Peru Atv Trails and Maps

240 Reviews

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Recent Trail Reviews

Hennepin Canal Parkway

A Slice of Wilderness in an Otherwise Developed Place

June, 2018 by pedalfree

It would be easy to view this trail in a negative light. The pavement is a mixed bag. It's not fast and smooth. Maintenance appears to be non-existent. There are hazards. There are snakes (I ran over one) and loads of bugs. You won't find a lot of services, at least at the west end.

But what you also won't find is a lot of people and sometimes that's a good thing. You won't find the type of self-absorbed roadies and triatheletes who sometimes terrorize other trail users by buzzing them at 25 mph. You won't find a lot suburban dog walkers. What you will find are cyclists and runners who genuinely enjoy being out in the natural world. If you like your nature natural instead of Disneyfied, you're gonna love this trail. If you like history, there are a number of locks along the trail. This was once a working canal. A local runner I met on the trail told me that it was the model for the Panama Canal.

I rode from Colona to Geneseo and back on Saturday June 9, 2018. It's a 21 mile round trip. It was muggy but interestingly enough, there were pockets of cooler air, too. The underpass below I80 was dark and flooded...real horror movie stuff. About a mile up, a small bridge was out but someone had carved a bypass and my Salsa Fargo with 29 x 2.25 WTB Rangers handed it just fine. I was surprised at how empty it felt out here. This is a part of the country where it's really hard to get away from civilization, but on this stretch at least, you can. The miles flew by and soon enough I was back at my car.

I've read a number of comments from people who tried to tackle this on road bikes. It's probably doable if you're adept at picking a line, but there are better bikes to choose for this. I got lucky and picked the right one and that no doubt added to my enjoyment. You could ride it on just about anything though. It's just not that rugged. It is pockmarked and goes from mostly paved to mostly unpaved and back many times. Between the mud and berries, my bike was filthy when I got back to the car. Bring a rag and clean it off when you're done or you'll have a mess when you get home.

The moral of the story here is to know what it is you're getting into and plan accordingly. Bring Deet unless you want to be eaten alive. Don't go traipsing through the weeds unless you want to get up close and personal with snakes. You're traversing what is mostly a wild wetland and if my experience was any indication, you'll have it mostly to yourself. That's pretty special in this day and age. Five stars, only because I can't give it six.

Hennepin Canal Parkway

Wyanet to Bureau Junction

May, 2018 by elindst1

Rode the Hennepin canal from Wyanet to the end of trail in Bureau Junction. Took our road bikes and that was not a mistake. We parked at the Bureau Valley Wyanet Elementary school which is about a ½ mile easy ride to the trail. The trail started out as dirt/crushed limestone which made it a bit of a slow go at first. It then changed to old asphalt type material.

7.5 miles from the end there was about a ½ mile of packed down gravel which wasn’t the best to ride on with our road bikes but it was passable. After that stretch it was a combination of old asphalt and some dirt on top of old asphalt.

There were also 2-3 parks along the way with toilets (no running water though). In fact, you should be prepared to ride the whole way with however much food and water you need as there really are no places to stop.

All of it was pretty level and the condition of the surface was decent until the last 2-3 miles. This was still ok for the road bikes but the condition of the surface was just not as good.

Illinois & Michigan Canal State Trail

Bumpy ride

May, 2018 by ryanalf

I rode Ottawa to LaSalle. Sections of the trail were very rough. Motorbike tracks, moguls and stream remnants made the trail dangerous. The history and the washed out bridge are awesome(see photo).

Accordion

Illinois & Michigan Canal State Trail

Start of the trail season warnings

March, 2018 by chubbycheeks

My husband rode his fat tire bike on the trail this morning between Chestnut St., in Ottawa, and the Buffalo Rock trail parking lot. His goal was to check out the conditions of the trail. He said that it was not fun. He came back via the street. The trail was wet, and the 1/2 mile from Chestnut west, as well as the 1/2 mile from Buffalo Rock east had many piles of dog poop. (There is a parking lot at Buffalo Rock that people use when they walk their dogs.) Seems like the dog walkers do not even bother to sweep the poop piles to the side. That is the least you can do if you are not going to pick it up.

Fox River Trail (IL)

Great, interesting trail.

January, 2018 by tommyspan

Although I walked this trail at various points one day in the winter, you can see how varied the views are. One minute you're in the woods next to the trail viewing eagles, the next you're right in the middle of a bustling downtown of a small city complete with waterfalls, spillways, dams, and buildings that look like they date from the late 1800s.. Great trail.

Ottawa Riverwalk

Reminders of History

November, 2017 by wilhelmggw

I have long enjoyed the beautiful Fox River, and been interested in the history of the small towns along the I&M Canal and the Illinois River. Visiting this new trail in Ottawa had me reminiscing a lot about this area and all my explorations of old. M'thinks I'll be coming back to this trail again soon.

