Where is the Illinois River Road?
Traversing both east and west sides of the Illinois River from Ottawa, 150 miles south to Havana, the Illinois River Road has spurs to the communities of Princeton and Canton. The Illinois River Road corridor has over 100 natural and historic sites and numerous unique communities located throughout its 10-county region.
The Scenic Byway is conveniently located between Chicago and St. Louis, but just far enough to get away from it all. So get off the beaten path and see what the Illinois River Road has in store for you!
Warnecke Woods 41-1835 North Avenue, Princeton, IL 61356
Warnecke Woods is a 33.5-acre botanical gem that was donated to the Bureau County Natural Resources Conservation Service District in 1984 by Marie Warnecke. Ecologically, the site is a mix of rare black oak/black maple savannah, swampy floodplain forest dominated by swamp white oak, and abandoned agricultural land which is gradually succeeding back to woodland through careful management. There are a good variety of forest birds for a smaller site, an easily accessible trail system, and a picnic area. Interesting savanna plants include Ohio buckeye, wild leek, gray dogwood, Virginia bluebells, gooseberry, and downy yellow violet. Down in the lowlands, the early spring woodland wildflower show features ephemeral species such as jack-in-the-pulpit, spring beauty, trout lily, American pennyroyal, mayapple, bloodroot, skunk cabbage, and red trillium.