Kankakee River State Park Hike

Bourbonnais, Illinois 60914

Kankakee River State Park Hike

Kankakee River State Park Hike Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"The first section of this river hike takes you along the wooded bluffs above wide sections of the Kankakee River. After crossing a pedestrian suspension bridge, you’ll follow Rock Creek along a dramatic canyon to a gentle waterfall.

Dogs must be leashed. Exercise caution when looking out from the ledges along Rock Creek, especially if you’ve brought kids or pets along. The seasonal concession stand offers ice, vending machines, bait, and canoes and bicycles for rent."

More Kankakee River State Park Hike Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

"Dramatic limestone canyons make this hike the most dangerous in Illinois. Over thousands of years, the Kankakee River has carved a deep gash in the bedrock, creating some of the state’s most interesting (and vertical) landscapes, and forcing hikers to watch their step. The 2-mile out-and-back Rock Creek Trail follows a tributary of the main river, with striking views from the top of the limestone gorge’s leafy eastern cliffs, including a broad, tumbling waterfall at the end. The trailhead was once the site of Little Rock Village, the largest Native American settlement in the region and home to the Council of Three Fires, an alliance between the Chippewa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi tribes. After the Black Hawk War in 1832, the land belonged to the U.S. government, and all of the Potawatomi fled except for Chief Shawanasee, who stayed behind in a cabin above the river. Today, a stone marks his final resting place along Rock Creek, where he was buried in 1838."

Kankakee River State Park Hike Trip Reports

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I have enjoyed this hiking area since I was a kid. Now that I am 34, I bring everyone I know. I highly recommend visiting this area. They have guided tours. I recommend this for first time visitors to understand the history behind the area you are hiking. The hikes are very enjoyable. The various seasons prove to be a learning experiece.

Kankakee River State Park Hike Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
Dog-friendly, Kid-friendly
Trail Type
Paved path, dirt
Skill Level
2 5–3 hours
April 1–October 31, daily, 7 a.m.– 10 p.m.; November 1–March 31, daily, 7 a.m.– 6 p.m
Additional Use
Available at the park office and the website. USGS Bourbonnais, IL
Local Maps

Trail Log