The Kishwaukee River was named for the Potowatomi Indian word meaning "river of the Sycamore". Long ago, the Potowatomi Indians carved their canoes from the large Sycamore trees found in the valley and used the river to transport their goods for trade.
Today, the Kish maintains a class "A" rating from the Illinois Dept. of Natural Resources making it one of the three highest water quality river systems in the state. It has often been described as a "unique aquatic resource comparable to a stream without human disturbance".
The riverfront is lined with silver maples, sycamores, and willow trees. Higher from the water's edge thrive an abundance of Red & White Oaks (watch for their unsurpassed beauty in the autumn!) and Hickory trees which are home to many songbirds.
The wetlands provide an ideal habitat for many aquatic species including beaver, river otter, turtles, and frogs. Waterfowl & wading birds such as the Sandhill Crane frequent the marsh areas along the river.
Your nature experience will also bring you in close view of many endangered, threatened, & watch-listed species. Keep an eye out for yellow-headed blackbirds, black terns, speckled alders, mulberry wing butterflies, and spiked mussels. It is not uncommon to see a hawk perched high in a tree (the Landing is home to two "resident" hawks) or to catch a glimpse of a beaver working hard on his dam.
Canoeing the Kish is the perfect opportunity to relax and truly enjoy all that our natural surroundings have to offer!