hiking

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

Lusk Creek Wilderness was designated as a wilderness area by the Illinois Wilderness Act of 1990 with 5126 Total Acres. 4796 acres is Shawanee National Forest System Land managed by the US Forest Service.

The actual hike down to the creek is pretty boring, but totally worth it when you get to the creek. Bring a fishing rod if you want to fish. I caught a 4 pound bass in a deep pool off of the canyon wall. Amazing scenery and the water is nice and clean to swim in.

2 months ago

Lusk Creek Wilderness is a beautiful and magical place and would easily get 5 stars — except for the horses. Eff the horses.

The below detailed equestrian issues aside, we had a good time. We backpacked three days/two nights. Info on good spots to pitch a tent are difficult to come across online, but with some exploring, we found a couple nice rock sheltered sites with existing fire rings (photo geo located on the map) that kept us dry in the storms. We saw a lot of fish down at Indian Kitchen but didn't have any luck catching supper. I'd be up for exploring the area more, but only during a dry period where the trails may be a little more passable...

You know how mountain bikers have an unwritten rule to not use trails when wet? Horse trail riders have no such rule, and the trail system is a decimated mucky mess of ankle deep manure infused sludge. Even the little work arounds that hikers have tried to create have also taken over by horse tracks. Many of the riders seemed to have an attitude of "this place is for horses, why are you here?" This was evident each time they'd act all upset that their horse was skittish of people walking on foot. A woman on horse back even yelled at us in bad word language while we were trying to cook breakfast (I guess a tent and small fire was too much for her horse to handle as she had to get off and walk the frightened animal past us, making it clear how we'd inconvenienced her).

That said, there were a couple friendly riders, but they were few compared to the rebel-flag-wearing loud obnoxious fireball-drinking self entitled trail ruining horsie riders.

Additionally, the trails are poorly marked. Inconsistent to non existent blazes coupled with riders making their own trails wherever they please can make navigating tricky, even with a compass and map.

Markers for trail were not very good. We got lost & hiked for 5 hours because the markers kept sending us in the wrong place. If you go to this trail, go to the water & then turn around, secret canyon is when the trails start getting sketchy with markers.

gorgeous trail and waterfall; however, I'm not sure how it's a loop. Recommend going to the water and Turning around!

worth the hike, beautiful!!

7 months ago

hiking
Tuesday, June 28, 2016