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OKAW VALLEY COUNCIL
KASKASKIA DISTRICT

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HIKES AND TRAILS IN ILLINOIS

FROM BELLEVILLE TO CARBONDALE

Other Sites

Last Update: April1, 2001

3. BSA Camp Vandeventer

Location: Off from State Route 156, southwest of Waterloo, IL. 215-18 [L-4] {P-6}
Features: Camp Vandeventer is a Boy Scout Camp owned by The Okaw Valley Council, with Headquarters in Belleville, Il. The camp is located in a wooded area that borders on Fountain Creek. The area is very senic with a large limestone bluff that has been cut in half by Fountain Creek. The area is riddled with caves and abounds in Karst topography with it's accompanying sink holes.
Hiking: features the Eagle Trail--a sometimes rugged 8 mile trail through woods and along Fountain Creek. For permit and map, contact the Okaw Valley Council, who offer a patch. For pictures see the Camp Vandeventer section of this web site. 
Directions: To reach Camp Vandeventer take Route 3 to Waterloo, Illinois. In Waterloo take route 156 west out of town for about 2 to 3 miles.  You will go down a large hill and cross Fountain Creek, and before you reach the top of the next rise, Camp Road will appear on your right. Take Camp Road for 1/2 to 3/4 miles and watch for the small red Camp Vandeventer sign on your right. The road leading to the camp is a narrow twisting rock road, with blind curves, and due caution and slow speeds should be used. Follow this rock road to the camp.
 

4. Fort Kaskaskia State Historic Site

Location: 6 miles north of Chester Illinois.
Features: Fort Kaskaskia State Historic Site consists of over 200 acres situated on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River. The site offers one of the finest overlooks which affords the vistor a view of the Mississippi River, the mouth of the Kaskaskia River, present day Kaskaskia Island and the site of the original village of Kaskaskia, the first capitol of Illinois. The site also features the remnants of an earthen-work and timber fortification constructed by the French sometime during the mid-1700's. The parapets and dry moat are still visible. The site played a role in Illinois pre-statehood history, from its early involvement with the French to its role in the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1803. Hours: 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Closed: Major holidays.
Hiking: Theire is no organized trails on site, but a 1/2 mile hike from the campgrounds to the historic Pere Menard Home passes the remains of the French fort.

Camping: A campground can also be found on site that offers 23 electrical hook-ups, 12 are located on individual asphalt pads. there are ground stoves, 3 water hydrants and pit restroom facilities located in the campground, sanitation stations are also available. There is ample room for individual and group tent camping.
Directions: 6 miles North of Chester, Illinois, via Route 3. Turn West on Fort Kaskaskia Road and go approximately 2 miles. Address: 4372 Park Road Ellis Grove, IL 62241 Phone: 618-859-3741

 

Mitchell Art Museum

Location: Mt. Vernon, IL, (618) 242-1236 105-65 [L-7] {P-10}
Hiking: has trails among outdoor sculptures on its 80-acre estate.

NO CAMPING - No known Web Site


17. Tunnel Hill State Trail

Location: Tunnel Hill State Trail is located in southern Illinois, between the communities of Harrisburg in Saline County and Karnak in Pulaski County. The Tunnel Hill office is a unique building located in Vienna, this facility has easy access to I-24 interchanges and Illinois 146 as well as being adjacent to the Vienna city park.
Features:
The trail provides hiking and biking through farmland, hills/bluffs, and bottomland areas. The trail passes through the Shawnee National Forest and the Cache River Natural Area, enveloped by bluffs, trees, and valleys. It encompasses a total of 47 miles of nature's beauty and twenty-three trestles in Southern Illinois from Harrisburg to Karnak, and the 2.5 mile spur from Karnak to Rago area. In addition to visitors being able to bike and walk these trails, they will also experience walking or biking through a 540 foot long tunnel. Following the completion of the Cache River Wetland Center, the trail is linked from Rago to the Wetland Center.
Hiking:
Forty-five miles of bike/foot trail is open from Harrisburg to Karnak with access and facilities in communities of Harrisburg, Carrier Mills, Stonefort, New Burnside, Tunnel Hill, Vienna, and Karnak.

NO CAMPING


20. Touch of Nature Enviroment Center

Location:At the east end of Carbondale just past the mall you will come to Giant City Road. Take a right/south on Giant City Road and drive eight miles to the Touch of Nature entrance on the left/east side of the road. Hours: 8:00 am to 4:30 pm. Please stop by the Administrative office to inform the staff of your visit and obtain information.[N-6] {R-9}

Features: The Touch of Nature Environmental Center is a facility owned and operated by Southern Illinois University. Three loop nature trails and a canoe trail are open to the public during the daylight hours year-round.
Hiking: 
Three trails total 2.25 miles.The Woodland World Trail features 20 stations that identify trees and forest ecology concepts in a young woods and revegetating medow. The earth path begins and ends next to the nature center and a small pond. The Secondary Sucession Trail requires about 30-45 minutes of walking through newly abandoned fields to end at a climax forest on the west shore of Little Grassy Lake. The trail begins and ends two tenths of a mile south of the nature center along the road next to a farm house. The 35 station Sunshine Trail begins on an old lane just south of the parking area at Camp II and leads through a mature deciduous forest ravine, slope and edge, skirting Little Grassy Lake and ending at the south side of the dining hall.The Little Grassy Lake Canoe Trailbegins at the camp II boat dock area and ends at a point one mile north of the docks. The canoe trail requires 45 minutes to one hour one way. Fifteen interpretive stations have been established along the shore and an excellent trail brochure is available at the main ofice.

NO CAMPING - No known Web Site

5 Sites, 3 Links.
Map Coordinates:The red coordinates [J-4] are used to locate the site on a state road map, published by the state of Illinois.The green coordinates { L-12} are used to locate the site on a Rand McNally Road Atlas. Any site that does not have camping  facilities are noted.