Des Plaines River Trail


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Des Plaines River Trail Facts

States: Illinois
Counties: Cook, Lake
Length: 56.1 miles
Trail end points: 15601 W Russell Rd (Wadsworth) and Sunset Bridge Meadow (River Grove)
Trail surfaces: Asphalt, Crushed Stone, Dirt, Gravel
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6032692

Des Plaines River Trail Description

Closure notice: Between 02/01/2024 and 06/30/2024, between W Higgins Rd and W Bryn Mawr Ave will have periodic closures and/or full closure restrictions due to construction activities. Check the status of the trail on the Forest Preserves of Cook County and the Forest Preserves of Lake County website for the latest information regarding temporary trail closures. 


The Des Plaines River Trail runs alongside the Des Plaines River for just over 56 miles, protecting watershed habitat and forestland through much of Lake and Cook Counties. The trail is a natural oasis within a short drive of Chicago and its northern suburbs. Having such a long, lush trail just outside of such a densely populated urban area is truly a wonderful asset to the surrounding community.

About the Route

There are a variety of trail surfaces across the whole route, from pavement to crushed stone to single-track forest trail. Be prepared for this terrain to change quickly and often for an exciting adventure at every turn. The northernmost 20 miles of the trail are well maintained and frequented by nearby residents. Keep an eye out for deer, birds, snakes, and turtles, all native to the area and abundant along the path.

Moving farther south, the corridor becomes narrow and filled with roots in certain segments. If the ground is wet, be careful when making turns. Also be cautious at the multiple instances where the trail crosses over several highly trafficked roads. Most of these intersections are well marked and have signals for cars to stop. Additionally, several crossings are by tunnel, which makes it much easier to continue along the trail at these intersections.

Nearly the entire length of the trail is hemmed in by various forest preserves including Van Patten Woods, Wadsworth Savanna, Sedge Meadow, Lake Carina, Captain Daniel Wright Woods, Camp Pine Woods, Schiller Woods and more.

Just north of Golf Road in Des Plaines, the trail runs into an active railroad line and continues just on the other side of the tracks. Caution should be used here when crossing the tracks. About 3 miles of the trail parallel tracks in a rail-with-trail formation.

Restrooms, picnic areas, and water fountains are frequent throughout this system of connected forest preserves. Several parking lots are also located along the trail’s entire length, making it easy to access the route at a variety of points.

In Lake County, snowmobiles are permitted along the trail between Wadsworth Road (and in the wetlands research project area) and the northern terminus at Russell Road.


In Wheeling, the trail connects with the Phyllis Harmon Path.

Parking and Trail Access

The Des Plaines River Trail runs between 15601 W Russell Rd (Wadsworth) and Sunset Bridge Meadow (River Grove), with parking and restrooms available on both ends.

Parking is also available at:

  • 16400 W Buckley Rd (Libertyville)
  • 619 S Milwaukee Ave (Vernon Hills)
  • River Trail Nature Center, 3120 Milwaukee Ave (Northbrook)

The Chicago suburbs have a robust public transit system that provides car-free trail access, here.

Parking is available at a number of locations along the trail, please see TrailLink Map for all parking options and detailed directions.

Des Plaines River Trail Reviews

loved it in spite of the gravel

Biked this trail twice over the weekend. Started both from Independence Park. First day went north to the Wisconsin state line, almost. Second day went south to Libertyville. Fun rides with no one on the northern loop on a Friday afternoon. Sunday on the southern loop was more crowded. The two negatives are the complete lack of restrooms down to libertyville. If there are any they are not marked from the trail. The other negative was riding crushed rock on a road bike. Was not prepared for that and hit a few soft spots that tried to suck me down. I prevailed and managed around 68 miles for the two rides.

Des Plaines River Trail (Cook County) from Tuohy Ave to Lake-Cook Rd

As noted by other reviews, this segment of trail is rugged. However, if prepared for the conditions it can be viewed as an adventure. The trail is under construction from Devon Ave to Tuohy Ave (south of Devon down to North Ave I knew it might be impassable due to recent rains) but from Tuohy going north to Golf Rd the trail was decently dry (rode several days after moderate rainfall) as it went through the forest preserves. An undeveloped rail crossing creates a trail gap between Golf and Central Ave so there is an unmarked alternate route along East River Rd with narrow shoulders and bad paving that leads into Beck Lake preserve to pick up the trail again. North of Beck Lake the trail is fairly good up through River Trail Nature Center (worth visiting)/Allison Woods. An unsignaled crossing of busy Milwaukee Ave (Rte 21) is then needed and the trail starts again on Winkleman (frontage) road between the Crowne Plaza and Hilton hotels. Between Milwaukee Ave and all the way to Lake-Cook Rd it is very challenging even when fairly dry but with good natural scenery and bird/animal sightings.

trail closed near Rosemont

Trail is closed at east river road and Higgins as well as near the Hyatt Regency in Rosemont. Those that were open were in poor shape, mud, loose gravel.

Upgrade needed

I started out riding on the trail about 5 years ago love the distance. Just do not like the limestone since it makes the trail extremely dusty. Wish more than anything this could become a paved trail!


always a fun ride!

watch out for construction in the southern end of the trail—passable right now, but it may not be in a few weeks.

DPRT North in Lake County is a Gem

I've ridden this trail for 30 years and it's well maintained and relatively flat. The crushed limestone surface drains water away quickly though in winter, when the ground is frozen, the water can form puddles or freeze so you must be careful. After bigger rainstorms, some of the underpasses can be impassable (e.g., Route 60 especially--there is a side path that connects the trail but you need to cross a major road). The path gets multi-modal usage, from walkers, families, runners, horses, skiers, bicycles, to e-bikes. You can ride this with a road bike if you're confident but cross or gravel bikes are better but certainly not absolutely necessary. Nowadays we see fat-tire bikes, especially in winter, and e-bikes too. People are generally quite respectful of others. The trail is well marked and I recommend starting at Daniel Wright Woods or Old School Forest Preserve which are in southern Lake County. As others have said, going north from there keeps you in Lake County which does a great job of maintaining the trails.

south end not great

I started from the south entry point and only made it a few miles in before deciding to just take the roads back south. It hadn't rained for a few days and the bridge underpasses were still full of pooled water and soft mud. I don't even know if I'd ride through them on a mountain bike unless I was really looking to get nasty.

Des Plaines River Trail

Hit this trail in two different trips. Came on 7/21/2022 and started at Daniel Wright Woods and headed north, rode about 20 miles north. The trail was limestone and appeared to be in relatively good shape. Trail was a mixture of shade and sun. This part of the trail was well maintained and enjoyable. On 7/28/2022, we came back, started at the Half Way Forest Preserve and headed south. The first 5 miles were just like the week before, well maintained and after that things drastically got worse. There was a lack of signage and also the trail was very poorly maintained. We had to worry about going around so many mud puddles and also there were plenty of areas where it looked like rain at one time washed out the area and made nice sized gulley's. We got 11 miles in and the trail abruptly signage or maps at all to tell you where you need to go. Luckily, I had my phone and checked the traillink app, but we decided, that we had enough of the rough terrain, that we headed back. Such a disappointment.

