Hike Distance: 8.3 miles Yearly Hike Distance: 1284.8 miles
Elevation Gain: 810 feet Yearly Elevation Gain: 169388 feet
Another visit to Chicago, Il for the wedding of my niece! It seemed too soon to go in for another visit, since my father-in-law’s funeral, but this was planned for a long time. We only got to hike for one day during this visit so we had to make it good. There isn’t much hiking, as we know it in the PNW (Pacific Northwest), but this is about the best that the Chicago area has to offer, so we headed out for the Deer Grove West Trail System in Palatine, Illinois.
This area has a decent trail system and there is both an east and west section to the park. The west portion seemed to have the best opportunity for a nice long loop hike, so we went there. We pleasantly found ourselves in an uncrowded parking area, and in fact, the entire trail system seemed empty. There was an equal mix of people on bikes and walking, and the trail system is mostly fairly wide and level, and primarily a gravel surface.
Its strange to see a forest of deciduous trees given that we see mostly evergreens on our hikes in the PNW. That said, it’s a very nice change from our typical hiking experience! Our loop hike was essentially around the yellow trail, and we explore a bit off the trail. All the seasonal streams were dry but there were plenty of boggy/swamp areas. The mosquitoes were not prevalent but I managed to get a bite anyway.
Having the name Deer Grove, we were fortunate to have seen two groups of deer while on our hike! 🙂 The deer seemed somewhat acclimated to people but they were skiddish when we approached. No matter, as I had my zoom lens ready to take plenty of photos.
We had a wonderful time on the trail and really enjoyed getting away from people, and family. haha It was an exhausting trip and I’m not anxious to go back soon, but may have to due to my mother-in-law being in bad shape.