Top 5 Family Friendly Bike Trails

Lake County is known for its outdoor activities and boasts over 550 miles of bike trails to explore.  This week we’re going to review the top 5 family friendly bike trails in Lake County.

What makes these trails “family friendly”?  To start with, they all have access to bathrooms.  (Let’s keep the “roughing it” for another day.)  Other than that, they all have a little bit of something extra for the kids.  From a giant Tree House, to a Discovery Museum… these trails have it all.


1.)     Cuba Marsh Forest Preserve – Lake Zurich / Barrington

This might be the best family friendly bike trail around.  This 3 mile loop can be divided up

Cuba Marsh Forest Preserve

Cuba Marsh Forest Preserve

into smaller sections, or extended into a larger size so it’s nice for a family that doesn’t know how far they really want to go.  Some of its more interesting moments include a long board walk ride over the marsh.  And be sure to keep a look out for the many deer that call Cuba Marsh “home”.  Insider tip:  Use the Citizen’s Park entrance and link up to this bike path on the bridge.  Citizen’s park has bathrooms, drinking fountains, picnic areas, a popular park and even a giant tree house for the kids to explore!


2.)    Sun Lake in Lake Villa

Welcome to Sun Lake Bike Trail!  Carved into the Earth by a glacier, Sun Lake is the center of this 25 acre preserve and offers a 2.5 mile trail around the protected lake.  Although direct lake access is not permitted due to conservation efforts, make sure to bring your lunch for a quite picnic opportunity at one of the provided picnic benches.


3.)    Ray Lake in Mundelein

Offering a 2.7 gravel trail with 3 boardwalks, a scenic overlook and plenty of picturesque wetlands and open prairies, Ray Lake is a photo op waiting to happen.

                            Ray Lake Trail

Previously owned by Ray Lake Cattle Farm, this preserve is being restored to its natural environment, but be sure to stop by to say hi to the Ray Lake Farm cattle statue as you enter!  If you feel like going on an adventure, you can connect to trail #4 on this list (Lakewood) at Lakewood Winter Sports Area trail head.


4.)Lakewood Forest Preserve

Lakewood Forest Preserve

      Lakewood Forest Preserve

One of the best parts about Lake County Bike trails is that the Illinois Department of Transportation is building even more of them!  Although this trail is under construction, the Lake County Discovery Museum and the Dog Exercise Area will remain open.  This trail is in Lake County’s largest forest preserve, but you don’t have to bike the whole 9.25 miles to enjoy it!  Insider Tip:  check out the colony of bats in the picnic area at Shelter E but try not to bother them! 


5.)    Heron Creek in Lake Zurich

Heron Lake Forest Preserve

Heron Lake Forest Preserve Play Area

The heart of this preserve is the Indian Creek basin that flows right through the area.  You’ll be able to explore some of the highest wetland classification that Lake County has to offer, so be sure to leave it how you found it!  After a 2.5 mile bike loop, families can enjoy an innovative playground, a sand pit and lookout stations to check out the wildlife.


Click Here For These and More Trail Maps from the Lake County Forest Preserve

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One Response to Top 5 Family Friendly Bike Trails

  1. Michele June 5, 2013 at 11:50 am #

    Thank you for this!

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