Bob Tyson, former Outings Chair for the Sierra Club, has compiled a list of beautiful, scenic trails which are basically level and easy to walk. Open the .PDF files below for more information. We have printed a limited number of trail guides and distributed them to select locations in southern Illinois.

Easy Trails for Seniors Cover
Easy Trails for Seniors

Shawnee Group Outings

Upcoming Wilderness Act Celebration Outings in Illinois

Plans are already underway for Wilderness Act Celebration outings that will explore Wilderness Areas in the state. Registration is required for all outings. Camping is not officially part of the outings, but Sierrans will be camping at nearby campgrounds. For additional information contact Carol Klinger

Saturday, September 6 from 9 am – 11 am or so

Field Trip to Trail of Tears State Forest
3240 State Forest Road
Jonesboro, Illinois 62952
(618) 833-4910

Tracey Boutelle Fidler will lead a tour of the demonstration plots at Trail of Tears State Forest. Jody Shimp (Regional Administrator, Illinois Division of Natural Heritage,) David Allen (IDNR District Forester, Dixon Springs,) and Calvin Beckman (Site Superintendent of Trail of Tears and Giant City) will be on hand to answer questions. This event is open to Sierra Club members. Please dress for the weather and be prepared to hike off the trails. Here's a flyer for more information.

09/27/14 Crab Orchard and Panther's Den

Sheltered overhangs beneath the bluffs provide habitat for the endangered French's shooting star. Muskrats, deer, and beavers are common sights. Mink and bobcats have been seen here too.

Belle Smith Springs Hike September 28th

9 am, Sunday, September 28, 2014 Hike at Belle Smith Springs in the Shawnee National Forest Scenic 3-4 mile hike for all levels. This relaxing jaunt is a perfect add-on to the Wilderness Weekend activities of Friday night camping and the Saturday hike at Panthers Den. Wear weather appropriate clothing and sturdy shoes. Water shoes are a good idea if we decide to hike to the natural bridge. Bring water and a lunch for an optional picnic in a nearby scenic area. Ed Max will lead as head botanizer, and Joe Harris will be assistant leader for Shawnee Group. Meeting place TBA. Registration required by September 26th by Email to: joeharris567098@gmail.com

October 12th Piney Creek Nature Preserve, Chester, IL - Meet at nature preserve parking lot and trailhead

Illinois naturalist Chris Benda will lead a wildflower walk at Piney Creek Nature Preserve near Chester, IL on October 12. The hikes are free and open to the general public. Participants will learn about the basics of plant identification, and will be provided handouts about plant identification terminology, field guides and web resources, and invasive species.

The hike will start at 10:00am at the Piney Creek parking lot and trailhead and will last up to 4 hours. No previous experience is necessary. Reservations are not required, but are encouraged. The hikes will be limited to the first 20 participants. To reserve your spot for any of the hikes, contact Chris Benda at botanizer@gmail.com.

10/25/14 Garden of the Gods

The Garden of the Gods Wilderness Area contains rock formations, canyons, bluffs and ridges carved by millions of years of wind and water. Breathtaking views of the rolling forest below can be admired from the massive sandstone formations along the ridge tops.

Sierra Club will be leading hikes in all eight wilderness areas this year, encompassed in six hikes. In March, we hiked in Burden Falls and Bay Creek Wilderness Areas. In the Fall, three hikes are planned for the remaining four wilderness areas.
For Further Shawnee Group Outings, Check back here for announcements from our new Shawnee Group Outings Leader, Christine Crites


Eastern Missouri Group Outings Contacts:


See www.sierraclub.org/emg/outings and missouri.sierraclub.org/emg/outings for more outings.