A Little Time and a Keyboard: Hiking to a Spectacular View at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington

Monday, May 25, 2020

Hiking to a Spectacular View at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington

Hiking to a Spectacular View at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington, IL

Hiking to a Spectacular View at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington, IL

When I zeroed in on Grassy Lake Forest Preserve for our next hiking adventure, I did not expect to be treated to such a spectacular view! When we arrived at the forest preserve, we quickly noted that we would mounting a hill. Of course, our curiosity piqued and we embarked on the hike to and up the hill.



Grassy Lake Forest Preserve with prairie grasses!
Grassy Lake Forest Preserve with prairie grasses!
Grassy Lake Forest Preserve has an interesting shape to it. There are about 5.8 miles of trails at Grassy Lake affording views of both Grassy Lake and the Fox River Valley. The trail we followed led us up to a panoramic view of the Fox River Valley. Kettles, karnes and moraines reflect the glacial history of the preserve.

While exploring Grassy Lake, we encountered wetlands alive with a chorus of frogs!
While exploring Grassy Lake, we encountered wetlands alive with a chorus of frogs!
While the view from up high is spectacular, be sure to pause and enjoy the collection of ecosystems around. You will be treated to a variety of wildlife including frogs and birds.

Fantastic view of the Fox River Valley from Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington, Illinois.
Fantastic view of the Fox River Valley from Grassy Lake Forest Preserve.

We encountered several view points. The scenic overlooks are quite popular, so you may have to wait a little to savor the view. As you can see, it is worth it! There are a few grass trails around, so be on the lookout.

A tree swallow pauses at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington, Illinois.
A tree swallow pauses.
After taking a zen moment savoring the view, don't forget to explore the other trails at Grassy Lake. We wandered along the grass trail closer to the river. We discovered this trail to be full of wild birds. We spotted tree swallows, kingbirds, red-winged blackbirds, goldfinches, an indigo bunting and more. I was genuinely surprised by how many birds we saw along the grass trail!

Yellow Rocket wildflowers adding a blaze of color.
Yellow Rocket wildflowers adding a blaze of color.
Wildflowers also added flashes of colors throughout the preserve.

Summer day along the Fox River at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve!
Summer day along the Fox River at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve!

The preserve does have an underground passage to another trail in the other section where you can see Grassy Lake. On this visit, we did not have time for the other trail. However, we would like to return and explore that trail as well.

Sunny skies add to the beautiful landscape of Grassy Lake Forest Preserve.
Sunny skies add to the beautiful landscape of Grassy Lake Forest Preserve.

Grassy Lake surprised us with the magnificent views and great birding. The rolling trails through a variety of ecosystems will welcome unique experiences throughout the seasons.

Hiking to a Spectacular View at Grassy Lake Forest Preserve in Lake Barrington, IL

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