Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > > >

Great Lakes Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Michigan | Minnesota | Ohio | Wisconsin

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 03-01-12, 02:51 PM   #1
perspiration
already soaked
Thread Starter
 
perspiration's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Suburbs of Chicago, IL
Bikes: 2011 Surly Crosscheck, 2014 Novara Randonee
Posts: 272
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Chicago Suburban/area bike touring/camping

Hi everyone, I just got a new ultralite tent for my birthday and some panniers for christmas so I'm trying to plan out some weekend bike tours around the Chicago Suburban area. I know about Starved Rock, and that's bikeable in a 4 day weekend, but I was wondering if there are any other good campgrounds/forest preserves to camp in the DuPage-ish area. I really know nothing about it since my Boy scout days, and all the campgrounds we went to had spots designated for youth groups only.

Alternatively, has anyone tried stealth camping in the suburbs? It doesn't seem like it would work too well, but who knows!
perspiration is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-12, 07:26 PM   #2
MJH2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 1,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think Herrick Lake might have some camping. I'm not sure how it could be enjoyable, though. Anything remotely close to "open space" in DuPage County tends to be absolutely packed.

I did two camping-by-bike trips last year and had fun on both. Both started on the Fox River Trail in Genevea/Batavia/St. Charles. One went out the Great Western Trail to Sycamore, then on to Oregon (where there are plenty of camping opportunities). The other went down the trail until it ended, the continued on roads to the I&M canal. From there I headed west to the Hennepin, then north on the Hennepin feeder and up into Dixon. No shortage of places to camp on either of those.

Not sure where in the Chicagoland you're located, but a metra ride to one of the farther outlying suburb could make something like Marengo Ridge or Shabbona lake a fairly relaxing day.

The pic is the second night of the I&M/Hennepin canal pic. I was I was with another dude, and we ended up riding well into the dark. These little camping areas are all over on that trail. Pretty cool... and no tent needed if you've got a tarp!
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/phot...eat=directlink

Last edited by MJH2; 03-01-12 at 07:40 PM. Reason: Edited for pic.
MJH2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-12, 11:34 AM   #3
boogman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: NW Chicago
Bikes:
Posts: 83
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
MJH2 - what route did you take from Sycamore to Oregon? I don't see any trails and my impression is those country roads out there have little or no shoulder and sees a lot of truck traffic.
boogman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-12, 12:54 PM   #4
perspiration
already soaked
Thread Starter
 
perspiration's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Suburbs of Chicago, IL
Bikes: 2011 Surly Crosscheck, 2014 Novara Randonee
Posts: 272
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Herrick Lake was one of my favorite Boy Scout campouts, but I only know about the youth cabin they have there.

The Fox River trail has to be my favorite bike path so far in Illinois...and I'm basically in love with St. Charles. Oh to live by the river... I'd love to take another bike ride out that way. I'll look into this further!

I'm located around Westmont/Downer's Grove and a buddy and I rode up to DeKalb last summer, maybe we should have gone farther but I didn't see a ton of camping opportunities. Stealth camping, maybe...
perspiration is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-12, 05:12 PM   #5
MJH2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 1,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by perspiration View Post
Herrick Lake was one of my favorite Boy Scout campouts, but I only know about the youth cabin they have there.

The Fox River trail has to be my favorite bike path so far in Illinois...and I'm basically in love with St. Charles. Oh to live by the river... I'd love to take another bike ride out that way. I'll look into this further!

I'm located around Westmont/Downer's Grove and a buddy and I rode up to DeKalb last summer, maybe we should have gone farther but I didn't see a ton of camping opportunities. Stealth camping, maybe...
It takes me about 4 mins to roll downhill to the Fox River Trail. It's some of the best riding around, although parts can get a little crowded in the summer. Looping the Fox River and Prairie Path is a blast... especially at night in the fall.

The closest camping to DeKalb is probably going to be Shabbona Lake State Park.

