The Illinois & Michigan Canal provided the first complete water route from the East Coast to the Gulf of Mexico by connecting Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River via the Illinois River. Today, the I&M Canal trail has preserved 80 of the original 96 miles as a multi-use trail; this segment begins in Romeoville and follows the canal towpath southwest to Peru. The 61 mile I&M Canal State Trail, from LaSalle to Rockdale, forms the lower portion of the trail.
Trail users will find many state parks along the canal, including:
Channahon State Park, site of two of the I&M Canal locks and the restored locktender's house. Picnicking, tent camping, fishing and canoeing are available.
Aux Sable access area, with an aqueduct, lock and locktender's house.
William G. Stratton State Park in Morris, with boat access to the Illinois River, fishing and picnicking.
Gebhard Wood State Park in Morris and bordered on the south by the canal. Offers birding and wildlife-watching opportunities and the restored nettle Creek aqueduct with visitor center.
Buffalo Rock State Park, 5 miles from the Fox River Aqueduct on the north bank of the Illinois River. Offers scenic views, picnicking, and two live American bison.
Don't forget to check out the I&M Canal's Northern Section
Rode the trail round trip from Channahon to Morris. The trail is in good shape, mostly crushed gravel and about a mile or so of pavement. Good parking at Channahon and ample parking in Morris at Stratton state park. The trail is flat and tree lined most ...
When my husband & I discovered the Joliet Junction Trail did not exist at the I & M end, we decided to ride the I & M Trail west as far as we could that day. (We had plans for the evening.) The first five miles west are in the sun, but after that the ...
As I said earlier, the section of the Trail going through Marseilles is forgotten. If you were disappointd in Seneca, you will be more so in Mareilles. The section passing the sheep farm ( the lone farm mentioned by someone else) has been much improved ...