Hadley Valley is a remarkable resource for outdoor recreation as well as for birding and wildlife viewing. Come for day in the sun, soak up some vitamin D, and take in the sweet smell of native wildflowers as they bloom. With just a short trip from Chicago, it’s a great discovery for all nature lovers!
Since 2007, the Forest Preserves of Will County have restored more than 180 acres of native habitat, working in collaboration with Openlands, the US Army Corp of Engineers, the Illinois Tollway (I-355 Extension project), the City of Joliet, the Illinois DNR, and local development. Altogether, about 148,000 individual plants have been planted to restore the wetland areas.
The quality of restoration at Hadley Valley has earned it numerous awards and accolades. Native plants and animals thrive in vast prairie, open savannas, and shaded woodland.
Enjoy over 8 miles of crushed limestone trail along the native ecosystems in the preserve. The western segment is linear and travels 5.01 miles, while the eastern segment is hillier and travels 3.44 miles. Take your pick on difficulty level! Or go through the whole preserve, the paths are connected.