This trail has a little bit of everything.

I agree with the other reviewers that the trail is generally much better in Lake county north of Lake Cook road. Although sections of the trail south of Lake Cook Road are rough, I did not have any problems riding it with my no suspension, narrow tire hybrid bike. The trail is also not well marked in Cook county. Some may consider those as negative but I actually liked that the Cook county portion was more natural and challenging. In some ways it was more enjoyable to ride than the well manicured portion further north.

I rode the Cook county portion in mid summer. I can see that sections may be flooded at times, especially in the spring.

Deplorable, unless you have a dirt bike and like it rough

This review focuses on the section in Cook County, from Higgins Road south to North Avenue. Rode this in 2020; was hoping for better conditions today (7/4/2022) but am extremely disappointed. The route suffers from extreme neglect. There are erosion washouts; new makeshift alignments around trees that were downed years ago--and around mud spots that have never been filled in; dark tunnels full of mud and tree branches (Higgins Rd. is the worst); horizontal tree roots across the path; areas where the gravel is too coarse and where it is too deep (especially over the Kennedy Expressway). Numerous crossings of four-lane arterials--attempt these only at less busy times like Sunday mornings. Also, don't ride within a week after any significant rainfall, because it will return to mud. On more numerous occasions I have ridden the more northerly section between Algonquin and Palatine Roads--it is in better shape and does not have the deplorable tunnels. But beware: the long-awaiting crossing over the Union Pacific RR between Golf and Central Roads will not open until 2024 or later, so we will have to continue a detour along East River Road. Three stars north of Algonquin, but only one star south of there, for an overall average of two--and that is being generous.

From Just North of the Border

I park at the trailhead just over the border on Russel Rd. I frequent this trail because it's only 10 min. from my home. I enjoy riding through marshland and near the river to see the diverse foliage and wildlife. This trail does undulate a bit so your legs and gears are gonna get a workout. (but not too bad) This trail gives me the opportunity to ride pretty much as long or short a distance I wish. Some of the crushed gravel does get soft in spots, but I do believe it from when it floods on certain occasions. The trail does provide a few restrooms along the way. i do recommend this trail to anyone. Thanks.

dDPRT cook county complete!

We have now walked from North Ave north to Rt 60. We are still heading to the northern end. We have to walk double — out and back but it’s been a great COVID distraction. Some bad parts from wheeling north to lake cook rd. Then trails thru Mt Prospect, Des Plaines and park ridge really nice. Gets a bit wonky again around Catherine woods south. For walking fine but bikes harder to get under some of the bridges. Also kids hanging out under a few too. Beautiful trail. Not very crowded but Lake county does amazing job.

Memorial Day Weekend

We tried this trail for the first time this weekend. Started at Dundee and rode north to Route 60. The reviews are spot on that it’s night and day when you go from Cook to Lake County. Next time we’ll start farther north — maybe at the Half Day Road forest preserve. My husband noted that Half Day Brewing Co. is just west of the Preserve, which sounds like a perfect place to end a ride.

North for novice

I agree with the reviews of the trail south of Lake Cook Rd. It’s ok for a few miles south but there’s a notable difference of trail conditions from the trail north. Two different counties and budgets to maintain them, I assume. Traveled this trail multiple times this past COVID season. It’s my first year biking in 40 yrs and wow, what a great trail.

Great Trail

I like the north branch of the trail for its beauty and the south branch for the rough ride and challenges. (Some nice scenery on the south branch too.) I have a 29er mountain bike. When I rode the south branch on my hybrid the first time I took that trail I had to take the bike in for repair afterwards. But on a mountain bike the south branch is a blast. Where else in the suburbs can you get a ride like that?

The tale of two trails

I LOVE the Des Plaines River Trail. But. Going north and going south are totally different experiences.

I live in Glenview, so I join the trail through an unmarked path I somehow found at the end of Carol Lane in the Timber Trails neighborhood just west of Milwaukee. I catch the trail in the East Lake woods.

If I go north, it's beautiful. There are weird spots. In Northbrook, you have to cross a busy Milwaukee Avenue (by Allgauers restaurant) with no stoplight. Then you have to ride up a little street to find the trail again. (There's an interesting story about how the Rat Pack played at the restaurant that used to be at the site of Allgauers, but we'll save that for another review.)

The woods are lovely. There's a Nature Center (not open during COVID). It feels like you've left civilization behind. Until you have to cross Dundee Avenue, which can be a bit nerve-wracking.

But there's a big meadow that I love. The trail is just a small rut at that point, but the meadow is thick and beautiful and serene. The last time I went through it, was the last time I felt totally at peace.

And the other reviewers are right. The difference between the Cook County Trail and the Lake County Trail are night and day. I'm surprised you don't hear and audible "POP" when you cross the bridge at Lake-Cook Road.

The Cook County side, while gorgeous, is dirt and mud, if it has rained, and roots to watch out for. The Lake County side is crushed gravel, wide trails and benches every other mile. I've only been five miles into the Lake County side, but that was enough to see herons resting in tree branches while I pedaled over a small, charming bridge.

And yet, while the Cook County side seems to be the embodiment of forest preserve patronage, (I got a nephew who's got a cousin who's got a friend who keeps the trails maintained) I still love it.

Which brings me to going south on the trail.

When I take people on the trail, I bring them south first because it's just so...different. And maybe not right if you just want an easy, lovely ride.

It's beautiful from Euclid past Central. Tall trees, with sparse underbrush give way to dense thickets that feel like the English countryside.

And then, yep, you get to the freight train tracks. You have to pick up your bike and carry it across the tracks. Freight trains are infrequent, but they come. Apparently there are plans to build a bridge. But until then, it's part of the adventure.

That soon leads into my favorite part of the whole trail. Riding through, or beneath, actually, downtown Des Plaines.

The path is paved and takes you right along the river, down below the street and commercial buildings. Pass through a tunnel, under a railroad bridge, and you soon come upon the Methodist Camp. A strange old series of buildings that have been around for more than 100 years. Before that, the Union Army used to train soldiers at the site.

Once you are past that, well, it depends how wet it's been. The trail can get flooded and super muddy, so be prepared to call it a day. And if that's the case, the tunnels that were built to go under Touhy and Devon and Lawrence can also get muddy and flooded, so you may have to cross those streets without a stoplight.

Irving Park is the same way and it, like the others, is a four-lane road at that point.

At this point, it's pretty. It's nature. But it feels pretty urban. The trail's a little bumpy too (I think they might have paved it a long time ago, and then didn't bother to keep it up. (Thanks, nephew's cousin's friend).

You even take a bridge over the Kennedy Expressway at one point.

I'm glad I finally made it all the way out to the trail's end at North Avenue. But it can get a touch dicey between Devon and Fullerton at times. That segment feels a little forgotten somehow. I hear there are plans to improve this section, and it would be a good thing.

