River Trail Nature Center

River Trail Nature Center Entrance

For 10,000 years, since the last glaciers melted away, the Des Plaines River Valley has been home and highway for plants, animals and people. Only a few hundred years ago American Indians paddled their canoes along the river and hunted bear, deer and elk along its banks, while trappers and fur traders came searching for beaver in its waters.

 

A fragment of that world has been preserved in the Forest Preserves of Cook County.

 

River Trail Nature Center tells the story of native plants and animals that remain in the urban environment. Here you may walk through sugar maple woods along the river on self-guiding trails, learn of the past and present in the exhibit building, and visit a few of our native animals.

 

Younger children may enjoy River Trail’s nature discovery area, where kids can climb in an eagle nest, crawl in a fox den, create their own puppet shows, and more.

 

Programs and special events are held throughout the year. Trail maps and interpretive publications are available at the front desk, and naturalists will answer your questions.

River Trail on Facebook »

3120 Milwaukee Ave
Northbrook, IL 60062
847-824-8360
 

Hours: March – October
Building 9 am – 5 pm, closed Fridays
Grounds 8 am – 5 pm
Hours: November – February
Building 9 am – 4 pm, closed Fridays
Grounds 8 am – 4 pm

Closed:
Thanksgiving, Christmas Day & New Year’s Day

Events List Navigation

February 2018
Sat, Feb 24 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Feb 24 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sun, Feb 25 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Feb 25 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
March 2018
Sat, Mar 3 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Mar 3 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sun, Mar 4 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Mar 4 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sat, Mar 10 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Mar 10 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sun, Mar 11 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Mar 11 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sat, Mar 17 • 1:30 pm
Free

Sap’s Rising

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Mar 17 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Don't MissSun, Mar 18 • 11 AM
Free

46th Annual Maple Syrup Festival

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Mar 18 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesWed, Mar 21 • 10 AM
Free

Small Serendipity

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Mar 24 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sun, Mar 25 • 1:30 pm
Free

Bucket Bug Hunt

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Mar 25 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Mar 31 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
April 2018
SeriesSun, Apr 1 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesWed, Apr 4 • 10 AM
Free

Small Serendipity

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesFri, Apr 6 • 7:30 pm
$3.00

NIGHTLIFE SERIES – Night Hike

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Apr 7 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Apr 8 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Apr 14 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Apr 15 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesWed, Apr 18 • 10 AM
Free

Small Serendipity

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Apr 21 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Apr 22 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, Apr 28 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, Apr 29 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
May 2018
SeriesWed, May 2 • 10 AM
Free

Small Serendipity

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Fri, May 4 • 7:30 pm
Free

Fireside Tales

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesFri, May 4 • 7:30 pm
$3.00

NIGHTLIFE SERIES – Fireside Tales

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Bird The PreservesSat, May 5 • 6 AM
Free

The Big Sit!

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, May 5 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Bird The PreservesSun, May 6 • 10 AM
Free

Birding Basics

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, May 6 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sat, May 12 • 1 PM
Free

Conservation @ Home Series: Gardening to Feed Pollinators

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, May 12 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sun, May 13 • 1:30 pm
Free

Mother’s Day Wildflower Walk

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, May 13 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Tue, May 15 • 9:30 am
Free

Seniors in all Seasons

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesWed, May 16 • 10 AM
Free

Small Serendipity

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, May 19 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Bird The PreservesSun, May 20 • 1:30 pm
Free

Birds of Prey Series: Owls

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, May 20 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSat, May 26 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Sun, May 27 • 1:30 pm
Free

Creature Feature

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesSun, May 27 • 3 PM
Free

What’s On The Menu?

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Mon, May 28 • 1:30 pm
Free

Creature Feature

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
SeriesWed, May 30 • 10 AM
Free

Small Serendipity

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
June 2018
Mon, Jun 18 - Fri, Jun 22 • 9 AM
$200

Travelling Adventurers

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Mon, Jun 25 - Fri, Jun 29 • 9:30 am
$50

Jr Keepers: Session 1

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
July 2018
Mon, Jul 9 - Fri, Jul 13 • 9:30 am
$50

Discovery Days Camp: Session 1

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Mon, Jul 16 - Fri, Jul 20 • 9:30 am
$50

Nature Explorers Camp: Morning Session

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Mon, Jul 16 - Fri, Jul 20 • 1:30 pm
$50

Nature Explorers Camp: Afternoon Session

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Mon, Jul 23 - Fri, Jul 27 • 9:30 am
$50

Discovery Days Camp: Session 2

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
Mon, Jul 30 - Fri, Aug 3 • 9:30 am
$50

Jr Keepers: Session 2

River Trail Nature Center, Northbrook
+ Export Events
Visit two of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County