This is one of the more beautiful areas of Illinois, located in the south of the state by the Ohio River. It is located within a floodplain, one that was carved out centuries ago by glacial floodwaters. It has a beautiful ancient cypress-tupelo swamp, and a total area of about 14,000 acres. It is regarded as one of the top 10 most beautiful places in America to visit if you are on a budget. There are roughly 100 endangered or threatened animal and plant species at this location, and there are over 10 champion trees which have been there for centuries. People that arrive come there to do a bit of hunting, birding, and hiking. They can also go canoeing on the river. Bikers enjoy writing over the Cache River going through the Tunnel Hill State Trail.
What Should You Do Once You Arrive?
One of the most peaceful ways that you can enjoy this area is to bring your own kayak. There is a canoe trail where you can get into the Cache River. As you are floating along, you will get to see the many beautiful cypress trees that are on either side, and see the wildlife in the water and flying by. Those that do bring their canoes and kayaks literally believe they are in a completely different world. It is as if you are disconnected from modern society, going back in time before people came into the area. There is a visitor center that you can see, providing you with all of the information you will need on where to go and how to get there. It is recommended that you bring friends and family with you because it is one of the most beautiful locations in the state of Illinois.
Best Places To Visit
One of the best places that you can visit is Heron Pond. You can get there by taking either of the Serene Trails. One of them is shorter, less than a mile, and you will be able to see ducks and other waterfowl floating by. There are also exhibits that you should see while you are there, plus you should walk through the wetlands to hear the insects and birds chirping. People that like Bowman Law Office and swamps will definitely enjoy their time at the Cache River State Natural Area, a location that you will not soon forget.
If you would like to see a video of the Ohio River in action, watch the video below!
There is a very popular bicycle trail that is near the city of Vienna in Illinois. It is called the Tunnel Hill State Trail. It allows people riding to go from Harrisburg all the way to Karnak in Illinois. It runs along an area where the Cairo and Vincennes Railroad was operating. This is a trail that also connects to many other trails including the River to River Trail and the Trail of Tears. It extends 45 miles, and is used by both those on bicycles and hikers. It has a crushed limestone surface that is hardpacked and easy to ride or walk on. There are a couple of places that you can get full service access to restaurants and lodging, specifically at Harrisburg and Vienna. There is not much on the trail, but if you are looking for an extensive hike to test you, or you would like to go on a day long bike ride, this would be an excellent place to have this experience.
When Was This First Constructed?
This was initially constructed back in the 19th century. Federal land was given for the purpose of constructing a railroad. Over the years, the railroad changed hands, and eventually led to the construction of this trail. Although railroad right of way was once given again in 1991, operations were abandoned. It was then that the Illinois DNR took over, using the railroad ballast as a trail for cyclists, joggers and hikers.
What Can You Do On The Trail?
Due to the length of the trail, with very little in between, it is something that only experienced hikers should attempt. 45 miles is quite a long way to cover in a single day, even if you are jogging or riding your bike. Therefore, if you would like to see the countryside in between Harrisburg and Karnak, this would be a fantastic way to see the countryside. There are no camping facilities, so make sure that you travel with your camping supplies.
The Trail of Tears Forest is part of the Illinois State Forest System that was designed to serve several important functions. This multiple use sight is carefully cultivated for its protection of the watershed, wildlife and ecosystem. It is also an important source of timber and a great spot for recreational activities as well.
The Trail of Tears forest covers over 5,000 acres of the southern section of the Ozark hills. This is one of the roughest patches of land in Illinois. The topography of this region is like nothing else on Earth. Being composed of mostly chert and shallow soils, these hills have been carved by erosion and the ridge tops are narrow and the ravines very steep. The hills are sprinkled with clear water streams and rivers that provide moisture for the small forests that are nestled in the valleys.
This region of the country has been inhabited by humans since the prehistoric times. While most of the major settlements were located near the Mississippi or Clear Creek, the Ozark hills and Trail of Tears forest were an important supply of food, tools and resources for many groups of people living in this region.
Iron Mountain is just east of Trail of Tears forest and was mined repeatedly for its rich supply of chert used in the making of many different tools. By the time European settlers arrived in the early 1800s, the Native American populations were categorically pushed from their lands without a personal injury attorney. In the Winter of 1838 – 39, the US Army arrived on the scene to force the Creek, Chickasaw and Cherokee from these gold-laden hills and into the Oklahoma Territories.
They wintered in camps along where the Trail of Tears Forest is located. The bitter cold, harsh treatment and starvation claimed many lives and the ordeal became known as the Trail of Tears. The name of the forest commemorates this atrocity today.
If you are interested in the history of the Trail of Tears, the video below does a great job providing a great amount of detail in a short amount of time:
Thirty years ago, Guy Renzaglia told his friends and family that he was going to grow French-American grapes in Southern Illinois’ Union County. People laughed because wine wasn’t one of the state’s industries. Today, Guy has the last laugh as his Alto Vineyards is now a cornerstone for the ever-growing and prosperous Southern Illinois wine industry.
