Are you looking for something active and outdoors that you and the whole family can enjoy together? Enjoy some late summer days and early fall colors while exploring some fun hiking trails by participating in Lake County Forest Preserve Districts Hike Lake County program.. The hiking trails range from a little over one mile to a little over three miles so you can pick the one that best fits the abilities of your family. The trails are located all over Lake County and give you and your family a chance to enjoy nature, get some exercise, and spend time together while admiring all the beauty that the Lake County forest preserves have to offer.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Check out the list of hike locations here and pick seven hikes you want to do. Download a travel log four main galleries and when you have completed the hikes record them in the log. If you finish seven of the hikes between now and November 30th, you can submit your travel log online and earn a commemorative badge for your hiking stick. Where to get a hiking stick? You can buy one for just $10 at any of the Hike Lake County Centers(except for Independence Grove).
When you arrive at your hiking location, follow the “Hike Lake County” signs posted all over the area directing you to the start of the trail and throughout the trail as well. These are very helpful to keep you on the right path. They are very visible and easy to find, and can make your experience easier, especially since the kids will love finding all of the signs.
CHILD FRIENDLY/PET FRIENDLY
If you have young children that want to walk the trail, your best bet might be to pick some of the shorter hikes, but most of the trails are crushed limestone so they are stroller friendly too. Some of the trails have parks in the preserve as well and can be enjoyed for more family fun and used to reward the kids for a hike well done!
The hiking trails are pet friendly as well, and your canine companion can even participate in the Hike Lake County Challenge to earn his own reward! Put your pet’s name on the Travel Log and if your pet completes the hikes with you, and they can earn a commemorative dog tag (up to three dogs)!
You can download the Hike Lake County mobile app to your smart phone and take part in a Scavenger Hunt with the kids. Use your phone to scan QR codes on signs throughout the hikes to unlock secret content and clues. You can try to spot a keyword on the hike and uncover fun facts about the forest preserve. If you are able to log seven keywords into your travel log when you submit it, you can enter for a chance to win a Full Moon Night Hike for you and ten friends at the preserve of your choice.
COME AND EXPERIENCE IT FOR YOURSELF
Taking my 7, 5, and 2 year old on the hike seemed daunting at first, but proved to be a very fun experience. We chose the Heron Creek Trailin Long Grove being that it was only 1.2 miles and it was plenty for my 2 year old who walked the whole trail sans stroller. We enjoyed all the beautiful trees and colorful flowers. The kids loved the three bridges we crossed and the wide paths they could run, hop, skip and jump on. It even began to rain and the kids didn’t mind. It was all part of the experience. Of course they loved the amazing playground that they were rewarded with after the hike the most.
Come out with the family and enjoy some of these beautiful hikes! If you have tried out any of the other hiking trails, feel free to leave a comment below telling us about your experience! Have fun hiking!