Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Great Outdoors Activities in Chicago for Runners, Hikers, and Bikers

Since most of the following post is about things to do on land, I had to sneak in a boating video!

Grant Park Loop

If this is your first time visiting Chicago, you would want to explore the city just a little bit more out from the ordinary. The Giant Park Loop is a perfect destination for you to see the city from a different perspective of a tourist. The 4-mile paved trail is located in downtown Chicago and is the site of the famous Chicago Marathon. If you don’t feel like running, you can just lounge around the Grand Park and visit some of the popular attraction near the area like the Buckingham Fountain and Art Institute of Chicago.

Lakefront Trail

The Lakefront Trail is an 18-mile long that stretches along the shore of Lake Michigan. It runs along from Lincoln Park in Kathy Osterman Beach to the South Shore Cultural Center. The trail is a great way to spend those running legs while still getting the full view of the city’s skyline. It passes some of the famous tourist destinations like Grant Park and Navy Pier. Also, the Lakefront Trail offers not just a scenic view but mile markers and drinking fountains as well.

Des Plaines River Trail

If you really love nature then head on to Des Plaines River Trail.  The 55-mile gravel trail is one of the longest tracks in the Chicago area. It runs along the Wisconsin border and the southern part is located at the O’Hare International Airport. However, the trail can sometimes be flooded with water usually spring time but it most days it’s the best way to explore nature and Chicago’s wetland without running too much away from the civilization.

Great Western Trail

This 17-mile gravel trail follows an old deserted railroad from the western part of Sycamore to the LeRoy Oakes Forest Preserve.  Most of the landscapes are crushed limestone but once you reach the wetlands of Kane Counties and DeKalb you will encounter wetlands in there. Once you start running or biking, watch out for great blue herons that may come your way.

Palos Trail System in Palos Forest Preserve

Calling all hardcore runners! The Palos Trail System in Palos Forest Preserve is looking for a challenger to tackle its unpaved trails and swelling terrain of wetlands, and secluded ravines. Anyone who needs extra training to master those Ironman skills is welcome to run in the Palos Trail System. To experience the trail head on to Pulaski Woods parking lot to get a warm up from several of its routes. Just be careful as most of the routes can only accommodate singer track, be a lookout for mountain bikers and other creatures on the road.

Fox River Trail

Well, if the above trail bores you then try to experience the Fox River Trail. This 40-miles paved trail is perfect for runners who want to run in rushing water. This trail runs along from the south of Algonquin to Oswego. Bikers will enjoy the scenery but the track is made for ultra-runners who are up for the challenge of running into the earthy sometimes muddy trail. You can reach Fox River in different Metro stations.

Want to commemorate your trip to Chicago? How about buying a Nautical Wood Chart Of The Chicago Shoreline! 
Chicago Shoreline 3-D Nautical Wood Chart 13.5 x 31