Fox River Trail (IL)

St. Charles to Woodstock

October, 2017 by danielkarl1957

Rode north on this trail as far as Crystal Lake yesterday. It was a nice ride and I had not been past Elgin before. Things open up a bit and there are some very nice stretches. They did a nice job navigating the new bypass at Algonquin. The path under the old railroad bridge north of South Elgin is now completely gone. We ended up carrying our bikes over the old bridge which was kind of a pain. Would take the detour next time.

Illinois & Michigan Canal State Trail

good relaxing ride, completed in segments

October, 2017 by eric.dobson2

I finally completed the trail in LaSalle last weekend, I had been completing the entire route in segments throughout the summer. Overall, I enjoyed the experience, I liked the historical placards and informative mile markers. Yes, I stopped and read every one of them! I thought it was really well done, and very interesting history of the canal and its construction and usage. Cool grande finale ending up in LaSalle where the packet boat and mule towpath was in full display with the tour.

I started in Lemont where the trail begins, through Lockport (the old canal headquarters) and got through Joliet. A must see is the old Joliet Iron Works, an interesting historical walking tour. The next segment I completed was from Joliet (Rockdale) to Channahon, with beautiful views of the Illinois River. Saw an abundance of varied wildlife as the canal here is wide with plenty of water still left in it. McKinley Woods Park is a nice diversion to take a break. Channahon to Morris was the next segment, again with nice views of barges on the river and the Dresden dam area. From Morris to Marseilles the trail begins to get more woodsy, and at some points the trail goes from crushed limestone to single track dirt. This is where the canal is hard to see, as it has dried up over the years, thus there is less wildlife to see. From Marseilles to Ottawa the trail is still woodsy, but becomes more industrial as you are riding next to train tracks and grain silos along the river for much of it. Ottawa to Utica becomes more scenic as you start to see the St Peters sandstone cliffs at certain points. Finally from Utica to LaSalle you can see much more of this, and the trail ends with a lock with all of its functioning parts, as would have existed back in the day.

I normally ride on much more challenging, tougher and more hilly terrain with my trail bike, so this was a change of pace for me. The trail is in decent shape, but you can tell that it has not been maintained for awhile. There are bridges out in several spots (easy to get around), and fallen trees that you need to lift your bike over. All in all, I would recommend it to the casual rider, seeking an interesting history of the canal from back in the nineteenth century. Happy riding!

Hennepin Canal Parkway

A Nice Ride

September, 2017 by mcaples67

Road 60 miles (30 out and back) from trailhead at Rock River in Colona. We brought our road bikes (23mm tires), expecting paved trails. It was slow going, but certainly doable. The trail is definitely in need of repair and maintenance. It is flat, peaceful and quite beautiful. The canal history and artifacts (locks, etc) are a very interesting perk.
Fortunately we packed extra water. We had trouble finding water stops along the way. There was a fountain at the lock (14 miles from the trailhead) but it was not working in late September even though it was almost 90 degrees.

Illinois & Michigan Canal State Trail

Most Gorgeous Trail ~

September, 2017 by fitnpeaceful

I don't know how anyone could rate this anything but 5 stars. There are sections of this trail (Channahon to Ottawa) that are absolutely breathtaking - especially on a warm fall day when the leaves are turning color. There are long sections of the trail where you are riding between two bodies of water and it is absolutely spectacular. Access the train in Channahon and ride northeast toward Ottawa. You will not regret it!

Virgil L. Gilman Trail

Newly paved sections!

September, 2017 by fitnpeaceful

I frequently take the VL Gilman from the access off Terry St. on the west side of Aurora and go west to Bliss Road and exit to ride the country roads west of Route 47. The Gilman Trail is beautiful and many sections are recently paved (within West Aurora) sections.

Fox River Trail (IL)

Trail from St. Charles to Aurora 5*, St. Charles to Elgin 3*

September, 2017 by dabertin

We rode the section from Pottawatomie Park in St. Charles to Aurora on Saturday September 16th in the afternoon. Once we found the trail from the parking lot, it was a lovely ride and not a lot of hills. It passes through a few congested areas near parks and through downtown St. Charles but largely it was not overpopulated. There are a few places that it wasn't terribly clear which way to go, there's a main trail with trails that go off it and at one point there are two trails, one on each side of the river. Once we got to Aurora there was a bit of street riding, well marked, and then there was nothing although I knew we couldn't be at the end based on the map. The trail is all asphalt and in pretty good condition. The scenery is beautiful and goes through some nice towns.

Sunday Sept. 17th we rode the part from Norris Woods in St. Charles to the 5 or 6 mile mark which is north of Elgin. There were lots of places that were not marked well at all, there were a lot of confused riders including us. There's currently one section that is closed, we figured it out going north, going south we missed the turnoff but were able to figure out how to get back on the street. The scenery was not as nice as the south section. There are more hills on this route including one right at Norris Woods, one in Elgin that I had to get off and walk and one mid way that was very challenging. Mostly asphalt, some street riding, a couple small crushed limestone sections.

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