In the end, North is beauty. South is adventure.

Happy trails!

Terrible trail south of Lake Cook Rd.

I started out in Vernon Hills off of Milwaukee and Rt 22. I went south and it was a great ride. I crossed the bridge at Lake Cook Rd to Cook co. OMG it's a nightmare. Cook country should be ashamed of itself for calling it a trail.
This is a MESS,PERIOD. big stones, at some point you can't figure out where the trail is. UNSAFE FOR ANYONE. It's so shady in the forest floor you can't see the ruts until it's too late. You will get hurt on this trail on the Cook Co. side.
I hit two of them and one I got knocked into a tree. Don't be fooled , stay North of Lake Cook Rd and you will have a ride. Nice gravel and level trail. NEVER AGAIN will I travel South of the LC rd bridge.

is the rail road the only way to connect to trail?

Between central and golf there is a end to trail and we had to walk our bikes over rail road tracks is this the only way to connect the trail?


Road this trail twice recently riding a recumbent trike. Once north from Everet Rd in Lake County up to the Wisconsin border. Trail surface was almost always very good. The second ride was south from Central Road in Cook County. We had to turn around at the UP RR crossing just north of Golf Rd because the trail was blocked with barriers. Mountain bikers were able to portage across the tracks carrying their bikes through the track ballast but very difficult to carry a heavy trike across the high rails. We retraced, then took roads through Oakton CC campus to Golf Rd and rejoined trail. Road south to Lawrence Av. Surface in this segment was marginal. Twice underpasses were not rideable and we crossed busy roads. There were no curb cuts.

Lincolnshire to Libertyville

Biked this trail for the first time and it was great. I started at mile 29 and went north to mile 17. Took a break at Independence Grove. Nice picnic shelter and tables beside the pond. It was also my first time on crushed gravel and it’s definitely more physically demanding than pavement!

Awesome trail. I took my fat tire bike for a 40 mile bike ride. This is great for dogs too since there's the des plaines river. Plenty of shade

Awesome trail. I took my fat tire bike for a 40 mile bike ride. This is great for dogs too since there's the des plaines river. Plenty of shade

captain Daniel Wright Woods Green Trail

This magnificent water view is located at Captain Daniel Wright Woods Green Trail.

North End of Trail is Nice!

The north part of this trail from 137 to near the Wisconsin border is really nice thru Independence Grove thru some spectacular oak forest, scrub and savannah. Flooding has closed some underpasses at times but overall good trail when open, well marked, easy access and much fun. Lots of birds, small mammals, and the occasional snake. Nice but preserves along the way. Good to get out and enjoy!

I've ridden the trail in Lake County a number of times and it's great. This stretch though is pretty rough. Lots of loose gravel, ruts and no markings. I won't go back. Start at the Lincolnshire Marriott and head north and you'll have a great trip.

I've ridden the trail in Lake County a number of times and it's great. This stretch though is pretty rough. Lots of loose gravel, ruts and no markings. I won't go back. Start at the Lincolnshire Marriott and head north and you'll have a great trip.

Rode it from Lake Forest to Wisconsin border

Rode it in June 2020. As others said the Lake county section is amazing. I used a gravel bike with 38 tires, but it can be done with any bike but it was more fun like this. A mix of prairie and shaded oak forest section, water views, turns, and even rollers. This trail is second to none I know in its beauty.

DRP veteran

Amazing path crossing all of Lake County North/South. Plenty of bathrooms along the way. Mile 1 begins at Russel Rd parking lot. Check for Flooding Nearby businesses include 1. The Duck Inn Bar Wadsworth 2. Capt Porky & the Shanty Wadsworth 3. DQ : Grand Ave in Gurnee. 4. Schwinn cyclery Libertyville 5. Hansa Coffee Libertyville 6. Lots of dining in Libertyville 7. Chipotle in Vernon Hills I

fantastic access to preserves

I grew up biking this trail so I’m very partial, but it was a great place to spend time outside, challenge myself, and explore. The fact that I could bike from my house to the DPR trail and have relatively safe access to so many forest preserves was fantastic. Quick stops off at independence grove to ride around the lakes or Dairy Queen to grab ice cream made it fantastic. Just rode again after not having visited in four years and it’s just as good as I remember, just have to watch for flooded underpasses in the spring (fun to ride through in the summer though when they’re flooded)

Southern end of trail in TERRIBLE shape

I started at the southern end in River Forest. The trail was a flooded mudpit despite the fact that it hasn't rained in ages, was covered in huge fallen tree branches, and just in overall disrepair. Then, just past Fullerton, the trail literally disappeared INTO the Des Plaines River, leaving you NO choice but to turn back around. You're literally no better off on this trail than you would be if you just started off randomly making your way through the forest.

Southern Trail

I use the southern most part of Trail from Bloomindale Ave up to Ohare mostly. Trail is great, views, water at groves is close, only negative is all dead wood after flooding. I t can sit and block trails for months until its removed.

From Des Plaines to Libertyville

I like the canopied forest intermingled with open prairie. I live fairly close to the trail and have frequently ridden the trail from as far south as the city of Des Plaines to as far north as Libertyville. The trail extends farther south and north. For the parts that I ride the trail is mainly dirt, crushed gravel, and paved trails. During heavy rains, it will be washed out in many spots. Even during relatively dry periods, there is standing in several spots on the trail. Heading north from Des Plaines you have to cross railroad tracks. This is the private property of the railroad and they have done many things to dissuade riders from crossing the track. Farther north you have to cross Milwaukee Ave. without a light. Later you have to cross Dundee without a convenient light. You could use any bike on this part of the trail, and I have encountered a few adventurous riders on touring bikes despite some less than ideal conditions for thin tires. Overall it is a spectacular ride, especially when the prairie flowers are blooming.

Des Plaines River Trail

great trail to walk on if it is not muddy have walked from Devon to Algonquin road and had no problems

Walk from Dam No 4 Woods to Campground Road Woods

Have photographed 30 deer since walking from Dam No 4 Woods to Campground Road Woods, a nice relaxing walk to see squirrels, chipmunks, birds, rabbits and o yes the deer. This is a beautiful trail to walk and much safer than walking on the street or road. I live one mile from Dam No 4 Woods so it is easy for me to get there.

I have walked this frequently and have had a lot of fun and excitement saw many deer and small animals chipmunks, squirrels and saw a couple of cardinals, I walk this once a day and have a good time met a lot of nice people while walking .

I have walked this frequently and have had a lot of fun and excitement saw many deer and small animals chipmunks, squirrels and saw a couple of cardinals, I walk this once a day and have a good time met a lot of nice people while walking .

Walk to Big Bend Lake

Started at Dam No 4 Woods and walked to Golf Rd and Big Bend Lake , saw plenty of animals deer, squirrels , chipmunks and beautiful scenery along the trail. Nice peaceful walk plenty to see , nice surface to walk on not muddy saw 1 deer by the 294 underpass and south of Oakton St saw 2 deer in the woods about 20 feet away from me, what a beautiful sight to see a doe and her fawn took pictures of this. It was a beautiful walk and I had a lot of fun.

