Exploring the Beauty of Rim Rock Recreational Trail: A Hiker's Paradise

Nestled in Shawnee National Forest, the Rim Rock Recreational Trail offers an inviting adventure. Just 10 miles from Garden of the Gods and Shawnee Forest Cabins, this trail is perfect for hikers and nature lovers. Enjoy stunning sandstone bluffs, peaceful forests, hidden caves, and a beautiful lake. Rim Rock promises a memorable nature experience

Trail Overview: Your Ticket to Nature's Wonderland

Distance and Getting There

You’ll find the Rim Rock Recreational Trail just a short drive away from Garden of the Gods and Shawnee Forest Cabins. It’s a convenient escape into nature’s embrace, with clear signs pointing you in the right direction as you head out for your adventure. And don’t worry about the distance; it’s just enough to make you feel like you’re getting away from it all without having to travel too far.

Highlights Along the Way

Sandstone Bluffs: Nature’s Masterpieces

Imagine walking amidst towering sandstone bluffs that seem to have been carved by the hands of giants. These natural formations are like works of art, each telling its own story through its unique shapes and textures. You’ll want to have your camera handy because every turn of the trail reveals a new masterpiece waiting to be captured.

Tranquil Forests: Where Time Stands Still

Take a break from the sun-drenched bluffs and step into the cool embrace of the forest rim. The rustling leaves and chirping birds create a symphony of sounds that soothe the soul. It’s a chance to slow down, breathe in the fresh air, and appreciate the simple beauty of nature all around you..

Ox-lot Cave and Pounds Hollow Lake: Nature’s Hidden Treasures

For the adventurous souls, Rim Rock offers access to Ox-lot Cave—a hidden gem waiting to be explored. Venture into its depths and marvel at the wonders that lie beneath the surface. And after you’ve had your fill of cave exploration, why not head over to Pounds Hollow Lake? Whether you’re up for a swim or a leisurely picnic by the water’s edge, it’s the perfect spot to unwind and take in the beauty of your surroundings.

walking on the rocky area

Trail Tips: Your Guide to a Great Hiking Experience

  • Pack Light: You don’t need much for this hike—just a sturdy pair of shoes, plenty of water, and maybe a snack or two to keep you energized along the way.
  • Take Your Time: There’s no rush when you’re surrounded by nature’s beauty. Take breaks, soak it all in, and let the magic of Rim Rock work its charm on you.
  • Respect Nature: Remember, you’re a guest in this wilderness. Leave no trace behind, stay on the designated trail, and treat the environment and its inhabitants with care and respect.

Nearby Cabin- Your Home Away from Home in the Shawnee Forest

After a day of adventure on trails on Rim Rock, there’s nothing like returning to the comfort of your own cabin nestled amidst the trees. Shawnee Forest Cabins offers cozy accommodations equipped with everything you need for a relaxing stay—including hot tubs to soothe your tired muscles after a day of hiking.

And if you’re looking for something truly special, why not book one of their treehouse cabin? Imagine waking up amidst the treetops, surrounded by the sights and sounds of the forest, with your very own hot tub and suspension bridge adding to the magic of your stay. It’s a getaway you’ll never forget—a chance to reconnect with nature in the most enchanting way possible.

rental cabins two bedroom front view<br />

Extend Your Adventure: Discover More Gems of Shawnee National Forest

Garden of the Gods Observation Trail

Immerse yourself in the iconic beauty of the Garden of the Gods Observation Trail, located right within the Shawnee National Forest. Marvel at stunning rock formations and sweeping panoramic views as you explore this must-visit destination.

Pounds Hollow Lake

Indulge in water-based activities at Pounds Hollow Lake, where you can swim, fish, or simply relax on its picturesque shores. Surrounded by lush greenery, this serene lake offers a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Bell Smith Springs

Venture into the heart of Shawnee National Forest and discover the enchanting beauty of Bell Smith Springs. Hike through lush forests, explore unique rock formations, and cool off in crystal-clear streams in this natural paradise.

Shawnee Hills Wine Trail

Discover the charm of the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail, a scenic route nestled in the heart of Southern Illinois, featuring award-winning wineries surrounded by lush vineyards and breathtaking landscapes. While exploring the trail, make your stay unforgettable at Woodland Cabins, where you can relax in cozy, rustic cabins equipped with modern amenities, all set within serene wooded surroundings. Enjoy the perfect blend of wine, nature, and comfort at Woodland Cabins during your Shawnee Hills adventure.  

Extend your stay and continue your exploration of Shawnee National Forest’s hidden treasures. Whether you’re seeking adventure or tranquility, there’s something for everyone to enjoy in this stunning wilderness.

Rim rock wine trail

Additional Information: Rim Rock Recreational Trail

Distance and Location

  • Distance: Approximately 10 miles from Garden of the Gods/Shawnee Forest Cabins
  • Location: Rim Rock Recreational Trail is conveniently located within the Shawnee National Forest, making it an ideal destination for those staying at nearby cabins.

Trail Highlights

  • Length:This trail offers a 1.7-mile loop through picturesque sandstone bluffs, forested areas, and access to Ox-lot Cave and Pounds Hollow Lake. 
  • Features:It features stone steps and scenic overlooks, making it a popular destination for hikers looking to experience a variety of natural landscapes in a relatively short distance.

Whether you’re up for a scenic walk, an exploration of historical sites, or a relaxing day by the lake, Rim Rock Recreational Trail provides an exceptional outdoor experience. So, make sure to add this trail to your itinerary and enjoy everything it has to offer.

Directions to Rim Rock Trail, Illinois

To experience the historic charm of Rim Rock Trail, start by heading onto Highway 34. Turn east onto Karbers Ridge Road and continue for 8.3 miles until you reach the Rim Rock entrance road. Be sure to snap a “Selfie with The Shawnee Forest Bigfoot” at the intersection of Garden of Gods Road and Karbers Ridge Road along the way!

Rimrock trail happy trail 2 person

Conclusion: Your Next Adventure Awaits

So what are you waiting for? Lace up your hiking boots, pack your sense of adventure, and get ready to explore the beauty of Rim Rock Recreational Trail. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just someone who loves to spend time in nature, this trail promises an unforgettable experience that will leave you feeling refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready for whatever comes next. Your next great adventure awaits—don’t keep it waiting!

Rim Rock Recreational Trail Illinois - Map