There are 10 unique trails at Pere Marquette State Park spanning 10 miles. They offer photogenic views of the countryside and are color-coded. The following is an outline of three of them.
This trail is of moderate difficulty and the oldest. Originally created in 1934, it begins in a wooded area that gives way to a view of the Cap-au-Gres fault, a mesmerizing 60-mile fracture that spans from Lincoln County to Madison County. One mile long, the trail ends near McAdams Peak.
Ravine Hiking is a relatively easy trail. Once dominated by hill prairies, it now features a young forest, after its original vegetation was decimated by naturally occurring fires. It connects the Hickory, Goat Cliff, Hickory South and Ridge trails, and it has beautiful calycanthus shrubs.
This is the most challenging of all the trails, and it is literally not for the faint-hearted. A quarter of a mile long, it begins with a steep slope that rewards those that reach its summit with photogenic views of the park. It ends at McAdams Peak.
Families visiting Pere Marquette State Park will be spoilt for choice at this amazing venue. The following is an outline of some of the best family activities to enjoy while there.
For families into fishing, Pere Marquette State Park has a wide variety of fishes that include crappie, carp, catfish, bluegill, largemouth bass, drum and white bass. Ample parking, launching ramps and docks are all available. Fishing takes place within the Illinois and Mississippi rivers.
For individuals, couples and families seeking an idyllic, rustic experience, Pere Marquette State Park provides an unparalleled camping experience with hundreds of sites to choose from, and some are handicap accessible. Sites are categorized according to the level of amenities available, with some offering the basics such as a sanitary dump station, electrical hook-ups, drinking water, and shower building. More equipped sites such as Camp Ouatoga and Camp Piasa feature fully-equipped kitchens, lighted sleeping cabins, restrooms with warm showers and swimming pools. For those not into camping, Pere Marquette State Park hotels are a dramatically refreshing alternative.
A 2,000 acre hunting area just off Graham Hollow Road is available for adventure seekers and families that love hunting. Turkey, squirrel, and deer abound. However, this is only during permitted seasons and in accordance with state regulations.