Wadsworth Road to Gowe Park


Wadsworth Road to Gowe Park

Skill Level


Trail Length

5.8 miles

Waterway Trail

Directions: Access to the canoe launch is on the south side of Wadsworth Road, on the east bank of the river, and is approximately 1/2 mile east of Route 41. The water trail winds through parts of the Lake County Forest Preserve District, past the Wetlands Demonstration Project, and Gurnee Woods. The trip ends at Gowe Park, just south of Highway 132. 

Notes: This is a pleasant paddle through forest preserves in Lake County which can be challenging depending on conditions. Beware of obstacles such as beaver dams and log jams, which you should portage around. Forest Preserve volunteers work to keep the route clear, which is a ceaseless endeavor.

Always check United States Geological Survey (USGS) water data before your trip.

2 thoughts on “Wadsworth Road to Gowe Park”

  1. This paddle was an absolute blast down a beautiful stretch of river. But I must say a beginner-intermediate rating is misleading. After doing more than a dozen of the trails in this guide, including several ranked Expert, this was the most challenging I have encountered by a huge margin. At least 4 major obstacles and a half dozen smaller ones, including massive logjams and a rock dam with over 4 ft of drop. Don’t get me wrong – it is a TON of fun and I would highly highly recommend it for any adventurous paddler. But a beginner or people with kids looking for a relaxing float will get way more than they bargained for here. While low water levels contributed a bit I am sure to some of the challenges I faced, it was not the whole story. Gauge height at Old Mill Creek at the time of my paddle was 6.26 feet, with the median being 6.6, so while low it was not overly so. Overall this is an awesome paddle – i saw bald eagles, snapping turtles, tons of songbirds, map turtles, at least a dozen muskrats, and it has a beautiful mix of open grasslands and forested sections. Information as of 7/3/23

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