Open daily one hour after sunrise until one hour after sunset
Naperville, IL
13 Miles
Drinking Water
Bicycling Hiking Horseback Riding Model Craft Picnicking Wildlife Watching Winter Activities

Springbrook Prairie

Originally slated to be the site of a 200-acre dragon-shaped lake with a swim beach and campground, today, the 1,832-acre Springbrook Prairie Forest Preserve in Naperville is instead one of three regionally significant grassland bird communities in the state and home to species like meadowlarks, dickcissels, grasshopper sparrows, woodcocks, and bobolinks as well as state-endangered northern harriers, short-eared owls, and Henslow’s sparrows.

A stream re-meandering project has created twists and turns and a wider, shallower bank along the namesake Spring Brook. These changes have slowed the flow of water, improving aquatic habitat and allowing the brook to more easily pour over its banks and into the preserve during heavy rains, a valuable flood-control feature for nearby residents.

SpringbrIllinois Nature Preserves Logoook Prairie Nature Preserve and Springbrook Marsh Land & Water Reserve, both within Springbrook Prairie, comprise 1,650 of the preserve’s 1,832 acres. The site features expansive prairies and meadows and supports numerous rare bird species.

In accordance with the Illinois Natural Areas Preservation Act, bicycles, pets and horses must remain on the limestone trail within the nature preserve and land and water reserve areas.

District ordinances already dictate the preservation of rich, natural habitats, but land and water reserve status provides an extra layer of protection for future generations. The District continues to own, manage and maintain these areas, but individuals who destroy natural resources or violate other regulations are subject to state penalties. For more on the nature preserves system, visit the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission's web page at http://dnr.state.il.us/inpc.



A reservable shelter is at the 83rd Street trailhead. A second, smaller nonreservable shelter is on the west side of Plainfield- Naperville Road near the parking lot.

Ground fires are prohibited, but visitors may bring their own grills and use the on-site hot-coal disposal containers.

For everyone’s convenience, Springbrook Prairie offers drinking water and restrooms with flush toilets at the 83rd Street trailhead and restrooms with pit toilets at the Naperville-Plainfield Road parking lot.


Within the nature preserve area, dogs, horses and bicycles must remain on the maintained trails.

The off-leash dog area, model-aircraft field and picnic areas are not part of the nature preserve and will continue to operate without restriction.

Over 7 miles are open to hikers, bicyclists, horseback riders, and cross-country skiers; 2 miles of narrow, mowed trails allow visitors, except bicyclists, a closer view of the preserve’s natural features. Sections of the trail may be closed during key bird breeding seasons to protect critical nesting habitats.


Dogs with valid Forest Preserve District permits can enjoy Springbrook Prairie’s off-leash area, which is located on 83 Street west of Book Road. Rules for the area are posted at the preserve. Owners must have their dogs’ permits in their possession when in the off-leash area; dogs must be leashed in all other areas of the preserve. The area is open during regular preserve hours; it is closed on Thursdays until 10 a.m. for routine maintenance. Purchase a permit online or call Visitor Services Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at (630) 933-7248.  

Model-Aircraft Area

Operators with valid District permits in their possession can use the model-aircraft field on the west side of Plainfield-Naperville Road.

Annual and daily permits are available through Visitor Services at (630) 933-7248 weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Senior citizens are entitled to one free annual permit per calendar year.

Volunteer Opportunities

Working under the direction of the Office of Natural Resources, volunteer site stewards and “Volunteer Restoration Workday” participants help to monitor and manage the extensive restored prairies and marshes that make up this preserve. For information on volunteer opportunities at Springbrook Prairie and other forest preserves, visit the Natural Resource Management volunteer page, or contact Volunteer Services at (630) 933-7681 or volunteer@dupageforest.org.


The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County is committed to making its facilities accessible to all visitors. For special accessibility needs or concerns, please contact the District's ADA coordinator at (630) 933-7683 or
TTY (800) 526-0857 at least three business days in advance of your visit.

Get Adobe Reader
©2016 Forest Preserve District of DuPage County