Cold weather is officially here. Take advantage of the winter season by exploring the vast outdoor adventures McHenry County has to offer. Whether it’s sledding with the family, ice fishing with friends, or hiking a candlelight trail there are winter activities and outdoor recreation for everyone.
Snowshoeing, Cross Country Skiing & Winter Hiking | Map
The McHenry County Conservation District offers two weekends of candlelight cross-country skiing and hiking. January 14 & 15th you can explore Harrison Benwell Conservation Area by candlelight and February 11 & 12 at Marengo Ridge. All experience levels are welcome, and you can visit the campfire to warm up before you leave! Learn more HERE!
Cold weather hiking enthusiasts can take advantage of solar lit trails as well at Pleasant Valley and Hickory Grove Highlands November through March.
Need snowshoeing gear? Glacial Park has a rental service so you can give this winter sport a try!
**Please note that most hiking trails are also cross-country ski trails, so please walk on the outside of the ski tracks when visiting**
Stickney Run | 3216 State Park Rd, McHenry
Silver Creek | 1009 Rawson Bridge Rd, Cary
Rush Creek | 20501 McGuire Rd, Harvard
Prairieview Education Center | 2112 Behan Rd, Crystal Lake
Prairie Trail North | Route 176 – Barnard Mill Rd.
Prairie Trail South | Pyott Rd. to County Line
Pleasant Valley | 13119 Pleasant Valley Rd, Woodstock
Marengo Ridge | 2411 N, IL-23, Marengo
Lake in the Hills Fen (Walk-in only) | 1500 Jefferson St., Lake in the Hills
The Hollows | 3804 US-14, Cary
Hickory Grove/Lyons Prarie Marsh | 500 Hickory Nut Grove Ln, Cary
Harrison Benwell | 7055 McCullom Lake Rd, Wonder Lake
Glacial Park | 6705 State Route 31, Ringwood
Fel-Pro RRR | 1520 Crystal Lake Rd, Cary
Exner Marsh (Walk-in only) | 9000 N. Lakewood Rd, Lake in the Hills
Coral Woods | 7400 Somerset Dr, Marengo
Brookdale | 2105 Paulsen Rd, Woodstock
Sledding | Map
Looking for outdoor recreation for the whole family? You’re in luck! Sledding hills are scattered throughout McHenry County and are filled with families in the winter season. So bundle up, grab your sled, and start exploring!
If you are looking for more extreme winter sledding, visit Wilmot Mountain’s tubing hill. This is one epic outdoor adventure. Check out the video below for a quick preview:
Glacial Park | 6313 Harts Road, Ringwood
Albert A. Adams Park | 3703 N. Richmond Rd, McHenry
Veteran Acres | 431 Walkup Rd, Crystal Lake
Butternut Preserve | 540 Ballard Rd, Crystal Lake
Four Colonies Park | 925 Sarasota Lane, Crystal Lake
Three Oaks Recreation Area | 5517 Northwest Highway, Crystal Lake
Indian Prairie Park | 600 Miller Road, Crystal Lake
Lions Park | 1200 Silver Lake Road, Cary
Braewood Park | 1001 Gaslight Dr, Algonquin
High Hill Park and Nature Preserve | 501 Kirkland, Algonquin
Spella Park | 2610 Harnish Drive, Algonquin
Deicke Park | 11419 S. Rt 47, Huntley
Emricson Park | 900 West South St., Woodstock
Ice fishing | Map
** Only available when there if 4” or more of clear ice present **
Winter anglers rejoice! McHenry County is filled with lakes perfect for ice fishing. In our lakes you can find bluegill, largemouth bass, norther pike, walleye, white crappie and yellow perch.
The Hollows | 3804 US-14, Crystal Lake
Woods Creek Lake | 149 Hilltop Dr, Lake in the Hills
Wonder Lake | 4200 Thompson Rd, Wonder Lake
Crystal Lake | 300 Lakeshore Dr, Crystal Lake
Elizabeth Lake | 11000 Lakeview Dr, Richmond
Pistakee Bay | 801 Oak Grove Rd, Johnsburg