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Posts Tagged ‘HIking in Chicago’

By Sue Shekut, Owner, Working Well Massage, Licensed Massage Therapist, Certified Wellness Coach, ACSM Personal Trainer

We took a nice long hike this past weekend at Blackwell Forest Preserve. Although it was hot, we were able to hike along meadows, in the coolness of a few forests and along Silver Lake and the McKee Marsh.

Map of Southern section of Blackwell Forest Preserve. image by J. Porys.

Map of Northern section of Blackwell Forest Preserve. Image by J.Porys.

According to the DuPage Forest Preserve Site: The Blackwell Forest Preserve in Warrenville is located on land that the retreating Wisconsin Glacier shaped 12,000 to 15,000 years ago. The glacier’s meltwaters left behind much of the soil that covers DuPage County today. After the glacier’s retreat, savannas with widely spaced oak trees formed on the higher ground while the lower-lying ground became home to marsh and prairie plants.

McKee Marsh. Image by Sue Shekut.

And we found out that the 13,000-year-old skeletal remains of a wooly mammoth were found within the marsh area many years ago.

Woolley Mammoth remains found in Blackwell Forest Preserve area. Image by Sue Shekut.

Blackwell offers boats for rent and has many campgrounds of Youth activities and family camping and picnicking events.

Rent a boat at Silver Lake in Blackwell and enjoy the day! Image by Sue Shekut.

You can rent canoes, kayaks and rowboats for use on Silver Lake by the hour or the day at Blackwell’s boat-rental area.  Oars, paddles and personal flotation devices are provided for rentals only and cannot be rented separately for use in private watercraft.

The boat-rental area is open weekends from the beginning of April through the end of September from 8 a.m. until sunset. From Memorial Day through Labor Day, it is also open Mondays through Fridays from 11 a.m. until sunset.

Boats for rent in Silver Lake in Blackwell. Image by Sue Shekut.

There is no swimming allowed in Silver Lake though and I wouldn’t want to swim in it.

The fish can swim all they want but not us humans in Silver Lake! Image by Sue Shekut.

It’s too full of algae!

Future biodiesel source in Silver Lake? Image by J. Porys.

Still the cool lake water did provide us with some relief from the heat. Any many happy boaters paddled along the still lake waters the day we hiked there.

Silver Lake in Blackwell Forest Preserve. Image by Sue Shekut.

It’s OK to fish in Silver Lake where you can catch bluegill, catfish, crappie, largemouth bass, northern pike, rainbow trout and walleye.

Fishing at Silver Lake. Image by Sue Shekut.

After Hiking a few miles in the hot sun, the forest provided welcome cool relief! Image by Sue Shekut.

Blackwell Forests offer a visual cornicopiia of colorful berries! Image by J. Porys.

As the sun began to set, Silver Lake became Mirror Lake in Blackwell. Image by Sue Shekut.

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60 Hikes Within 60 Miles

If you’re looking for the lowdown on where you can stretch your legs and escape the urban grid, 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Chicago will help you find your way.

Focusing on urban and rural areas and everything in between, the book features classic hikes at places such as Starved Rock State Park, as well as undiscovered gems like the LaSalle Fish and Wildlife Area in northwestern Indiana.

The author, Ted Villaire, also writes a blog, Prairie Fever here, with great insights into hiking, biking camping and kayaking in the Chicago area.

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Ted Villaire

Who is Ted Villaire?

Ted Villaire received a bachelor’s degree in English and journalism from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and received his master’s of arts in writing from DePaul University in Chicago. He is author of 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Chicago, published in 2005 by Menasha Ridge Press, and is currently working on four more regional outdoor guidebooks that focus on bicycling and camping within the Chicago region and throughout Illinois. A Chicago resident for the past 10 years, Ted has worked for various daily and weekly newspapers, and has had freelance articles appear in The Chicago Tribune and the Des Moines Register. Recently, Ted worked for seven years as a publications editor for a large non-profit organization headquartered in Chicago.

Note: Working Well Resources is not affiliated with Ted Villaire in any manner. We just enjoy his blog and book and want to share them with you!

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