Concerns the trail that, at least in spirit, extends from Freeport, IL to just outside of Rockford, IL. I'm relatively new to Chicagoland, so any corrections welcome.
Rode this trail from Freeport to Rockford, at least some parts. I rode out East River Road and then tried to join the trail at Ridott by heading south on N Rock City Road. When I got to Ridott I spent a good deal of time looking for the trail and realized that it was nothing but a rutted dirt track - not good for my rough riding road bike.
I then went Ridott Rd and related back roads to Pecatonica. Great ride back there on the hills, but watch out for a couple dogs. The owner yelled that the dog is friendly as I ripped by...uh huh.
Rejoined the trail at Pecatonica and was happy to see pavement, but it turned to compressed pea gravel just outside of town. Also, the plan life encroaching on the trail had been cut down and left on the trail. I rode until Conger Road then got off because past there the plants had not even been cleared. What was I doing on this trail anyway?
Rode State Road the rest of the way into Rockford. State Road has an excellent shoulder with a few exceptions, making for a very easy and fast approach to Rockford if you don't mind some big rolling hills.
All in all, I wish I had just stuck to roads but I wanted to see what the trail was like. Clearly, it was not very used and I appreciate all those maintenance crew's efforts to bring it back to life.
Back in 2006 I road the trail as part of the Grand Illinois Trail ride:
I gave up, road Rt. 20 from Pecatonica through Rockford.