Pine Dunes Forest Preserve: Birding, Biking, and Easy Hiking

Looking for a place where you can: view as many birds as possible have the chance to hike several miles on a loop trail enjoy some solitude visit someplace new If so, you should visit Pine Dunes Forest Preserve, which is located in Antioch, Illinois, near the Wisconsin border. It’s part of the Lake County … Continue reading Pine Dunes Forest Preserve: Birding, Biking, and Easy Hiking

The Most-Popular Non-Nature Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in 2022

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER AND AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND I wrote many stories about nature destinations in 2022, but I also covered other topics that were near and dear to my heart including stories about the sudden loss of one of my best friends, my father and other family, a visit to the Flight … Continue reading The Most-Popular Non-Nature Stories at Nature in Chicagoland in 2022

Goodbye 2022…Hello 2023!

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER AND AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND I want to thank my Nature in Chicagoland readers for visiting my blog in 2022. I continue to love writing this blog, and wish I had more time in my daily life to do so. I visited many nature destinations in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West … Continue reading Goodbye 2022…Hello 2023!

An Elegy for Chicago’s Walking Man

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND All he wanted to do was to walk the city streets in peace every day.   Joseph Kromelis walked and walked the streets that sprawled below the steel and stone canyons of Chicago’s Loop, Magnificent Mile, and Streeterville, past bustling businessmen, tourists walking five abreast … Continue reading An Elegy for Chicago’s Walking Man

Remembering My Community of Saints on Día de los Muertos

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND To paraphrase the Bible, of dust we were made, and to dust we will return once our time on earth ends. This fact is immutable, but I think we all long for some type of permanence after we die. If we lived good lives, our … Continue reading Remembering My Community of Saints on Día de los Muertos

8 Reasons You Should Vote Yes for the Cook County Forest Preserves on Election Day and 11 Spots to Visit

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND The Forest Preserves of Cook County feature 70,000+ acres of beautiful public land. Its prairies, forests, wetlands, lakes, rivers, streams, and savannah provide excellent opportunities for hiking, biking, paddling, fishing, horseback riding, running, cross-country skiing, sledding, snowshoeing, swimming, and other forms of outdoor recreation. It … Continue reading 8 Reasons You Should Vote Yes for the Cook County Forest Preserves on Election Day and 11 Spots to Visit

Middlefork Savanna Nature Preserve: Great Blooms, Biking, Hiking, and Nature Experiences

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND How lucky we are to have such natural places as Middlefork Savanna Nature Preserve, where the saw-toothed sunflowers grow tall as fairytale giants (OK, maybe not that tall), the plentiful asters prettily mark the end of wildflower season, and the birds seem to sing a … Continue reading Middlefork Savanna Nature Preserve: Great Blooms, Biking, Hiking, and Nature Experiences

Birding Blogger and Filmmaker Releases “The Magic Stump”—a Must-See Documentary

I recently watched Bob Dolgan’s nature documentary “The Magic Stump,” and it’s a beautiful and thoughtful meditation on the love of birding, the friendships it helps to deepen, and the lives of Prairie Falcons and other birds. It reminds us that birding is the perfect alternative to our fast-paced, immediate gratification society that seems to … Continue reading Birding Blogger and Filmmaker Releases “The Magic Stump”—a Must-See Documentary

Illinois Beach State Park: Beautiful Dune, Lake, and River Views; Hiking; Biking; Camping; and Other Great Outdoor Recreational Activities

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND There are only 63 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline in Illinois (as opposed to 3,288 miles in Michigan), and much of this land has been developed as part of city lakefronts, heavy industry, and private beachfront property. That’s why Illinois Beach State Park (1 Lake … Continue reading Illinois Beach State Park: Beautiful Dune, Lake, and River Views; Hiking; Biking; Camping; and Other Great Outdoor Recreational Activities

Remembering David Fode

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Dave (right) and I at his wedding. I still don’t believe it. I might never believe that one of my best friends is gone. I loved Dave like a brother and always will. I met Dave almost 40 years ago as a high school freshman … Continue reading Remembering David Fode