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Find the top rated atv trails in Sterling, whether you're looking for an easy short atv trail or a long atv trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a atv trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
Rode south out of fitchburg. About 5-6 miles south this turns into a limestone path. I rode it in november so maybe its better in the summer but its no skinny tire road bike route. Was nice until then.
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!
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.
It was the first day of Autumn and 93° when my riding buddy and I returned to the trailhead in Winnebago in the late morning after travelling west to a private lane just short of Farwell Bridge Road and back - 19.13 miles indicated on my bike's computer.
This bike trail may not be the most scenic, and may not be a 'real' Rail-Trail, as it seems to parallel the old rail line rather than use it, but it's still better than riding the streets in town for this guy. Lots of sunshine under the sparse canopy of power lines meant lots of water consumed on this hot day.
It is paved only in short sections - in the towns/villages of Winnebago and Pecatonica, as well as in the vicinity of Highway 20, where it appears that a very large paved parking lot has been recently constructed on the north side of the road. Other than that, I would classify this as a 'fair-to-rough' hard-pack surface trail.
Some have commented negatively about the loose/sandy section. That section will certainly get a rider's attention, but this 68 year old on an eight year old, 'bottom-of-the-line' Trek Mountain Bike, rode through it without mishap, as did his younger riding partner on a Hybrid Giant bike.
This trail is definitely not for the rider that wishes to just cruise along and visit, while gawking. One must pay attention and watch for the mini-sinkholes, as well as the variations in trail surface. I am a nature lover however, and 'roughing it' has always held a very special place in my heart. This trail is what it is. If one wants a paved path, choose another. If one wishes for a little private time in nature and reap the joy and benefits that comes along with riding a bike, then this 'less than groomed' trail might be just what the doctor ordered.
I also need to point out that the signage along this trail is excellent - every public road crossing is clearly marked with road/street names and stop signs.
A quick stop at the small gazebo along the river near the fairgrounds in Pec will provide one with an interesting history of the river and the Pecatonica Grist Mill of days past.
In summary... I will be returning to this trail to see what is at Farwell Bridge Road and beyond, as well as to complete the ride to Rockford and see what's up on that end.
As stated previously, "This trail is what it is". Take it or leave it.
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!
Three miles from Westfield road in Winnebago to meridian road where it ends. They are doing construction on a sewer main so I am not sure you can go on it during the week past Weldon road. It looks like they've widened it to move heavy equipment through. There are a couple of rough spots but nothing you can't get through. Fields on both sides and flat.
We rode from Toulon to Dunlap and back. It was a beautiful day and the trail setting is very nice with a mix of woods and fields. The trail was in pretty good shape but you need to be alert for ground squirrel burrows. In the wooded sections there is a fair amount of debris so you need to watch out for the larger branches. It's fun riding but if you get too relaxed you may be jolted back to alertness by a branch or a hole.
The DNR web site lists several closures but there is really only one north of Princeville. Like the previous reviewer we rode around it on county roads to the east and it was no problem. The Toulon to Wyoming section has the worst trail conditions (but is perfectly rideable in spite of the trail closed signs) and we will probably start in Wyoming if we do it again.
We ride hybrids with reasonably wide tires and I'm not sure how much fun it would be on a road bike.
We rode from the trail head at Lock 22 (where CR 300E crosses the canal) up along the feeder canal for about 14 miles. The trail was in good shape for most of the way, mostly paved, and it was enjoyable ride. North of the Rte 92 crossing the trail quality deteriorated markedly and it was single track dirt through weeds and grass. We turned around at Osage Rd because of the trail condition. We tried riding west from Lock 22 but gave up after a little over a mail. It wasn't that bad but it was single track through recently mowed but still pretty high grass.
The first thirteen mile north along the feeder canal was a beautiful fun ride with good trail conditions, nice scenery, and a herons, turtles and jumping fish. We also saw very few other people on the ride. North of that and west of Lock 22 the trail was passable but less fun.
We ride hybrids with pretty wide tires. I'm not sure any of it would be fun on a road bike.
Nice easygoing trail for a newbie like me. Stayed at Hickory Grove Campground (great new owners) then early morning ride. Crushed stone & asphalt a little overgrown on the edges but a great trail
I rode from Wyoming to Toulon and back, then continued south to what used to be Stark, now a small group of homes, returning to Wyoming. The next day I rode from Wyoming to Peoria.
The trail was wet from rains both days, softening the low spots and leaving a few puddles. The rides were enjoyable, with a mix of farm and woods. Signage through the towns was adequate to find my way. Each town has stores that provide a snack or a restroom.
Wyoming has a great coffee shop that makes great baked goods and lunches in addition to their coffee. Next door is a gift shop worth a peek.
I detoured around the washout in the Rock Island Trail Nature Preserve by riding the paved township roads east of the preserve.
Rode madison to New Glarus, no probs
I rode most of the trail below Joliet on July 28 , 2017. Except for the closures shown on the DNR website (downtown Morris, Marseilles to Ottawa, and two bridges out near Utica), the trail was in decent condition. (I was glad I was on a hybrid and not a skinny bike.)
Joliet to Morris was in good shape. Some of this section is dull, some parts are pleasant.
The closure in Morris has been there for years, and the street detour is easy and not too long.
Morris to Seneca is my new favorite section: quieter and more woodsy than the rest. No trail problems.
Seneca to Marseilles was fine. There’s a good view of the Illinois River if you go a few blocks south of the trail in downtown Marseilles.
Marseilles to Ottawa was mostly dull and pointless. I went around the barricade just west of Marseilles and had to carry my bike over downed trees, which I expected. It got old after a while, though, and since the trail was boring at that point, I wish I hadn’t bothered. There’s a nice paved road next to the trail – use that instead.
Ottawa to Utica is in decent shape, except for the bridge that’s out, and I like this section. I went about 9 miles west from the Fox River aqueduct in Ottawa and came to the bridge. I was tempted to take my shoes and socks off and wade through the two inch deep stream and continue, but turned around instead. (It’s only another mile or so to downtown Utica).
I like the section below Utica, but with the bridge out, I didn’t feel like continuing.
If you accept the closures and the dull parts, the I&M is a good Illinois trail.