North Central/Northwest Illinois Rides

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - Central, Texas & Gulf States' started by Cannonshot, Sep 4, 2011.

  1. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2005
    Oddometer:
    21,057
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    My friend 4-s-hsky worked out a couple a nice routes in NC/NW IL for people to enjoy. I have posted the tracks for download here.

    Here are the routes and his comments about each.

    Hennepin Canal/Illinois River Ride for Big Bikes<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    This track starts and finishes on private property, the tracks creator to be exact. It is meant to be ridden in a counter clockwise rotation. It is about 260 miles total. Along the way there are many bridges, river towns, locks, state parks and terrain changes. The first recommended stop would be the Hennepin Canal visitor center to learn about the canal. It was for the most part a commercial failure but quite the construction task for its day. From there a mix of sporty paved roads take you to a long stretch of narrow gravel as you enter the Illinois River Valley area. The patio on the Henry Harbor Marina in Henry is a great lunch stop. Crossing the river at Henry is a treat over one of the few remaining older two lane bridges on the Illinois. A hike anywhere in Starved Rock State Park is a good for a stretch, St. Louis Canyon personally recommended as is at the end of a beat up road on the south side of the park. You will go through several river towns on the way to the covered bridge in Princeton, plenty of opportunity for fuel and services. The track takes a cut back to the start but you can finish up in Rock Falls for services. There are a mix of gravel and paved roads on this ride, all public so be wary of traffic at all times. I assume no responsibility if you do something stoopid or illegal. Above all have fun and be careful.
    [​IMG]

    Northwest Illinois Back Roads Ride for Big Bikes<o:p></o:p>
    Here are a few notes for the ride. The start, camp and finish are obviously on private property, this track’s creator to be exact. The day will be about 240 miles in length. The track is meant to be ridden in a counter clockwise rotation. Keep an eye on waypoints if you need fuel. I have waypoints for but not always a track to gas. The tall rock on the left side of Apple River Canyon State Park is a good place to get off, stretch with a hike and re hydrate. The Observation Deck at the former Savanna Army Depot is worth the side trip. Look for the waypoint “Right2ArmyDepotDune” and follow that track. You will notice the entrance and exit track gets close but simply follow the brown signs to the deck as you enter the property. The exit track gives you a better view of the Army Depot. If you have time a loop through Palisades State Park is always a good time and the bluff views are pretty cool. As you leave Savanna Poopy’s bar is on your left, a good spot for a beverage or snack. Yea it’s a Harley bar but lots of families hang there also, it’s not so bad really. On the way to Fulton, Lock and Dam 13 is on the way if you wish to see a Mississippi River lock. I have the track running past the windmill in Fulton. The town has a strong Dutch contingent and this windmill was shipped here from Holland. Visiting hours may be over late in the day but it is a rather interesting tour. As you near the end, the town of Lyndon has a historic plank bridge I way pointed. There are a mix of gravel, dirt and paved roads on this ride, all public so be wary of traffic at all times. I assume no responsibility if you do something stoopid or illegal. Above all have fun and be careful.
    [​IMG]

    Again, tracks can be downloaded here.

    Many thanks to 4-s-hsky for taking the time to share some great rides for others to enjoy!
    #1
  2. jped

    jped jped

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2009
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    Location:
    E. Iowa
    When in Savanna, Il., visit the Iron Horse in the Downtown, Hwy 84. Lots of old bikes, racers, hillclimbers, vintage gear, posters, etc. Also, Hawg Dogs, just up the street has some cool old stuff.
    #2
  3. MisterShandy

    MisterShandy Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
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    97
    Location:
    Chicago
    Looks great, maybe I'll take another trip to starved rock, been a couple years. The ride along the Mississip is just what I was looking for too. I am grabbing them both in the hopes of riding them this summer! Thanks.
    #3
  4. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Super Moderator

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  5. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Super Moderator

    Joined:
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    #5
  6. StumpThump

    StumpThump n00b

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    Oddometer:
    8
    Location:
    La Salle/ Peru Illinois
    This is right in my backyard. I'm gonna hafta ride it. I just bought a new dual sport after streetin' it for the last 23 years.
    #6
  7. reveille

    reveille Beagle for sale!

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,187
    Location:
    Northern Illinois
    If you are looking for someone to ride with shoot me a PM. I have a well equipped DR650 and live out near Yorkville. I would very much like to ride the Hennepin track.:deal

    Jim
    #7
  8. Silver dude

    Silver dude Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Oddometer:
    10
    Did the Hennepin earlier this week many thanks for the track what a terrific ride.
    #8
  9. Gerken

    Gerken Formerly 4-s-hsky

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    173
    Location:
    Sterling Illinois
    Checked out this abandoned rail tunnel a few weeks ago and decided to add it as a waypoint on the Northwest Illinois Big Bike track. http://bridgehunter.com/il/jo-daviess/winston-tunnel/ Pretty cool find and worth the uh, "foot hike" in. It's on DNR property and only accessible from the west off Black Jack Road. The link will tell you more as I wish to absolve myself from any issues you may encounter including the rattlesnakes. We did not spot any but our foot hike was at a very accelerated pace just in case. I don't do snakes. PM me with any questions. Enjoy, respect and be safe.
    #9
  10. Voigtlander912

    Voigtlander912 Stromtrooper

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2014
    Oddometer:
    18
    Location:
    NW Chicago burbs
    A friend of mine and I did the Hennepin route last Sunday. We travelled from Chi-town via I88 to Moline Rd then South the longer part of the trail to starved rock SP. It was well over 200 miles via country roads and some good deal of gravel. I would like to thank Cannon shot for mapping out the route. Very nice ride, but with inbound and outbound travel it totaled 470 miles in one day - a bit long, but fun. Here is a short video snip. Crossing the closed bridge.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCaEbNDHCy0
    #10