Freeport, Illinois — It’s going to be a great weekend in Stephenson County and many other local counties to get out and go ‘Ride Your Bike”. Grab some friends, pull the kids together and hit any one of Freeport’s most awesome amenities, the Jane Addams trails.
Stretching north from Freeport, Illinois, to the Wisconsin state line, the Jane Addams Trail is a natural wonder. Expect to see birds and wild animals-from exotic aerial hunters, such as owls and hawks, to run-of-the-mill squirrels and deer.
It’s named for Jane Addams, who was born in 1860 and blossomed onto the international stage as a humanitarian and pioneering social worker. In 1931, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, the first American woman to receive the honor.
Her other shining achievements include the 1889 co-founding of Chicago’s Hull House, a settlement facility for recently arrived immigrants, and the co-founding of the American Civil Liberties Union in 1920. Her namesake trail lies less than 2 miles from Cedarville, where travelers can visit her childhood home and gravesite.
At the Wes Block Trailhead to the Tutty’s Crossing Trailhead the trails bring access to downtown Freeport. This section of the trail offers travelers lodging, restaurants, stores, and specialty shops in historic downtown Freeport. Be sure to savor a dip of ice cream or a turtle sundae at the Union Dairy, an integral part of Freeport’s history since 1914, and spend some time experiencing our local history at the Lincoln Douglas Debate Site.
- 17 miles from Tutty’s Crossing Trailhead in downtown Freeport to Wisconsin state line where it connects to the Badger Trail, a 40 mile trail to Madison, Wisconsin. Note that Wisconsin charges a trail admission fee
- 4.1 miles asphalt paved path from Tutty’s Crossing Trailhead to Wes Block Trailhead with two short sections of no-road bike lanes. 10 foot wide, level grade, crushed limestone surface from Wes Block Trailhead to Wisconsin state line.
- 22 bridges including the historic Van Buren Bridge across the Pecatonica River, erected in 1885, and a Covered Bridge outside of Orangeville
- Bordered by the Pecatonica River, Richland Creek and Cedar Creek
- Travels through historic downtown Freeport, the Old River School Historic District Neighborhood, and past natural wetlands, old oak woods, grassland prairies, exposed rock embankments, active farms, and several small communities as well as the Village of Orangeville
- Part of the Grand Illinois Trail that traverses northern Illinois from Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River
Trailheads and Parking Access to the trail is available at:
- Tutty’s Crossing Trailhead 250 E. Stephenson Street, Freeport On the banks of the Pecatonica River Parking, Information, Boat Access (Shelter, Restrooms and other amenities under development)
- Wes Block Trail Access 2636 W. Fairview Road, Freeport Exit off Illinois Highway 26, 1/4 mile south of the U.S. Highway 20 intersection Parking, Shelter, Restroom
- Cedarville Road 2875 W. Cedarville Road, Freeport West of Village of Cedarville Parking, Wayside on Trail
- Red Oak Beaver Road off Red Oak Road Parking, Portable Restroom in Summer
- Buena Vista McConnell Road Parking
- Richland Creek Trailhead 101 N. Ewing Street, Orangeville Parking, Shelter, Restroom, Water