Goose Lake Prairie State Natural Area bears a close resemblance to Illinois’s landscape 150 years ago, when a sea of prairie grass covered the Prairie State. While exploring the state’s largest stand of tallgrass prairie, you’ll find cattail marshes, small ponds visited by waterbirds, and dozens of species of flowers and prairie plants. In July, the prairie explodes with wildflowers of all shades; in September, goldenrod and compass plants form a yellow carpet over the landscape. Near the park’s ponds, watch for great blue herons, kingfishers, and snapping turtles.
Mapped by Ted Villaire