Giant City State Park

The number of beautiful hiking spots in Southern Illinois still baffles me. Not only is there Shawnee National Forest, but there is also Giant City State Park, Ferne Clyffe State Park, Cache River State Natural Area, Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge, the list goes on. Sufficient to say, I have a lot more exploring to…

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Shawnee National Forest

I spent Memorial Day Weekend (2018) hiking at Shawnee National Forest with members of Women Who Hike – Illinois. It was great making new friends and knocking hikes off my Bucket List! Shawnee National Forest encompasses 280,000 acres of land in the southern tip of Illinois. It protects a wide variety of geological features you…

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Rock Cut State Park

Even though the temperature was not expected to rise above 30 degrees, it was windy, and the sun was hiding, Lizzie and I were in need of an adventure and decided to explore Pierce Lake Trail at Rock Cut State Park. Rock Cut State Park is located in northern Illinois about an hour and a…

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Moraine Hills State Park

The same weekend that Lizzie and I visited Volo Bog State Natural Area, we also visited Moraine Hills State Park. It is characterized by a 48-acre lake and hills that were created by receding glaciers 15,500 years ago. We hiked the 3.7 mile Lake Defiance Trail. Half the lake is surrounded by trees. It was…

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Volo Bog State Natural Area

When Lizzie and I were researching new places to hike we stumbled upon Volo Bog State Natural Area. It is an Illinois Nature Preserve and a National Natural Landmark. Volo Bog is the only quaking bog in the state of Illinois. Not being geology majors, we had to Google what a quaking bog is –…

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Starved Rock State Park

Starved Rock State Park was voted the #1 attraction in the state of Illinois and you can definitely tell why once you’ve been there. I love how all of the hiking trails in the park are connected to each other so you can pick a starting point and hike as much or as little as…

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Matthiessen State Park

Matthiessen State Park is located near Utica and Oglesby, Illinois close to Starved Rock State Park. Frederick Williams Matthiessen developed the park for his personal use and after his death it was donated to the state of Illinois. I bet he would be happy to know that not only do many people enjoy his park,…

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