We will be taking a 2 mile hike through Beaver Dam State Park on the Marsh and Upland Forest trails. While many people are familiar with the trail around the lake at Beaver Dam, these trails are less traveled and present opportunity to see aquatic and upland birds along with frequent deer. Some parts of the Marsh trail are wet with shallow standing water so wear appropriate foot wear. This hike is easy to moderate. Meet at the West Dam Parking lot (park on the side of parking lot closest to the road - not the Plainview Winery Cafe side). After the Sierra Club sponsored hike, individuals will be free to further explore the 8 miles of hiking trails in the park or consider stopping at the Denby Prairie State Nature Preserve on their own.
Trip limited to 20 people: RSVP with Steve Soltys at 217-899-9996 or firstname.lastname@example.org and participants will need to sign a Sierra Club Waiver. Minors must be accompanied by a legal gaurdian.
Directions: Driving time about 1 hour. From Springfield take I-55 South and get off at Exit 60. Take Illinois 108 West into Carlinville, take it through the town square staying on IL-108 West. Once you leave the square on IL-108 West go to the first Stop light and turn left onto Shipman Road. (If you cross the railroad tracks on IL-108 you have gone too far. There are no signs for Beaver Dam State Park there.) Go south on Shipman Road about 9 miles and Beaver Dam State Park will be on your right and the entrance road leads to the parking area by the dam on the right. You will pass a Walmart and the Broom Orchards on Shipman Road in case you a unsure if you are on the correct road.
The Denby Prairie State Nature Preserve is a small (2.5 acre) prairie with a parking area for viewing half way between Carlinville and Beaver Dam State Park on Shipman Road. This is a very small and fragile area that can't handle a lot of people tramping through it, so please view from the parking lot.