Snowmobiling

four people on snowmobiles

Snowmobiles are allowed at four designated locations in the Forest Preserves under certain winter conditions.

On this page:


Locations

Snowmobile areas are open from 10 am to 10 pm on days when the soil is frozen with a minimum snow depth of four inches and temperatures are constant 20 degrees or less.

Public safety requires the temporary closing of some Forest Preserves parking areas during the winter season. However, our maintenance department prioritizes the clearing of parking areas serving winter activities. Always call ahead to make sure snowmobile areas and parking areas are open.


Ned Brown Meadow
(part of Busse Woods)
Golf Rd, east of I-290/Hwy 53
Cook County, IL 60007 (view web map of Ned Brown Meadow)
(near Elk Grove Village)

Call 847-437-8330 for snowmobile area status.


Morrill Meadow
107th St, west of La Grange Rd
Cook County, IL 60480 (view web map of Morrill Meadow)
(near Willow Springs)

Call 708-839-5617 for snowmobile area status.


Turtlehead Lake
Harlem Ave, south of W 135th St
Cook County, IL 60462 (view web map of Turtlehead Lake)
(near Orland Park)

Call 708-385-7650 for snowmobile area status.


North Creek Meadow
Glenwood Lansing Rd, west of Torrence Ave
Cook County, IL 60411 (view web map of North Creek Meadow)
(near Chicago Heights)

Call 708-474-1221 for snowmobile area status.


Decal Registration & Rates

All snowmobiles operated on Forest Preserves property must be properly registered with the Forest Preserves of Cook County and Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). IDNR registration is required prior to obtaining Forest Preserves registration. All snowmobiles must display current registration decals.

Snowmobile Decal Rates
ResidencyRate
Cook County Resident$50/decal
Non-Resident$100/decal

How to Apply

Forest Preserves decals can be purchased online or submitted by mail or in person at any one of the locations listed below

If you purchase online: In addition to your online application, you must submit proof of current IDNR registration (page 2 of the PDF application) via email (fpd.permits@cookcountyil.gov), fax (708-771-1071) or in person at one of the locations listed below.


Registration Locations

The General Headquarters Permit Office accepts cash, check or credit card. All other locations accept cash or check only—please call ahead before visiting one of these locations.

Snowmobile Registration Locations
LocationAddressPhone
General Headquarters Permit Office536 N Harlem Ave
River Forest, IL 60305
800-870-3666
Calumet Division8700 S Western Ave
Chicago, IL 60620
773-233-3766
Indian Boundary Division8800 W. Belmont Ave
Chicago, IL 60634
773-625-0606
North Branch Division6633 Harts Rd
Niles, IL 60714
847-647-2240
Northwest Division3500 S Rohlwing Rd
Rolling Meadows, IL 60008
847-437-8330
Palos Division9901 Willow Springs Rd
Willow Springs, IL 60480
708-839-5617
Salt Creek Division2405 S 17th Ave
North Riverside, IL 60155
708-447-0090
Thorn Creek Division440 Thornton Lansing Rd
Lansing, IL 60476
708-474-1221
Tinley Creek Division13800 S. Harlem Ave
Orland Park, IL 60462
708-385-7650

Rules & Regulations

The owner and any operator of a snowmobile, registered with the State of Illinois and the Forest Preserves of Cook County, shall abide by all the rules and regulations set forth by the State of Illinois and the Forest Preserves of Cook County, including the following:

Snowmobiles may be operated:

  • Only on days when the soil is frozen with a minimum snow depth of four (4) inches and temperatures are constant 20 degrees or less
  • Only in the designated areas of the Forest Preserves listed above, between the hours of 10:00 am and 10:00 pm

No snowmobiles shall be operated at any time:

  • Unless equipped with working headlights, tail-lights, brakes, and a proper muffler of the type which comes as standard equipment with the snowmobile.
  • In a reckless or careless manner
  • In excess of 40 mph
  • While the operator is under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • In parking lots (except for the purpose of loading or unloading)
  • In any manner intended or reasonably to be expected to harass, drive or pursue any wildlife

Any persons violating any clause or provision of the rules and regulations set forth by the State of Illinois or the Forest Preserves of Cook County pertaining to snowmobiles shall be subject to penalties as established by the Illinois Snowmobile Registrations and Safety Act and by the Forest Preserves Ordinance.