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Spent a weekend out on the trail. Great trail! Well marked and lots of opportunities for water. Really scenic for trails around here.

Museum is great, hike is nice but don't feel like you need to do it to see everything.

Great kids trail, not too long and super pretty surroundings. Can get a little steep but over all easy walk. Short. There is a center there that is WONDERFUL inside. Great nature center.

make sure to follow the white squares with blue "i"s, especially the first one - it's in the second electric post as soon as you start

Nice hike in. Had trouble picking the trail back up once I reached the river.

One of So IL’s best spots. Been coming here since 90s. Technical enough to keep it interesting but still big kid friendly. Spent an amazing night there last night with unbelievably forgiving weather for July. We camped at a well established spot by the water about a 15-20 min hike from the north CH trailhead and before the Wolf Den. Took 5 ticks off my son this morning but none on me. Guess they don’t like the smell of bourbon. New hikers should be aware of the two options at the north trailhead. The left fork is more friendly if you’re packing heavy or not in prime condition. The right fork is a bit of rock and boulder hopping down into the valley.

Great museum, decent trail

It’s a good one day hike if you start in the morning or a a late evening with one night of camping, it’s pretty but not a lot to do if you plan on spending a day there. There are a lot of ticks!

walking
1 month ago

Just go, you will love it!! And be sure to take kids with you.

Well marked trail. LOTS of fairly steep uphill climbs on this one. It was pretty muddy so the trail was rugged in many spots where you had to almost straddle the path to get footing. Beautiful spot on the lake on rock causeway. Not sure I would've ridden a horse on this trail that day due to muddy conditions, but several equestrians had in the day or two prior to our visit. If you are a beginner just know that this trail has some pretty steep ascents and with it being an out and back trail, you're going to have to come back down eventually. Please take a walking stick or trek pole to aid you especially if it's muddy.

Good trails close to the city! Nice elevation change and even though the center was closed, restrooms were open. The road noise was a huge downer, but the scenery and location made up for it.

good hill climbs,can hear traffic but beautiful little treck!

trail running
2 months ago

Fun trail to run. Slippery when wet but a fun challenge.

I like this loop for a number of reasons. First of all, it’s very close to home, less than 10 minutes away. By cutting out a lot of drive time, I can fit in a longer hike when the time block I have is minimal. Secondly, the loop is only about 2.5 miles if I’m REALLY short on time, but I can easily turn it into a 5-7.5 mile hike if I just repeat the loop. Third...and very important to me, it’s dog and kid friendly. I always hike with my dog, and sometimes my grandkids are with me, The grandkids do better on paved trails, and I can take a stroller for the 2 y/o who can’t keep up with the older ones. I prefer dirt trails, but sometimes there are advantages to a paved trail. And finally, it’s scenic with small wildlife. A quiet, calming, “away from the city” feel, in busy South County, close to highway access.

Nice trail, pretty easy walk but very narrow in some area's

Nice trail. The trailhead rates it as moderate to difficult, but I would say moderate is a fair assessment with quite a bit of up and down. It was raining when we started and so was pretty muddy and poison ivy is all over the sides of the trail. A lot of wild life, including turtles, frogs, lizards, cray fish, deer, several species of dragonflies as well as a poisonous snake in the brush when the trail takes you over the lake. Was there for 4 nights over Memorial Day weekend and only saw a hand full of other groups. Overall a great time.

hiking
2 months ago

My dog and I love this trail. It’s a challenge going up but short enough that it’s not too intimidating. And it’s almost entirely shaded which is GREAT!

It’s pretty overgrown right now and a tree fell on the path. Beware of ticks. We spent most of the time trying to dodge the overgrowth but my dog had a small tick on her when we got home.

walking
2 months ago

The museum alone is worth it! Great historic site, nice walk. Some stairs if you want to go to the top of the mounds, but other than that it is pretty accessible to everyone.

backpacking
2 months ago

. My sister and I had never backpacked before and brought way too much stuff with us, but this was a great trail to start backpacking on. Plenty of water sources throughout, and the shade made the trail fine. The south loop is much less maintained. Also, there is a sort of fake camping site near the river on the east side of the south loop that is misleading; skip the one near the river and move travel a little more south. You'll fine the correct camping site. Overall, we had a very good experience and will plan to return.

One of my favorite trails in Southern Illinois. Forest Service rules means camping is allowed under the sandstone overhangs, with easy access to beautiful side trails (including the slot canyon Wolf Trap Hollow) and the lake if you enjoy fishing.

backpacking
2 months ago

Beautiful area, I don’t think the trail could be more well marked, very well maintained. Easy to moderate. Plenty of water in May.

I loved the terrain and views. But people are LIVING in these woods. We seriously had a man request that we “pay the troll toll” because we accidentally came upon his home during our short walk. We played it cool and gave him some cashews and he was alright with us passing through but still, wth. Then we encountered a set of campers

Would not classify this as a hard trail. Lots of options for picking which distance works best for you.

One of my favorite trails. So many off-chutes to beautiful scenic areas, great climbing and water holes. Long day hike but definitely leave with a clear head :)

This is a really beautiful backpacking trail. Emerging from winter, I wanted something short and relaxing rather than lengthy. This trail was perfect! I camped overlooking the lake and we had phenomenal weather. Beware of ticks -- I had one tick on me to remove.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked with my dog over the weekend. It’s a very pretty trail with wild flowers and limestone outcroppings. There were a lot of people there this weekend; all very friendly. You’ll get a work out on the way up. Make sure you wear suitable shoes as there is quite a bit of loose rock. I would definitely recommend it.

beautiful hike on the north loop cutting across several flowing streams + along spectacular bluffs. the fragrant scent of pines is wonderful. nice mix of terrain but not difficult;rather pleasant + relaxing.

hiking
3 months ago

One of my favorite trails in Missouri! The south loop adds some miles and it really peaceful because not as many people are on it.

Very nice trail with a beautiful stream. We went on a nice early spring day.

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