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Glancer Magazine

MOM'S LITTLE BLACK BOOK | Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve, Darien


Sometimes I am so amazed at all the nature spots just around town. Since my girls were young they always enjoyed climbing trees, collecting bugs, digging in dirt, and playing in the water. We spent hours at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle rearranging rocks to create new water patterns in the creek; collecting acorns and twigs to make nature soups; and filling buckets to make mud pies.

As the girls have grown older, their love for nature has not changed, and we have continued to explore new territory from Starved Rock waterfalls just an hour away in Utica, to climbing rocks in the Black Hills of South Dakota!

Fall is the perfect time to hike, and Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve in Darien is just a quick 25 minute drive from my house. There are miles of limestone and turf covered trails intermixed with creeks and waterfalls providing an amazing backdrop for tots, tweens, and teens to feel like they are far away in a never never land. For tots this might mean climbing trees, skipping rocks, and frolicking in the dirt; for tweens this could create a world of imaginary play; and for teens it is the perfect place to take hundreds of selfies #Bae #Hiking2016.

That’s exactly what happened when I took my girls and a group of their teen friends to checkout Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve. The rivers and mini-waterfalls were such a beautiful setting that you couldn’t help yourself but to take umpteen photos. The girls had a blast on their impromptu adventure through the woods to discover the waterfall. It felt like we were miles away from civilization and before long the girls tried to be miles away from me! #TeenLife - Kristen Kucharski


The 2,492-acre Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve is one of the most ecologically impressive parcels of open space within the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, if not northern Illinois. Waterfall Glen’s prairies, savannas, and oak-maple woodlands contain 740 native plant species and over 300 species of mammals, birds, fish, amphibians, and reptiles, and another 300 of invertebrates use the forest preserve either year-round or during their migrations.

Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve

Intersection of Cass and Northgate Roads

Darien, IL 60561

(630) 933-7200

Hours: Open daily one hour after sunrise until one hour after sunset

Price $: Free

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