Explore the most popular scenic driving trails in Illinois with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great loop trail. Takes about 2 hours to walk.

road biking
1 month ago

Great bike path. I ride here every day. Gets crowded during the weekends after 8am.

In summer mode months this trail is super busy, fast bikers make it a bit scary for hikers, do not suggest for small kids unless in a stroller. Lately, Saturday’s there have been scheduled 5k and even a half marathon going on on this trail, no signs posted anywhere, trail is always open, so my husband and I ended in the middle of a huge herd of runners half way through the loop, which made our walk very uneasy. We love biking here as well, but you should get here early in the morning to beat the rush of people.

Too weird. Didn’t finish all. However it’s a good trip. Will give it a second try to make a round trip.

2 months ago

Close and convenient. Multiple course options

trail running
3 months ago

The scenery is cool but all pavement trails. More a race bike trail than anything else. I have enjoyed it.

road biking
3 months ago

Accessible from the Des Plaines River Trail, Independence Grove is a marvelous year round destination. It has all you could ask for. Great paved and unpaved trails, fishing, boating, beach and food stand. I’ve even been to weddings here. Bike here from the trail, relax while you’re here, and continue on your way. A treasure not to be missed.

First, this is a horse trail. Watch where you step! Also be aware and give them a wide berth. If you’re good with that, this is a fun short hike.

Several larger ponds and lots of woods make this a scenic hike. Tons of wildlife here and if you walk back into the woods a little, sit down on a log, and be still, you’ll be rewarded with an abundance of animal activity.

I wouldn’t come here after rain as it would quite muddy. It opens early, so if you like a sunrise hike, this is a great place. Don’t leave anything of value in your car. Parking is secluded and not great and signs warn of keeping your valuables with you. That said, I wouldn’t avoid this place due to safety. It’s really nice!

Great place to fish. Clean lakes and a great museum

Beautiful all year round!

Amazing scenery and good
Place for fishing and running too! Love the geese!

Absolutely beautiful

road biking
7 months ago

It was bit overgrown in places but it was a beautiful trail.

trail running
9 months ago

Great paths to run or walk on, especially at night it's very scenic. Biking is good when it is not busy but after 4pm most days biking can be difficult between people walking, running, and walking their dogs. If you are looking for a challenge run up and down big bear hill! Very exhausting workout! lots of physical exercise equipment throughout the park and activities like volleyball, two different basketball courts, cricket field, and multiple baseball fields. Big Bear Hill is great in the winter for sledding.

very busy trail at times ...

I hiked Sentinal loop with my dog. It was 1.5 miles with lots of ups and downs. There have been a lot of storms this summer so many trees were down across the path. It was a bit of a workout.

trail running
10 months ago

I come here a lot since it's close to my house. Heavily trafficked, especially on the weekends by charity run/walk events and such. I would avoid it on the weekends if you want to run in peace unless it's very early in the AM. Couple of formerly flooded patches of the trail have crazy amounts of mosquitoes, so be sure to bring some repellent.

walking
11 months ago

Easy paved pathway with very little shade and heavily trafficked. There are plenty of parking areas and restrooms along the path and on the upside you can get a close look at few captive elk, which is nice.

Trail has sandy parts and dirt/stone parts. Nice mix of sun and shade with benches located throughout for rest stops. A beautiful array of insects but surprisingly I didn't see or get bitten by a single mosquito. Nice variety of flowers in all areas. Public restrooms are located at both trailheads and there is access to the beach from Dunes trail. I loved both of these trails and will definitely be back!

trail running
11 months ago

Easy running. Great scenery.

The hike was a lot of fun and there was a beautiful grove of sunflowers. My friend and I did manage to miss the trail because it starts on the road and then there is a hidden turn off about 4.5 miles into the hike. We ended up walking for probably another 3/4 mile before we realized we were no longer on the trail. On the way back we did find the trail and started to hike it. It was fairly overgrown and we quickly turned back the way we came because we were being eaten by mosquitoes. That being said we had a great time!

Take an off trail hike around the lake.

Easiest to take Uber to Hyde Park to his home address probably or to the University of Chicago Law School. Fun walk, friendly neighborhood. We did maybe half of it.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

did the one mile loop and it was enjoyable with food, clean view and a small bridge. Lots of other trails that I will check or in the future

road biking
Saturday, June 24, 2017

I ride a mountain bike but there are no trails for mountain biking. I thoroughly enjoy riding the trails here but the first time I did I had ridden about 10 miles to get there and almost rode the loop a full 2nd time because I missed my turn off to head back the 10 miles.

walking
Saturday, June 24, 2017

love to walk my dog here. We walk a couple of miles several times a week and she enjoys walking along the lakes best so she sniff out small critters (she is a terrier). We usually don't need to hit the same areas for over a week since there are so many parking lots, trails and open areas for her to explore.

backpacking
Saturday, June 03, 2017

We backpacked the Aspen trail in the north section of the park and stayed at primitive site A. This trip included me, my best friend and two of our daughters. We arrived on a Saturday morning and all 3 primitive sites were available. I suspect that the sites are pretty much always open. This was a shakedown backpacking trip for us so we wanted a short trail. The Aspen trail at 1.1 miles fit the bill. The trail is wide but mostly uphill. You come to an intersection with a pit toilet and signs to the primitive sites. Each site has a fire ring with a grill and a picnic table. Plenty of flat area to pitch two tents. After we set up our site, we hiked the Bittersweet trail back to the main campground to retrieve bug spray from our car. The bugs were pretty bad. We drove down to the south part of the park and hiked half of the Sunset trail. The part we went on was not on the bluffs but had very challenging ups and downs.
It was very hot out and buggy but we had a great time. Good place to test out your backpack equipment.

Took the high trail and it was well maintained, paved and my little one could be pushed in his car all the way around! Great spot!

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