Wellness: Outdoors at Whistler Woods

Amenities at Whistler Woods include walking and hiking paths, cross country skiing, bicycling, and volunteer opportunities. Numerous studies show a direct relationship between access to nature and good physical and mental health and long-term well-being. Some of the benefits include lower stress and anxiety; reduced incidences of type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and high blood pressure; children doing better in school; lower impacts from ADHD; and improved immune function. A meta-analysis of 140 such studies involving 290 million people from 20 countries by the University of East Anglia in the U.K. confirmed that “spending time in, or living close to, natural green spaces is associated with diverse and significant health benefits,” including most of those listed above.


While wending their way through Whistler Woods, visitors may spot a variety of birds such as white-breasted nuthatches, great-horned owls and downy woodpeckers; as well as different mammals including white-tailed deer, raccoons, eastern moles and beavers. For more information about birding visit the Chicago Audubon Society.  Read more about birds of the Calumet region making a comeback.


The Major Taylor Trail runs for 7.6 miles between the Dan Ryan Woods to the north and Whistler Woods to the south. Most of the route is off-street trail that runs through the Cook County Forest Preserves and park space managed by the Chicago Park District. At the southern end it connects to the 15-mile long Cal-Sag Trial that goes from the John Husar I&M Canal Trail in Lemont to Freedom Park in Alsip.  The Cal-Sag Trail continues to expand and it will eventually stretch 26 miles from Sag Quarries in Lemont to the Burnham Greenway near the Indiana border. 

Walking and Jogging

Walking and jogging is a great way to get and stay healthy. Whistler Woods offers large, scenic paths and grooves for walking and jogging while surrounding by nature, including oak trees that are up to 300 years old.

Creative Guides to Experience Nature

Download our easy-to-use guides for exercises for all ages in how to create a nature journal, use sound maps, drawing challenges, how to make a nature slide show, and how to use all four senses to experience the wonder of nature that is all around you at Whistler Woods.