Virtual Office Notice

As of March 17, 2020, the office has moved to virtual work until further notice, and to protect the health and safety of our employees and customers, we are not scheduling in-person meetings at this time. Continuing our service to you during this time is very important. We are ready and available to help you. Please contact us by phone: (815) 423-6370; or e-mail: for any inquiries or assistance.

Midewin trails remain open from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. There are over 30 miles of non-motorized trails. Trail maps in English and Spanish are available online: Self-guided tours are also available on the website that are accessible by smartphone:

The health and safety of Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie visitors, volunteers, staff, partners and nearby communities remains our top priority.  In accordance with direction regarding social distancing provided by our Federal partner agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the restroom facility at the Wauponsee Trailhead is temporarily unavailable for public use effective March 30, 2020. Please continue to follow the guidance of our local health officials and CDC. For more information, visit:

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Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie


Live Cam - banner

In 2016, The National Forest Foundation and USDA Forest Service installed a web cam for visitors to check-in on the bison herd throughout the day. Midewin Public Services tracks to see when the bison are visible in the web cam & will post on Facebook & Twitter.




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Come visit Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie! Fifty miles from Chicago, the 18,500 acre Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie is a place where volunteers, partners and staff are restoring one of the last remnants of the native tallgrass prairie ecosystem. Read more about Midewin's history, mission, and shared vision here.



News Release: Child Reading wildflower brochure

At Home Learning

The USDA Forest Service – Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie has online tools available for learning at home. From sing-alongs to bat masks and other craft projects and more, there is something for students of all ages to learn about conservation and natural resources and every child’s life-long relation to both.

Box: Programs and Events

Programs and Events

  • Tours
  • Programs
  • Winter Lecture Series

Discover the Prairie


Plan Your Trip: Winter Pedal Power  Plan Your Trip: Find Your Spot - Hunting  Plan Your Trip: Horseback Riding





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Recent News


Frogs of Midewin - Podcast

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What’s that sound? Can you hear frogs year-round at Midewin? Which frogs are here & how are they helping to restore the land that was once the Joliet Area Army Arsenal?

Listen now: 10-minute talk on WCGO Radio Chicago.

Honoring Prairie Farmsteads

Spotlight: Honoring Historic Farmsteads

In 1838, local resident Henry J. Abel was heard to say that prairie farmsteads were “preferable by far to the timberlands.” What made Abel say that?


Grow a prairie garden: Field notes from Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie

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Growing a prairie garden at your home or business is simpler than you might think.

Prairie Plant of the Month 2020 Calendar

Fall Color 2019: Black-eyed Susan

In 2019, Midewin produced a weekly series of messages on native Illinois prairie plants. And we turned them into a calendar for you! 


Video B-Roll

Spotlight: Bison Crawl

All video is housed on the Forest Service Vimeo account. Please check back as links to more b-roll footage will be added over the next few months.


Feature: Prairie Restoration - Boomer

Conversations about Midewin