The Iroquois Spirit Trail was created in 1993 and utilizes a portion of the original Bigfoot Cub Scout trail that was created in the 1970s. It also utilizes a portion of the old Midlothian Turnpike south of Bachelors Grove cemetery, including the narrow path between the pond and Tinley Creek. Portions of the trail can be found within Bachelors Grove Woods and crossing over what remains of Bachelors Grove Road near Bachelors Grove Prairie. The trail is still in use today and is marked by various metallic symbols found on trees in the area.
You can obtain a copy of the original map by calling Donna Brambora at (309) 432-3351 or you may download a copy of it below in PDF format. If you are with the Cub Scouts and wish to obtain an embroidered patch for completing the trail you may contact Donna Brambora for further information.
The following was extracted from the trail map pamphlet
The Iroquois Spirit Trail is sponsored by the Gene Kleehammer Memorial Fund, Chicago, IL. This trail is open to all Boy Scout, Girl Scout, and all other interested groups or persons. The Iroquois Spirit Trail is a 10-mile hiking trail running through the Tinley Creek Division of the Cook County Forest Preserves.
The Iroquois Spirit Trail was established in the memory of Gene Kleehammer of the Gage Park area of Chicago. Gene was in scouting for over 30 years, serving in many capacities at St. Simon's Cub Pack 3471 and Scout Troop 471, and held several positions with the Iroquois District of the Chicago Area Council. His last 10 years were served on the Cub Scout Training Staff and he helped train hundreds of adult leaders in addition to his work with the Cub Pack and Scout Troop.
Gene loved every minute of scouting, especially the camp-outs, Powwow's, Scout Camporees and Klondike derbies. Camp Sullivan and Camp Fulcon were chosen as the starting and ending points for this trail because these camps were sites used for the youth related activities Gene took part in for many years.
The Forest Preserve District of Cook County operates overnight camping facilities for supervised youth organizations atCamp Sullivan and Camp Falcon. Adult and family camping is prohibited within the Forest Preserve District.
(A free GPS referenced version of this map is currently in development.)
Note: When printing the map be sure to use 8 1/2" x 14" size paper in order to retain all of the information. You may also use 8 1/2" x 11" size paper if all you need is a copy of the map and directions on its use.
You can also obtain a copy of the original map by calling Donna Brambora at (309) 432-3351
Vehicle parking near the Iroquois Spirit Trail can be found in a few locations, including the Rubio Woods Forest Preserve parking lot near Bachelors Grove cemetery. If you wish to get closer to the official start of the trail which is near Camp Sullivan you need to be aware thatthe parking lot for Camp Sullivan is usually off-limits to parking by the general public. This is due to the limited space available for youth groups that utilize the area. Although the service road for vehicle access to Camp Fulcon from the main parking lot is restricted, it is still a part of the Iroquois Spirit Trail so you may freely use it on foot.
To obtain trouble-free parking near the official start of the trail, you may find Carlson Springs Woods to be the most suitable location. The Carlson Springs Woods parking lot will also give you closer access near the official exit of the trail. The map below identifies the parking lot to Carlson Springs Woods off of Oak Park Avenue, as well as Camp Fulcon and Camp Sullivan for further reference. Upon your arrival at Camp Sullivan you can find a large sign across from the red barn displaying the trail.
Reservations and permits:
FPDCC Recreation Department
536 N. Harlem Avenue
River Forest, IL 60305
Hours of operation:
Weekdays 9AM - 4PM
To obtain the Youth Organization Camping Application form visit theFPDCC website.