Explore the most popular wildlife 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.

Beautiful all year round!

Not much to look at but a great dog park!

Pretty simple path, open view along the buffalo fence. Did not see any Buffalo.

trail running
1 day ago

Great challenge!! It was a little difficult to follow the white diamonds to reach the other side once you got down into the canyon, but other than that it was a wonderful workout and a lovely hike.

1 day ago

Great trail for kids and pets. Flat paved trails near the river and moderate dirt trails up to the bird sanctuary. Bird sanctuary is worth the trip. Lots to explore!

Nice little walk with the kids for their first hike. Went in late winter/early spring so new growth and animal tracks to point out. Very limited parking and a couple trucks flew by when were getting out.

19724 Stratford Lane is address for google map directions. Small parking lot plenty of signs to follow to get you to devils prop. Unfortunately as beautiful as the rock formations & creek are. The site has been vandalized and littered. There are no trails markings. If you are in the area stop by. But I wouldn’t drive far for this one.

I went early in the morning without any issues. No one was there besides myself. Due to heavy litter and vandalism I wouldn’t hike in late evening or at nighttime.

5 days ago

At Schweitzer Woods you will find a 5 acre fenced dog park with a large open play space in addition to some wooded trail hiking. Surrounding the fenced dog park is 150 acres of beautiful unfenced trail hiking through woods and meadows. I found it a little odd that both wooded trails dead end to nowhere.

Bring your own water/bowl for your dog.

Most of the forested area was designated as an Illinois Nature Preserve. Extensive restoration efforts have been made here to eradicate non-native shrubs from woodland tracts.

Kenyon Farm Forest Preserve in South Elgin is very simple and pleasant, with a small parking lot and paths not paved but mowed into the greenery. A small pond and several interesting trees.

Very small park in a neighborhood. It’s a nice little park if you live near by, not really worth driving to.

Nice hike up a drainage following a small creek.

I only rate this as a moderate hike because of the distance. It is a very easy hike. The western side is the best part of the hike. I would hike counterclockwise to save the best for last. several backpack camps all with fire rings and tables. trail is easy to follow if you use their map.

6 days ago

Nice Loop. Fun rock formations, couple creek crossings, good variety. The trail marking are poor. The first part is fine follow it across the creek and up the next hill, you will come to a marker telling you to turn left to the rock formations, take it left as indicated. (the trail straight forward is the river to river trail). I in a short distance down the hill you will come across the rock formation, take time to explore, then continue north, down the hill on the established trail, you will come to the creek again, cross it and stay on the established trail, (you may see a sign that says panther den with an arrow telling you to turn right, ignore it) following the creek, crossing it again, the trail heads up the hill to the left, which shortly heads back south towards the trail head, you will come to another intersection that says trail head left, take it left and will join the trail you came in on, turn right, and your about 1/4 mile from the parking lot.

This trail is only the McKee Marsh area. Blackwell is actually south and east of the outlined trail.

Refer to the listing for “Regional, Bobolink, and Catbird” for Blackwell forest preserve.

7 days ago

Hiked the smaller loop today, beautiful wooded areas. Not bad for our first time out. Maybe next time we will follow th map!

trail is only 1 3/4 mile as posted. Not 4.7 as the description states.

lots of bikes. took our dogs and found a trail that was quiet andd woodsy. dogs loved it. main entrance was very busy and lots of bikes. my dogs hate bikes

The rock formations are worth the hike.

If you cross the railroad tracks and go over to the Jackson Hollow side, the hike is even better. If you know where the other trails are in that area you can link them all together to make a nice weekend backpacking trip. It’s the best backpacking in the Shawnee. If you do Jackson Hollow stay near the cliffs. The trail is faint ever since they kicked horses out of that area. To cross the tracks, when the trail hits the tracks, turn left and walk down the tracks about 400 yards and you will see on the other side the place to cross into it. There is a large trail that runs down the bottom of the valley but you will want to get up by the cliffs. The Promise Land climbing area is over on that side of the tracks. My hike starts on the Jackson Hollow side crosses the tracks goes through the Jackson Falls area up the dog walk and back to our campsite. I’ve been hiking this area for about 50 years.

Nice park. Great signage all of the trails are labeled. There are different trails you can do and numerous scenic look out points. Also a scenic drive if you want to go back to the top to take some photos or watch the sun set.

We do this walk a lot with our dog. We like it.

Enjoy the inside trails. They are so much fun and very scenic.

You know this is quite the jem for this area. If you didn’t know the area you could miss the trail. It is great for birding. Fairly easy, so ......decent for kids of walking age without to much monitoring or worry. There are some high cliffs and small caves to explore. Over all nice little trek.

The trail was in great shape. Markings are very easy to see and there are plenty of them. If you are doing the full loop you want to take Dogwood (it splits, left is neat), then it turns into Ridge, then Hickory, then Hickory North, then be sure to peel off left to Fern Hollow, cross the road and continue. Then Hickory South. The last mile marker you will see is 5miles. Roughly 5.5 mile loop.

My favorite for my skill level.

This Trail Is small VERY SMALL! but worth the stop it is listed in the Smothsonia as the top 50 in the USA! On Smithsonia.Com and top for Illinois very Beautiful place. if you trail it it dont take long but in my case it lasted for almost 9 hours .Put me in a Wilderness and I'll stay as long as possible and cry when I have to leave. There are a few folks walking around but I seem to be able to figure out where to go to get away from them plus I went in the middle of the week so that helps. beautiful place I was there in Oct 2017 for the fall colors PERFECT!!!!!!!!

Its a very pretty touristy Trail I didnt see much of anyone and really ever do but look at the time I go . I aint much of a people person when im on a trail so I stay away from them and pick my times according if Im visiting a tourist/Disney Style trail. I always park in down town Ottawa and Backpacked to the 1st Canyon Trail (Horse Shoe Canyon and then pack from there all the way to the end (Visitor Center/Inn/Bar) Then I pack my way back to Ottawa. I do this just about every year . I love winter pack-ins and enjoy camping outside in the winter-freeze(Less people) so this is always a good winter start to my new year. I usually do it sometime in the month of Jan. I stay on the trail( which is frowned on) but I believe and live !!NO TRACE!! so no-one ever knows I was there and thats not saying much because although it is frowned on that I renegade camp this area has got alot of trash from your so-called-nature-lovers who throw away just about everything they carry in on the ground as they walk through this park !!!!!! It makes me so angry!!!!! You came with it so leave with it !! Its lighter now!!! so carry it out! If campgrounds-Trails-Wildernesses-Forests and Parks had trash everywhere people would complain "Dont go there its a Dump!" WELL MY FRIENDS YOU ARE THE REASON IT IS A DUMP. Outside of that rant I really enjoy my 2-half day Pack-in during the winter here and yes as I move along I pick up the trash left behind by others .Its not enough I carry 47lbs of winter backpacking gear on my back I carry a bag of your trash to throw away as well. SHOW RESPECT ,LEAVE NO TRACE!

Excellent trails lots of friendly runners!

Definitely harder than I anticipated!

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