birding

hiking

walking

nature trips

views

wild flowers

forest

wildlife

trail running

dogs on leash

waterfall

kid friendly

Experience the fun of outdoor adventure at Starved Rock State Park. Whether you enjoy hiking along the nature trails or viewing the many spectacular overlooks along the Illinois River, recreational opportunities abound. From picnicking to fishing to boating, from horseback riding to camping to enjoying winter sports, theres so much to do that youll come back again and again. The backdrop for your activities are 18 canyons formed by glacial meltwater and stream erosion. They slice dramatically through tree-covered, sandstone bluffs for four miles at Starved Rock State Park, which is located along the south side of the Illinois River, one mile south of Utica and midway between the cities of LaSalle-Peru and Ottawa. The park is best known for its fascinating rock formations, primarily St. Peter sandstone, laid down in a huge shallow inland sea more than 425 million years ago and later brought to the surface.

awesome trail!

hiking
2 days ago

Nice abs scenic trail. Enjoyed my time hiking with the family. AllTrails is right when they say it's heavily trafficked. A lot of people on the trails and parking lots were full. Still a great hike and worth going I'm sure I'll go back but I'd like to find some lightly trafficked routes for now

hiking
10 days ago

This was our first time at Starved Rock and we were able to do a couple trails during our visit, this being one of them. It was me, my wife, our 10 year old and our two boxers. We were there in mid-June (2017), on a weekday, so it wasn't crowded at all, however I heard it can be on the weekends. LaSalle canyon can be accessed from a longer hike, beginning at either of the Starved Rock Park ends, however it's most directly/easily accessed by parking at Parkman's Plain, which is right off of 71. There's a parking lot there with easy access to the river trail. The trail begins in a heavily wooded area by trekking down numerous flights of wooden steps, which ultimately lead you to the river trail. It's a wide, shaded trail that runs along side the river. After going alongside the river for a bit, there are clearly marked signs that indicate where to branch off to see LaSalle canyon. Once you reach the canyon, you'll be swept away by it's beauty. Gorgeous rock formations complete with a waterfall you can stand under or walk behind. The water also flows along the graded canyon floor, creating a natural waterslide. Upon exiting the canyon, you have the option of going a different route along the river trail to continue your exploring, or you can simply go back out the way you came.

This was our first time at Starved Rock and we were able to do a couple trails during our visit, this being one of them. St. Louis canyon is one of the few trails at Starved Rock accessible by it's own designated entry and parking area, as opposed to the majority of trails needing to be accessed from one of the park's far ends. It was me, my wife, our 10 year old and our two boxers. We were there in mid-June (2017), on a weekday, so it wasn't crowded at all. We only saw one other couple while we were there. The hike itself was pretty easy. There's a parking lot down at the trailhead, however the road going to it was closed, I'm guessing due to the asphalt being is such disrepair. We had to park at the top of a hill, outside the gate. Ironically, the most difficult part of the hike was having to walk down and up the asphalt roadway to the trailhead. The trail itself was easily maneuvered by my clan. There were some really nice canyon features, walls and rocks to climb in and on. And of course a beautiful waterfall that flowed into a shallow pool.

Great easy hike - especially for families. Several crossings of a shallow creek so you may get wet feet. Great views of the dells.