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The Best Backpacking in Illinois

Looking for the best backpacking in Illinois? We've got you covered with the top trails, trips, hiking, backpacking, camping and more around Illinois. The detailed guides, photos, and reviews are all submitted by the Outbound community.

Top backpacking spots in and near Illinois

  • Topeka, Illinois

    Backpack the Yellow Trail at Sand Ridge State Forest

    14.8 mi
    Park in Parking lot 2 on E. Co. Rd. 2300 N - from there you'll find the trail head for the Yellow/Red Trails. The Yellow Trail is the large 14.8 mile loop you'll follow for the whole trip. Start your hike by heading north on the trail; at this point the Yellow Trail is combined with the Red Trail...
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  • Pope County, Illinois

    Hike to Indian Kitchen

    4.8 mi / 192 ft gain
    Designated a national natural landmark in 1980, Lusk Creek Canyon is the name of a 906-acre canyon located within the Lusk Creek Wilderness Area of the Shawnee National Forest in Pope County, Illinois. The Lusk Creek Canyon Nature Preserve and National Natural Landmark features an outstanding sce...
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  • Jonesboro, Illinois

    Camp in the Trail of Tears State Forest

    Trail of Tears State Forest lies within one of the most rugged landscapes in Illinois. The hills are steep, and the soil is shallow and susceptible to erosion. Cliffs are all around and streams with gravel bottoms are in the narrow forest filled valleys. In 1838-39 the Cherokee, Creek, and Chicka...
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  • Alto Pass, Illinois

    Godwin Trail

    12.18 mi / 1043 ft gain
    Godwin Trail is an out-and-back trail that takes you through a nice forest located near Alto Pass, Illinois.
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  • Clayton, Illinois

    Red Oak Trail

    3.22 mi / 322 ft gain
    Red Oak Trail is a loop trail that takes you by a lake located near Timewell, Illinois.
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  • Makanda, Illinois

    Little Cedar Lake via Lirley Trailhead

    7.76 mi / 1309 ft gain
    Little Cedar Lake via Lirley Trailhead is an out-and-back trail that is good for all skill levels located near Makanda, Illinois.
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  • Sugar Grove, Illinois

    Virgil Gilman Nature Trail via Sugar Grove

    11.27 mi / 256 ft gain
    Virgil Gilman Nature Trail via Sugar Grove is an point-to-point trail that takes you by a river located near Sugar Grove, Illinois.
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