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Leave No Family Inside! Fall Walks in the Forest Preserves in October

Leave No Family Inside! Fall Walks in the Forest Preserves in October


Families and individuals are invited to discover fall fun in the forest preserves by attending a series of free guided walks at various preserves. The easy to moderate hikes will be geared for all ages and lead by volunteer experts who will point out and educate about the plants, animals and seasonal transitions in our local natural communities. Wear comfortable walking shoes. Please pre-register for hikes by calling 815-877-6100. 

Sunday, October 6     1:00 – 2:30 pm      

Watershed Wonder at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve, 5360 Mulford Road, Cherry Valley   

Led by environmental educator, Katie Townsend. As we wander the paved recreational path the focus will be on our one of our local waterways, the Kishwaukee River. The hike will also point out features about the landscape, plants, animals and people groups that lived adjacent to the water. Will include something for children and adults alike. From natural history to nature games it will be a lively exploration in one of our “wanderful” forest preserves. This hike will be primarily on a paved recreational path so children in strollers or individuals in wheelchairs can participate in this hike. Location: Blackhawk Springs (Mulford Rd) Meet @ the last Parking Lot by Indian Hills Shelter.

 Sunday, October 13   1:00 – 2:30 pm  

Creating A Haven for Wildlife at Deer Run Forest Preserve, 5691 River Road, Cherry Valley 

            Learn about the plants and animals that flourish in the restored prairie, wetlands and woods. Hike leader Ed Cope, of the WCFPD staff, was one of the people who helped transform Deer Run into the high-quality natural habitat that it is today.  The route will travel through the restored prairies and around the wooded loop.  Terrain will be mostly flat, grass trail, easy to moderate hiking.               Location: Meet in the main lot off River Road near the river.

Sunday, October 20    1:00-2:30 pm

Nature Gets Ready for Winter at Kieselburg Forest Preserve, 5801 Swanson Road, Roscoe

Bring the family out to find what happens when the green fades, the insects disappear and we bid farewell to the flowers. Naturalist Rick Barton from Natural Land Institute will lead this hike to explore nature at the turn of the season. We will walk the easy trail around the sedge meadow and prairie restoration to find signs of what happens to plants and insects in the winter. Easy grassy trail but if wet, bring boots. Location: Meet at Redcedar Ridge Shelter

Sunday, October 27   1:00 – 2:30 pm                                                                                        Ridges and Rivers at Kishwaukee Gorge (north) Forest Preserve, 4643 Blackhawk Road, Cherry Valley

Environmental educator, Katie Townsend, will lead this exploration of ridges, gorge, forests and prairies. There will be basic information on geology and the micro-environments created by the gorge. Impressive views of the Kishwaukee River are guaranteed! To protect the landscape from erosion and create a safe experience the hike will only be on established trails on the ridges. There will be exploration at various levels making this a family centered activity.   Moderate hiking, some climbing of steps and inclines. Location: Kishwaukee Gorge North (Blackhawk Rd). Last parking lot by the outhouse!!