Forest Preserves of Cook County

A couple walking on a path through a wooded area.The Forest Preserves of Cook County boasts nearly 70,000 acres that are a gateway to healthy and active living. The Forest Preserves is making healthy living easier for local residents by providing opportunities to connect with nature and outdoor activities with more than 300 miles of trails for biking, running, jogging and cross-country skiing; recreational activities like paddling, kayaking, canoeing and sledding; free or low-cost programming at six nature centers and dozens of outdoor events

The Forest Preserves is also promoting all the benefits nature has on human health and wellbeing through the Wellness in the Woods initiative. It doesn’t take much to experience the health benefits that nature has to offer. Whether it’s being active by climbing 293 limestone steps at Swallow Cliff, being playful while zipping through the forest canopy at the new Go Ape Treetop Adventure Course in Bemis Woods, or being restful while spending a night under the stars at one of the Forest Preserves new and revitalized campgrounds, people of all ages can enjoy numerous activities while benefitting from nature in the Forest Preserves of Cook County.

What’s Happening in Suburban Cook County?

The Forest Preserves of Cook County is working to improve entry points at gateway sites to encourage people to enter into the Preserves and take advantage of the natural open space available in Cook County.

Gateway sites will include:

  • Improvements to signage and wayfinding at entry points and throughout the sites;
  • A unique landmark to welcome visitors, creating an easily identifiable gateway;
  • Kiosks that will include maps and information for people to engage with and learn about the site; and
  • Interpretive signage about the natural and cultural resources and history of the site where appropriate.

Download the Gateway Master Plan to discover more about gateway sites.

Learn more about your Forest Preserves of Cook County
and Wellness in the Woods

Healthy HotSpots that benefit where we Play

Forest Preserves

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