27277 Forest Preserve Road
Wauconda,IL 60084
2,835 acres
6:30 am–sunset, daily.


Lakewood is Lake County's largest forest preserve, offering dedicated equestrian trails, and additional trails for hiking, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling. Please keep dogs leashed and on trails at all times, and pick up after them. Learn about our off-leash Dog Parks (permit required).

Biking is not allowed on preserve trails, only along sections of the Millennium Trail and the Fort Hill Trail as they run north through Lakewood. Trail tunnels for both of these regional trails allow for continuous travel and easy passage under Route 176.

Other preserve amenities include a Dog Park, a variety of fishing ponds, and a lighted Winter Sports Area.

Preserve Closures

In preparation for new construction as part of the Lakewood Master Plan, picnic shelters A, B, C and E are closed and no longer available for rent. The shelter E playground, roadway and drive are closed to all traffic.  



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More About This Preserve

The Natural Scene

Lakewood is home to 24 threatened and endangered species. On the west side of the preserve is the 70-acre Wauconda Bog. It is ringed by poison sumac and a natural moat, and is so ecologically valuable it is designated as a National Natural Landmark and an Illinois Nature Preserve. Learn more »

Other natural areas of note are Broberg Marsh and Schreiber Lake Bog. Broberg Marsh is in the northwest portion of the preserve and is regionally renowned for its habitat, which supports wetland-specific breeding birds. The wetland provides nesting habitat for six state endangered bird species including Amerian bitterns, black terns, common moorhen, black-crowned night herons, common terns and yellow-headed blackbirds.

Schreiber Lake Bog is in the southeast portion of the preserve and supports habitat for several endangered and threatened norther boreal bog plant species. 

This landscape is a mixture of oak woods, wetlands and fields. You'll also find farmlands and groves of evergreens. A lot of wildlife lives here and if you're observant, you may even spot one of the bats from the colony living near Shelter E. These shy mammals sleep while picnickers have their fun, and then awake at dusk to eat thousands of mosquitoes and other bugs.




From roughly 1835 to 1865, this site's large forested areas were divided into smaller parcels used by local farmers as a source of firewood and lumber. After the Civil War, small farms dominated the property.

In 1937, Malcolm Boyle, a general contractor from Chicago, made his first of many purchases here and created Lakewood Farms, a country estate. Over the next 20 years, his farm became one of Lake County's largest, with livestock, orchards, gardens and crops. Boyle landscaped the ponds, dug Banana Lake and built 16 major buildings.

In 1961, Howard Quinn purchased the 1,250-acre farm and converted it into a large dairy ranch, which operated until 1965. In 1968, our acquisition at Lakewood began and has continued in stages for more than 30 years. You can still identify the large show barn, the chicken coop and the bull barn.


The main entrance for the preserve is on Route 176, just west of Fairfield Road.

The entrance for Shelters A and B, and horse and snowmobile trailer parking is on Ivanhoe Road, just west of Fairfield Road.

The entrance for the Winter Sports Area and Millennium Trail and Fort Hill Trail access is on the east side of Fairfield Road just south of Route 176.

The Dog Park entrance is on the east side of Fairfield Road just north of Route 176. An annual or daily permit and a dog are required for entry.

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