Please Scroll Down for Current &Upcoming Happenings

  • Habitat Restoration and Stewardship Teams: Moraine Hills State Park & Volo Bog State Natural Area

  • Of Bogs and Books: Winter 2021-2022 selections

  • Bird Walks

  • Shutterbugs of Volo Bog

  • Walk with a Naturalist

  • Guided Tours of Volo Bog

  • Volunteer Veterans Conservation Corp

  • Photo Contest - The Pictures are up!

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Bird Walk Schedules

Volo Bog State Natural Area,

McHenry Dam & Chain-o-lakes

Bird Walks at Volo Bog State Natural Area LNCI!   

Saturdays & Sundays      8:00 a.m.    Please reply to register or phone 815-344-1294

With prairie restorations, woodlands, old fields, marshes and of course Volo Bog itself, VBSNA affords birders the opportunity to see a variety of species - 193 species have been documented on site! Often several species are seen and heard even before even leaving the parking lot. Visit http://ebird.org/ebird/hotspot/L322146 to explore our most recent sightings. Bring binoculars and field guides, or borrow from our leaders. Walk is approximately 3 miles and takes from 2 - 3+ hours with weather and luck in birding. Adults and attentive kids ages 6 and older are welcome. Meet in the main parking lot. Registration is requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov  Group size is limited - Walk-ins welcome if space allows but walk may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior. Co-sponsored, and led by members of, McHenry County Audubon. Visit www.McHenryAudubon.org

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To Register, Contact:

Stacey Iwanicki @ dnr.volobog@illinois.gov or call 815-344-1294.

Group size will be limited to 15

Walks with a Naturalist at Volo Bog State Natural Area on Wednesdays                

10:00 am – 12:00 pm      Meet Naturalist Stacy Iwanicki in front of the Visitor Center         

*Discovering Deerpath & Prairie Ridge Trails:

Seldom-travelled, Deerpath and Prairie Ridge Trails are across Brandenburg Road, traversing shrubland, transitional woods and prairie restoration areas. Discover some unique vegetation such as wafer ash, honey locust and hog peanut. A distant view of tamaracks in Pistakee Bog are a highlight.

 

*Trekking Tamarack View Trail: 

Named for Volo Bog’s hallmark tamarack trees seen off in the distance, TVT loops around the outer periphery of the bog through a variety of habitats including woodland, prairie, marsh, and even a small stream. 

 

*Volo Bog’s Golden Tamaracks Walks: 

Venture into the heart of Volo Bog just as the Tamarack Trees reach their peak of golden glory! These deciduous conifers lose their needles each year but first give us a spectacular show.

All ages are welcome.  Registration is requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov   Group size is limited - Walk-ins welcome if space allows but walk may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior. We’ll be following COVID protocols so please bring your mask. Please dress for the weather with comfortable hiking shoes and a broad-brimmed hat. Bring (but do not pre-apply) insect repellent.

 

 

Walks with a Naturalist at Moraine Hills State Park/McHenry Dam on Thursdays            

10:00 am –12:00 pm      Meet Naturalist Stacy Iwanicki at locations noted.

*Whitetail Prairie – Hiking the grassy Nature Trail for a leisurely 1.5 miles: 

*Oak Opening – Lake Defiance Trail 3.7 miles so we’ll be getting our exercise!:

*McHenry Dam – Fox River Trail; meet by trail head at south end of parking for 2.0 miles:

*Northern Woods – We’ll do a turn-around hike for only 1.5 miles: 

*Pike Marsh for a leisurely 1.5 mile turn-around hike:

Naturalist Stacy Iwanicki will lead a discovery of the natural world around us as we wander along the trails practicing our observation skills and learning about the amazing biodiversity in our park. All ages are welcome!  Registration is requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov  Group size is limited - Walk-ins welcome if space allows but walk may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior. Please dress for the weather with comfortable hiking shoes and a broad-brimmed hat. Bring (but do not pre-apply) insect repellent.

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Volo Bog is an amazing ecosystem of rare ferns and mosses, floating trees and carnivorous plants. It is our state’s 25th designated Illinois Nature Preserve and a National Natural Landmark. Serving as an outdoor classroom for nearly 100 years, we just don’t want the people of Illinois to forget what a treasure we all have. 

Private Group Tours (7 – 14 people) by appointment. Phone 815-344-1294.

The Pictures are up, come out and vote for your favorites. 
Awards will be presented at Winterfest, January 2022.

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