North End 5 stars,,South End not so much

We live near the southern section of this trail, so we have rode that portion multiple times. It is a night and day difference with the northern portion. The southern end is just not very pleasant. Trail is in poor shape, poor signage and due that section of river, the area is prone to flooding. Viaducts are usually impassable, flora is mostly invasive species, lot of trash , etc etc.

The north end however (maintained by Lake Co. as opposed to Cook Co.) is just great. Well groomed, tons of signage, usable viaducts, clean, etc. This section meanders through forest, open prairie , some farmland. The scenery is beautiful, especially mid summer with the plants in full bloom.

Highly recommend sticking to north of Cook Co. We plan on finishing the entire trail a section at a time until we hit Wisconsin!

from Touhy Ave to Bender Road

Had a great time walking this section of trail saw 2 deer at Touhy and by the 294 underpass walked up into Des Plaines by Bender Road.

beware of the water

Great trail full of changing landscapes, the only pity is that many times it's impossible to ride it because it's flooded.

Apart from that, a well worth trail.

First ride with my son

Me and my son started just east of the Des Plaines library and we stopped just south of the airport and I must say that I absolutely love this trail. Eventually I will make that trip to gurnee. Just an absolute beautiful trail

Great walking trail north of touhy my only complaint is that it was flooded at the I 294 underpass.

Great walking trail north of touhy my only complaint is that it was flooded at the I 294 underpass.

Walked from Devon to Touhy on trail and it was very interesting

Walked from Devon to Touhy on trail and it was very interesting

First ride of 2018

Excerpted from my blog (

April 12, 2018

First ride of 2018, 42 miles down and only 1,958 to hit my annual target! The afternoon started out warm and sunny, a rare occurrence this Spring as the start of April hasn't been this cold in Chicago in 137 years with multiple snow storms! About 90 minutes into my ride the wind shifted and it was like someone turned on an air conditioner - in five minutes the temp went from high 60's to 50 degrees which is where I usually draw the line on riding 'cause it gets too cold for me.

Overall trail conditions are pretty decent with no flooding from Deerfield Road up to Independence Grove and while the trail surface is somewhat rutted from the long winter it is in reasonably good shape. One word of caution, bring plenty of water as none of the wells along the trail are open for the season and are wrapped in plastic film.

I did the circuit around Independence Grove and from a distance spotted what appeared to be two baby owls peeking out of the hole in tree. I thought it was my lucky day and quickly snapped this pic (see on blog) only to get closer and realize they were fake, the dead giveaway is the yellow glue on their feet - fake news indeed :-)

Not much in the way of color on the trail yet, it has been too cold for any spring flowers.

Very multi-use

I've now ridden the northern 20 or so miles twice, starting at Russell Road both times. The first couple miles are pretty rough due to the horses. That's not a knock on people riding horses on the trail, just the reality of hoofs digging into the crushed limestone surface. It seems to smooth out quite nicely after that and is very pleasant. Not many road crossings, which is great. Yesterday's ride was much cooler than my previous, but there are plenty of places to stop in the shade if needed. I'm not a fan of the crushed limestone surface simply because it leaves my bike caked in dust, but this is a nice trail for a day's use.

Pretty good, just start north of Milwaukee

-After Dundee, no unsafe crossings (to my knowledge)
-Varied scenery ranging from swamp, light and dense forest, restored prairies, and old farmland
-Pretty empty on most days (south of Milwaukee can see more traffic)
-Can sporadically see larger animals (deer, raccoons, skunks, turtles, snakes). Guaranteed to see some warblers, woodpeckers, hawks, and finches when in season

-Some areas are pretty desolate. The solitude can be nice, but I can imagine it attracts criminals.
-The gravel/packed dirt is OK for the most part. Around Lincolnshire you start seeing more asphalt.

-South of Milwaukee trail is muddy and swamp-like, very narrow paths
-Underpasses can close as can parking lots (I once drove from Milwaukee Ave. to Beck Lake without finding an open lot)
-Can be a bit confusing especially south of Milwaukee

To sum up, start north at Milwaukee. There's a big lot but you have to cross unprotected and bike beyond a hotel before the trail picks up again. After this there is only one other crossing at Dundee. Some people start across Dundee so they don't have to cross at all.

I was also surprised by the abundance of old ruins sometimes right along the trail. There's an old POW Camp, tons of old farm remains, and scattered agricultural machinery,

Long trail; some parts are good, some not so much

I see a lot of five star reviews and I am guessing those come from people at the north end of this long trail. South of where it crosses Milwaukee Avenue, there are some pretty poor areas. It floods out, there are unsafe road crossings. In one place it comes down to a worn path barely a tire's width. South of Touhy Avenue the surface is uneven with some rocks and old broken asphalt. I ride this trail often because it is the one closest to me, but for the stretch I know, I cannot give this a high rating. The North Branch Trail is much better, a few miles east.


Great trail! Accessible, scenic and well-kept. I've lived walking distance from the trail for 20 years. It can be perfect walking, jogging and biking. We've enjoyed it for family outings with the kids when they were children. For safety, solo activities are best avoided as the trails can be isolated and very wooded in some areas. avoided for worecommend group outing

DPRT Awesome trail.

I love this trail. Lots of shades, beautiful scenery, lots of animals like birds squirrels bunny's deer... Bears.... ;-) (just kidding about the bears). So.. yeah its an awesome trail. I will keep coming back here.

Scenic and Fun

I would like to say the Lake County section is handicap accessible.
jennpwilliams remarks about trail being ungroomed and not good can be true after heaving rains. This is a river trail and flooding can take out sections. Once dried up I feel the forest preserve district does a great job of re-grooming the trail. Overall this trail is kept well and I truly enjoy my rides on this trail.

Mud and dirt

What a mess, needs some gravel, no signs pointing to where to go.

Not maintained

Really a mud / dirt path with some gravel in places. Not good even for cyclocross bikes. I can't imagine why they say this is wheelchair accessible either. There are huge tire tracks in the mud/dirt making it difficult to ride. Too bad because it's nice running along the river and has lots of shade. Won't do this again.

Ran the whole thing down and back

I ran both county sections (Lake and Cook) down and back in the Fall of 2016. At 112 miles round trip, the trail is easily do-able over the course of the several week period.

Running the while trail gave me a very enlightened perspective on the relative degree of trail maintenance and habitat quality between the Lake and Cook sides.The trail surface in Lake is far superior for most of its length, with fewer trail breaks. Healthy oak forests covered more of the Lake side, although I'd say that the area straddling Lake/Cook border region (from Cahokia Flats north of the Lake/Cook border down to Palatine Rd south of the border) has the largest numbers of massive mature oaks of any sections of the trail. This may be my favorite portion of the trail, and it felt like running through a primordial forest. I wasn't all that crazy about the Prairie sections north of Wadsworth Rd because it didn't provide much cover and, given the openness of the area the trail surface tended to be drier and harder, which was less forgiving on my joints. All the way down to the south quarter of the trail, I could not believe how rutted and uneven the trail surface could get. The underpass under Belmont was a total mud slick and a lot more ankle-turning holes covered the trail south of that section. But some of the habitat further south along the last 10 miles was just as beautiful as a lot of the sections closer to Lake.

