Waterfall Glen

#1 of 1 trails in Holly Park

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Waterfall Glen is a 9.4 mile loop trail located near Lemont, Illinois that features a waterfall. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from April until October.

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2 Completed 2 Reviews

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The Main Trail is a loop surrounding Argonne National Lab, so the map associated with this entry is not even half of the full trail available!
The trail is primarily crushed limestone and, generally, very wide. There are a good number of elevation shifts, but nothing particularly taxing. On Memorial Day, there was quite a bit of traffic.
There are many maps and posters throughout to let you know where you are. There are a couple tricky spots where more signs would be useful when melding with the roads leading from Argonne as well as electric access roads.
There is a bit of fun single track around the waterfall. :)
I need to knock off a couple stars due to all of the road crossings. The crossings are uncontrolled and, generally, not a problem; however, there are a couple roads with heavier usage where drivers are clearly not following the posted speed limits and I felt like I was pushed into a game of Frogger.

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6 Completed 6 Reviews

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1 Completed 1 Reviews

very good spot to bike, specially mountain biking. the path isnt pavement but small rocks. 9.4 is the perfect distance.
if that is ur first time, u may get lost but there are maps of the park everywhere. keep track of your steps.
u can also find small snakes. my husband and i passed by 2 snakes crossing the path. one actually tried bitting him.
overall...great place to exercise outdoors.

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7 Completed 2 Reviews

The trail was OK. it's a all gravel trail with a few hills. I did do the entire trail, but accidentally hit finish on the app with about 2.5 miles to go. I like swallow off of 104th & Cal Sag...it's a little more challenging with steeper hills.

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2 Completed 2 Reviews

Not a bad place for a good run or bike ride walking was a bit difficult in areas but we loved the area will be taking our bikes there soon

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1 Completed 1 Reviews

This was my first hike since moving to Chicago and I was really pleased! A couple friends and I hiked the main gravel trail about 3 mi to the waterfall area, and then were blown away by what greeted us. If you are one for adventure over fitness, then skip the gravel trail altogether, park near the waterfall and hike along the creek. There was about a half mile of trail along the creek we explored but I'm sure there are more single-track trails back there. Beautiful and convenient from the city, I'll be back here for sure. Four stars because of the crowd we encountered, and the monotonous gravel.

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1 Completed 1 Reviews

Great place to walk... there are gravel trails you can stay on or you can venture off into the woods. Love the waterfall area! do not use the map/directions from here though. you will end up on Janet street at someone's house!

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3 Completed 2 Reviews

A great diverse hike in the suburbs. A great training spot; there were many people with backpacks on the trail this weekend. I think this would make for a better bike ride than nice hike. We also ran into many places of flooded out trails after all the rain we've been having and had to turn around 3.5 miles around the loop.

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11 Completed 7 Reviews

What a great place, save for the D.O.E. area in the middle of it...

Me and the pups easily spent all day here hiking the main trail (9.5 miles) and then hitting up the side trails that run along Sawmill Creek and the falls.

I already put this as a tip but, just in case -
If you just want to see the waterfall, keep driving down Cass 'till you hit Bluff Rd. You can park at the Waterfall Glen Outdoor Education Center. It's only a short hike from there.

The main loop is crushed gravel and is geared towards runners, bikers and walkers. It's not a difficult trek, elevation changes are easy and most are gentle inclines, there are a few steeper ones but, it's nothing you can't handle even if you've never hiked a day in your life. There are also benches every so often where you can rest up, have a snack and hydrate.

There are Information Centers and Restrooms at the parking areas/entrance. The Information Center has a box filled with maps, visitor guides and park information pamphlets. Cool reading material to take with you on the trail. The restrooms were pretty smelly and I came in dead winter... wonder what they're like in the heat of summer... still, as Ian Malcolm would say "When you gotta go, you gotta go"
Information Center

At the Northgate Rd. entrance is also a large fire pit with wooden benches that can be used... looks like it's be a lot of fun if you've got a small - medium size group of hikers.

Along the main loop are side trails -
Kettle Hole - 0.9 miles
Tear Thumb - 1.1 miles
Rocky Glen - 0.2 miles

I checked out 'Tear Thumb' - It's a grass trail that's really easy to walk but, I'm not a fan of it. Mainly because the only thing you see is fence with "No Trespassing... D.O.E." signs and D.O.E. buildings on your right side.

Once you get to the falls then you can find the REAL side trails - the no-name ones, the ones where your boots get dirty and you have to duck under hanging vines or climb over fallen tree limbs... THIS is where it's at for me.
Just south of the falls as you walk along the creek path, there are more fire pits - these are OLD and made of stone. I'm particularly fond of the outdoor fireplace there.
Pass the two fire pits and veer towards the creek, you'll find a tiny little trail that runs right along the edge of the creek, it's beautiful even in winter. There are lots of little spots where you can sit (in the dirt) and just see and hear the water flowing over the rocks... loved it.

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