Quote:
MJH2 - what route did you take from Sycamore to Oregon? I don't see any trails and my impression is those country roads out there have little or no shoulder and sees a lot of truck traffic.
There are no trails, but there are some awesome (mostly) dirt roads that effectively parallel Route 64. There's a road by the pizza hut in Sycamore that goes west. It's a little busy. After a few miles you're on dirt. Having ridden that route a couple of times, I can say that you will see hardly anybody once you're a few miles past Sycamore. The few cars you do see will give you plenty of room, and most everybody will waive.
MJH2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-12, 03:56 PM   #6
hubcap
One Man Fast Brick
 
hubcap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicagoland
Bikes: Specialized Langster, Bianchi San Jose, early 90s GT Karakoram, Yuba Mundo, Mercier Nano (mini velo), Nashbar Steel Commuter, KHS Tandemania Sport
Posts: 1,121
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJH2 View Post
There are no trails, but there are some awesome (mostly) dirt roads that effectively parallel Route 64. There's a road by the pizza hut in Sycamore that goes west. It's a little busy. After a few miles you're on dirt. Having ridden that route a couple of times, I can say that you will see hardly anybody once you're a few miles past Sycamore. The few cars you do see will give you plenty of room, and most everybody will waive.
I'm a little late chiming in here, but I was searching for something, saw this thread, and though I would share my similar experience. I live in St. Charles and have ridden to Sycamore on the Great Western and then on the small roads south of and paralleling Rt 64 to Oregon, and from there on to White Pines State Park. I would hazard a guess that we took a very similar route between Sycamore and Oregon. Some of the roads are paved, some are gravel, and some are indeed dirt.

Perspiration, if you pull up Google maps, it will be pretty obvious to you how to get to Oregon without spending much time on Rt. 64. It's an enjoyable ride.
hubcap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-12, 07:09 PM   #7
perspiration
already soaked
Thread Starter
 
perspiration's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Suburbs of Chicago, IL
Bikes: 2011 Surly Crosscheck, 2014 Novara Randonee
Posts: 272
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I will look into it! Any tips on good jobs in St. Charles? lol! Every time I go through there I think about how much I'd like to live there.
perspiration is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-12, 07:21 PM   #8
boogman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: NW Chicago
Bikes:
Posts: 83
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The gwt.. Is that ridable on 700x32c tires? Want to do it from randall rd in elgin, but not sure if i should take my touring bike or mtb..
boogman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-12, 08:41 PM   #9
MJH2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 1,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by boogman View Post
The gwt.. Is that ridable on 700x32c tires? Want to do it from randall rd in elgin, but not sure if i should take my touring bike or mtb..
As of 11:00am today, it was absolutely fine with a 700x23. It would take A LOT of rain to make it too rough for a 700x32. I'd say go with the touring bike.

If you took the Randall Road trail south into Leroy Oaks, it will run you right to the eastern end of the GWT. The trail is now mostly paved out to Rte. 47, anyway.
MJH2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-12, 07:39 AM   #10
boogman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: NW Chicago
Bikes:
Posts: 83
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Here's a discussion on this topic, including a very helpful map someone created..

http://www.thechainlink.org/group/ch...AGroup%3A27677


too bad there is so little choice here in chicago.. the woes of living the midwest..
boogman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-12, 10:08 AM   #11
hubcap
One Man Fast Brick
 
hubcap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicagoland
Bikes: Specialized Langster, Bianchi San Jose, early 90s GT Karakoram, Yuba Mundo, Mercier Nano (mini velo), Nashbar Steel Commuter, KHS Tandemania Sport
Posts: 1,121
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for the link! A lot of good information with that Google map.

http://g.co/maps/zfhh4
hubcap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-12, 11:41 AM   #12
BenzFanatic
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Chicagoland area
Bikes:
Posts: 80
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
I actually grew up right on the DG/westmont border... right by twin lakes golf course. I haven't been, but I hear Blackwell forest preserve in winfield is really nice, and it's right off the IL prairie path I believe. I'm in North Aurora now, about 3 miles from the Fox, and I have friends in winfield, so I'm hoping to ride the aurora branch of the prairie path and through Blackwell whenever weather and schedule permits.
BenzFanatic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-12, 07:53 AM   #13
black_box
Fax Transport Specialist
 
black_box's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: chicago burbs
Bikes: '17 giant propel, '07 fuji cross pro, '10 gary fisher x-caliber
Posts: 898
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
You might want to check this out:

Schaumburg REI — Overnight Bicycle Touring Basics with Trails for Illinois
Date: 5/2/2012
Event Location: Schaumburg REI
Event Fee: Free
Time: 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. (CDT)
http://www.rei.com/event/39635/session/50023
black_box is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-06-12, 07:04 PM   #14
boogman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: NW Chicago
Bikes:
Posts: 83
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Anyone planing doing ths short overnight tour?

http://trailsforillinois.tumblr.com/gityup
boogman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-12, 08:48 PM   #15
TimHeckman
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Bikes:
Posts: 1
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I just finished a quick trip from the near west suburbs to Channahon State Park. About 45 miles each way, a '71 Schwinn Suburban, a tent, a sleeping bag, and a box of granola bars. A lot of fun for my first time.
TimHeckman is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:03 AM.