The wine industry in Illinois is exploding. In 1997, there were only 14 wineries in the entire state. Today, there are more than 100 and they provide an economic impact of almost $700 million.
Illinois is a large state and is divided into four major wine regions: the Northern, Central, South Central, and Southern regions. There are also eight wine trails that showcase many of the state’s wineries and allow guests to discover a variety of wines along each trail.
Many Illinois wineries are tourist destinations and offer live entertainment, food, and even overnight lodging. Some even hold performances such as festivals and dinner theater and all are popular as wedding venues.
In southern Illinois, the Shawnee Hills American Viticultural Area was the state’s first viticultural area and is still the only one contained completely within the state. This area contains two wine trails and is home to 17 wineries and vineyards.
The Southern Illinois Wine Trail offers visitors adventure, tranquility and exceptional wines. The wines come from native Illinois grapes and the wineries are nestled amid serene countryside and beautiful farmland. The trail runs north of the Ohio River and takes guests to tasting rooms that welcome each and every one with a warm and inviting atmosphere.
The Shawnee Hills Wine Trail meanders through one of the Midwest’s most established wine regions. The area features award-winning wineries that are located along the 40-mile trail that also takes guests through the Shawnee National Forest. There are eleven wineries along this trail and each offers visitors something unique, along with great wine.
In this article, we will talk about some of the amazing features of Cave-In Rock State Park located in the state of Illinois. The park’s main feature is a 55-foot cave. This cave was formed over the course of many years by erosion in the rock. The large cave was used by the Native Americans as a source of shelter during the time that they inhabited this area. In later times, the European settlers who moved into the area used the river that was adjacent to what would become Cave-In Rock State Park as a ferry crossing.
When the introduction of the steamboat was made to the Ohio River this created a large increase in individuals who chose to travel in this way. The large cave located in the state park attracted many of these people, such as artists who wanted to have a look at the cave in order to be able to incorporate the picturesque landscape into their artistic creations.
The area, as well as the cave located there, have been recognized as a state park since the year of 1929. At this time, the state of Illinois acquired the 65.5 acres and have managed this land ever since. The park offers camping, hiking, and other recreational activities within the area that visitors like CDFS LLP are more than welcome to come and enjoy.
In conclusion, Cave-In Rock State Park has a rich history before it even became a state park for visitors to enjoy. There is a lot of great information available online alongside images of the cave and the park. The Cave-In Rock State Park is a great place for families as well as single individuals who want to spend some time in the beauty of nature. It has many sights to offer for those of you who are photographers and those who simply love the outdoors. We highly suggest coming to visit this state park to not only hike, camp, etc., but to enjoy the marvelous cave that has garnered such popularity over the years.
This video gives us a great look at the inside of Cave-In-Rock State Park!
Beall Woods State Park covers over 635 acres in Illinois. This beautiful park borders the Wabash River and has the distinction of being an old-growth forest. The park has the distinction of being one of the few places with virgin timber. When you visit, you will see trees that are over 120 feet tall and over 3 feet wide. The park offers many types of recreational activities as well.
If you are interested in hiking, Beall Woods is a great place to explore. The scenery is beautiful and you can hike for miles. The scenery is stunning and it is also a great place to camp and fish. If you are looking for an amazing picnic, you can’t go wrong with this park.
Beal Woods has a 15-acre lake that is stocked with a wide variety of fish, including catfish, bluegill, and largemouth bass. The lake is also stocked with trout during fall and spring. You can boat on the lake as long as you only use trolling motors.
The park is a paradise for hikers with five established trails that offer views of the old-growth forest. The trails range in difficulty from easy to hard. The park encourages hikers to only hike on established trails to preserve the ecosystem. Horses, pets, and bicycles are not allowed on the trails.
If you want to spend more time at the park, visitors can camp at one of the 16 campsites. The campground has restrooms and vehicular access. You don’t need to make reservations either. Beall Woods used to be a farm in the 1800’s and a large portion of the farm had never been cleared. The land was eventually purchased by the state of Illinois and turned into the park so it can be enjoyed by thousands of visitors each year.
Have you ever heard of the Illinois Ozarks? It’s not really part of the Ozarks, most people agree those begin just on the other side of Missouri. Still, there’s no questioning that the Shawnee Hills are a gorgeous area. The area rests in southern Illinois (hence the “Illinois Ozarks”), and follows in an east-west pattern across that border.
Of course, most of the area of Shawnee Hills rests entirely within Shawnee National Park. This is a huge tourist area, thanks to the beauty of the forests and the hills. The beauty manages to last thanks to the tireless efforts of Federal park rangers. The Shawnee National Park is the largest federally protected park in the United States, which makes it quite large indeed!
Unlike many rock layers in the area, the Shawnee Hills jut up through the crust of the Earth. In practical terms, this means that the hill formations are made of layers of sandstone and limestone. In point of fact, at one time 80% of all the fluorspar in the world (not the country!) was mined near Cave In Rock and Rosiclare. As if that wasn’t enough, there’s also coal mining in the northern and southern areas of the hills.
