Trails are open daily Sunrise to Sunset. Parking lots and trails are subject to seasonal and weather-related closures.
Find a trail close to home on our Find a Site page!
The Prairie Trail
The H.U.M. Trail
Overnight Cyclist Camping
The Prairie Trail 25.5 mile trail | Trail Map
Prairie Trail Construction Notice: The Trail section between Route 120 and McCullum Lake Road, within the City of McHenry is scheduled for resurfacing over the next few weeks (Tentatively closed through 9/12). During this time there will be periods where the trail will need to be closed. CHECK BACK FOR UPDATES. The project also includes several intersections/road crossing will also get safety/ADA updates, + new signage including a kiosk and a new amenity – bike repair station. This project was awarded the IDNR RTP Grant and the Community Foundation for McHenry County (CFMC) 2021 Mission Grant.
The Prairie Trail travels from the Kane County border on the south to just short of the Wisconsin State Line to the north, connecting eight McHenry County communities along the way allowing a safe and convenient means of travel sunrise to sunset. Because of its length, travels along the multi-use Prairie Trail come in close proximity to numerous shops and businesses, allowing cyclists to bike to work, run errands, or just go out to eat or for an ice cream treat. The trail takes cyclists through prairie, woodlands, alongside residential areas and passes through many scenic areas including Glacial Park, Larsen Prairie, Sterne’s Woods, the Diverse City Prairie and over the Fox River.
In addition, the Prairie Trail provides access to nearly 100 miles of trails; Hebron Trail links on the north end for a 6.3 mile stretch westward through North Branch Conservation Area; Ridgefield Trace links in Crystal Lake by Veteran Acres Park and extends west to Woodstock; and Kane County’s Fox River Trail links to the south. The Prairie Trail exists on the former Chicago and Northwestern railroad line.
Prairie Trail North
Village of McHenry - to North Branch Conservation Area
8.5 miles of trail
This unpaved section runs between the Village of McHenry northbound thru Richmond and westbound along the Hebron Trail. The trail is shared by horseback riders in warmer months and snowmobilers during the winter. Site users can intersect the trail at numerous points as well as park and ride from Hillside Road Lot, at Peterson Park in McHenry, or at Glacial Park Harts Road Parking Lot in Ringwood.
Prairie Trail South
Algonquin - Village of McHenry
17 miles of trail
This paved section which runs from the county line in Algonquin to the Village of McHenry for a 17 mile stretch. This trail provides recreational opportunities for pedestrians, bicyclists, and rollerbladers. Trail users should note that while most of the trail is relatively flat, the section between Lorraine Avenue and Hillside Road in Crystal Lake (through Sterne’s Woods) is quite hilly. Site users can intersect the trail at numerous points as well as park and ride from Meyer Road parking lot in Algonquin, along Main Street or at the Hillside Road lot in Crystal Lake, and at Whispering Oak Park or Peterson Park in McHenry.
West (Church St to Lange Rd): 2 miles
East (Keystone Rd to Lange Rd): 2.5 miles
Trail Link through North Branch: 1.5 miles
The Hebron Trail connects to the Prairie Trail through North Branch Conservation Area near Richmond on the east, and on the west travels from Lange Road through Hebron to Church Street. The trail travels along oak savanna, sedge meadow, and over the winding banks of Nippersink Creek. The trail takes a quiet route through rural farmland, open meadows and past the wetland complex of Goose Lake Conservation Area.
The Hebron Trail was built on the former Kenosha Division Railroad that carried passengers, mail and freight from Kenosha, WI to Rockford, IL. The K.D. line ran from 1860 until its final voyage in 1939.
Parking Access: Park at the North Branch Conservation Area, 11500 North Keystone Road in Richmond or the Hebron Township parking lot near Seaman Road and the Hebron Trail Intersection (approximate address is 10207 Seaman Road, Hebron).
The H.U.M. (Huntley-Union-Marengo) Trail
3.2 mile trail | Trail Map
The Huntley-Union-Marengo trail currently runs from East Street in Marengo to Vine Street in Union. This 3.2 mile paved, multi-use trail provides a recreational amenity for local bikers, strollers, runners and dog walkers alike. Traveling alongside railroad tracks and past wooded areas, the trail provides an opportunity for a family bike ride or daily exercise route, linking the neighborhoods of Marengo and downtown Union.
7.5 mile trail | Trail Map
Ridgefield Trace is a paved trail that offer residents a safe mode of travel whether by foot, bike or rollerblade. The trail extends primarily along Route 14, for 7.5 miles from Lake Ave. in Woodstock to Walkup Ave. in Crystal Lake. Route 14 was originally an Indian trail (also known as a trace) and Ridgefield was one of the first towns in the area.
Stone Mill Trail
1.5 mile trail | Trail Map
The 1.5 mile Stone Mill trail paved multi-use trail takes users from Maxon Road in Chemung, along Ramer Road to Lawrence Road near Milky Way Park in Harvard. Stone Mill Trail connects two rural towns, providing a safe means of travel and additional recreational amenity for local residents to walk, bike or rollerblade.
Historically the trailhead in Chemung was the original site of a saw mill, grist mill and finally rebuilt as a flour mill with origins dating back to 1845. The mill operated for over 50 years and the surrounding community was deeply influenced by the presence of the mill and thus the trail is named accordingly.
Overnight Cyclist Camping
Cyclists on long-distance trips have the option to tent camp overnight at North Branch Conservation Area in Richmond. Learn More
Practice “leave no trace.”
Ride at controlled, safe speeds.
Announce “passing on your left”.
Ride on the right; single file when in groups.
Be aware of wildlife both on and off the trail.
Approach horses slowly, and allow extra room.
Never pass a horse on a bridge.
Heed trail signs that show a bicycle with a slash. These trails are off-limits to bicycles due to dangerous conditions or ecologically sensitive areas.