A Little Time and a Keyboard: Forest Meandering Along Kishwaukee River at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford, Illinois

Monday, August 17, 2020

Forest Meandering Along Kishwaukee River at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford, Illinois

Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford, Illinois

Forest Meandering Along Kishwaukee River at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford, Illinois

A forest wander meandering along a river eases the mind. During a recent summer day, we traced the gentle turns of the Kishwaukee River in the Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford soaking up the joys of nature. 

Gently meandering Kishwaukee River
Gently meandering Kishwaukee River

When we first arrived at the preserve, we were a bit unsure about the experience. As we wound to the trail, we noted that we could hear quite a bit of the traffic along the nearby road. Our surroundings enchanted us but we were not confident that we would enjoy the peaceful hike that we had looked forward to.

Sandbars dot the Kishwaukee River
Sandbars dot the Kishwaukee River

As we became more enveloped by the forest, we savored a peaceful respite transported by beautiful views and the bird symphony. Comprising of 629.9 acres, Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve holds 7.5 miles of trails with 2.3 miles being paved. Plenty to explore! Preferring rustic trails, we embarked on the preserve's natural trail.

A rustic trail at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford, Illinois welcomed us to the forest.
A rustic trail at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve in Rockford, Illinois welcomed us to the forest.

As the forest folded around us, we no longer could hear the traffic. Instead, we each enjoyed fresh forest discoveries in this new-to-us environment. Part of the forest opened up filtering in the light with the surrounding trees forming an earthen chapel. I could not help but pause and take it in.

Trees opening up just enough to let in light looking like an earthen chapel at Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve
Trees opening up just enough to let in light looking like an earthen chapel.

The day of our adventure, we hiked through muggy conditions. After about a mile of hiking, we began to wind back along the Kishwaukee River.  Along the river, you may spot an osprey or a bald eagle if you are lucky! Our visit was shorter than we would have liked and we did not see an osprey nor bald eagle. So, we would like to return on a cooler day and hope to see one of these majestic birds! If not, we know we will enjoy the serene setting continuing our Blackhawk Springs discoveries.

Looking for bald eagles and osprey along the Kishwaukee River
Looking for bald eagles and osprey along the Kishwaukee River

To Know about Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve

  • Trails are both paved and natural
  • Hiking and fishing opportunities are available
  • In addition to the Kishwaukee River, there is a natural spring
  • There is a ballfield and other recreational areas


No comments:

Post a Comment