All in all, the beauty and excitement of DPRT far outweighed the low points and frustration along some sections, so I plan to run the entire 112 mile loop every Fall from now on.

DPRT: Devon Ave. to Lake Ave.

I rode this portion of the trail with some trepidation after having read other reviews and my own experience with the trail immediately south of this section (North Ave. to Devon). I was pleasantly surprised however to find that it was well maintained and (mostly) easy to follow.

The section through downtown Des Plaines is quite nice, and would be a ideal place to stop for lunch. The underpass at Touhy Ave. - as others have noted - has deteriorated, and I would advise walking your bike through this area. It's still much better than trying to cross Touhy Ave. at street level, however.

The only difficulty I encountered was the railroad crossing in the area called Kloempken Prairie on the route map (north of Golf Rd., south of Central Rd.). As you approach this area several signs indicate "Trail Ends" and "Active Railway." Indeed the path does appear to just dead end at a raised railroad bed with signs stating "Private Property" and "No Trespassing." It's not at all clear what you're supposed to do. When I arrived at this point there were (luckily) no trains in sight, and I simply carried my bike directly across the tracks and found that the trail continued on-wards. Not sure what I would have done if there had been a train parked there.... turn back, I guess.

I left the trail at the Lake Avenue Woods-East area, finding a small path that led to Carol Ln. and then out to Milwaukee Ave. All-in-all it's a pretty nice section of the DPRT, and I'd encourage anyone to try it.

Active railroad crossing north of Golf/crossing Touhy is dangerous

Rode the trail from Dam 4 in Park Ridge north today to just north of Golf Road. Generally a nice trail. Agree some of the trail is not well marked going north and you need to ride in the bike lane of the street for a short section.

Noted some dangerous spots though.

We haven't ridden north in a while (agree south is awful) but recall carrying our bikes over railroad tracks north of Golf Road in Des Plaines the past. A sign says the trails ends - active railroad crossing. (That is not indicated on the traillink map.) Indeed a train was crossing when we got there and we turned around.I recall the trail picked up on the other side of the tracks. Is there some other way to go to avoid the train crossing?

Also, crossing over Touhy Ave., which is not at an intersection, is dangerous. From the south side of the trail, it's hard to see the cars traveling east. The other option is the trail under the bridge at Touhy. This short trail is in very poor condition. One concrete section is uneven and has wide cracks. You might want to walk your bike. At least you don't have to cross Touhy.

South End is awful

I have now ridden the entire trail on a hybrid bike. I live in Libertyville and ride the DPRT 3-4 times per week from about Rte 22 all of the way up to the Wisconsin Line. I've put on over 2500 miles just in Central Lake County on the DPRT and enjoyed every minute of it. Today, I rode all of the way to the south end which terminates at North Avenue in Maywood. The trail is great in Lake County, but pretty much as soon as I got into Cook County, it all went to hell. The only exception was an enjoyable area in Des Plaines where the trail is concrete, well marked and smooth. The Wheeling area is terrible to ride on with large rocks, tree roots, and ruts. I thought it might only be a short section, so I kept going. It is terribly marked, as noted by others, so be prepared to have to look for the trail. Even when you are on it in some areas, you'll think you're on a goat path. The area south of Touhy to the expressway was OK, but then the bridge was out at Cumberland. I'm sure it will be beautiful when done, but the re-route to the west and under the tollway was like off roading. There was one area that I had to walk the bike about 500 yards because of the ruts, mud and overall roughness. Then it got worse as I got south. What a waste of time. I feel like my 35-ish mile ride was like a 70 miler. Don't waste your time going south of Lake Cook Road.

Great Trail -- an Urban Oasis

My wife and I have ridden our hybrid bikes from Lake Cook road to Russell Rd. and absolutely love this trail. Well maintained. This weekend we rode from Russell Road to Wadsworth Rd. and back about 15 miles and loved the views of the wet lands the passes through the mature woods and see three sets of horses with riders out for a ride. Nice variety of scenery. We went out Sunday afternoon and saw only a few other riders. Perfect.

A runner's dream

Lovely trail. It's pretty long and so far I've only run 20 miles of this trail but I love the hills I come across, beautiful views and on Saturday/Sunday mornings you run into alot of runners on the trail. Found a restroom along the way. It also runs into Independence Cove which have bathrooms and water fountains (beautiful place). The only thing is that some of path is under overpasses and sometimes the water is too high to get thru so you just have to turn around. Great trail.

overall a very good trail

I ran 15 miles on this trail this morning and found it to be overall quite good. It is muddy towards the south end, but still passable -- this is after quite a lot of rain in the last few weeks, but only a bit over the past few days. The northern part is less wooded, with some areas along the road and some paved path along the river. This part is not as well marked, and one point (at Campground Road Woods) it was not clear that I should cross the road and continue on the road, because it was not marked. I figured it out eventually, and will know for next time. I was there starting at 7 am on a Sunday, and it was moderately busy -- perfect for me, a woman running along, in that I never felt unsafe because there were plenty of people around, but I also did not feel as if it was too crowded. The biggest downside is that the road sounds are quite loud over a significant part of the trail. Thankfully there are several underpasses in addition to a few road crossings, and I did not have to stop often. Overall I would give it 4/5 stars and definitely plan to come here again because it is easily accessible to me.

There's no trail!

We started at the south end of the trail and managed to go 11 miles in 2 hours because we spent so much time trying to figure out where the trail was, wading through mud, and jumping over trees across the path. This trail wouldn't have been so awful if you could have just see where the d@m thing was. It's real hard to tell mud from more mud in every direction.

southern most tip is NOT suitable for anythig

As most have already pointed put the southern most tip of this trails is craptacular. I am an avid hiker with proper gear and in an effort to avoid the plethora of bicycles that flood area trails (and rightfully so) i thought i would give the less travelled area a try. The only things to be found were lots of mud and unleashed dogs and teenage hooligans. I advise you stay to the far north on the DPRT. All

This is the best trail!

This trail is amazing! It has a some challenges along the course like quick turns,bumps, and sometimes some mud. The scernery is like no other trail I've experienced in Illinois. Nothing like biking along this beautiful river. If I had one complaint it would be the need for an overpass over Dundee. The trail itself is well maintained especially in the Lake County segment. This trail is perfect for a mountain bike!

Mud, mud, and more mud

Be careful if you ride within a week of a rainstorm. I took my daughters for an afternoon ride about a week after we got a big rain. We got about a mile or two North of the Fullerton entrance and wiped out and got stuck in the mud. It was great for mud pies and luckily none of us got hurt, but it could be treacherous. It still was very beautiful, but proceed with caution.

