Giant City Trail Information

Whether you have a day or a week at Giant City State Park, spend some time on the spectacular hiking trails. Trails range from 1/3 mile to 12 miles, so take your pick! Be sure to get a interpretive trail guide at the Visitors Center.

A map of the park and interpretive trail guides for each of the trails at Giant City are available at the Visitors Center. In addition, visitors can pick up checklists for trees, birds, amphibians/reptiles and wildflowers at the Center.

Arrowwood Self-Interpretive Nature Trail

Just off of the parking lot at the Visitors Center lies Giant City’s newest trail. This 1/3 mile tree identification trail is an easy walk through a young forest. Twelve interpretive signs are located along the trail with tips on identification and uses of trees. Hike this trail first for a refresher on many of the trees of Giant City.

 

Rock Formation

Devil’s Standtable Nature Trail

For a little more strenuous hike, try this one. This 1/3 mile trail has some short uphill climbs that are well worth the effort. Tall forest trees surround you as you approach the 70 - 80 feet tall sandstone cliffs. An interpretive sign explains how the tall standtable formed.

 

Stonefort Nature Trail

Stonefort Nature Trail

One of only ten sites found in southern Illinois, a "stonefort" is a wall of heavy stones left by Late Woodland Period (600 - 900 AD) Native Americans. Although called "stoneforts", their true use is unknown. They may have been ceremonial meeting places. Anyway, come theorize for yourself. This 1/3 mile trail can be quite strenuous.

 

Indian Creek

Indian Creek Nature Trail | Trail Map

This 3/4 mile moderate trail crosses Indian Creek, a rocky stream that moves a lot of water during wet seasons.This trail is worth the effort as it provides glimpses of a mature floodplain forest containing large cottonwoods and sycamores. You’ll also be rewarded half way with a large sandstone bluff where some believe Native Americans took shelter. This trail closes during shotgun deer season.
 

Giant City Nature Trail

Giant City Nature Trail | Trail Map

By far the most popular trail at Giant City, this 1 mile trail is home to the famous "streets" of Giant City. You’ll walk on a mulched trail with wooden walkways at difficult spots. There are some strenuous uphill portions on this trail. Take this trail to view a diversity of plant habitats from creek bottomland to dry blufftop. This is also a promising trail for seeing the largest woodpecker in the United States, the pileated woodpecker.
 

Trillium Trail

Trillium Trail | Trail Map

If it’s spring woodland wildflowers you’re after, this is the trail for you. Known for such rare species as Forbes’ Saxifrage and French’s Shooting Star, the sandstone bluffs of this 2 mile trek are home to a great variety of Illinois’ finest wildflowers. This is a rugged trail with rocky terrain and clifftop edge sections. Please use caution as the slightest moisture leaves sandstone slippery!!!
 

Red Cedar Hiking Trail

Red Cedar Hiking Trail | Trail Map

Plan ahead to complete this 12 mile hike around the park. You’ll experience a little of everything Giant City has to offer on this trail, including oak-hickory forests, rocky creeks, and sandstone bluffs and shelters. No water is available, so please carry enough to meet your needs for a long way. Although there are creeks crossed on this hike, most of them are intermittent or running only during or after storm events. A primitive tent camping area at 6 miles provides fire grills, picnic tables, and privies. Please stop at the Visitors Center to get a camping permit. This trail is closed during shotgun deer season.
 

Post Oak Nature Trail

Post Oak Nature Trail

This 1/3 mile handicapped-accessible trail winds along the top of a beautiful forested sandstone cliff. The paved trail leads visitors through many natural experiences including viewing the life around a small wildlife pond and exploring a dry blufftop oak forest with gorgeous overlooks. This trail is also perfect for elderly visitors or parents with very young children.

 

 

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