Friday, May 11, 2012

Biking the Millennium and Ft. Hill Trails in Lake County (Video)

The Lake County Forest Preserve District's planned 35-mile Millennium Trail will connect central, western, and northern Lake County communities and forest preserves as it eventually loops west from the Des Plaines River Trail, arcs north, and then back again east to the DRT.  Today, more than 20 miles are complete and open to hikers, bicyclists, and cross-country skiers, and a 9.25-mile section from Lakewood Forest Preserve north to Singing Hills Forest Preserve is open to equestrians in Wauconda.

Trail sections currently open include from Hawley and Route 176 in Mundelein west and north through Lakewood and Singing Hills to Marl Flat Forest Preserve in Volo; along the Round Lake Bike Path; from Hook Drive east through Rollins Savanna Forest Preserve in Grayslake; and from Bonner Heritage Farm to McDonald Woods Forest Preserve in Lindenhurst. 
A 4 mile stretch of gravel trail called "Fort Hill Trail" connects Ray Lake Preserve to the Millennium Trail/Lakewood trail systems with the imminent opening of an underpass at Gilmer Road. The Fort Hill Trail parking area is located on the west side of Gilmer Road, north of Route 176.  You can also park at Ray Lake Preserve on Erhart Road between Fremont Center and Gilmer Roads. A highlight of this trail is the side "Loop Trail" through the former Four Winds Golf Club on the old golf cart path.  (Click to enlarge maps.)

Ft. Hill Trail through Ray Lake Preserve

These maps will have to be revised after two Route 176 underpasses are completed in 2012, allowing easier passage for both trails by avoiding road crossings.

Here's a brief video highlighting some of the sights of the two trails...

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