A dream trail right under our noses!

I've lived in the Chicago area my entire life. All this time I've driven around the forest I did twelve miles IN the preserves...WHAT A TREAT! This is a must-do for families and riders alike. Lake County well groomed and engineered. Cook County rougher and more challenging!

Great Trail from Glenview North

I've been on multiple sections of DPR from Glenview north. As others have noted, there are sections that, if it has been raining, can be virtually impassable. On the other hand, the sections from Lincolnshire are uniformly dry; run through really attractive ecosystems; and have underpasses so that riders can avoid the hyper-busy suburban highways.

The only down sides are that there are places where the trail parallels one of the aforementioned high-traffic roads, and the winding nature of the route can lead to close calls with approaching users, especially if one or both of you is moving at a reasonably high speed.

I wouldn't try my road bike on the DPR unless I had a repair kit, but the trail is, with the exception of some short areas of deeper sand, really smooth and an easy ride.

Great Trail But It Could Be Better

Cook county and more specifically the towns and villages where this trail runs through need to get their act in gear. Riding this trail south of Lawrence avenue in Schiller Park is for thrill seekers and off-road fat tire bikers only. The trail north of here to Higgins is hard pack and loose gravel until Higgins Rd. Then the trail heads through Park Ridge. Shame on you Park Ridge! There are portions of this trail that are ride-able only after long dry spells... there is so much mud here during wet seasons. Park Ridge needs to take a cue from Des Plaines of all towns because north of Touhy begins a beautiful stretch of limestone and concrete trails all the way north to Milwaukee avenue. North of Milwaukee you have to exit Allison woods and cross Milwaukee and take Winkelman road for a quarter of a mile. Here is where the trail degenerates into a quagmire of gravel and poorly marked mud trail. It's actually disgraceful and I would not recommend a road bike here. The cities of Mt Prospect and Wheeling should be ashamed of themselves. There is a nice bridge over Willow Road; a sign that maybe the county has plans for the trail south and north of this bridge, but much of it has been neglected for a long period of time. Remarkably there are rideable sections, but again, I would only recommend fat tires and spare tubes on this portion of the trail. Once you cross Lake Cook Road, the good stuff begins. Luckily, most of this trail is actually in Lake County; and they have done a great job making this one long, limestone crushed beauty almost all the way up to the Wisconsin border. You will see some beautiful terrain here and some welcome shady runs through thickets of trees which open up to beautiful wide open prairies. You will cross the river several times on beautiful bridges until you hit Independence Grove which is worth it as a destination all to of itself. It has its own system of bike trails circling what was once an open quarry but is now lush lagoons and greenery. A very nice club house and beach are at the center and the club house serves some overpriced but decent food along with beer to replenish the body. The trail continues on north of Independence Grove in fine fashion. It's a little more challenging with more hilly terrain but the trail is in wonderful shape. It just peters out south of the Wisconsin border. All in all, a very nice ride save for the few blighted spots in Cook County. Hopefully the politicians can scrape up some cash to make this a truly great ride; especially the section between Winkelman and Lake Cook. Go to it pols!!!

FatBike Heaven

First time on the trail, logged about 10mi in on a single gear Fat Tire Bike...from the bottom to Belmont ave. Can't wait to push forward. Saw some Deer even a Buck. Slammed through some awesome flooded muddy tunnels. Wall rides under overpasses, and awesome river and nature scenery.

On the Border

I ride this trail from Russell Rd just over the Illinois border south and I love it! There are horses in some areas, trains, giant 100 year oaks, water ways, bridges, interstate tunnels, plains, lowlands... just about every imaginable terrain and view. I've seen snapping turtles, deer, turkeys...
This is my favorite nearby ride as I live in SE Wisconsin. The trail is gravel, with some occassional minor elevation and plenty of twists and turns.

Best in Lake County

I have logged about 2500 miles on this trail in 2 years and I never get bored of it...going North from Independence Grove there is a slight bit of elevation to push you.

my favorite!

this trail has so much to offer!
one of my favorite bike paths for sure!

Good. various routes and animals

Route condtions vary between which city you are riding in. The Rosemont side is more well kept then the Schiller Park side. None the less there are a ton of deer!

Great trail

Pros: Very scenic, excellent signage, lots of wildlife, quiet. Cons: On a bike, I found it was muddy and hard to push through on road tires after a light rain in November.

Excellent trail

There is always some sort of wildlife on the northern part of this trail. Deer, Turtles, Frogs,very scenic nice trail to ride. Well marked with mile markers every 1/4 mile. There are a couple restrooms along the way not much water unless you venture off the path. Very nice to ride in the Fall colors. I usually bike from Russel road to St Mary's Rd or Route 60 and it is always a nice ride.

Woodland Serenity

I've been riding this trail for years mostly between Foster and Algonquin. Parts are bumpy but overall condition is good. Smaller single track trails off the main run offer more challenges and scenery


We rode our bikes from the north trailhead off of Russell Road all the way to Potawatomi Woods off of Dundee Road. It was wonderful!! The trail is in fantastic shape, the scenery was beautiful and we got lucky with how amazing the weather was. We stopped for lunch halfway down at Independence Grove and felt spoiled by the amazing selection their cafe offers. Nothing like a cold beer after riding. :) I highly recommend this trail!

i love it

Nice trail!! Good for run and ride!!

Tougher Trail, but worth the trip out

We drove up from NW Indiana to ride the Lake County portion of the trail. We parked at Adler Park, which was free parking. If you park at Independence Grove and are not from Lake County, you will have to pay a fee. This portion is very well marked, plenty of benches for resting and very scenic. The trail is definitely suited more for mountain bikes ~ not road bikes. This is probably the dustiest trail we have ridden on, with plenty of loose gravel. Again, thankful we had mountain bikes. We biked 31 miles and I, especially, was exhausted. Lots of hills. It felt like we were taking more breaks than usual.

At the northern end of the trail, there is a lake with a picnic area ~ very beautiful and peaceful.
All in all, we thought the DesPlaines Trail was worth the trip out.

Great signage, views and facilities

First time on this trail in July of 2014. Unbelievable signage - every quarter mile distance signs, many access points so very prevalent trail signs guide you and finally many "you are here" markers to get your bearings.

Multiple forest preserves, parks and restrooms along the trail. I am from Wi and we tend to make fun of our Illinois brethren - toll booths, traffic jams, flat landers, etc but to ride this trail is certaining worth a trip south of the state line!

Thanks Illinois!

