By Wade Ellett, Let’s Move Quad Cities Outdoor Blogger
Here are some great hikes to enjoy any time of year, even with a little early snow on the ground!
This is a great paved path connecting Eldridge and Long Grove, Iowa.
We picked it up at Sheridan Meadows Park in Eldridge, but it starts alongside North Scott High School on East Iowa Street.
It terminates in about one and a half miles in Long Grove, at East Grove Street, across from the Long Grove Christian Church Cemetery.
The paved path runs alongside a road to the West, but rolling farm fields to the East make for great scenery.
Once you reach Long Grove, those fields will turn into a pleasant residential neighborhood. This paved walkway is perfect for walking and cycling for the entire family.
Drive north about an hour to Copper Creek Trail. It isn’t incredibly long by itself (see below), but it’s a great spot to walk (or ride, when the weather is nice).
The sandy-earthen trail is great for hiking and mountain or fat biking.
This trail follows the meandering Copper Creek and after just under a mile meets up with the Bear River Recreational Trail, which is a great trail to continue on, if you have the time.
You can access Copper Creek trail from W. Miles St. in Preston IA; I recommend parking at Two Good Park in Preston, and walking about a block north to W. Miles Street. From there, head west and in a block or two you can’t miss it!
Bear River is 6-1/2 miles of shaded trail running along the Maquoketa River, located on the former Chicago-Milwaukee Railroad line.
We hiked for about 4 miles, spotting a few bald eagles and the occasional fox. We also saw plenty of deer tracks on the path.
There are plenty of great spots to observe the river along the trail, and you’ll see wonderful limestone bluffs as well.
Overall, it’s a beautiful hike, and a good place to spend a few hours.
You can pick up Bear River from Copper Creek, if you feel like going that far, but you can also access it just east of Spragueville. Your GPS might lie to you once you get close, but there are a few signs that lead the way, so keep your eye out for them. Once you’re in Spragueville, keep your eye peeled for W. Main Street. Head east on that road; its name will change to 45th st, but in just about half mile from the post office, the trailhead will be on the North side of the road.
Where do you plan on doing your winter hiking?
|Meet Wade Ellett, Let’s Move Quad Cities Outdoor Blogger. Wade is an outdoor adventurer who shares his passion for QC outdoor adventures here! Read his other posts by clicking here.|