the stars are bright here.

Peaceful

So beautiful, a few tricky moments but that might just be because the water level was high while I was there. I had to cross two biggish creeks by just walking through the water but my hiking boots kept my feet dry. Gorgeous, lots of mushroom variety and there are a few patches of coniferous forest that make for magical transitions.

Beautiful hike with awesome rock formations. We hiked this trail on a rainy day and the water sheds off the trail well. The trail is easy unless you want to venture into the rock formations which provide ample opportunity for climbing.

Excellent bluffage and unique rock formations for miles! Multiple nice waterfalls (all wet weather).

hiking
1 month ago

I really really wanted to find the trail after the electric towers, and we did for a bit, but lost it on the downhill and bailed due to the sun going down and battery of cell diminishing. It turns out we weren’t too far off when we bailed. (I was able to check my Apple Watch map to the all trails map ) We hiked in nov with no leaves on the trees and I think that helped keep on the trail for awhile.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice little trail. Can’t wait to see the waterfall in full force. Nice walk in the woods and a fun trail.

Very short hike but awesome rock formations. Great for photo ops.

hiking
2 months ago

great trail. beautiful views of the falls from above and down below.

hiking
2 months ago

Fun trail. Just like many trails in southern Illinois, unique views, cool waterfalls and a good trail to enjoy. Hope to camp here one day.

camping
2 months ago

Great place to camp. The primitive shelters had parking, fire pits, a grill, and a Picnic table. The main reason this is such a good spot is it’s proximity to several trails. It’s right in the middle of some very cool places. I definitely plan on returning and would recommend.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful trail!! It is hard to figure out how to get down to the waterfall. Go LEFT when you are on top of the waterfall. There are rocks that you climb down right after the wooden bridge. There is another spot of rocks to climb down right before the open field that will allow a longer hike. The waterfall was one of the best I’ve seen in Illinois thus far.

Fall is a great time to come and see this awesome place! The different color trees make it more beautiful. Lots of places for photos. It is a easy trail I have been here 3 times and it always has a lot of people. If you bring children ... don’t let them out of your sight.

We started the trail clockwise. It is a easy hike on a stone paved walkway for a little bit then you will see the stairs to go down and squeeze thru the rock formations..then the trail is a dirt path which had a little mud because it had rained the day before. But not too bad at all! Loved to see the huge rock cliffs beside us as we hiked. It’s a easy peaceful hike only saw one other person so not too crowded!

hiking
2 months ago

Nice easy hike. Does take you to a awesome overlook. Has a small cave , big rock formations. You need to follow the blue blazes and sometimes it’s hard to know which way to go. Use your AllTrails recorder to help you stay on the right path. Saw a couple putting up their tent to camp which would be fun!

Pretty

Beautiful trail. Easy hike , enjoyed the colors of fall

Trailer was enjoyable

such cool rock formations on this trail! definitely recommend if you haven't seen it before!

we do this trail all the time. its more moderate in my opinion. lots of variety of views. great option - not uber challenging so all can enjoy it, but still a good workout. in spring, the wildflowers are amazing. in winter, the frozen waterfall is gorgeous.

Always a great view and fun climbing

loved the view of the lake if you take the straight bit off the loop and then double back. rock formations were awesome. go in fall when the trees are in color - it's breathtaking!

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful and historic trail! We took our two year old on it and he did fine

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