Take a Hike: Oldfield Oaks Forest Preserve

| Take a Hike by Patricia Hayden, What's New

Oldfield Oaks Forest Preserve by Patricia Hayden

This month I visited Oldfield Oaks Forest Preserve in Darien. At this site there are two looped trails to explore as well as an off-leash dog park.

The main entrance for Oldfield Oaks is on the south side of Oldfield Road just east of the intersection of 87th Street and Lemont Road. Parking is free and there are handicapped spots available. There is a portable washroom near the parking lot as well as informational postings about the trails (it’s a coyote habitat and there are no bikes allowed).

From the trail start, I went to the right and began my hike on the North Loop Trail. This limestone trail is approximately 1.1 miles and while walking I saw an abundance of Oak and Maple trees as well as Bush clover. And although I didn’t see any birds, I definitely heard them. At about the halfway point, the trail offered two separate routes: stay to the left and I would continue on the North Loop Trail; veer to the right and I would start walking the South Loop Trail which would take me to an off-leash dog park. It was a beautiful day, so I decided to veer right and explore.

The South Loop Trail is approximately .6 miles and also consists of limestone. Both trails had many winding sections and there were several places that had moderately steep climbs so I took advantage of the benches on the trail to sit for a bit and take in my surroundings.

Walking the South Loop Trail, I came to another divergence in the path: go straight I would stay on the South Trail or veer right and go to the fenced-in off-leash dog park. I went right to see the dog park and can confirm it was populated with many happy, energetic pups!

Note: There is a separate entrance and parking lot for the dog park and you can find that by going east on Frontage/Cheese Road from Lemont Road.

If you explore the dog park as I did, please know you’ll need to retrace your steps back to the divergence in the path in order to get back on the South Trail. As I continued on the South Trail, it eventually connected me to the North Trail and then back to the parking lot where I started.

More information about the site can be found here: Oldfield Oaks and information about the dog park and associated permits can be found here: Dogs in the Preserves.

We would love to hear your comments about this hike! Click here to go to our Facebook group post on this hike.

This post is part of the “Take a Hike” series by Patricia Hayden. To learn more about this blog and see information about all other featured hikes click here.