By Emily Harrington
These boots are made for walkin’ and that’s just what they’ll do, soon enough I’m going to walk all over C-U.
Champaign-Urbana is filled with trails and paths to explore! Some are big, some are small, but all provide a unique glimpse at a part of Champaign or Urbana that you may have not explored before.
- Ashland Park Subdivision Trail is 2 miles long located around and through the Ashland Park Subdivision east of Prospect and north of Interstate Drive. The trail surrounds Toalson Park.
- Boulware Trail is 1.25 miles long extending north of Windsor Road, through Mattis Park and ending near State and Fox Drive.
- First Street Trail (University Park Trail) is 1.48 miles long found along First Street from Gregory to Windsor Road.
- Greenbelt Bikeway is 1.6 miles long crossing through three parks. The bikeway begins on the north end at Dodds Park on Parkland Way Drive and extends to the south for .44 miles. When the bikeway crosses Bradley Avenue it continues through Heritage Park for .65 miles. Finally the trail passes under Interstate 72 for its last leg at Kaufman Park for .35 miles.
- Greenbelt Connector Trail is .23 miles providing an extension from Greenbelt Bikeway in Heritage Park to Country Fair Drive.
- Martin Luther King Trail is .25 miles beginning at Wesley Park on 1001 N. 3rd St. and extending south to its end at the corner of Washington and Fourth Street.
- North Champaign Trail is .34 miles beginning east of Prospect at Interstate Drive and continuing south to Moreland Boulevard.
- O’Malley’s Alley Trail is .5 miles between Kenwood Road and Duncan Avenue just south of Springfield Avenue.
- Pipeline Trail is 1 mile extending between Kirby Avenue and Windsor Road west of Mullikin Drive.
- Robeson Meadow Trail is 2 miles winding through the Robeson Meadows West subdivision south of Windsor Road and west of Duncan Road.
- Roby Trail is 1.43 miles beginning in Robeson Park. The trail extends to the northeast through the subdivision ending at Mattis Avenue just south of Kirby Avenue.
- Simon Trail is .53 miles beginning at Mattis Avenue just south of Kirby Avenue. The trail continues east to Wisegarver Park and then south to Devonshire Drive.
- Turnberry Ridge Trail is 1 mile surrounding the Turnberry Ridge Subdivision located east of Staley Road between Kirby and Springfield Avenue.
Savoy features the Harold E. Ruppel Bike Path. The path is 1.8 miles long and connects to trail systems in Champaign. You can access the path to the south of the Savoy Recreation Center at 402 W. Graham Dr. According to the Savoy Recreation Center website, “The path forms a significant leg of what is hoped will become a network of trails and pathways throughout the community, linking up to regional path systems that will ultimately interweave and circumvent the entire Champaign-Urbana-Savoy metropolitan area.”
- Busey Woods trails provide 2.5 miles of wooded terrain to hike during all seasons. Park and start at Anita Purves Nature Center located at 1505 N. Broadway. Outside of the center you will find the entrance point to the trails and a self-guided pamphlet to help you on your journey. The trails are divided into sub-trails depending on the direction and terrain you are interested in. Along the way you will find exhibits, seasonal ponds and wildlife. This is not a concrete trail, this is nature at its best. You may want to wear bug spray and be wary of poison ivy and ticks. Also, no bikes or domestic animals allowed in order to protect the environment.
- Crestview Park found at the corner of Cottage Grove and Sunnycrest Drive features an Asian-style garden with a walking path around the garden.
- King Park is adjacent to King School at 1108 Fairview Ave. The park has paths to walk on among playgrounds, pavilions and plenty of open space.
- Leal Park located at 303 W. University Ave. has a short-hard path hidden from the chaos of the busy street.
- Meadowbrook Park is made up of 3 miles of hard-surface trails plus some soft-terrain trails. Located in south Urbana along Windsor Road and Race Street the park has a lot to look at while walking, running, blading, biking or strolling. During your walk you can pass an ornamental tree grove, massive sculptures, kids playing on the playground and many gardens.
- South Ridge Park features a hard trail nestled in Myra Ridge Subdivision. The trail loops around the quiet neighborhood in southwest Urbana.
It doesn’t matter if you are a serious hiker or a leisurely stroller, all paths and trails will welcome you. So, grab your sneakers, a walking partner and/or stroller and pick a path from the list above. Take some time this summer to see areas of our twin cities that may have before gone unnoticed.
Emily Harrington is a Chambana townie that left her 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. job to be a 24/7 mom to a dreamy son. Still interested in writing, Emily uses some of naptime to practice her passion and keep her mind right. Emily is a happy wife with a happy life because she fell for a fellow townie. Oh, and let’s not forget her other son, a degenerate canine named Heppenheimer.