Hike to Starved Rock's La Salle Canyon

Illinois Starved Rock Visitor Center

Added by Brandyn Murray

Trek through Starved Rock's state park and enjoy the views of the Illinois River and Dam.

This out-and-back trail is one of the parks longest trails. Starting from the visitors center it is 2.2 mile hike one way and 4.4 miles if you go out and back. The trail is very much worth the long trek. You enjoy the views and fresh air of the Illinois river. You will also walk past the Illinois Dam. This trail is mostly walking a long the river. On the way to the canyon you will pass by many waterfalls if you choose to cut into the canyons. During the spring months with rain the falls will be flowing but during the summer months the water levels are fairly low.

If you are not up for the 4.4 mile hike to the canyon you have the option of driving down route 71 to designated parking area that leads you to the other side of the canyon's trail. From the parking lot, it will take you about 20 minutes on the trail to get to the Canyon.

Pack List

  • Hiking boots
  • Water
  • Sun protection
  • Leash for your dog
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Fitness, Hiking, Photography, Running

Skill Level:



Year Round

Trail Type:



4.4 Miles

Elev. Gain:

370 Feet



Dog Friendly

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How to Get There

7 months ago

Beautiful But Crowded

At the Visitor Center, there are plenty of trails that cross between the bluffs and the river. Starved Rock and the trails directly around it are over-boardwalked. It's a shame to see natural trails that need no maintenance ruined but once you get away from the VC, it thins out. I would suggest walking the river trail to La Salle/Tony canyons, where there are delightful waterfalls. You can go up and take the bluff trails back. The gorges are lovely but even on a gusty day, it was crowded. Go early and skip the crowd. Would be lovely for trail running as well.

7 months ago

Added by Brandyn Murray

I'm a photographer born and raised in the Cayman Islands, in the Caribbean. Living in Thomasville Georgia where I am attending Thomas University finish my bachelors degree in Social Media Marketing.

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