Rough Ride But Great Scenes

This trail is relatively close to me and I rode it last week. The scenery is great and the trail puts you in the heart of a forest. The trail is in two counties. Cook County and Lake County. The Cook County portion of the trail is for crossover or mountain bike only. The trail is a narrow dirt and sometimes mud path.Tricycles will have an extremely difficult time in the Cook County portion. The trail follows the Des Planes River very closely. The trail in Cook County also has large gravel as the road bed in certain portions. At the Lake Cook Road overpass you will enter Lake County if going North or Cook County going South. At Lake Cook Road going North (Lake County) The trail becomes crushed lime stone however the bed of limestone is loose and caution should be given. I did note some road bikes on the Lake County portion of the trail but mostly crossover and mountain bikes. There are more hills in this part of the trail and this caused me to tire sooner then I wanted all thought I did the complete 53 miles I also felt every mile of it. The hills are small but what I found difficult is they are very close together and going down never really seemed to be refreshing. This trail your body will feel at the end of your ride. The scenery is spectacular and for that I will give this trail 4 stars. The trail rode bed could use some improvements throughout. The Lake County portion of the trail is very well marked. The southern portion (Cook County) is very difficult to follow as markings are very far and few between. I got on at Winkleman Road (Cook County) and it took me a few moments to find the trail entrance. Should I decide to ride this trail again I will pick it up at or North of Lake Cook Road. Simple trail but I found it more challenging then I wanted. If you are looking for a smooth riding trail this is not for you. Lastly I would recommend picking the trail up no more south then Winklemen Road as any portion of the trail south of that is more stop and go traffic crossing streets,

Over the River and Through the Woods

I just "discovered" this trail last week. (yes I knew there was a trail there but had never ventured onto it. This Trail is for walking, biking, running and horseback riding- as noted by the "droppings" along the trail. I was on my road bike.

I only rode a short distance (Rte 176 to Rte 22 and didn't take any of the side loops. (My parents live off of 22 so it was truly to Grandmother's house!) This trail winds its way through woods, lagoons, forest preserves, picnic areas and the like. The views are scenic and I wish I had brought my pocket camera. At times you feel as if you are in the wilderness- Then you look into the far distance and see houses or commercial buildings or hear the road traffic. Still it is a nice escape.

While it had been pretty wet here lately the trail was in good shape. Note that since you are riding next to the river there may be flooding over the trail. The Rte 60 underpasss was closed but the water was only about 6-8" so I grabbed on to the railing and pulled my way across. The only criticism is that maybe given the closures along the route they should put a stair access at those points or tell users of an alternate route to get around the closures, as I'm pretty sure these occur at the same spots all the time.

The trail really winds at this point so fast paced riding will lead to your ending up in the woods on some of the unviewable hard angle turns if you go to fast. As well the trial is very soft or sandy or thick gravely in many spots so it wasn't great for a road bike. (Would be well suited to a hybrid, mouontain or wider tire bike.) Still traversible with a road bike thoung not great-but if your looking for the view/scenery it is worth it.

Love the Des Plaines River Trail

This is a great trail to ride. Cook county provides hidden unpaved trails(packed dirt) that weave through the city and suburbs. Great scenic river views. The lake county portion is crushed limestone and the scenery is breathtaking with lush vegetation, wildlife, streams and dams and great bridges. It is a very relaxing ride or you can go for speed, if that's your thing. I do the whole trail from Elmwood Park all the way up to the Wisconsin border every year and make a 2 day trip of it.

I love the Southern Portion when it's dry

I found this trail near my house, and I admit that early in the season - or as long as there are steady rains - the southern portion is a tough ride for any but the hardiest mountain bikers. I ride a mountain bike with hybrid treads.

Also, admittedly, the beginning portion of the trail near North avenue is not well-marked. If coming in at the park across from Menards: Enter the woods on the large path where the road curves, turn left on the small path before the river, and in a hundred feet there will be a bridge across the river on your left. YOU'RE THERE!

I like the ups and downs - although the major hill by Grand Ave. can be circumvented if you are crossing there. Just take the trail to the left before coming to Grand.

Nevertheless, when this trail is dry, it is an incredible escape from the city. Sure, the occasional idiot on a gas-powered mini-bike comes along. It's the city. But there's adventure on those trails - though I've yet to cross paths with anyone sketchy. Lots of walkers when the season is high and dry.

Don't deny yourself the fun. Unless you must have a paved trail because you are an entitled suburbanite or otherwise infirm.

Des Plaines River Trail

Did the trail today, my first in 10yrs., kind of tricky to find but I think worth a try: I started in River Grove and ended up loving a 4 and a half hour ride. Try it you just may like it.

Beautiful nature trail in urban environment

We had a beautiful Labor Day bike ride on the trail, from Campground Road in Des Plaines north to Potowatomi Park in Wheeling. The trail was in good shape (although not paved). A few bumps and sandy spots, but generally easy and level. If going with kids, be aware of a few busy street crossings along the way. Crossing Milwaukee Ave. near the Hilton can be especially tricky, and the trail connection is not well marked (you have to go about 1/4 mile north of Milwaukee Ave. to find the trail again on your left. Lots of forested trail, winding near the river, and a few patches of prairie. Several forest preserve parks along the way if you want to stop for a picnic or a rest. It's a great ride for recreational bikers; we're looking forward to returning.

Great Trail

I wish the Horse manure was cleaned up by owners! I love riding this trail other than the landmines! Not too flat some hills and I always see deer along the path. This is a good ride even when it is hot and sunny out, a lot of it is through woods with shade. I ride from Russel Rd south to Rt22 and really enjoy it!

Leave road bikes home

Ride this trail often starting at east river and central.Curvy and hilly two hands on your grips.You have to pay attention to the path.Good workout and not crowded.Not a la dee da path.Great scenery and quiet.For trail and mountain bikes.

worst trail ever, far south end at least

I picked up the trail from the far south end off of North Ave. in Elmwood Park and rode it to Grand Ave. in River Grove where I gave up. This would be a good trail for a horse not a bike. It was pretty much a mud/river path, unrideable at certain points because the river had swamped the path. At one point it seemed some beavers made a dam across the path. Even if it was dry it is still a mud path here and not even limestone. I had an impossible time finding where the path even started (no markers) and when I asked a worker he just pointed and mumbled something. Turns out I was already on it! I couldn't tell though because it was so horrible. At Grand Ave. the trail takes a steep dive off of the road. How would an older person ever ride this trail? I'm 32 and I ride a cyclocross bike. A wasted ride when I could have done the Prairie Path or Salt Creek trail. It was a joke, it really gets 0 stars for the portion I rode. I wondered why I saw no one else riding it for the first 100 yards or so and now it is quite clear.

Great trail with something for everyone

A beautiful, meandering, trail composed mostly of crushed limestone. While the trail is deep into suburbia, there are sections of the trail that are so sheltered you would think you're miles from civilization. Ten minutes later, you're crossing under a major road or are able to see someone's back yard. It's really the best of all worlds. The farther north you go, the less populated the area becomes. The hilliest area, is just north of route 137 and south of route 120. In this part of Illinois a hill is anything that isn't flat as a pancake. For those of you that have real hills in your area, you'll laugh at my description of "hilly".

