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Category: Illinois

Favorite Family Hikes near St. Louis – Part 1, the Illinois side

Favorite Family Hikes near St. Louis – Part 1, the Illinois side

One of the questions I get asked the most is which hikes do I recommend in the St. Louis area, especially which hikes are good for kids. We are blessed with so many amazing hikes in the area, but I’m going to try and narrow it down to the ones I think give the best bang for your buck. I’m going to start with the Illinois side of the river as there are so many Missouri area hikes that it’s…

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Hike of the Week – Salt Lick Point Trail, Illinois

Hike of the Week – Salt Lick Point Trail, Illinois

Salt Lick Point is a favorite hike of ours on the Illinois side of the metro area. This hike is located on a former quarry site in Valmeyer, Illinois. In fact you can even spy interesting old remainders of this site’s former life. The preserve consists of three different trails. We like to make a loop by hiking a portion of the Salt Lick Trail along the bluffs, continuing along on a section of the Newman Trail, and then completing…

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St. Louis Area Summer Fun List 2019

St. Louis Area Summer Fun List 2019

Each year I put together a list of fun St. Louis area places to go with the kids in the summer including museums, playgrounds, and parks. I also search though hundreds of events to come up with a good list of family friendly local events as well as vacation Bible schools. This list includes both sides of the river but the events are more focused on the Illinois side. I want to share this list with anyone who is interested…

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Trail of the Week-Jackson Falls

Trail of the Week-Jackson Falls

Shawnee National Forest, Illinois We’ve done a lot of hiking and exploring over the years and one of our favorite spots to spend a day is in the Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois. While we have visited many scenic spots including Bell Smith Springs, Garden of the Gods, and Ferne Clyffe, we somehow had never made it over to Jackson Falls. I can’t believe we had missed this awesome trail for so long! The trail starts at a parking…

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Boo Memorial Garden 7-22-18

Boo Memorial Garden 7-22-18

After hiking the Nature Trail at Giant City State Park (Link to that Post), we stopped by Boo Memorial Garden (Atlas Obscura Info) near Carbondale IL. Wow! We were completely blown away at how nicely maintained and well made this park was! Everything was sanded smooth (no splinters to when you bonk you head on something) and there was oodles of things for the kids to find as they ran through the castle. Absolutely worth the stop if you are…

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Salt Lick Point and Water Reserve Hike – 8/19/17

Salt Lick Point and Water Reserve Hike – 8/19/17

We started out early on a Saturday morning with hopes of beating the heat and pointed the nose of The Mighty Merc down Bluff Road: As we pulled into the parking lot, the hopes of beating the heat were quickly dashed as it was warm and humid already: But we loaded the kids on our backs and pressed on heading up the Salt Lick Trail which winds its way up to the top of the bluff: It wasn’t long before…

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Belle Smith Springs – 6/1/16

Belle Smith Springs – 6/1/16

We wandered down to Belle Smith Springs to hike a couple of trails before they got to overgrown. We wound up getting turned around a bit and found ourselves back at the Devils Spine. Running the backroads: In the mini-minivan adventure mobile: Rather picturesque parking area: With all the rains recently, the creek was up quite a bit which made some of the crossings interesting: We eventually ran into Devils Spine: