Grand Kankakee Marsh



Location: Take SR 2 east from I-65 about a mile and a half to Rangeline Road, then turn south and go 6 miles to the marsh.

Description: 940 acres, running for 3 miles along the Kankakee River. Marshes, oxbows, the river itself add up to lots of northern Indiana swampland, which is a lot more attractive than it might sound to some. The river is not exciting, but still interesting to canoe, and there's plenty of room to hike. Wildlife is abundant, especially birds. Take a slog through what's left of the swamp that once covered 500,000 acres, before the farmers decided that the land would work better if the river was turned into a ditch. This was formerly a Nature Conservancy property, then a Fish and Wildlife Area, then it was turned over to Lake County. There is supposed to be a visitor center here; when I visited, in late May, it was boarded up, and the notices on the bulletin board were all from the previous summer.

Nearby Points of Interest: Biesecker Prairie Nature Preserve; LaSalle Fish and Wildlife Area.

Cautions: Swamp=mosquitoes. Closed to other forms of recreation during hunting season.

Ownership: Theoretically, the Lake County Parks and Recreation Board.


National Forest