One of the few forest preserves within the city of Chicago, 257-acre Dan Ryan Woods is a popular and well-loved family destination on the South Side. Playfields, picnic groves, a sledding hill and a paved trail provide ample activities for all visitors to enjoy. While best known as a gathering spot for families and friends, Dan Ryan Woods also supports a large array of native plants, animals and migratory birds.
The Major Taylor Trail, named for an African-American bicycle racer and civil rights advocate, starts at the eastern edge of the farthest north parking lot at Dan Ryan Woods North. This paved multi-use trail runs along the edge of the preserve for about 1.5 miles to 91St Street. The trail continues southeast for another 5.5 miles (routed on city streets from 95th to 105th), eventually connecting to Whistler Woods south of the Little Calumet River.