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Des Plaines River Trail:Old School to Lake-Cook County Line

Complete and detailed guide of the Des Plaines River Trail and Greenway from the Old School Preserve to Lake-Cook Road.
id_2837047
Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Length: 11.7 miles
Duration: 1-3 hours
Family Friendly

Overview:  The Des Plaines River Trail and Greenway traverses Lake County, Illinois, North to South, over 31 miles as it winds it's way along the... more »

Tips:  The Des Plaines River Trail on the shores of the Des Plaines River, is susceptible to flooding during or immediately after periods of ... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Old School Forest Preserve Trailhead

Trailhead with parking, water, and restrooms inside the Old School Forest Preserve.

The Old School Forest Preserve offers miles of trails, great bass fishing, secluded picnic spots, and trail access in the heart of Lake County.

2. Outer Loop Trail Split

The Outer Loop Trail splits off to the left. The Outer Loop Trail travels around Old School Forest Preserve in a 2.6 mile loop.

The Des Plaines River Trail continues to the right.

3. Old School Road

The trail crosses Old School Road and railroad tracks.

4. St. Mary's Road Tunnel

The trail goes through a tunnel under St. Mary's Road and into MacArthur Woods on the other side.

There is no access to St. Mary's Road.

5. St. Mary's Road/Townline Road (Route 60) Access Spur

6. Townline Road (Route 60) Underpass

The trail ducks under Townline Road (Route 60) with this underpass.

CAUTION! Underpasses and the adjacent trail may be submerged by the rising river during and immediately after wet weather.

7. Townline Road (Route 60) Trailhead

A pedestrian bridge over the Des Plaines River preceeds the Townoline Road (Route 60) Trailhead.

This trailhead off of Townline Road (Route 60) offers trail access as well as parking and a canoe launch.

8. Wright Woods Pedestrian Bridge

A pedestrian bridge leads over the Des Plaines River and into Wright Woods Forest Preserve.

Wright Woods Forest Preserve is a peaceful oasis among the bustling suburbs and offers some of southern Lake County's most scenic outdoor recreation opportunities.

Wright Woods has four miles of trail: a short loop for hikers, bicyclists and skiers that... More

9. Yellow Trail Intersection

The trail intersects the Yellow trail of Wright Woods. The Yellow trail is a 2.7 mile loop arounds Wright Woods.

The Yellow trail joins the Des Plaines River Trail for 0.2 miles before is splits off further south.

10. Red Trail Intersection

The trail intersects the Red trail- a 1.5 mile trail that connects both Wright Woods and Half Day Forest Preserves.

The Red Trail follows the Des Plaines River Trail over a pedestrian bridge spanning the Des Plaines River and into Half Day Forest Preserve before splitting off 0.4 miles down the trail.

11. Half Day Pedestrian Bridge

A pedestrian bridge spanning across the Des Plaines River connects both Half Day and Wright Woods Forest Preserves.

Half Day forest preserve offers hiking trails, a small pond, parking, and a playground.

12. Half Day Trailhead

Half Day trailhead offers trail access as well as restrooms, water, playground, pond, trials, and parking.

13. Half Day Trailside Restrooms

Some restrooms and a water fountain are convienently located immediately adjacent to the trail.

14. Green Trail Intersection

The trail is joined by the Green Trail-a 0.4 mile trail which loops around a small pond.

15. Green Trail Split

The Green Trail splits off to the right.

The Des Plaines River Trail continues to the left.

16. Brown Trail Intersection

A small boardwalk connects to the 0.6 mile grass Brown trail.

17. Lincolnshire Path Access Spur

A short spur connects to the Lincolnshire Path running along side Half Day Road.

18. Half Day Road

The trail crosses Half Day Road.

19. Lincolnshire Pedestrian Bridge

20. Marriott Drive

The trail crosses Marriot Drive leading into the Marriot Lincolnshire.

21. Rivershire Lane

The trail crosses Rivershire Lane.

22. Riverside Road

The trail terminates into Riverside Road, but continues south a few hundred feet further west down Riverside Road.

23. Des Plaines River Trail

The trail continues south off Riverside Road.

24. Des Plaines River Trial Bypass

25. Milwaukee Ave. (Route 21/Hwy. 45) Crossing

The Des Plaines River Trail crossed Milwaukee Ave. before turning south.

You'll need to carefully cross Milwaukee Ave. to the Cubby Bear North. The Des Plaines River Trailhead is behind the Cubby Bear North and parking lot.

The Des Plaines River Trail continues south. Some parking is available.

28. Estonian Lane Access Spur

A short spur leads to Estonian Lane.

29. Deerfield Road Underpass

The trail ducks under Deerfield Road with this underpass.

CAUTION! Underpasses and the adjacent trail may be submerged by the rising river during and immediately after wet weather.

30. Deerfield Road Access Spur

A short spur leads to Deerfield Road.

31. Pedestrian Bridge

Pedestrian bridge crosses over a creek.

32. Riverwalk Place Access Spur

A short spur leads to the Riverwalk Place complex.

33. Pedestrian Bridge

Pedestrian bridge over the Des Plaines River Trail.

34. Lake-Cook Road Pedestrian Bridge

A large pedestrian bridge straddles the county line over Lake-Cook. This is the southern terminus of this guide.

The Des Plaines River Trail continues into Cook County on the other side.

35. Lincolnshire Path Access

This shore spur trail off the Lincolnshire Path leads to the Des Plaines River Trail.

36. Wright Woods Trailhead

37. Townline Road (Route 60)/St. Mary's Road Access

A short spur trail lead from the Northwest corner of the intersection of Townline Road and St. Mary's Road to the Des Plaines River Trail in MacArthur Woods.

38. Estonian Lane Access

A short spur trail provides access to the Des Plaines River Trail.

39. Wright Woods Forest Preserve Entrance

Wright Woods Forest Preserve is a peaceful oasis among the bustling suburbs and offers some of southern Lake County's most scenic outdoor recreation opportunities.

Wright Woods has four miles of trail: a short loop for hikers, bicyclists and skiers that circles a pond, and a 3-mile loop for hikers, bicyclists, skiers and horses. A... More

40. Riverwalk Place Access

A short spur provides access to the Des Plaines River Trail.

41. Half Day Forest Preserve Entrance

42. Deerfield Road Access