Old Plank Road Trail

Park Forest, Illinois

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This long suburban trail offers a surprising array of scenic spots— many of them surrounded by development. You’ll see cattail-fringed ponds, patches of prairie, numerous parks, and small suburban towns with quiet, wooded neighborhoods. At about the halfway point you’ll take a side trail through Hickory Creek Forest Preserve, where the route bounds over wooded hills and makes a couple of crossings of Hickory Creek. In the town of Frankfort, check out the historic architecture and the interesting shops before investigating several good dining options. Logan Park, the first section of the trail runs through the downtown area of Matteson, by a couple of parks, and through some scenic wetlands that sit behind a sprawling shopping mall. In Matteson the Metra station on the left and the red caboose permanently parked alongside the trail both point to the town’s rich rail history. After passing Governors Trail Park, you’ll see the first trail that branches off from Old Plank Road Trail. This is Preservation Trail, which heads north for 1.5 miles to Oakwood Park on the north side of Matteson.

Old Plank Road Trail Professional Review and Guide

"This long suburban trail offers a surprising array of scenic spots— many of them surrounded by development. You’ll see cattail-fringed ponds, patches of prairie, numerous parks, and small suburban towns with quiet, wooded neighborhoods. At about the halfway point you’ll take a side trail through Hickory Creek Forest Preserve, where the route bounds over wooded hills and makes a couple of crossings of Hickory Creek. In the town of Frankfort, check out the historic architecture and the interesting shops before investigating several good dining options.

Logan Park, the first section of the trail runs through the downtown area of Matteson, by a couple of parks, and through some scenic wetlands that sit behind a sprawling shopping mall. In Matteson the Metra station on the left and the red caboose permanently parked alongside the trail both point to the town’s rich rail history. After passing Governors Trail Park, you’ll see the first trail that branches off from Old Plank Road Trail. This is Preservation Trail, which heads north for 1.5 miles to Oakwood Park on the north side of Matteson."

Activity Type: Rail-Trails
Nearby City: Park Forest
Distance: 25.7
Surface:
Skill Level: Moderate
Season: Year-round
Local Maps: USGS Steger, Frankfort, Manhattan, Mokena, and Joliet
Driving Directions: Directions to Old Plank Road Trail

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May 2018