a person riding on the back of a bicycle: Registration is required.

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Registration is required.

WILL COUNTY, IL — A trio of bike treks will take place in September along some Will County Forest Preserve District’s trails. Head out with a guide on these Saturday rides and then wend your way back on your own, soaking in the sights and sounds of nature.

The free, all-ages Pedal the Prairie biking series will be held from 8 a.m.-noon on Sept. 5, 19 and 26.

On each ride, a district partner will make a presentation about the area being toured. Partners include the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie.

The series is designed to provide participants with a fun way to get some exercise while enjoying beautiful preserve scenery.

“This is the second year of the program,’ said Ben Hecke, the Forest Preserve’s community partnerships and outreach coordinator, in a release. “We’re excited to bring it back and we waited until September to give the weather a chance to cool down for folks.”

Last year’s rides started with a long distance, but this year the first ride will be shorter and each ride will build up in distance and difficulty, he explained.

“Each ride is unique with fun and different aspects of Forest Preserve trails highlighted,” Hecke added. “The rides are a great way to get some recreation and information along the beautiful trails of Will County.”

Riders of all abilities are welcome on the bike tours, which are designed as social rides as opposed to aggressive speed rides, Hecke stressed.

The round-trip rides are:

  • Sept. 5: 7.28 miles starting at Hickory Creek Barrens Nature Preserve in New Lenox and riding along the Hickory Creek Bikeway/Old Plank Road Trail loop.
  • Sept. 19: 22 miles stating at Lower Rock Run – I&M Canal Access in Joliet. Participants will head out on the I&M Canal Trail west to the Dresden Dam and back.
  • Sept. 26: 28 miles starting at Sugar Creek Preserve in Joliet on the Wauponsee Glacial Trail and heading south to and through the U.S. Forest Service’s Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie

Registration is required for each ride; call (815) 727-8700, or register online on the Event Calendar.

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