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Great Places to Walk Your Dog This Spring!

Updated on May 3, 2017

We have had some very unusual weather during January and February this year. Illinois has experienced three weekends with weather above 55 degrees. These temperatures have allowed many of us to get back outside and into our summer activities! Today I have come up with a short list of great places to walk our dogs locally in the great state of Illinois

Hiking

1. Starved Rock State Park - Utica, IL.

This beautiful park attracts millions of people every year to explore it's scenic trails and canyons, dine in its historic lodge and appreciate the panoramic views from the tall bluffs. This state park offers a unique contrast to the flatlands of Illinois. The park offers 18 canyons with breathtaking views, created by glacial melt, water and stream erosion. The magic of Starved Rock lies largely in the fact that everything is in a state of nature, just as it would have been as explorer, missionaries, and traders traveled through many centuries ago. *Note: Dogs must be on a leash at all times.

2. Constitution Trail - Bloomington-Normal, IL.

The Constitution Trail is a multi-use trail developed in the 1980s. The Trail was proposed by Hugh Atwood after seeing many bike trails in other large cities. He believed it would be a wonderful amenity for the Bloomington-Normal community. The Central Gulf Railroad line was abandoned at the time, which provided a pathway for a trail. Today the trail extends over 24 miles and gives a fantastic look at the heart of Bloomington-Normal.

3. Clinton Lake - Clinton, IL.

Clinton Lake offers a plethora of activities aside from fishing and boating. This lake is a 4900-acre reservoir built in the 1970s as a cooling source for Clinton Nuclear Generating Station. Clinton Lake is one of the best lakes for catfish in Illinois. It also offers camping, swimming, hiking trails, picnicking, hunting, snowmobiling and dog training land.

*NOTE: Dogs must be on a leash when on hiking trails.

Dog Parks

1. Wiggly Field - Chicago, IL

Located just south of Wrigley Field, Wiggly Field is free to the public and open seven days a week. The park includes a small dog enclosure, asphalt entrance, doggie water fountains, and dog agility equipment.

2. Katherine Legge Memorial Lodge Dog Park - Hinsdale, IL

Your dog can run and play off leash in this beautiful fenced in dog park. It includes a large grassy area with a small stream cutting across the park. The dog park is surrounded by 52 beautiful acres of woodland. The Lodge's charming ambiance and unique setting are perfect for any occasion.

3. White Oak Park - Bloomington, IL

This dog park inlcudes a beautiful 1 mile paved trail around a lake. You are likely to see all sorts of natural wildlife around this area.

Dog Beaches

1. Montrose Dog Beach - Chicago, IL

The Montrose Dog Beach is Chicago's first legal off leash beach. Located north of Montrose Beach, this designated area is fenced off and offers free dog waste bags and dog-wash area. Open during all normal Chicago Park district hours.

2. Belmont Harbor Beach - Highland Park, IL

A gently sloping beach allow dogs to splash in the shallows without getting submerged, while dogs who do like to swim still have the opportunity if they choose.

3. North Marcum Beach - Benton, IL

A short drive from Carbondale, the North Marcum Recreation Area provides a sandy beach, shower house and picnic area that is pet friendly. The beach area is oversized allowing for plenty room to play fetch with your dog.

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