TO DO: The Des Plaines River Trail

One of the biggest compromises we made when moving up to Chicago was moving from a 2,200+ square foot house into a small, two bedroom, dungeon of an apartment. The hardest part of that wasn't living in a two bedroom apartment, but moving Sophie somewhere that she can't run, potty, and play whenever she wants.

I promised myself that I wouldn't let us living in an apartment affect Sophie's active lifestyle- and that I would do my best to find somewhere in Chicago for us to walk, run, and let her play.

Luckily for us, shortly after we started living in the apartment we found a nice neighborhood to walk through that's close- making it a convenient option for our daily walks and runs. Here's the thing though, as lazy as Sophie pretends to be most days, the girl's got a lot of energy. I swear, if you never stopped throwing a tennis ball, she would never stop retrieving it. So, I knew that these walks would be a good supplement but I needed to find something else- and fast.

I started searching the area for trails, recreation parks, and dog parks close to the house when I stumbled across an app called Trail Link. Seriously, guys. If you're ever looking for a new place to hike, a trail to run on, or something fun to do on a Sunday definitely download the app and give it a look. It gives you the activities done on the trail, the distance, and even things like the closest parking spots and downloadable maps!

Thanks to Trail Link , I found The Des Plaines River Trail for Sophie girl and I to hike, swim, and run on. It's less than ten minutes away from our apartment, so convenient to get to, and fulfills the energy-burning exercise that Soph craves.

Usually we wait for Pat to get home from work and hit the trails together for a few hours. Sophie loves going and acts like a sillygoose when she realizes where we're driving to. She loves being able to swim, run down the trail and back to us, and enjoy being off a leash for a few hours.

It is so important to me that we keep her active and happy while we are away from home, so these outings are special to me. I don't ever want to feel like we're compromising our animals' health by moving around so much and being so busy.

Do you have any trails or parks in the Northern Illinois area that you love?! Share them with me below!


All pictures and content are property of Embracing Messiness and Bourbon Oak Tree Photography & Films.

Brandie Scales