Paul Douglas Preserve

wetlands at Paul Douglas Preserve
Restored wetlands at Paul Douglas Preserve.

The 1,800-acre Paul Douglas Preserve offers visitors exceptional birding opportunities. With open grasslands, restored wetlands and a heron rookery, birders can spot a variety of nesting species. With 25 miles of paved and unpaved trails, visitors can partake in a range of activities including peaceful walks, hiking, biking and more.

On this page:

Location & Things to Do

Access Paul Douglas Preserve through the Grassy Ridge Meadow entrance:

Grassy Ridge Meadow


W Central Ave, east of Huntington Blvd/Freeman Rd
Hoffman Estates, IL 60195

Things to Do & Amenities


Year-round: Sunrise to Sunset

Closures & Alerts

Paul Douglas Trail

The trail network offers diverse options, from paved paths to mountain biking routes. It's perfect for peaceful walks, invigorating hikes and exciting biking. These trails also connect to Crabtree Trail and Nature Center.


Paved & Unpaved

Estimated Total Length

24.8 miles


Year-round: Sunrise to Sunset

Closures & Alerts

*Please be a courteous trail user: Follow posted signs and our trail rules and etiquette.

Mountain bikers navigate a single track trail. Photo by CAMBr.

Mountain Biking at Paul Douglas

The Paul Douglas Trail offers cyclists rides on sweeping grasslands and rolling hills adjacent to scenic wetlands.

The Paul Douglas Trail includes miles of designated single track trails. These unpaved trails are narrow and designed for mountain biking and hiking. E-bikes are not allowed on these trails.

Great blue herons at Paul Douglas
Great blue herons at Paul Douglas. Photo by Scott Hansen.

Nature Notes

Since a large wetland was restored along Poplar Creek, pied-billed grebes, ruddy ducks and state-endangered yellow-headed blackbirds once again nest in the area. The heron rookery, which consists of nesting platforms along the marsh, attracts great blue heron pairs. Beavers are active here, too. Marsh marigolds and a variety of sedges populate Paul Douglas’ wetlands.

Eastern meadowlarks, Henslow’s and savannah sparrows and bobolinks nest in the larger grasslands. Red-eyed vireos and black-throated green warblers sing in the trees and sharp-eyed visitors can spot rough-legged hawks and northern harriers.