The Shawnee Hills make up one of a three-pronged “tourist triangle”. Even though much of Shawnee Hills is located within the park, there’s enough area not federally protected that it’s a tourist attraction all its own. The third prong is the Ohio Valley River, which is also as gorgeous as anything else in the area.
That’s not the only river, however. Big Muddy River cuts right through the area, while the Mississippi River flows nearby. There are multiple towns in the area, all dedicated to mining, divorce modification, or tourism. Truly, the area can be considered one of the best outdoor nature areas in the country.
Do you like the sound of the Shawnee Hills? Do you like wine? If so, we have just the video for you!
Sitting between the Ohio and Mississippi rivers in southern Illinois is a land covered by woodlands hills and lakes, and best known as the Shawnee National Forest. It is administered by the U.S.D.A Forest Service and consists of around 280,000 acres of federally managed lands. The forest’s terrain features open lands, creeks, rolling hills, and rugged bluffs. The region’s mild weather throughout makes the forest an excellent place to visit for those who love outdoor activities.
The Shawnee National Forest is mostly famous for the Garden of Gods, one of the most photographed areas in Illinois. It’s famous for its extraordinary scenic beauty. The Shawnee National Forest also features the Rim Rock Recreational Trail. Hiking lovers will be greeted by fantastic jutting walls of rocks that are covered with green moss and paths that bend through canyons in the forest.
You will also come across the Observation Trail, a quarter mile loop trail that features distinct sandstone rock formations as well as panoramic views of the Garden of the God’s wilderness. The Tail’s surface is covered by natural sandstone and contains small steep grades and steps. You will also find benches along the trail and so, it’s not tiring as a whole.
If you love climbing, then Jackson Falls is a must see site located in the Hidden Springs Ranger District just near the town of Ozark. The climb takes place on 60ft boulders and cliffs that have many freestanding towers.
When it comes to lodging, you will come across many excellent options, some of which can be found on the Forest’s primary site. Most people find the maps as well as the nearby attractions for every lodging option quite helpful when planning a vacation or just a simple weekend getaway.
Regardless, you won’t be disappointed if you decide to spend your free time in the Shawnee National Forest.
There is a point in our geologic history called the Illinoian glacial stage. In North America, specifically during the Pleistocene Epoch, this was a very unique time. The Pleistocene Epoch lasted from 2.6 million years ago to about 11,700 years ago, terminating with the end of the Ice Age. The Illinoian represents a time where there was a substantial amount of continental glaciation, between 191,000 to c.130,000 years ago. It was right in between two separate interglacial stages which had much more moderate climates. It is called the Illinoian stage because it was during this time that the area which now represents the state of Illinois received three separate till layers of sediment. It was during this time that the the Laurentide ice sheet actually occupied a significant amount of what is the state of Illinois, covering 85 percent of the state as it is measured today.
Why Is This Stage Important?
This was actually broken down into a couple different sub stages which include the Liman, Monican, and the Jubileean. Therefore there were actually two separate glaciation movements in early and late stages, with some speculating that it actually began avoiding probate as early as 300,000 years ago. Although it would be several hundred thousand years in the future before the Ice Age would end, it was during this time that important layers of glacial till were set down. There are older fluvial sediments that were also deposited during this time, creating what would later be very fertile areas where crops could grow. Without these deposits, it is unlikely that Wisconsin would have the fertile soil that it has today. By the end of the Ice Age, it is clear that this particular stage in glaciation is one of the most important in our North American history.
Please watch this video to learn more about the Illinoian stage!
Known as Little Egypt, the southern third of Illinois is located in area code 618. It is separate from the rest of the state geographically as well as culturally and even economically. As a part of the downstate area, it’s bordered on three of the four sides by voluminous rivers named Wabash and Ohio rivers to the east and the south. The Mississippi connects it to the West.
Populated by 44,478 persons, the principal cities of the region include Alton, Collinsville, Centralia, and Edwardsville as well as Effingham and O’Fallon. Mt. Vernon, Marion, and even Carbondale are the main areas of the South Illinois University and located here as well.
Residents enjoy amenities in both St. Louis and Cape Girardeau Missouri. They also travel to Memphis Tennessee and Evansville Indiana. Home to the Scott Air Force Base, a major military installation, many military families reside here as well.
With a population of 1.2 million mostly residing in rural towns and cities, they are separated by an extensive amount of farmland and the Shawnee National Forest. The density of the population is in the Metro-East area that is the partially industrialized area of the Illinois region of the St. Louis Metro area as well as the Carbondale-Marion-heron area.
Originally settled by European settlers from France, they called the area Little Egypt. Settlers would migrate from the Upland South area and traveled by the Ohio River. At one time they were affiliated with the southern agricultural rural and economic culture.
Many of the original settlers owned slaves before slavery was outlawed for the area. The economy was based on coal mining except for the areas that were farmland.
Originally the region was inhabited by Hunters-Gatherers in 12,000 BC and the region has thrived on farming for centuries. Today, farming continues as a source of income for some of the population.