New Book Shows That You Don’t Need a Car to Enjoy Chicagoland Nature

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND The Chicago metropolitan area (as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau) consists of nearly 11,000 square miles. In this vast area, there are a plethora of awe-inspiring nature destinations. There is Lake Michigan, our vast inland sea, which offers an amazing interplay of sky and … Continue reading New Book Shows That You Don’t Need a Car to Enjoy Chicagoland Nature

The 7 Most-Popular Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in November 2020

A story about the migration of tens of thousands of sandhill cranes; you can view this great Midwestern migration for the next few weeks. A Chicago city park that features 154 acres of native marsh and wet prairie habitat, great birdwatching, and easy hiking trails Nearly 22 acres of restored woodlands, wetlands, and a pond … Continue reading The 7 Most-Popular Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in November 2020

Indian Ridge Marsh Park: A Bird Haven and a Story of Environmental Rebirth

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Surrounded by steel processing plants and busy railroad lines and roads lies a place of wild beauty and an oasis for migrating great egrets, double crested cormorants, and little blue herons, among many other birds. Park No. 565 is a Chicago city park that’s nothing … Continue reading Indian Ridge Marsh Park: A Bird Haven and a Story of Environmental Rebirth

14 Amazing Nature Spots I Visited This Year That Should be on Your Chicagoland “Nature Bucket List”

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND It's been a challenging year in many ways as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the contentious presidential campaign, and other factors. But amidst the stressful conditions, there have been two constants: my great family and nature. My family has provided support, solace, companionship, … Continue reading 14 Amazing Nature Spots I Visited This Year That Should be on Your Chicagoland “Nature Bucket List”

Powderhorn Prairie, Marsh, and Lake: A Unique Dune and Swale Landscape, Fishing, and an Exciting Restoration Project

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Powderhorn Prairie, Marsh, and Lake is a nature gem tucked amongst rail yards, industry, and city and suburban neighborhoods on the far South Side of Chicago. There are two main Powderhorn properties: a 48-acre human-made lake with 7,000 feet of shoreline (which is located in … Continue reading Powderhorn Prairie, Marsh, and Lake: A Unique Dune and Swale Landscape, Fishing, and an Exciting Restoration Project

Kankakee Sands: Bison Hunting, Wide Open Spaces, and Great Hiking

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND There is nothing like hiking on a prairie or through a dense forest without seeing nearly another soul for 4+ hours. And that is what I experienced last week when I visited Kankakee Sands on a sunny, humid day in the high-80s. This stunning natural … Continue reading Kankakee Sands: Bison Hunting, Wide Open Spaces, and Great Hiking

20+ Great Destinations on Chicago’s South Side and in the Southland to Check Out This Weekend and Beyond

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Looking for something to do this weekend and beyond? If so, check out these 20+ great places on Chicago’s South Side and in its south and southwest suburbs. I’ve also included Indiana Dunes National Park, one of our nation’s newest national park, and it’s just as beautiful … Continue reading 20+ Great Destinations on Chicago’s South Side and in the Southland to Check Out This Weekend and Beyond

Belmont Prairie and More Than 25 Other Prairies in Chicagoland to Visit and Enjoy

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Willa Cather, one of my favorite authors, once described the Midwest (especially Nebraska) as a “Sea of Grass.” But farms, miles of pavement, and cities and suburbs have replaced much of this vast ecosystem. This is especially true in Illinois, which is misleadingly known as the “Prairie … Continue reading Belmont Prairie and More Than 25 Other Prairies in Chicagoland to Visit and Enjoy

The 7 Most-Popular Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in May 2020

A great canoeing/kayaking/hiking destination in the Chicago area The wildest place in Cook County Great places to see bison in Chicagoland and beyond 40-foot limestone cliffs, a stream, beautiful waterfalls, and a fishing pond–all in a Chicago neighborhood Rolling hills, deep ravines, and the remnants of the Manhattan Project A great place for a hike … Continue reading The 7 Most-Popular Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in May 2020

Raccoon Grove Nature Preserve: Stunning Spring Wildflowers, a Sun-Dappled Creek, Splendid Fall Colors, and Easy Hiking

Copyright Andrew Morkes BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND I didn't see any raccoons, but I did savor acres and acres of stunning wild geraniums and mayapples during my hike last week at Raccoon Grove Nature Preserve (5851 W. Pauling Road, Monee, IL 60449). This 213-acre Illinois Nature Preserve is a great destination for a … Continue reading Raccoon Grove Nature Preserve: Stunning Spring Wildflowers, a Sun-Dappled Creek, Splendid Fall Colors, and Easy Hiking