Coming from the north, take I-294, Lake Shore Drive, or any southbound road with access to I-55. Follow I-55 to Exit 279A, Route 45-LaGrange Road south. Proceed south on LaGrange Road (96th Ave.) to 167th Street. Turn right/west and look for the entrance to the parking lot on the left/south side of the street.
Coming from the south, take I-80 to Exit 145, northbound on Route 45-LaGrange Road (96th Ave.). Proceed north on LaGrange Road to 167th Street. Turn left/west and look for the entrance to the parking lot on the left/south side of the street.
While you're there
Use binoculars to view a whole new world filled with birds, butterflies, dragonflies and other insects—a world you almost certainly can't see anywhere else.
If you're a birdwatcher, the grassland, officially labeled an "Important Birding Area," will be a new-found favorite.
Read the informational kiosks.
Before or after your visit, look up some information about native prairie life. Being a little familiar with what you observe will enrich your experience. You can find some sources to get you started here.
It's not nerdy to come with field guides—books that help you identify wild plants or birds. It's actually a very cool thing to do.
Look up! Take in the wide prairie sky surrounding you without the interruption of poles, wires, buildings, signs, and trees.
Before you come
To ensure an enjoyable visit, there are two basic considerations: protecting yourself and protecting the grassland.
Download and print a trail map here. Most pathways are wide open and can be very sunny. We recommend a hat and plenty of sunscreen, even in winter.
Long-sleeve shirts and full-length pants of a sturdy fabric, like denim, along with socks and closed-toe walking shoes or hiking boots are a good idea, too. The goal is to protect you from scatchy, thorny plants and nipping insects.
Of course, in winter weather, you'll want to bundle up. Inner-garment fabrics that wick moisture away from the body are best. You want to avoid wind chill!
Don't wear perfume, cologne or any other artificially scented products; they attract bugs.
And don't forget water and, in all seasons except winter, insect repellant!
A few rules
By following the rules, you honor the precious and diverse habitat and the collaborative work of many to restore nature in this rare and special place. Our world is losing biodiversity daily; environments such as Orland Grassland are increasingly scare and threatened. The grassland needs your help to survive and thrive.
Drone flying is not
allowed anywhere on forest preserve property.
Please dispose of water bottles and other items in provided trash barrels, or carry your discards home for recycling.
If you're biking, please stay on the right except when passing and follow only designated bike trails. Bikes can do great harm to plants and leave tracks that lead to erosion. Give courteous warnings when passing slower bikers or hikers.
No motorized vehicles of any kind are allowed inside the grassland, except in the parking lot.
From May to October, please hike only on the asphalt trail. Wandering into the deep grass can disturb or even crush the nests of native grassland birds.
It's OK to bring your dog for a lovely walk, but you must leash
your pet at all times. Dogs can be a
particular menace in
because many of the native birds nest on
the ground. You don't want your dog to trample nests or scare away mother birds.
All the forest preserves general rules are here.