Hennepin Canal Parkway Trail: Milan Section

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Trail Alerts
Safety: Potential Flooding/Water Hazards –

This trail is located close to or on open water, wetlands, or floodplain. Please use caution and be alert for water near or on the trail. Be alert for flooding and swiftly moving water. Check with your local trail manager for more information on closures during periods of high water.

Safety: Vegetation Hazards –

This trail is open, but be alert for overgrown vegetation or potentially harmful vegetation alongside or on the trail, such as poison ivy.

Trailhead Information

Parking and access are available off of Big Island Road in multiple locations and at the end of 14th Street NE/Frontage Road.


The Hennepin Canal Parkway Trail follows an old towpath along this historic canal, which opened in 1907 as a link between the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. The canal was abandoned when railroads made carrying goods by canal obsolete. The canal is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The entire parkway spans across five counties in Illinois with its western terminus in the Quad Cities Region in Rock Island and Henry Counties. The Hennepin Canal provides a wide variety of recreational activities including fishing, boating, picnicking, canoeing, walking horseback riding, bicycling, camping, and snowmobiling.d snowmobiling.

Other Information

The Hennepin Canal Parkway Visitor Center is located just outside the QC Region, near Sheffield, Illinois (one mile south of I-80, just west of Route 40). East or westbound travelers on I-80 should take Exit 45, turn right (south) on Route 40. Then almost immediately cross the Canal and in about 1 mile is the brown sign directing them to the Parkway Visitors Center. Turn right (west) and proceed to the Center. For more info, call 815-454-2328.

The Rock River Trail is a system of recreational trails on and along the Rock River that goes through 11 counties in Wisconsin and Illinois. This QC Trails featured trail is part of that network. The Rock River Trail was established in 2010 to promote recreational use and appreciation of all 320 miles of the Rock River. Visit the trail online to learn more about how to hike, bike, paddle, horseback ride, drive, fly, or appreciate history, art, or chocolate along the trail!

Elevation Profile

The elevation profile above approximates terrain along the specified section of trail and is provided for general information. Use your best judgment to choose trails with elevation changes to match your comfort level. See QC Trails Terms of Use for more information.

Trail Managers

Visit the Illinois Department of Natural Resources Hennepin Canal State Trail online for more information or contact:

Big Island River Conservancy District

Big Island River Conservancy District
2528 58th Ave W
Milan, IL 61264
Phone: (309) 787-2795

Village of Milan, Illinois

Village of Milan, Illinois
405 East 1st Street
Milan, IL 61264
Phone: (309) 787-8532

Illinois Department of Natural Resources

Illinois Department of Natural Resources
One Natural Resources Way
Springfield, IL 62702-1271
Phone: (217) 782-6302


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Barb Wlaskolich - April 10, 2017

Rode this trail today. The Illinois Dept of Natural Resources has been clearing trees from the banks of the Hennepin Canal primitive trail. There are small branches so be alert when traversing this trail to the confluence. Trail signage has been installed from the confluence at Lock 32 to the Veterans Memorial bridge at Carr's Crossing. The signs show mileage between Lock 30, 31, 32, and the Milan business district. A nice addition to this trail.


Lisa Miller - June 25, 2016

Finally had a chance to do this section of trail. Nice paved surface at the east end and middle and natural surface to the west end. Followed it to the confluence of the Rock and Mississippi Rivers. Nice ride.

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