Check out the trail map and locate Independence Grove. It's just off Route 137. A former rock quarry has been transformed into rolling green hillsides, lakes and a 2 to 3 mile paved path that skirts the outside edge of Independence Grove. If you're riding your bike from the trail and happen to stop off at this beautiful gem, it's free.

If you're driving into Independence Grove:

Free for Lake County Illinois residents; $5 per car for nonresidents Mon–Thu, $10 per car Fri, Sat, Sun and holidays.

Lake County residents can purchase a vehicle window sticker to bypass stopping to show the required proof of county residency on each visit. Just point out your sticker to the gate attendant and they'll wave you through. The sticker is good for the life of the vehicle's window and is non-transferrable. Fee is $5 and available for purchase at the Visitors Center.

The northern most section of trail from Wadsworth Rd north to the Wisconsin state line is the rockiest. No other section south of Wadsworth road could be described as rocky. The crushed limestone surface is easy to ride for those with cross bikes, hybrid bikes, mountain bikes and anything with tires wider than 1 1/2 inches. Road bikes are also fine as long as the trail is well packed. Occasionally after a big storm, there will be gulleys 4-8" wide where the packed limestone has been sculpted by the rain. This results in some soft sand like sections that can be difficult to get through unless you're either strong and can power through the section (maybe 20 - 40 feet) or are willing to just get off your bike and walk it through the area for 20 seconds. By the way, I ride my road bike with 22 mm wide (less than an inch) tires all the time. I just learned to power through the soft stuff when I see it.

I love Independence Grove. While you're on the trail, you'll merge right onto the paved ring path around the grove and stay on it for maybe a quarter of a mile before you have the option to get back on the trail. There are nice, clean picnic shelters and a bathroom right off the trail. If you're coming off the trail, look for the closest picnic shelter (it's fairly large with a fireplace if I remember correctly). Right across from the shelter is the bathroom. Nothing fancy, but there is a drinking fountain right outside the bathroom that you can use to fill up your water bottles if needed.

If you happen to be on the trail and are looking for somewhere to eat (again nothing fancy, just fast food) find the intersection of the trail and Route 176. There is a Culver's just west of the intersection, right off the trail. It's literally a 3 min ride from the intersection to Culver's.

South of Route 60 as you approach Route 22 (half day road) you'll find yourself suddenly thrust into some major cross roads in suburbia. Once you've hit Route 22 (half day road) you're not far from the Lincolnshire Marriott Resort.

I have attempted to go past the Lincolnshire Marriott but there is an unfinished section south of the resort that it a little bit of a pain to get around, so I haven't done it.

Great trail, check it out.
One of the best urban/suburban trails I've ever ridden.

Beautiful Forest Trail

The trail has a little bit of everything. Some sections go through prairie, others through forests and still others travel next to the river. The trail is relatively flat, making it an excellent trail for biking, running, or horseback riding.

Des Plaines is one of the best

Des Plaines is cleary what the title says one of the best trails to ride on. I would recommend you start at the very beginning and the Van Patten Woods. It starts just a little bit past the Canoe launch area so just keeping going past it and you'll see the bike entrance. It's a very beautiful scenic ride and very photogenic trail and it's very relaxing and enjoyable. Plenty of resting and shady areas and lakes and ponds and plenty of wildlife to enjoy and it's all well taken care of through out the year and safe to ride on. I must address this and please do watch out for horse droppings that may still be festering on the trail that haven't been picked up yet as you don't want to ride through that yuck! Other than that the trail is one of the best ones to ride on for bikers of all levels. It's also good for jogging/running, and the occasionaly horse back. Please watch out for horses and approach them with caution so you don't spook them.

Independence Grove is my favorite place to finally get to when riding through the trail as it's always full of life and energy. It's full of friendly people and activity and a great resting stop as it has a nice little cafe for any hunger or thirsty needs you may get. The trail goes around the little lake they have there and connects with other trails just like through out des plaines you can find connecting trails and I recommend exploring them all when you have the time it's quite the memorable journey.

It's also really neat riding through the Rollin savanna area and you can see how far the trail goes up ahead and your out in the open. It's nice and enjoyable to ride through there and that's the one part your out in the open and the sun can really beat down on ya on a hot day when riding through that part so have plenty of sunscreen with you.

You don't have to worry about traffic as you either go over or under any major roadways, but make sure the trails are open as it can get flooded easily during heavy rainfall or days of rain which can cause parts of the trails to be closed until it goes down. They have a website you can visit for any more info concerning the Des Plaines trail it's easy to find on the web.

It's flat, crushed stone, asphalt, and well sort of hilly, but not really. It's a great place to ride and explore it's one of the nicest, relaxing, enjoyable, well taken care of trails to vist and ride through. The MacArthur Woods is also another great spot to ride through.

The Millenium Trail is a connecting trail and is worth checking out as well and run to ride.

Make sure you bring a camera if your a photography biker so you have plenty of memories of the ride and of the family as the trail provides alot of diversity and great views and scenery and photo ops. Just so many sights to see and check out along the way on the trail.

The whole trail is a great ride and worth the trip and experience as I ride through/ on it at least 5-10 times each summer.

Also please stay in a single file line when riding so you don't cause any accidents with any oncoming bikers from the opposite direction and there are many bikers on it and some of them ride pretty fast and come out out of nowhere and it wouldn't be fun to get runover or collide with any of them so listen to the signs they have up and ride single fine. Don't ride side by side cause it's no fun to end a bike trip in the hospital so please be aware of everything going on and ride safe.

The trail is perfect for everyone to enjoy. Happy riding everyone!

Very nice ride

I've ridden this trail twice in the last year and both times were very nice, most recently a week ago. The trail is crushed gravel and in good condition most of the way. The first time there were a couple of muddy spots but this last time (in mid-July) the riding conditions were good the whole way (except for one brief detour). Both times we started at Half Day Forest Preserve and rode north, turning around about 5 miles short of the trail's northern end for a ride of about 50 miles. Macarthur Woods has a nice little lake and with water and toilets also available makes a nice spot for a break. There's some more or less gentle ups and downs and lots of curves and although most of the trail is in the woods there are a couple of nice prairie sections. There are relatively few road crossings. I like coming out of the woods near the Washington road underpass and seeing the roller coasters at Six Flags.

Des Plaines Trail

"Started at 1/2 Day road went about 15 miles north and back . I thought it was scenic and enjoyed its diversity. It was well maintained and was well traveled by bikers,walkers,joggers, and horses. "

Great Trail!

"I have been using this trail to run on for about two years, and I think it is a great trail. The surface is usually finely-crushed gravel that is very even and well maintained. The trail winds through several parks and forest preserves, and as such there are ample facilities and parking.

Street-crossings have been well thought out with only a few thoroughfares to cross, at which there are marked crosswalks. The appeal of this trail is the diverse areas through which it passes. There are areas where you will have fellow trail users, and other areas where you will enjoy the solitude. And distance is clearly delineated for runners who may want to pace themselves.

For its beauty, diversity and serenity, I give this trail the ranking of great trail!"

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