Stone Bridge Trail Reviews    

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Excellent trail with access to other paths

By eirene16 in July, 2013

Stone Bridge is one of our favorites. Not only is it scenic and well-maintained, but it connects to several other bike paths of various lengths. First of course is the 14-mile Long Prairie (paved) to the west. Next, just north of where the Stone Bridge Trail crosses Elevator Road, there is the short Kinstone trail (gravel) to the west which will take you right to the Hononegah Rec Path (paved), on which you can ride from Roscoe to Rockton along Hononegah Road. At Hononegah Forest Preserve, you can access the very short Kelley-Meyers Trail (paved) which takes you to the park of the same name. Although we have not yet fully explored that option, we understand that you can THEN access the Dorr Road bike path (paved) which runs north to South Beloit. So on this network of trails, you could start east of Capron, IL, and bike all the way to South Beloit. And I should also mention the eateries along the way, namely the Poison Ivy Pub at Elevator Road, and many others along Hononegah Road.

Runners - One of the best trails

By snipe33 in June, 2013

One of the best, if not the best, running trails in the area. The crushed stone is easy on the feet and much of the trail is shaded by trees. It connects to a few different running paths, so you have options for mixing up your run. There are a few roadway crossings.

You can really make a long run out of this trail. I have run this trail from its beginning at Rockton Road to Long Prairie Trail (switches to asphalt) all the way to IL 173 and BACK. It's quite the trek!

I prefer to start at the parking area at Rockton Road, but you have options for doing different sections. There's even an entrance to the trail on Tybow Trail (a subdivision).

Make sure that you look around for evidence that this used to be an 1850's railroad line. You'll see things if you look!

A nice easy trail

By ilbob in December, 2011

I hiked the length of the trail and back 12-12-11. The dog and I both had a good time.

I posted a bunch of pictures and video on my blog.

http://ilbob.blogspot.com/2011/12/12-12-11-stone-bridge-trail-117-mile.html

This was a longish hike for us. 11.7 miles per the GPS track. Just under 6 hours. We had nice cool weather. It started out in the low 30s and edged up into the low 40s. We passed by Stone Bridge and Roland Olson FPs, and turned around when we got to the Long Prairie Trail.

It is an easy walk, not much grade change. It is an old RR right of way and trains don't like much in the way of grade change. The surface is an easy walking crushed stone.

It was a Monday morning. I did not expect much traffic. We ran across maybe a dozen people on foot, most with dogs, and another half dozen or so on bikes.

The trail surface is about 10 feet wide, with 20-50 feet of buffer on either side. Much of it is hardwood, some is prairie. Much of the trail abuts residential areas so it is sort of like walking through people's back yards. The trail often has deep gullies along side it, sometimes exhibiting a 50 foot drop or more, and in one section there are 10-30 foot high berms on either side.

I did not notice much in the way of facilities along the way. A bench at Elevator Road, and a well and outhouses at Roland Olson FP were about it. There were also benches at the observation deck at Stone Bridge. There are 19 parking spots at the Rockton Road access point. About the same at Roland Olson FP. You probably could park in the Roscoe Township offices at Elevator Road as well. None of the other access points had any parking.

We passed over 4 or 5 creeks. Wilma wanted to visit them, but there was not any real convenient access. Maybe next time.

Stone Bridge Trail

By tracydoyle in September, 2011

A beautiful, smooth path. The surface is very finely crushed gravel and dirt - no problem with traction even for a bike with street tires. The stone bridge, which is on the National Register of Historic places, is a must-see. There is a long, zig-zag walkway down to an observation deck to view it. Don't turn off your heart rate monitor - the trip back up will get your blood pumping! Many parts of the path are very well shaded. There is a very slight upward grade that starts about 1/2 mile away from the trail head on Rockton Rd. that goes quite a distance - something to be aware of if taking a long trip. I prefer to start at Rockton, so my return trip is a little faster and easier. Just did a ride from Rockton to the Long Prairie trail, through Caledonia, then a quick left on Fairgrounds Rd. to the Boone Family Restaurant - 12 miles. Food, rest, then headed back. Very doable, even for a beginner like me.