A fun and hilly ride that's on par with many other systems in the Illinois area. It is also part of the Illinois race series. If you can ride well here, you'll do fine at any other nearby park.
The network at Spring Lake Park is made up of three primary loops (Deer
, and Rat
) and several smaller loops and connectors. The trails at Spring Lake are tight in some spots and they do have lots of bridges and log piles. It can be really challenging and the hills just keep coming. All together though, they add up to over nine miles of sweet singletrack!
From the parking area, head away from the lake and across the grass to a tree-lined corner. Start in on "A" Loop
with a steep climb that's followed by short downhills. There are a couple of features to play on like wooden roll-overs and even a teeter-totter if you're feeling adventurous.
At the Baby Rat
intersection, turn left for three-quarters of a mile of tight, off-camber singletrack. It's one of the newer sections of trail but not included in the local race. Turn left at the next intersection to follow the Spillway Connector
across a low wooden bridge and over the water.
Up next, follow Bunny
for a fast and easy loop that's a mix of single and doubletrack. On the other end, turn left to follow the Bunny - Deer Connector
to the start of Deer
. Turn west (left) and pedal along the easy doubletrack until it reaches the start of Rat
. This tough, winding trail loops to the south and features some of the most difficult climbs and biggest downhills at the lake. Once you've dealt with all the elevation changes, Rat
spills back onto Deer
so riders can follow the north portion of that loop.
Enjoy almost a mile of easy travel before reaching the start of Fox
. This is the backbone of the Spring Lake Park trail system. The Fox
trail has been here forever and provides the only way out to West Extension
, which in turn makes a nice extension to all the mileage riders have been racking up.
After the West Extension
, continue on the lower side of Fox
past the Roller Coaster and Triple Jump sections as well as Campsite Three. Pick up Eagle
for a very fun, must-ride trail that travels closely along the lake. Watch your speed so you don't inadvertently take a dip! It accesses Campsite Two at the intersection with the Eagle Cutoff
and Campsite One before it makes a long turn back to Deer
Once back at the dam, you can ride across the top for an easy cool-down back to the parking area.